On 26th June 2018, I went on a holiday with my family to the Caribbean island of Tobago. This was the first time we went away as a family for years and was definitely a trip I was looking forward to (particularly as I hadn’t been to the Caribbean since maybe 2006).
So in this blog, I’m going to tell you a little bit about my holiday, what to do there and how best to prepare if you are thinking about going to Tobago too.
Topics I’m going to be covering include:
· The Airplane
· Where to stay
· Other things to do
Also during this blog, I may be lazy with my English and type how we’d speak in the Caribbean (why not, since it’s about Tobago) crossed with a South London lingo. SO that’s just an FYI for you grammar police. Anyway, let’s get into it!
So firstly, when it comes to packing for your holiday, I’d pack… stand there and look at your suitcase… and then… take out half of the stuff you packed because you probably won’t need it. Serious, I could have just packed hand luggage and been good. Maybe 3 or 4 string vests, a couple shorts and I would have been nice (well obviously a little bit more than that, but not too much). But by far, the greatest thing I packed was my Bucket Hat! I got it dirt cheap just for this holiday, a few days before, and I freakin’ love it! (my fam not as much haha) I wore it all the time lol and even now here in the UK, when I meet people new, they say it proper suits me :D they assume I’ve been wearing it my whole life and are shocked when I saw I’ve just got it and have never worn a Bucket Hat before lol. But make sure to pack mosquito spray, I’m not a fan of them. I spent about £50 on spray, repellent bands and plug-ins coz when I was in Barbados as a kid, they yam me up bad! I didn’t even use all the stuff I got, so I still got some left for the next holiday (hopefully sooner rather than later).
Bear in mind the airplane is cold from the aircon, especially on the return flight, which is usually at night, so I like to wear a tracksuit on the plane. Although, a few people laughed when I posted the pic on social like “why are you wearing a tracksuit to Tobago?” Lol it’s for the plane! In fact, this tracksuit also came in handy in certain buildings too because you have to wear long sleeves in them (e.g. certain shopping places, government buildings etc.)
But sorry even before getting on the plane, let me digress. Sometimes I regret things in life and wish I did something different. Not like regret regret, just like an “ahh man”. And in this case, it was as soon as we arrived at Gatwick airport, early morning (about 6am) on Tuesday 26th June 2018. What happened was that as soon as we got out of the Cab and went to wait at the escalators to go up into Gatwick Airport, Krept and Konan walked past (and Cosmic and another don too). But I didn’t go up to them and say hi or wahgwarn :( they actually looked at us as well as if to say “we know that you know who we you are lol say wahgwarn”. I don’t know why I try stunt and not go up to them when I dig their music, I’m even listening to their Link Up TV Behind Barz right now. But anyway, from looking at Krepts Insta and Snapchat story, I guess they were flying from Gatwick to perform at Napa or one of dem islands there. Oh well, next time…
Anyway, let’s get back to it. So on the plane, you get your own screen on the back of the chair in front of you with games and movies and what not. Personally, I didn’t really rate the movies and I’m such a strong sleeper (I can do it with my eyes closed), so I just tend to slump on planes. Food wise, if you have dietary requirements, make sure you order it way in advance of the day of the flight. In my family, four of us are Vegan, so we had to let them know. It was semi peak on the way back though because there was a complication with the British Airways system. But we managed to get our Vegan food thankfully. The great thing is though, with dietary requirements, you get your food first :P
Also (MASSIVE TIP), before you decline your chair on the plane, make sure the person behind you is prepared for it! Their table is at the back of your chair. I declined my chair and the person behind me drink split on them (oops). That actually happened to me flying back from Quebec, Canada in 2004 (and I still haven’t forgot about that! Damn Orange Juice). Anyway, I apologised though, but they try tell me I not to decline my chair (bitch please, I paid for this seat). I told them just decline their chair too if they wanted space. I swear, I can’t wait for the day I can turn left on planes (meaning fly first class) and even when you walk through to the economy class, it’s so peak and a tease to see the better seats that you can lie down on.
On the way to Tobago (if flying from the UK like we), you’ll do a stop in Antigua first to drop people off for an hour or so. This is your first taste of the Caribbean :) not for you to get off the plane though! They also spray the plane with this aerosol thing? After that, you’ll fly for an hour or so to Tobago.
