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Tobago

Republic of Trinidad and Tobago

Tobago makes up one half of Trinidad and Tobago and as the smaller sister island, Tobago is an unspoilt, relaxed gem lying at the southern-most tip of the Caribbean Islands. Tobago has fabulous beaches, picturesque towns, tropical rainforests and turquoise seas.

The island may be small at only 21 miles long by 7 miles wide but offers first-class diving, lush rainforests perfect for hiking and waterfall swimming and has an abundance of wildlife including over 200 species of birds, the West Indian manatee, collared peccary, red-rumped agouti, ocelot, red brocket deer, Neotropical otter, weeper capuchin and red howler monkeys.

Tobago boasts an impressive number of dive sites for such a tiny island, with more than 50 well-established spots, with sites for every experience level. The diving is found on both Caribbean and Atlantic coasts. The Caribbean coast would suit beginners and more inexperienced divers with cooler water temperatures, less current and wind, the Atlantic coast offers more exciting strong drift diving with chances of spotting pelagic species such as Tarpon, nurse sharks and mantas.

Getting there
British Airways and Virgin Atlantic offer flights from London Gatwick to Tobago. British Airways fly weekly on Monday and Thursday with a touch-down in Antigua, and Virgin Atlantic on Tuesday and Saturday (November to March) or Sunday (April to October) with a touch-down in Barbados. Flights are approximately 10 hours.

Stay a bit a longer
If you are looking to extend your trip, a twin centre holiday that covers both Speyside (in the North) and Crown Point (in the South-West) would be a great combination. Tobago is also a wonderful place to explore and we highly recommend you add some time to your holiday to see the beautiful scenery and wildlife this amazing little island has to offer. You can see some sample tours further down this page.

Quick Guide: Tobago

  • Location: Southern Caribbean – 22 miles north-east of the larger island of Trinidad and approximately 100 miles off the north-eastern coast of Venezuela. It also lies to the south-east of Grenada. 
  • When to go: December to May (dry season) / June to November (rainy season) – Tobago lies outside the main hurricane belt
  • Average air temp: Tropical – between 28-35°C year round
  • Average water temp: 25-27°C
  • Recommended diver level: Good for all levels

Blue Waters Inn

Blue Waters Inn is a small, 38-room boutique hotel set within 46 acres of lush tropical grounds in the quiet north-eastern end of the island.

Situated in a secluded horseshoe bay, the beach is perfect for swimming, kayaking, paddleboarding and snorkelling, and the hotel has an on-site PADI dive centre, with nearby sites including Angel Reef, Japanese Gardens, Blackjack Hole and London Bridge.

All the comfortable, air-conditioned rooms face the ocean and are a few short steps from the sand.

The resort’s beautiful infinity pool and sun terrace overlook the waters of Batteaux Bay and there are hammocks fringing the beach where guests can relax with a good book and cocktail.

The on-site Aqua restaurant and bar offers waterfront dining on the stunning deck over the beach with views across the bay towards Goat Island and Little Tobago, and serves a great variety of food with fresh fish being the speciality.

Guide cost: 7nts from £1075 per person.
Includes return transfers from airport, 7nts accommodation in a twin/double share Standard room, breakfast, 10 guided boat dives with full equipment.
Not included: International flights to Tobago.

Manta Suites

Set 20 minutes from Goat Island, Manta Suites is located just a few steps from the beach and is based at the Tobago Dive Experience diving centre. The hotel offers comfortable one and two-bedroom self-catering suites which have breath-taking ocean views towards Little Tobago and Goat Island.

The suites are spacious and airy, offering all the comforts of home. You can choose to cook your own meals in your well stocked kitchen or enjoy some of Caribbean hospitality at the dining deck, just adjacent to the suites, complete with a gas grill & honour bar.

Guide cost: 7nts from £975 per person.
Includes return transfers from airport, 7nts accommodation in a twin/double share 1 bed Suite, breakfast, 10 guided boat dives with full equipment.
Not included: International flights to Tobago.

Diving in Tobago

Tobago Dive Experience is a PADI 5 Star IDC Centre is just a 5-15 minute boat ride away from some of the most pristine reefs in the Caribbean and is one of the few dive operators on the island to regularly visit both St. Giles & Sisters, where you have the chance to see mantas, hammerhead sharks and much, much more.

Sean Robinson is a dive instructor with more than 30 years of experience in commercial and recreational scuba diving, with more than 20,000 dives under his belt. He is considered a pioneer in the dive industry in Trinidad & Tobago. ​Sean and his team are dedicated to teaching the country to dive, with programs in many of the countries schools. Tobago Dive Experience & Tobago Reef Masters certifies more scuba divers per year than any other shop in the Caribbean. 

Kathleen Robinson has worked in the dive travel industry for over 15 years, planning and booking individual and group trips for divers, dive clubs and dive shops all over the Caribbean and Central America.

When you visit Sean and Kathleen in Tobago, they offer more than just diving – they offer an experience! Sean and his dive crew will entertain you with some great stories and show you the best diving in Tobago, while Kathleen will help you plan any excursions you may fancy to see the beautiful scenery and wildlife that Tobago has to offer.

