The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago is comprised of two Caribbean islands and several islets off the coast of Venezuela. The vast majority of the population live on Trinidad, previously a colony of shifting ownership from Spain to France, Netherlands and England. As a melting-pot of multiculturalism, the island explodes into full expression each February in celebration of Carnival; a welcome-to-all celebration of its ethnic diversity and rich cultural history. The originators of calypso, limbo and steelpan, Trinbagonians can be an exhilarating, radiating people – but the picturesque isle of Tobago remains a contrasting paradisiacal idyll.
Trinis, as Trinidadians like to be called, have a history of slavery and indentured labour, with many of the East Indian and African population brought to work on the islands’ sugar plantations in the 19th century. Today, Trinis are determined to live their lives as they choose - avoiding the bureaucracy of the modern world and heralding the common sense they see as lacking at the top. They now have a booming high-income economy reinforced by an abundance of natural resources and a consistently tropical climate.
With its many and varied traditions, customs, and cultures, Culture Smart! Trinidad and Tobago can help you navigate the codes and paradoxes of Trinbagonian life. It will help you arrive at the Port of Spain and explore Scarborough, Plymouth and Roxborough through the lens of a laid-back Trini.
Eating one of Trinidad and Tobago’s freshwater catfish, Cascadoux, will lead to you returning to the islands – according to native legend. Request it and you will be forever endeared to your hosts!