But listen… when you get off the plane in Tobago… DO NOT TAKE PHOTOS! They are proper strict about this! Of course, when you get off the plane after about 11 hours and being in the social age we are in today, the first thing you’re going to want to do is take selfies and snap. Especially when you have the unique experience of stepping straight onto the runway, down the steps of the plane, rather than through a corridor. But the airport officers were onto us like a flash and saying to delete any photos we’ve taken. It was so extreme that after they told us, we continued walking and my brother was using his front facing camera as a mirror to see what he was looking like (he’s got mad waves) and one dude came zooming over in the car like “we’ve told you already! Do you want to be deported!” Damn fam, talk about a welcome to the country, especially when we’ve got Trinidad and Tobago citizenship and passports through my mother’s side of the family.
Where to stay
When booking your accommodation, stay in and around Crown Point / Canaan area (basically anywhere circled on this map). No point staying elsewhere on the island, it’s dead compared in my opinion.
We stayed in a banging Villa right next to a Mall and Cinema and close to the best beaches. We had semi-beef with some next young people in the Villa though for being disrespectful and playing music wayyy too loud and late at night. It wasn’t that kind of Villa kmt, I got a 4 year old niece trying to sleep here…
If we were to go back again, we’d probably stay in the gated community at the Tobago Plantations called The Magdalena Grand Beach Resort. This area is quite wealthy, apparently people like Brian Lara (former Trinidadian Cricketer and widely acknowledged as one of the greatest batsmen of all time) have property here. My Dad made a friend when we were at Store Bay who took him and my mum to see this area and they proper liked it. But where was my damn invite kmt lol.
The first thing we did after we get taxis to our villa is hire a car. You’re looking at about $1800TT (£214.39) for the week, so £30.61 a day (pretty much how much you can get it in the UK tbh). We had a Nissan Tiida, which my friend Jordan said is known as the wet man car lol but he didn’t explain why! The handbrake on it is mad, like it took a while for us to clock where it was. It’s actually a footbrake where the clutch would be (we had an automatic, like most cars over there).
When we arrived and get in the taxi, my brother and I did enquire about hiring bikes (as in peds). But the person taking us (my mum’s friend) and the driver advised strongly against it. Ironically, just as we happened to go past a point in the road where there was a smashed wall from a collision. The driver of our taxi said he lost two nephews who died on bikes (yikes!).
Anyway, the aircon in the car was a blessing though. Petrol is cheap too, since Trinidad and Tobago is the largest oil and natural gas producer in the Caribbean (I found this claim on Google :P). We’d put in maybe $30TT (£3.57) at a time, which would fill about a quarter-to-half a tank, with the engine size being 1.6 litre. It’s sick as well coz they have staff at the petrol station who do it all for you (for no extra cost) so you don’t even have to get the car. It’s usually young brothers too, so it’s nice seeing them have employment. The speed limit in Tobago is 50kmh (30mph) and 80kmh (mph) on the faster roads. They drive on the left-hand side of the road over there and the steering wheel is on the right just like in the UK.
But be careful on the roads though coz:
· Other drivers love and are quick to overtake you
· Collisions happen (as explained above)
· Other drivers sometimes forget there is something called an indicator and will just randomly stop when they like to drop people off or God knows what
· There are nuff potholes
· Be aware at some parts. Animals like cows, chickens, goats and even dogs and cats may walk inna di road lol
· Hella windy roads going up and down hills, when you drive away from the Crown Point / Scarborough area to the other side of the island. We’d make jokes cah it would say the hill is a 25% gradient and there’d sometimes be no barriers on the side. Certain drivers looked like they wanted to go over a 100% gradient!
I do like the driver culture there though. It’s very common to see people on the side of the road putting their hand out to hitch a ride and people would pick them up. Most cars start with a “P” on their licence plate, which stands for private, so they can pick up people if they like.
I also like the fact that you can turn left on a red light (turn left on red), just like how in America you can turn right on red.
Don’t waste your time with any others, just do Store Bay (best in my opinion) or Pigeon Point, again both around Crown Point.
