Just outside of Port Of Spain while navigating narrow winding roads through a few small but busy island communities, the landscape soon transforms into magnificent tropical lush green beauty.
I am on an afternoon drive on the North Coast Highway headed for Blanchisseuse Bay where I hope to do some kayaking. The surrounding landscape is amazing. On one side of the road are mountains and hills covered with all shades and shapes of greens, the deep blue waters of the Caribbean Sea on the other.
Approaching Maracas Bay I spot a gentleman on the side of the road collecting something that peeks my interest. He is making trips back and forth to his car with clear plastic containers.
I am told, “You see there is no one living above”. Now I understand why he is doing what he is doing and I accept his offer to partake although I do not have a plastic container.
With cupped hands, I drink cool refreshing mountain spring water straight from the source with the help of a tank and a PVC pipe.
Next it's a stop for “Trini Treats” and another spectacular view of Maracas Bay.
So good, so nice, grated coconut and lots of sugar. Yeah, I feel good.
Continuing the drive provides more striking views as from a seaside cliff I stop to breathe the fresh ocean air and listen to the sounds of crashing waves below me. It is times like this that I can truly appreciate the beauty of nature and having the freedom to enjoy it.
Through more quaint communities and along roads that have seen better days, I eventually arrive at Blanchisseuse Bay. Stopping along the road an elderly gentleman walking the street smiles at me and extends his hand through my car window. We exchange pleasantries and I tell him about my plans to go kayaking while visiting here. He tells me I need to go back up the street to the first white house and ask for Eric Blackman, “He's the one that rents kayaks”.
I miss the chance to go kayaking but I do not mind and I just head to the beach area where I pay US$1 for parking.
On a weekday afternoon the beach is practically deserted. It seems that this beach with a continuous flow of crashing waves is more for surfing and relaxing than it is for swimming.
During certain times of the year Blanchisseuse Bay is also a popular turtle nesting area.
Although the beach has non-stop wave action and surf, the area to the right side seems safe enough to enter the water. Standing in waist high water on a relatively smooth ocean floor, it is fun to be thrashed around by the pounding waves.
Leaving the crashing salt water waves I walk across a sand barrier between the ocean and the river.
Finding the right spot I take a seat in the clear river water but hold on as it streams rapidly to its salt kin. It is a natural process to free myself of the oceans salty residue.
They are all fresh on a metal ring and are hanging around the waist of a local fisherman.
He has just speared them a few hundred yards of the beach. Although I think the lobsters are pretty big I am told they are small compared to the others that are caught here. It is hard for me to imagine a 20-30lb lobster.
For the drive back to Port Of Spain I take the road less traveled (by most tourist, anyway) and return via Arima.