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Tobago cruises offer fun and adventure in the serene, aquamarine waters of the southern Caribbean. Lush, forested Tobago is the sister island to larger Trinidad, and part of the same country. It offers some of the best hiking, snorkeling, and beaches in the region. Tobago is also incredibly biodiverse, with thousands of protected bird and animal species and plant life that draw visitors from all around the world.
Tobago isn’t just limited to natural beauty. From delectable tropical treats at the famous local food market to 18th-century forts and a world-class history museum, this island is brimming with ways to pass the time. Spending a day here is a feast for the senses, and you’ll feel it the second you step off the ship on any of these Tobago cruises
Fort King George in Scarborough is one of the island’s biggest draws, and one of the oldest historical sites from the colonial period. This fort was built in the late 18th century by the French, and then captured by the British a few years later and given its current name in honor of their king. At the fort, you can explore the perfectly preserved prison area, tour the sites from which cannonballs once flew, and see spectacular views from the top. Make sure to visit the Tobago Museum, located in the fort. Here, Amerindian artifacts, old maps, and military items are on display.
No trip to Tobago is complete without a shopping trip to Scarborough’s Central Market. This food market has a bounty of colorful local fruits, vegetables, fish, and spices to taste and enjoy. It has recently been rebuilt and modernized, and it’s easy to walk around, browse, take pictures, and sample the vendors’ wares. The Scarborough Market is located very close to the cruise terminal, so it’s easy to reach.
Pigeon Point Beach is one of Tobago's most beautiful spots, with white sands, shady palm trees and crystal clear waters. Snorkeling here is some of the best on the island, with an abundance of fish, coral, and other marine life to observe as you dive into the warm waters. The jetty at Pigeon Point is one of the most photographed in the Caribbean. A thatched hut perches at the end of a wooden boardwalk, the archetypal image of paradise.
Food in Tobago reflects the diverse culture of the island. Local dishes tend to have a strong Indian influence, combined with indigenous fruits and vegetables, European flavors, and some of the freshest fish on the planet. There are plenty of great restaurants near the Tobago port, many offering authentic dishes such as curried crab and dumplings, shark ‘n’ bake, and Tobagonian Indian-style roti. You’ll find further options for food and drinks on Milford Road just outside of the cruise terminal. Make sure to try a local rum punch or a Carib beer to cool off in the tropical sunshine.
Tobago was originally inhabited by the Tacarigua and Aragua indigenous peoples, then settled by the Spanish, French, Dutch, and British over the latter half of the 18th century and into the 19th. In recent history, Tobago has been transformed into a vacation paradise, while retaining its commitment to protecting nature. The island is famous for its lush natural scenery, laid-back vibe, multi-cultural society, and great food.
The port facilities for Tobago cruises are located at the tip of the town of Scarborough, the main commercial and tourism center of the island. The compact, modern port allows easy access to shore excursions, dining, shopping, and other attractions of downtown Scarborough. From the port, it’s a quick drive to the best beaches, by taxi or by shuttle.
Like many small islands, the best way to get from place to place while in port on cruises to Tobago is by car. Once you’re there, towns like Scarborough, Charlottesville, and Crown Point are walkable, but you’ll want to book private vehicle transportation to get around the island efficiently. Chartering a boat around the island is another enjoyable way to explore the rainforests and beaches along the shore.
No Tobago cruises would be complete without exploring the local shops and the market. You’ll find lots of great jams, spices, and pepper sauces at the Scarborough Market, just a few blocks from the cruise terminal. You can also go boutique shopping for Tobagonian hand-crafted artisan gifts, from woven-palm hats to handmade leather sandals along Scarborough’s Main St. Look out for local coffee and cocoa products; cacao is grown on Tobago and cocoa balls are a great gift to take home. You grate them into hot milk and boil to make a tasty hot chocolate. Local rum is a good buy, too, as are wood carvings and paintings by local artists.
The local currency in Tobago is the Trinidad and Tobago dollar, or Trinidadian dollar (TT$) as it’s sometimes called. For many goods and services, you can also use the US dollar. Credit cards are accepted in larger hotels, restaurants and stores, although smaller beach bars and market vendors usually prefer cash. Make sure to look up local conversion rates in case you are spending TT$, and always ask if an item is priced in local currency before buying. There are ATMs in the main towns, as well as money exchange shops where you can get local currency. Tipping is not common, but a 10% tip on meals or tours is accepted and often very appreciated.