No disrespect to the other beaches but we just didn’t rate them and the biggest let down was driving across the whole island (1.5 hours!) to the highly recommended Charlotteville beach. Dead. We didn’t wanna spend our last beach day there so ended up turning right around back to Store Bay. Pigeon Point you have to pay $20TT per person to enter though (free for young kids under six I think). Both of these beaches (Store Bay and Pigeon Point) have amazing things to eat. Store Bay I’d always get my Vegetarian Roti for $20TT (so only about £2.40, are you mad!) and at Pigeon Point, I love the chips they do for $15TT (£1.76). The BBQ sauce is unlike anything I’ve ever had! My brother said they have the best chicken he’s tasted in his WHOLE LIFE and he weren’t even gassing! (But I’m a Vegan so don’t advocate eating meat). You can play pool in there for free as well (I beat my brother but lost to my Dad :( ). I met a nice Venezuelan girl there who was working in one of the shops there, she’s married though *cry face*
At both beaches, you can do Jet Skiing for about $240TT (£28.57) for 30mins and do a Glass Bottom Boat Ride for $100TT (£11.90) or whatever you manage to hustle. I thought the Glass Bottom Boat ride was gonna be dead because if memory serves me well from doing it in Trinidad over 10 years ago, it wasn’t that great. So I wasn’t too keen on it, when my mum proposed the idea and when people try sell it to us and. But I was wrong coz it was live! The name of our boat was, I can’t remember… But anyway, we were fortunate to be on a boat that didn’t have too many people (maybe we intimidated others away lol coz other boats around us were pretty full). So we had nuff space at the bottom deck to see the fishes through the glass and space on the open top deck to chill out. The views were amazing! We stopped over some corals to do Snorkelling and my God, you wouldn’t believe the views! The corals and fish were beautiful. I was so glad I bought my own Snorkel set from my Venezuelan girl for $250TT (£29.76) rather than use the ones provided because mine was better :P My brother was like he wouldn’t pay $250TT for a Snorkel. But I liked the girl, can’t remember her name though but she was cool and was teaching me Spanish. I wanted to put money in her pocket and for her boss to feel like she’s good. I thought it was a good investment anyway cah I used it at the pool at the villa and all the time at the beaches. The fishes would be mad close to you right by the shore it huge schools! I wish I had a GoPro or something to tek pictures. My niece loved to use the snorkel too and would always be like “Unkie, can I use your breather?” lol breather you know. Another neat point where the glass bottom boat stops is the Nylon Pool. It’s crazy because it’s only waist deep but the area around it is deep water. It’s not really a pool lol I think I thought that at first. They joke and say if you rub the Nylon Pool sand on your skin, it makes you 10 years younger lol and if couples kiss if the waters of the pool, your love will last forever.
(By the way, all my TT dollar to pounds conversions in this blog are based on the exchange I got from ACE-FX at London Bridge. It was 8.4 and was the best rate I found after INTENSELY looking around. Imagine, the last time I was in Trinidad, the rate was 10! Anyway, I ordered my TT dollars from ACE-FX online and then paid and collected them when I went to London. It’s a nice efficient service. It’s hard to find TT dollars as most places have to have them ordered in as, as you can imagine, they aren’t as popular as other currencies)
But back to the beaches. Here’s a warning, as soon as you pull up to a beach (especially Store Bay), before you EVEN get in the car park, you’ll have people trying to sell to you! Everything from deck chairs, umbrellas, chennet and glass bottom boat rides (bitch I already did a boat ride! But they say “if it’s nice, do it twice”). Sometimes it got a bit too much…
In terms of the deck chairs, I had a plug on Store Bay though who niced us with them. He called me “British” lol and claim he knows and has been to Peckham, can’t remember his name though (there’s a trend going on here). He gave us the deck chair for free once and offered to take me and my brother shooting with his rifle (for p of course). Maybe he does know Peckham, I joke. Deckchair wise you’re looking at $20TT for the chair and $10TT for the umbrella, so for 2 chairs and an Umbrella, you’re looking at $50TT (because you share the umbrella between two chairs), so about £6 for the day (or £3 each for two people — having a chair each and sharing the umbrella). Not bad if you ask me. I prefer the deck chairs to sitting on a towel on the sand, though it did seriously slump me. One time at the beach I spent most of it asleep on it! Maybe it was the itis (food coma) from the Roti? Or my talent again at being so good at sleeping I can do it with my eyes closed..
