KITESURFING HOLIDAYS - TOBAGO, CARIBBEAN
The tiny island of Tobago in the West Indies shows that true paradise can come in small packages. Just 26 miles long and seven miles wide, Tobago is home to empty beaches, exotic wildlife, lush landscapes, mouth-watering cuisine and wonderful local people. In terms of kitesurfing, you'll love the vast uncrowded sailing lagoon, the waves on the reef and the lush, warm turquoise waters.
CAPTION | Shallow, warm waters, picturesque beaches and safe learning / ALL PHOTOS | Sportif
The wind flow over the island can create superb conditions on either side, providing a lot of variety. Lambeau beach features steady wind and before high tide the beach is wide and open, making it ideal for learning. The flat water inside Bucco reef at Pigeon Point provides endless amounts of safe, fun riding pleasure. The reef lies up to one and a half miles off the beach and the flat, shallow waters are any kiter's dream. On the outside when the conditions come together you'll have a hard time finding better waves. If you're looking for a location for mixed abilities or families, Pigeon Point is ideal. (There is a daily fee of TT$18 (weekly TT$75) to enter the Pigeon Point Heritage Park, although you can get a free pass if you prebook rental gear for a week or more or if you are on a ten hour beginner course.) Once you've got your confidence up then exploring the island with a kite safaris mobile team is a fantastic way of not only improving your riding, but also to experience different conditions and see more of the island with the safety of a guide. For the advanced rider there are several options with the Atlantic ocean waves on the east of the island and the clear, warm flat waters on the west coast.
WIND, WEATHER AND WATER
On a good day, mainly from December through to June, the conditions here are among the best in the Caribbean. Trade winds topped up by local thermals are your juice, generally cross-shore from the right and are stronger and more regular than the stats suggest - in general nine to 12 metre weather. The beaches are of nice soft sand although there are a few coral heads to look out for inshore. Booties can be a good idea if you're a novice. Expect very warm air temperatures around 25°C / 77°F. Sea temperatures peak around 28 - 30°C / 82 - 86°F in August and are at their lowest around mid-February, around 26 - 28°C / 79 - 82°F - so very nice all year!
Hire a car or bike as Pigeon Point is around 25 - 40 minutes on foot from most accommodation offered.
Currency:Trinidadian dollar (TTD$):£1=11TTD/€1=9TTD/$1 = 6TTD
Budget apartments to boutique hotels, including one of the most beautiful resorts and owner of multiple 'Caribbean World Traveler' awards, the Coco Reef Resort is located at the artificially designed Coconut Bay. Pigeon Point is a 35 minute walk. The family run Kariwak Village is set in beautiful grounds in dense vegetation and with a peaceful atmosphere.
Contact Sportif for accommodation options
FOOD AND DRINK
Like other Caribbean islands, the food here is incredible, and you can expect everything from simple local cuisine to high class international restaurants. Most people visit the island to enjoy the peace and quiet with most places rarely open as late as 11pm, but Tobago can provide a good nightlife too. There's everything from karaoke to street parties, fetes and reggae clubs. Crown Point is the most lively area.
Often twinned with neighbouring island, Trinidad, this tiny republic is one of the most southerly in the Caribbean chain and is beautiful, offering an unhurried lifestyle, lush tropical scenery and a choice of activities. Trek through the rainforest to see exotic birds and wild flowers or take a trip to the capital, Scarborough, to see the colourful markets or the carnival with its calypso steel band. Tobago also offers some of the finest diving in the Caribbean and you'll see manta rays, barracuda, dolphin, giant sea turtles and even whale sharks.
The Arthur Napoleon Raymond Robinson (TAB) is the international airport and isn't far from anywhere as the island is small, but transfers will be arranged with Sportif.