Cheap Flights to Port of Spain
Trinidad and Tobago's capital, Port of Spain, takes its name from an early Spanish colonial settlement in the 16th century on the banks of the St Ann's River. Today, it is a modern industrial and financial hub that's less reliant on tourism than other Caribbean island capitals but still is still packed with historic and cultural attractions for the visitor.
The heart of Port of Spain is the busy, modern Downtown district, but visitors will be drawn equally to the historic colonial architecture and parks of the Woodbrook district and the vibrant nightlife and entertainment of Saint James. The city's spiritual centre is the vast Queen's Park Savannah: a tranquil area of parkland that is home to the Prime Minister's residence, the national cricket stadium and the focal point of Carnival activity.
Since Trinidad lies outside the hurricane belt, the city does not experience a lull in activity during hurricane season from June to December, but tourism season hits its crescendo in February when Carnival season begins. Trinidad Carnival ranks alongside those of Rio and Notting Hill and the proud tradition of Calypso and Mas bands is a key feature of city life.
With its unique blend of Caribbean, East Indian and South American culture, Port of Spain offers an intoxicating mix of musical, culinary and artistic influences.
Things To Do
Book well ahead if you're coming during Carnival season, when revellers come from all over the world to join the legendary festivities. Come at any time throughout the year and you'll find it hard to miss the city's pounding Soca soundtrack and the characteristic Indian-inspired culinary scene.
Stretch your legs
Queen's Park Savannah is an ideal starting point to get your bearings. Locals come here to relax (or 'lime'), picnic and play ball games. North of the Savannah is the Royal Botanic Gardens, dating back to 1818, while the western side is the location of the Magnificent Seven Houses: historic buildings dating back to Victorian times.
Savour the nightlife
You'll find most of the popular nightclubs and bars along Western Main Road in the St James district. It's also a great place to sample some typical local street food including the signature Trinidad roti.
Enjoy some people watching
Downtown Port of Spain can be busy, but Woodford Square is the tranquil home of the Parliament building and Speaker's Corner -- there are plenty of benches to relax on here. Follow Fredrick Street to the equally colourful Independence Square, taking in some boutique shopping on the way.
Calendar Of Events
For two weeks every February, the focus of Port of Spain and island life is devoted almost entirely to Carnival celebrations -- the biggest in the Caribbean and one of the liveliest street parties worldwide.
Carnival celebrations. Starting the Monday and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, Carnival is a mixture of street parades, Steel Band competitions and spontaneous revelry across the city. Most of the activity is around Queen's Park Savannah, home of the hotly contested Panorama steel band showdown.
Cricket madness. Queen's Park Oval is the largest of the Caribbean cricket grounds: a beautiful stadium with the Northern Range as its backdrop. The local passion for cricket reaches fever pitch in August with the Caribbean Premier League matches between the islands.
Film festival. The Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival, one of the longest-running in the Caribbean, takes place in late September, with the major screenings at the National Academy for the Performing Arts. This is a great opportunity to sample regional cinema from Caribbean directors.