Talking of food, let’s talk about it! Ahhh “Food glorious food” in the words Oliver. I love Caribbean food and I’m sure you to do too, as well as many people who go to the islands. Here’s a quick list of my favourite foods we got in Tobago:
My God! Heaven on your tongue! We were so lucky that there was a guy who sold them every morning (apart from a Sunday as we walked and found out…) right around the corner from our villa. There would always be a line of people who wanted them, everyone from us as vacationers to locals grabbing some on the way to work. They tasted so peng, we went from ordering maybe one or two on our first day to up to 10 each at a time. We lined up his pocket nicely, I’m sure he felt a slight hit when we left. One woman in the line was like “Did you say 15!”, yes I ordered 15 lol we loved them. Bring a plastic bag when you buy them if you buy loads at a time like us. I prefer them without the pepper sauce though. The woman who serves them does it rapid too. It’s cool coz they have an icebox of drinks there too, semi-expensive though like $7TT (83p) a bottle (actually thinking about it maybe it ain’t that bad but seemed like it at the time). Don’t drink the mauby though, it tastes like s**t! It’s tree bark or something like that. My mum loved it though and my friend Jordan’s mum likes it too, maybe it’s an older thing? Every morning our routine would be go get Doubles about 9am then go back to the Villa by the pool to eat them. We used to play a game where we had to declare to ono (each other) how many we were gonna eat now and save for later and it always turned out we’d eat one or two more than intended coz they were that good. And then the carbs would hit us and we’d go slump… It was so jokes, one time my sister and I were just absolutely knocked out on the sofas and she don’t usually slump like I do. We did reduce how many we bought at a time though towards the end cah (because) they taste better when they are fresh rather than re-warmed. I went through a period of a few days liking them cold lool.
A Trinidad and Tobago traditional dish, Roti. Roti used to be my favourite food from T&T but I have to say no Doubles has overtaken it! It’s still peng though. The first joint we got roti from was a little spot on the way to the beach on Milford Road (imagine this is the ONLY main road in the area lol it made me chuckle).
Price wise you’re looking at $20TT (£2.38) for the Vegetarian Roti (can’t remember the meat price soz). Ahh I feel like I could murder a Roti now! My best place for Roti though as I mentioned above was a Store Bay. Usually in the UK, I would eat Roti with a knife and fork and I distinctly remember my Granddad cussing me growing up saying you don’t eat Roti with a knife and fork! 15 years later from this trip, I can see why lol it just a quick ting you eat with your hands like a burger. Maybe I used to try be classy back in the day, who knows.
(also spelt Palori — I didn’t know how to spell it so spelt it Plori lol #DontJudgeMe)
This is an absolute hidden gem. My sister and dem were banging on for the whole of the first week like “where are we gonna find Pholourie, where are we gonna find Pholourie”. We couldn’t find it anywhere. I couldn’t really remember how it tasted to really go on about finding it. My sister said back in Trinidad (she would have been about 10 or something) she ate loads of it from my Granddad and put on such weight coz of how much she ate. After the first week, we found two women who run a pop-up stall on Friendship Road off Milford Road (that main road again), who sells them amongst other things on a Sunday. But only a Sunday though, I guess this made up for the Doubles man not selling on this day. The rest of the week, the woman said they worked as Government Officials (that actually sounds fancy when you type that out) and it proper suited them having their spot on Friendship Road because they were actually so friendly.
But yes, Pholourie are banging. You buy a bag for $5TT (60p) and I love the tamarind sauce the put with it. I tended to buy two bags at a time and back them down straight away as soon as I sat down in the car or even before that walking back to it lol. I can’t eat too many of these though, so I wouldn’t recommend buying more than that. I think the first time I bought three, took the last one home and didn’t even eat it and it’s not as nice re-warmed coz by then all the sauce has soaked into them. The crazy thing is, after searching and searching for Pholourie and after buying it from the women dem on Friendship Road, it turned out we could actually also buy it from a stand on Pigeon Point Road (the road leading to, believe it or not, Pigeon Point Beach). Yeah Pholourie is nice, but deffo third for me (I think my fam would agree) after Doubles and Roti. I think the thing for me that not make me like them as much was seeing them being made after we cleared out their first batch at Friendship Road. You fry them in deep oil and that then concerned me..
On a side note, the women selling Pholourie did sell peng drinks (again around the $7TT (83p) a bottle mark). The first one I had from the is called LLB (Lemon, Lime and Bitters) coz I tried it a few days prior at my mum’s friend restaurant in Bloody Bay a few days prior.
We were initially gonna stay in this Bloody Bay area as well but it was fully booked. I’m glad we didn’t though because it’s not as nice as where we were staying so it was a serendipity (a blessing in disguise) that it was full. Remember what I said above, stay in the Crown Point / Canaan area. But yes, LLB is very popular drink over there.
A next drink I liked was the Guava juice (by the way, all these drinks are homemade). But I have to say, my favourite drink of the lot was Grapefruit juice! It’s ironic coz usually in the UK, I don’t grapefruit as neither the fruit nor the drink, it’s just too bitter! It’s my Mums favourite though. But yes, the Grapefruit juice in Tobago was absolutely 10 out of 10 and my favourite go-to drink.
