Trinidad and Tobago nature tours

“Trinidad and Tobago enjoy the flora and fauna of South America in a compact Caribbean setting. This in-depth tour reveals the best of both islands, tailored to your interests.”

Highlights

Tobago Main Ridge Forest Reserve hike| Glass-bottom boat tour to Little Tobago Bird Sanctuary | full day Tobago island tour | Asa Wright Nature Centre | Nariva Swamp | Caroni Bird Sanctuary | Oilbirds at Dunstan Caves | Leatherback turtles nesting and hatchlings emerging | also possible: snorkelling, kayaking, scuba diving, nature trails

Description of Trinidad and Tobago nature tours

This Trinidad and Tobago nature tour is a tailor made eco adventure to discover the rich flora and fauna of these two islands, while also including every comfort and time to relax. The dual island nation of Trinidad and Tobago lies just seven miles off the coast of South America. They are the most southerly Caribbean islands and also the most exciting and least explored. Despite forming one country, the two islands offer very different landscapes, from the tropical rainforests and exotic wildlife of Trinidad to the silver beaches and spectacular coral reefs of Tobago.

On this tailor made nature tour, we hope to show you some of the 2,300 species of flowering plants, 600 or so different butterflies and over 470 species of birds that can be found on these islands. This is not a conventional sun, sea and sand destination; instead, Trinidad and Tobago attract visitors interested in its lush tropical rainforests and wetlands teeming with exotic wildlife. At the Caroni Swamp, for instance, you can watch thousands of Trinidad’s national bird, the vibrantly coloured scarlet ibis, flock home to roost. There are also beautiful and remote beaches where enormous leatherback turtles keep return year after year to lay their eggs.

No other Caribbean destination offers such diversity of wildlife and habitats in such a compact area, making Trinidad and Tobago a nature lover’s paradise. Eco adventures in mainland South America come close, but can’t deliver such a diversity of flora and fauna in such a compact, accessible form.

Trinidad and Tobago has two seasons: high season runs from 15th Dec to 1st May; low season is from 1st May to 15th December. The islands enjoy an almost constant average temperatures of 29°C (84°F) during the day and 23°C (74°F) at night. December to April are the driest months, with rain showers lasting no longer than 30 minutes a day. Thanks to its southerly location, Trinidad and Tobago is rarely affected by hurricanes. Between Christmas and Easter is the most expensive time to travel. Carnival falls in the few days before Ash Wednesday, which usually occurs in February or early March. To see leatherback turtles laying their eggs, come between March and August. Hatchlings emerge from May to September.

Travel Team

If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. The Travel Team.

01273 823 700 Calling from outside the UK?

Departure information

This trip can be tailor made at a time to suit you and can be adapted to suit your interests, budget and requirements as necessary
Our top tip:
If you're keen to see nesting leatherbacks, travel from March-August. Hatchlings emerge May-September.
Trip type:
Tailor made.
Activity level:
Leisurely.
Accomm:
9 nights in 3-4* beachfront hotels, 5 nights in a rainforest lodge.
Solos:
Can be tailor made for solo travellers at extra cost.
Included:
Accommodation, local and international flights, transport, listed tours, transfers, tour guides.
Meals:
All breakfasts and dinners. 5 lunches at accommodation, packed lunches when on tours.
Vouchers
Accepted
“One of the best local words is ‘limin’, which just means chilling out. Everyone limes in Trinidad and Tobago.”

Responsible tourism

Trinidad and Tobago nature tours

Carbon reduction

Your holiday will help support local people and conservation. We must also reduce CO2. Learn about the CO2 emissions of this holiday and how to reduce them.

Environment

During this trip you will be based at three different properties, all of which are located in rural areas close to the local communities. These hotels are the main source of employment for the nearby villages and local people are trained in a wide range of skills. At the Asa Wright Nature Centre in Trinidad all their resident guides are trained in conservation and wildlife and sometimes even sponsored through to University graduation. The Centre is committed to conservation education at all levels and approximately 4000 local school children visit the estate each year. The Lodge at the Asa Wright Centre is a comfortable non-profit making hotel, most of their funds come from their guest facilities and you can therefore help them develop their conservation efforts just by visiting the Centre.

At the Mt Plaisir Estate Hotel at Grande Riviere, the owner with the support of the village community, local artists and craftsman, has transformed the basic lodging into a rustic, eco-friendly hotel blending harmoniously with the surroundings. Most of the food served is grown organically on their farm, which you can visit. The furnishings here are the work of local craftsmen and artisans and are available for sale. Guests are immersed in the local community and village people are welcome to share in the hotel’s facilities. This is where the endangered Leatherback Turtles lay in abundance. At night, Mt Plaisir is lit only by the dim yellow glow of low-watt bulbs masked by wicker shades; candles in the dining room and the light of the moon are the only other illuminations allowed while the turtles conduct their ancient ritual, sometimes just metres from your bedroom door.

