As we had finished painting the primer on the hull we thought we deserved a short break and decided to visit neighbouring Tobago last week. Beyzano looked quite different with a bright yellow hull but the next couple of coats will be a more refined blue!
The fast ferry from Port of Spain left at 0630 and we were in Scarborough on Tobago by 1000 after a smooth crossing. The busy docks and container ships anchored in the Trinidadian bay serve this modern and relatively wealthy island. In contrast, Tobago is much smaller and has a lovely, relaxed ambience with chickens running around the towns and lots of colourful stalls in the markets.
Leaving Port of Spain was interesting as there is a half sunken wreck just behind the ferry terminal, so it isn’t easy to manoeuvre out of the berth. It was also fun to go at a higher speed than usual!
We hired a car from Crew’s Inn for just 20 GBP a day, including collision waiver and filled the tank for 8 GBP, so it isn’t an expensive way to see another island. The roads were very quiet but you need to look out for a few major pot-holes where the steep sides under the roads have given way.
The first day we visited the Fort George museum in town, which had several very well laid out rooms with thousands of years of island history on display. It was well worth a visit and was a beautiful building in its own right.
We then followed the coast road northeast, spending an hour at the waterfall to cool off. The scenery is spectacular, with countless sandy bays backed by steep, lush vegetation. The town of Charlotteville is the other port of entry for yachts, so we had a quick look for future reference. The anchorage was quite busy due to the customs office and the few shops in the town but there were only 2 boats anchored in Scarborough.
We checked into the Blue Waters Inn, at Speyside, an old estate. For 90 GBP a night, the room was very comfortable, with a luxurious shower, balcony overlooking the bay and 2 beds, which didn’t move! We were treated to a welcome rum punch before swimming out to a floating platform off the beach but there is also an infinity pool with bar, air-conditioned games room and a terrace bar by the beach. A small pier takes you to a covered deck with sun loungers, perfect for a sundowner.
The next morning we sat on the terrace for a buffet breakfast, which was included. A selection of hot dishes were also available to order; maple pancakes – yum.
The hotel is an eco-centre and they have 6 different types of hummingbird happily taking advantage of nectar feeders in the grounds. Staff can arrange a glass bottomed boat trip, dive tuition and nature tours. It was a small, peaceful place and we would have been happy to spend a couple more days there.
We took the north and west roads back to Scarborough, driving through the rain forest and visiting some picturesque bays, including Englishman’s Bay, en route. This was idyllic in the calm weather with an empty white sand beach and a colourful stall and restaurant. It is a famous anchorage but can be rolly in the wrong conditions.
The ferry left at 1700 so we had time to explore the bustling town before boarding. Friday night is always party night in the islands and the bars were already quite lively, as was the ferry bar taking party goers to Port of Spain for the weekend. It was a whistle-stop tour but as it is unlikely we will sail there next season, it was good to see the island even if it had to be by ferry.