To be fair, most juice drinks in Tobago are really nice. Fruit punch tastes so good as well (maybe my second go-to drink) and I liked the Pineapple one too. My favourite company juice (not a homemade one) is by a company called, I can’t remember and couldn’t find it on Google either. But their bottles are colourful and have sort of a cartoony font (if you know the name, let me know!). My favourite juice company in America is Minute Maid if that makes up for it.
In the UK, my brother LOVES Coconut Water, it’s all he drinks! I don’t even like it. Whenever I go home to London, I can guarantee to see two, maybe 3 cartoons of Vita Coco Natural or Innocent Coconut Water in the fridge. So when we were in Tobago, it was no surprise he wanted to try Coconut Water pure from the sauce. But ironically, he hated the coconut water there and me who doesn’t like it in the UK, did like it (well thought it was nicer than the one in the UK anyway). Here’s my sipping it below, can’t remember the cost of it though sorry.
(also known as Guinep or Ackee, depending on where you are in the Caribbean)
I like to call these natures sweets :) my mouth waters just thinking about them. Chennet was something I loved from my previous experiences going to the Caribbean then. You just bite the green outer bit to break out the middle. You then suck off the fleshy bit and then I like to spit out and volley the seed! (Lol soz) You’ll probably get a bunch for about $5TT (so 60p) from most places around the island. When you’re driving (especially towards Speyside from Scarborough), you see kids selling bunches on the road which is cool.
Takeaways and eating out
The first night we arrived, we hadn’t done our food shop yet of course, so my Mum gave us $100TT for Chinese, us all thinking it should cover six of us. But we completely underestimated the costs. Each meal cost easily like $50TT! In pounds yes it’s pretty cheap (about £6 each), but it was a massive wakeup call to how much TT dollars you should be carrying on you at all times. There on out, I made sure I carried a minimum $200TT (£24) with me at all times. But then I had to up it to a minimum $300TT (£36) . Every morning before we left the villa, I had to re-up my wallet to make sure I had enough for di day. In the UK I don’t really carry cash like that on me though, I’d usually just pay tingz on card.
That Chinese restaurant was actually ran by Chinese people, which for some reason I was surprised by. I naively didn’t know there were Chinese folk there. But anyway, there are other spots you can eat / get takeaway from of course like Fast Food ish type places, an Italian, a Jamaican etc. Average dish prices you’ll be looking at are $35–40TT (say £4–5) for a vegetarian dish and $50–75TT (say £6–8) for a meat dish.
One place we really wanted to stop in was Jenny’s. My brother and I loved going to Denny’s in America and Jenny’s was like a spin off of it crossed with a Wendy’s. But it was never flipping open! no matter what time we went and no sign on the door stating the operating hours! How on earth are they running their business? Gosh.
But ironically, I never really have a big appetite when I go on holiday. So many times, I’d pick up a big takeaway meal and not even eat it. I’d prefer just to snack on Doubles, Roti and all that. Maybe it’s the heat that suppresses my appetite? One thing I’d never miss out on though was my Cereal in the morning! I just loved the Granola they have other there with Vanilla Almond Milk (yum! I’d never seen Vanilla Almond Milk before). But these every day (and other) shopping things are expensive! I’m talking like box of Cereal for like $35TT, which is like £4 and Almond Milk for about that too. I didn’t get it. In the UK, I’d never pay £4 for a box of Cereal or Almond Milk (even if it was Vanilla! Though I did see something on the BBC recently that the price of real Vanilla pieces are doing a madness right now in Madagascar and that it’s hard to get hold of). But anyway, bear that in mind that when you do your food shopping, expect to pay more than you usually would in the UK. The Cereal and Vanilla Almond Milk was worth it though :P and it’s nice coz, just like at the petrol stations there, at supermarkets they have staff that do it for you and pack your bags. The main place to do your shop is at Penny Savers. It was funny coz one time at night coming back from the beach, we decided to stop at Penny Savers on the way home. Me and my mum were walking back to the car with the shopping and it was swarmed with these flies! My sister and everyone else inside the car was like “get in quick!”. Bloody Bay also had these mad flies too. They call them June Flies, coz guess when they come out? In June..
Let’s quickly talk about the weather. 50 had a song called “When it rains it pours” and when it comes to Tobago, it gets like that AND WITH NO WARNING! One minute it could be bright sunshine, then you feel a drop and BOOM! You’re swimming. We always joked about how we’d often walk round the corner to get our Doubles thinking the weathers cool and then BOOM get slapped by Poseidon’s ferocity. It gets like that as well when it gets dark. There’s no warning! It could be nice and bright at 6:29pm but then as soon as it hits 6:30pm, BOOM it’s nightfall. Which brings me nicely to the next section mi waan fi talk ‘bout… Nightlife!
