that when Columbus discovered Trinidad
he stumbled into a big party. Today,
Trinidadians are a fun loving, hospitable people who do indeed
love partying. Steel pan music was invented here, a by-product
of the oil industry, and its discarded oil drums. Calypso, too,
had its birth in Trinidad. These musical forms combine to help
make Trinidad’s carnival the world’s finest celebration.
seems to reach out and almost touch Venezuela. The two were
linked together only 11,000 years ago when the last ice age
lowered the sea by 300 feet. It shares a rich diversity of
plants, birds, and insects with the South American continent.
There are also some species that are unique to Trinidad. South
American Indians inhabited Trinidad when Columbus arrived in
1498. The early Spanish colonization in 1776 was not successful
as the Spanish were doing too well plundering South America to
get too interested in Trinidad. Governor Chacon then offered
free land to all comers, and the colonization of Trinidad got
under way with help from many French settlers. Port of Spain
became the main town.
The British captured Trinidad and Tobago in 1797 and held the
two islands until independence. In the early days Trinidad had a
flourishing plantation economy based on sugar. The plantocracy
found itself short of labor after the abolition of slavery, when
former slaves quite naturally wanted no part of working on the
plantations. The landowners’ solution to the problem was to
import some 150,000 indentured servants from India. Today
Trinidad’s population is a blend of Indians, Africans, and
Europeans; a mix that has generated some exceptionally good
looking people. Trinidad has a population of 1.2 million, about
350,000 of whom live in Port of Spain. Trinidad and Tobago
became an independent twin-island state in 1962, a democracy in
the British tradition.
During the last world war
the United States established major naval and air bases in
Trinidad. They served to protect oil shipments to England, which
were prime targets for German U-boats. Trinidad has the good
fortune to have large oil deposits and a pitch lake. As a result
it is more industrialized than the rest of the Caribbean and
produces, among other things, steel and ammonia, which are
exported, along with oil and natural gas. Shipbuilding and major
construction are undertaken.
Trinidad is modern.
It has large shopping malls, similar to those in the USA and
good roads. Over the last few years Trinidad made a deliberate
and successful bid to become the haul out and service center for
yachts in the Lesser Antilles with a marine industry based in
the Chaguaramas National Park. Trinidadians built many boatyards
and marinas and developed so many services that there are over a
hundred in the Chaguaramas area alone. This has put it firmly on
the map for cruising people, or yachties as they are locally
Many come to haul out but stay to discover another side of
Trinidad; an island whose exotic and flamboyant nature includes
rain forests and swamps with monkeys, parrots, macaws, manatees
and giant leatherback turtles. They discovered too, one of the
most fun-loving and hospitable people in the Caribbean whose
Carnival is considered by many to be the best in the world. When
the fun got too much, they found, as Trinidadians have long
known, that a week or two in Tobago is the perfect way to relax.
There are a good number of Trinidadian yachtspeople and they
have two active yacht clubs, the Trinidad and Tobago Yacht Club
(TTYC) and the Trinidad and Tobago Sailing Association (TTSA).
They are welcoming and friendly to visiting yachtspeople and
love to see everyone have a good time.
Trinidad also has several out-of-the-way anchorages. These make
perfect getaways for a few days of peace and quiet. Many of
these offer great hiking for the adventurous.
since August 05
Chandlery, fishing gear, technical supplies
General Yacht Services
Coral Cove Marina
Peake Yacht Services
Power Boats Mutual Facilities Ltd
Trinidad and Tobago Sailing Association
Chaguaramas Development Authority