Explore Tobago

Rain Forest Tour #1 – Gilpin Trace & Argyle Waterfalls
There are a number of trails in the Tobago Main Ridge Reserve, the oldest natural reserve in the western hemisphere, however the Gilpin Trace has the distinction of being the oldest named trail. It is also the most “well travelled” by tour groups, so depending on what we find when we get there, we may opt to hike a less travelled but equally species rich trail nearby.

As we follow the trail we are likely to see several White-tailed Sabrewing, a large hummingbird which was formerly very rare but is now slowly recovering in numbers, though will still be the hikes highlight should we spot one. Collared Trogons are widespread in the forests and Blue-backed Manakins are often heard, though opportunities to actually see them are rather rare.

Since this is a popular trail, we are likely to be sharing it with other birding and nature enthusiasts, but this is often a great way to share stories of what lays ahead or behind on the trail, including the Rufous-breasted Hermit, Rufous-tailed Jacamar, Stripe-breasted Spinetail, Buff-throated and Olivaceous Woodcreepers, Yellow-breasted Flycatcher, Fuscous Flycatcher, Plain Ant-Vireo, Redlegged Honeycreeper, Golden-olive Woodpecker and often resident Great Black Hawk.

Once off the trail we will drive a short distance in search of a road side “Roti” stand to pick up this dish for a light lunch as we make our way to Argyle Falls. Tobago has a number of beautiful waterfalls with the Argyle Waterfall being one of the most scenic. It’s a tiered climb with cool pools of water perfect for a late afternoon dip. The pathways are slippery so we’ll take our time on this walk.

Price from £85 per person including tax. Minimum of 2 persons.
Includes: Van transfers, guide, Birds of Trinidad and Tobago Checklist, entry fee for Argyle Falls.
Tour Duration: Departure 7:00 a.m. 6 hours approximate.
Not Included: Optional guide gratuities not included. Lunch is not included, however we will stop by a local stand to purchase Roti or guests can request a quick stop at a supermarket on the way out of the rainforest to buy food/snack and beverages on the way from the Gilpin Trail to the waterfall.

What to Wear: Light weight long pants are best suited for rainforest hikes. Good walking shoes with socks are highly recommended (ones that can take mud). Wellies (Boots can be rented at entrance to Rainforest and are highly recommended during rainy season. A change of clothes to keep in the van is advisable during the rainy season as well (June to December.) You may also want to consider clothing appropriate to take a dip in the natural pool at the Argyle Falls.

Packing Considerations: Light back pack with binoculars, camera, bird book, water bottle, sunscreen, insect repellent, Kleenex or TP (there are no rest rooms available) and a small amount of money (preferably TT) for the purchase of lunch.

Rain Forest Tour #2– Our Guide Kenneth’s Favorite “Over the Mountain” Tour
This tour requires a bit more stamina than the flatter Gilpin Trace as you follow guide Kenneth on one of his favorite trails. With a gradual rise your tour takes you in a loop eventually passing over one of the higher ridges in the Reserve. Depending on the season you will either circumvent or traverse bubbling brooks, and squelch through some mud (it all adds to the adventure!) so water hardy shoes are highly recommended.

Walking through this pristine environment you can not help but give silent thanks to Tobago’s colonial governor, who in 1765, declared the central mountain ridge and its surrounding lands a Crown Reserve, making Tobago’s the oldest legally-protected forest in the world.

Thriving in this protected forest are a variety of colorful winged inhabitants including the Red-legged Honeycreeper, the larger but equally colorful Blue-backed Manakin, and large (by hummingbird standards) White-tailed Sabrewing as well as the smaller Copper-rumped and Ruby-topaz Hummingbird.

Rufous-vented Chachalaca, Tobago’s national bird known locally as “Cocrico” can be sought in the thick undergrowth of the forest as well as the majority of the same species found on the Gilpin Trace Rainforest Tour #1.

While coming out of the forest into the semi-open woodland we’ll have a chance to look for the Yellow-bellied Elaenia, Short-tailed Swift, Broad-winged Hawk and Crested Oropendola as we head back toward the van. We’ll also stop at a fresh water spring so you can refill your water bottles with water that tastes the way nature intended!

Price from £70 per person including tax. Minimum of 2 persons.
Includes: Van transfers, guide.
Not Included: Optional guide gratuities not included.
Tour Duration: Departure 7:00 a.m. 5 hours approximate.

What to Wear: Light weight long pants are best suited for rainforest hikes. Good walking shoes with socks are highly recommended (ones that can take mud). Wellies (Boots can be rented at entrance to Rainforest and are highly recommended during rainy season. A change of clothes to keep in the van is advisable during the rainy season as well (June to December.)

Packing Considerations: Light back pack with binoculars, camera, bird book, water bottle, sunscreen, insect repellent, Kleenex or TP (there are no rest rooms available) and a small amount of money (preferably TT) for the purchase of lunch, snacks, etc.

Ready for your next adventure?

Great Escapes Diving Holidays Ltd

Combs Tannery
Tannery Road
Combs
Stowmarket
Suffolk
IP14 2EN
United Kingdom

Office hours: Mondays to Fridays, 9am - 5pm
Tel: 01449 535010
Email: info@greatescapesdiving.com

All the flights and flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. When you pay you will be supplied with an ATOL Certificate. Please ask for it and check to ensure that everything you booked (flights, hotels and other services) is listed on it. Please see our booking conditions for further information or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.atol.org.uk/ATOLcertificate

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