The main place to go on a night out is the Crown Point Strip. That’s another reason I’m saying once you’re staying in and around the Crown Point / Canaan area, you’re living!
And do you know what the funny thing is? The first night when we arrived and everyone went to bed, I jumped in the car and thought to myself, “Right, where would the livest place be in Tobago right now”. I was prepared to drive anywhere, no matter how long it took. So I just got in the car with no guidance or direction, just pure guesswork, and after 10 or so minutes, I found the strip! Bear in mind, some parts of the road was pitch-black lol I’m sick! I just followed my instinct / spirit and that was the first time I drove the car as well. It’s so different from my car in the UK. I drive a lil 2 seater at home and the car in Tobago was a big 5 seater with the indicator stick on the opposite side. So many times I’d put on the windscreen wipers instead of indicating lol. Either way I’m sick for finding the strip :)
But anyway, back to the clubs. Jade Monkey is probably the most popular club but personally, I preferred Azenchon. Why? Coz Jade Monkey is partly outside so when it rains its peak! Especially at night. The strip (I don’t think they call it that though but I do) is pretty much active all week, but of course the main days are Friday and Saturday night. Any age too, don’t feel you are too old or too young (well so long as you’re not under 18 of course). The Shade Nightclub is also supposed to be a good spot. People were describing it as almost like a Youth Club (with pool and that) crossed with a Nightclub and supposedly girls were free on a Friday or something like that. But when I went to go, it wasn’t open. From chatting with one of the dudes who work there, who I happened to catch taking the trash out, I gathered that maybe they had been struggling with numbers as to why it weren’t open. After all, it isn’t really near the strip (it’s by Buccoo instead), so it wouldn’t get that natural footfall how Azenchun or Jade Monkey would.
What I did like though, that was mad, was that after all the venues closed for the night on the strip (say 3am/4am), people would just pack up in cars and all head to this next club a few miles down the road and they’d literally stay there until past sunrise still going! I secured one of my best whines there :P I remember driving past at 7am one day to still see people whacking out! So if you’re looking for the after-party, that’s where it’s at! It’s off Milford Road about halfway in between the strip and where Penny Savers is. I cannae remember the name of the venue nor the road sorry.
And when it comes to Sunday… it’s SUNDAY SCHOOL! On my first night when I went to Jade Monkey, these girls I met told me I NEED to go to Sunday School! I said, “Listen, I left school over 10 years ago, there is NO WAY I’m coming here to Tobago on holiday to go back to school!” Who did she take me for? Sunday School you know, I ain’t religious in the slightest..
But boy was I wrong! It’s a night out at Buccoo Beach on the open square, which is pretty savage because it’s just open like that plus it’s a Sunday! Lol like certain people would start work for the week the next day and all sorts. The first Sunday my parents went though and they didn’t really like it (well my Mum didn’t). But they went mad early like 8pm and left at midnight whereby I’m the type of kid to like to go out like 1am at a Clubs peak. Then the second Sunday I went with my sister and we thought it was live! We caught so much joke off people there, like there was one Rasta Man who was killing it with his Rasta Man skank! And there was an old dude with a cane bossing it, are you mad! They won it my opinion, if there was something to win lol, and there was a next bredah killing it with his flag / rag (I forgot mine that night!) doing his 2 step. Families were even there too lol I’m sure I saw a girl about 10, its welcome for everyone.
Drinks wise wherever you’re at, you’re looking at $15–20TT (say about £2 for argument’s sake) for a bottle of beer (I was introduced to Stag out there!) and you’re looking at about $20–25TT (so again say £2–3) for a like a Smirnoff Ice or something like that. I didn’t really touch spirits out there cah I didn’t wanna get too mash up as I was designated driver for our family. But it was nice because we went to Tobago whilst the World Cup was on, a lot of the venues had the games (or highlights) on a big screen in the background. So you could listen to music, have a drink, dance and watch the footy.