Here, the turtles come first and this is now an important conservation area, which tourism is helping to preserve. All visitors must visit the turtle conservation centre, where they are invited to view the exhibition on turtle conservation and pay a small fee, which goes directly to the efforts to raise awareness, conduct scientific research and stop poaching. In the past locals have killed the turtles for their shells and meat and dug up their eggs. Now they are employed as wardens and help protect the turtles.

All the national parks that you will visit on this trip are protected. The Tobago Forest Reserve is the oldest protected rainforest in the western hemisphere, with plantation owners realising as early as 1776 that they should stop cutting down the forest. Since then 14,000 acres of central Tobago were designated a protected Crown Reserve. On this tour, you will have the opportunity to walk the 5km Gilpin Trace trail through the Reserve with an experienced and knowledgeable local guide, who will ensure that a responsible code of conduct is followed so that any impact on the environment is minimised.

We choose all the accommodation that we use very carefully, for their location and their operating systems and work very closely with them. We visit every property regularly, to ensure that standards are kept, that they remain sympathetic to the environment, that whatever possible is done to be more energy sufficient and just to keep in touch.

We always recommend that guests eat out in local restaurants, try the street food from vendors and take part in the local culture, thus spreading holiday spending throughout the local community.

16 Reviews of Trinidad and Tobago nature tours

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Reviewed on 25 Jun 2019 by

We thoroughly enjoyed our well organised trip which met our bird watching requests. Everyone we came in touch with was friendly and helpful. Read full review

Reviewed on 28 Mar 2019 by

Excellent. A great rip to a very interesting island. The extent of the rainforest was very pleasing to see. The way the villagers at Grande Riviere protest & conserve the leatherback turtles was awd inspiring and a great thing to experience. Read full review

Reviewed on 14 Jan 2019 by

All 3 places we stayed in were equally enjoyable as were the birding activities... Overall the holiday was 5* and we’ve booked with this tour operator again for next year. Can’t wait. Read full review

Reviewed on 09 Jul 2018 by

An excellent holiday with good range of wildlife and fantastic scenery; ideal for both birders and those who have a more general interest in wildlife and the environment. Read full review

Reviewed on 30 Jan 2018 by

I loved the quality of accommodation. Read full review

Reviewed on 10 Mar 2017 by

Thousands of Scarlet Ibis coming to roost at Caroni Swamp Read full review

Reviewed on 06 Feb 2017 by

The most memorable was watching scarlet ibis come in to roost and visiting the oilbird caves from the Asa Wright Centre. The beautiful and peaceful environment at both Hacienda Jacana and Kariwack Village. Read full review

Reviewed on 27 Jan 2016 by

It is equal to the best holidays we have been on and we want to repeat it. Read full review

Reviewed on 15 May 2016 by

Best bits: Seeing the leatherback turtle on the beach, closely followed by arriving on the veranda at ASA Wright, then the boat trip and scarlet ibis. Read full review

Reviewed on 09 Jan 2015 by

They have a philosophy where their priority is for conservation and education, trying to increase local people's knowledge of local flora and fauna, they also educate young people to become guides. Read full review

Reviewed on 13 Dec 2014 by

The stars of the fortnight were definitely the birds: from thousands of scarlet ibis coming in to roost, tiny iridescent hummingbirds battling over sugar feeders, beautiful elegant tropic birds soaring above or comical tiny male manakins dancing to attract a female. Undersea life was a very close second - it was like swimming in an aquarium just a few metres off shore. Read full review

Reviewed on 19 Aug 2014 by

Wonderful, loved being surrounded by nature. The leatherback turtles laying on the beach was also a highlight. Read full review

Reviewed on 14 Mar 2014 by

Getting to the heart of Carnival on our day trip there was the most memorable part of the holiday...Excellent - lovely people, great bird life, and a huge variety of fish to snorkel with, just off the beach... Read full review

Reviewed on 13 Feb 2014 by

Excellent, I will pass on recommendations to friends and family Read full review

Reviewed on 18 Jul 2013 by

Excellent...The best part was the turtles at Mt Plaisir, Grande Riviere. We watched one laying her eggs, and later helped a lost hatchling find the sea! Read full review

Reviewed on 05 Dec 2011 by

Seeing 188 species of bird which were new to me and in the process experiencing the sights and the people of the two islands....Excellent! Read full review

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