Ohhh I almost forgot! We were lucky enough to be on the Island when they had their famous annual event… Island Crashers! It’s a 3-day party at Pigeon Point beach and even though I mentioned Shade Nightclub above, they did have their warm-up party there I believe. From my understanding, Island Crashers is basically mainly for those in their teens (16 to 19) to celebrate finishing their academic year (there is scope for those in their early 20s too, certain events had a 21+ bit). People literally travel from all over the Caribbean to be there, there was literally 1000s of yungen leute (young people in German)! Remember those young people I mentioned above who we almost had a beef with in the Villa? They were here coming for Island Crashers. The tickets for it are mad expensive though lol like $700TT (£83) for the 3 days (£28 a day). To be fair, it’s not that bad once converted into pounds but I weren’t looking to spend that (nor did I budget that cost into my money). So since it’s called Island Crashers, what did I do? I crashed it! Just kidding, I did go but it weren’t that bad. What I did was snuck in on one of the days *shhhh* they don’t call me Sneaky KoD for nothing #StealthMode. How did I do it? A magician never gives away his tricks ;) During the daytime it was cool coz you saw lots of young people at the beach in the Island Crasher T-shirts and what not probably nursing a hangover. I was playing keepie-uppie with some of them.
Some of the big tunes there were when we were out there were (in no particular order):
- Busy Signal — Stay So
- HoodCelebrityy — Stay So
- Popcaan — Family
- Tarrus Riley — Simple Blessings ft. Konshens
- Vybz Kartel — Under Water
- Vybz Kartel, Masicka — InfraRed
And I was also hooked on these songs and had dem on repeat lol:
- Alkaline — After all
- Bob Marley — Jah Live (because of my Dad and niece lol they were singing and dancing to it in the Vila)
Other things to do
So yeah, I’ve pretty much covered everything I wanted to talk about regarding Tobago, so now it’s over to you :) But there are others things you may wanna do in Tobago like:
This was a place I had on my to-do list before we even got to the island. I Googled “Things to do in Tobago” when I was in the UK and something about going to see a waterfall really intrigued me. Maybe that’s why I sat under it and get pelted by the water.
It’s a strong drive from Canaan to get there but it’s really popular though, not surprising for being Tobago’s highest waterfall. One of the families also in the Villa happened to coincidentally be there as well. When you arrive here, you’ll see a big fire brigade building and next to it is the entrance for the waterfall. You have to pay for entry, $60TT (£7) and you can pay extra if you want a guide (we didn’t though) and then yeah you’re in :).
To get the actual falls, you walk through the forest / woods, so you see so many unique trees like huge bamboo stalks etc. and there is a Rastaman chilling deya carving tings out of wood lol he was a sound guy. And then after going over a few minor streams, you reach the waterfall :)
You can swim in the bottom of it (that’s what my mum, sister and niece did) and you can go hiking up (as me and my brother did). We got to the next pool bit up where there were other young people chilling and we took photos there and what not.
But I wanted to go even further… It’s a serious climb and I only had my sliders on! But what I realised then every time I went up a level to a new pool, it just seemed to go on forever! I swear I must have been hiking up for like an hour before I thought you know what, let me turn back before my mum sends out a search party fi me. So I met my brother back, a few pools below, and then we climbed down (well slid down on our bums coz it was so steep!). I remember trying to grab anything on the way down trying not to fall, uprooting trees, getting splinters from wood, getting covered in ants and all sorts. My brother grabbed a stick thinking that he’s Gandalf lol.
All in all, Argyle Waterfall was nice, and was a nice change going into nature like that rather than being in the Villa or at a beach. Nothing against the beaches or Villas though, just simply a nice change for the day, you feel me? Oh yeah, if you want to, by the entrance of Argyle Waterfall they have Quad bikes to hire for like $100TT (£12) for 30 mins or something like that.
Ah man, this would have been something I would have loved to have done (well watched), but we were there at the wrong time off year. In fact we all would have loved to see the Turtles hatching on the sand and making their way into the sea. Tobago has ample places around the island (as indicated on the map) to watch turtles hatch on the beach then make their way into the water. Maybe next time I’ll get to see them ay.
I love a good movie me :) I deffo don’t go enough in the UK. So when I realised we had a cinema right round the corner from our villa, I was keen to go! But what made this realisation even more so was the fact that the tickets were dumb cheap! I’m talking $45TT (£5.36) a ticket! And on Mondays, it’s Buy One Get One Free (BOGOF), so only £2.68 each! With tickets that cheap, I would go and watch a movie if I didn’t even know of it simply out of principle that I was paying a pittance.
I watched The Incredibles 2, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom and The Escape Plan 2. I really wanted to see The First Purge. Firstly coz it features Jovian Wade, a brudda from Endz and secondly coz I’ve never seen any of the Purges but understand the concept, that it’s basically about you can do a madness for 12 hours. That’s all wild. I knew it dropped in the UK on July 4th, but I was gutted it didn’t drop in Tobago. Like America, movies usually come out earlier there (like it did for Incredibles 2), so why wasn’t it out in Tobago yet? Anyway, one of my favourite bits about going to the cinema in Tobago wasn’t necessarily about the movie itself. It was all about the trailers! Specifically this one about Trinidad and Tobago here!
I just love it. When I got back to the UK, I hit up Movie Towne in their DMs and asked what’s the name of it so I could find it on YouTube :) It makes you so proud to be Trini.
The Kimme Museum of Art and Culture
At some point during our holiday, we lost our map that I picked up from Store Bay Beach. So we grabbed a next one but then found the original one again. And when looked closely, my sister saw they had something called the Kimme museum! Now this was VERY important to me, not because at The Kimme Museum “you can admire the larger than life-size sculptures made from oak, cedar, lime, cypress and bronze, depicting perfect portraits of the beautiful Tobagonians”. It’s because my cat is called Kim aka KIMMIE! My mum was keen to go as well, I know she’s likes that kind of thing, so we put in on our agenda to go. The only problem, it’s only open on a Sunday. So the final Sunday before we were due to fly back, we headed for The Kimme Museum! :D But it weren’t open! After waiting outside the locked gates, a guy from inside said to us it’s unfortunately closed this Sunday due to refurbishments. That’s it then. I think he said come back tomorrow and he’ll open it exclusively but we already had plans. Oh well, so if you get the chance, on a Sunday, go to The Kimme Museum for me and Kim :(
Another thing you can do is go visit Little Tobago (as if Tobago wasn’t little enough lol). Basically it’s a tiny island off the coast of Tobago that isn’t inhabited by humans. Animals can just roam free. So you’ve got different birds, bats! (in this building ting) and even a Hermit Crab lol I picked him up. You have to have a tour guide to take you across on a Glass Bottom Boat and to show you around the island. I can’t remember how much it costs though, deffo less than $100TT, so less than a tenner per person, which ain’t too bad. You meet them at the hotel right by the Speyside coast called Blue Waters Inn. Very nice hotel but too far from the strip and everyting for me. So as you can imagine, it’s a strong drive to get there (about an hour or so) from where we were staying. At the hotel, it’s the last time to get food or drink, so make sure you do. We got chips and that just before we boarded. I’d recommend not wearing slides or sandals because it is a bit of a hike uphill on the island and parts can be slippery if it was raining. But it was nice coz on the boat on the way back from Little Tobago to Big Tobago lol we stopped to do some snorkeling. The views weren’t as nice as the Glass Bottom Boat trip to the Nylon Pool but they were still good nonetheless. Then again, it’s always gonna be difficult to top the Nylon Pool trips one because it was honestly so beautiful.
That’s all folks
So yes, in the words of Porky Pig from Looney Tunes, “that’s all folks!” As I look down towards the bottom left corner of my Microsoft Word, I see I have passed the 7,000-word mark going across 12 pages, so I think it’s about time I wrap up (in more ways than one because h-England *yardie voice* is getting cold!). My Uni dissertation (that is published :P) was 8,000 words, so I’ve basically just written a dissertation on Tobago, mad! But it’s made me realise, if I can write this much for a blog, I need to actually write a book! I’ve got so many ideas as well, I just need to do it… and writing this blog, over a period of a few weeks, has shown me that I can.
Anyway, let’s bring this back to Tobago. So yes, you’ll be heading back to Arthur Napoleon Raymond Robinson International Airport to head home… (remember, no pictures!). But what really surprised when we headed back to the airport was the amount of Germans there were flying back to Germany! I didn’t know Tobago was so popular for Germans (my bredrin Jordan who I mentioned before later told me it was). Like literally, the check-in line to go back to Germany (firstly stopping in Barbados) was longer than the check-in line to get back to h-England *yardie voice*. In fact, there was no check-in line for our flight back to England at all! It made sense to me now why there were so many signs there in Spanish as well as German since Tobago was so popular for Germans. Spanish signs were there of course since some people speak Spanish across Trinidad and Tobago. I actually switched to learning Spanish on my DuoLingo whilst I was there (and to speak to my Venezuelan girl).
But what I really liked about the check-in at Tobago airport was that because the airport is so small, the check-in is right by the side of the road! So we literally checked in our luggage then I went back to Store Bay Beach! I wanted to get a Roti for the last time lol there’s no way you can do that in the UK after checking in your luggage. We then chilled at the benches in the grassy area outside, soaking up that Caribbean sun one last time, before going up the escalator in the airport to head home.
Goodbye Tobago, we’ll meet again.
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