Sunday, 23 October 2016

Maracas Bay | Palm Trees, Rolling Waves, & Lunch with a Bes' View

Arguably the prettiest beach in Trinidad (Tobago beaches not considered), Maracas Bay offers a 2km long crescent shaped bay, lined with tall swaying coconut palm trees, off white sand, and rolling waves, with the Northern Range is it's backdrop.

Maracas, as it is affectionately referred, is without a doubt the most popular 'beach' in Trinidad, maybe because it's as to close to a perfect beach as you can get, or because it's the home of Bake & Shark. 

As popular as it is, growing up I NEVER visited this beach!  Trinidad may not be known for it's beaches but I can name at least 5 that I frequented as a child, none of which were Maracas Bay.  
I definitely make up for lost childhood visits to the beach now however, as every. single. time I am home I make at least one trek up to Maracas, even if only for said Bake & Shark.  Many are known to make the drive solely for this purpose sometimes not even stepping foot in the sand.  I don't make this practice a habit though.

Maracas Bay is nestled in the northern range of Trinidad, neatly tucked away a cool 16km from the capital of Port of Spain.  So it's no 'quick run'.  When I go, I'm going to the Beach! and of course having a Bake & Shark too.

As you make your way up through the hills along the winding road, you catch glimpses of what awaits you at the end of your 30-60min drive - depending on your starting point; East through Santa Cruz, Port of Spain and West through Maraval before hitting the North Coast Road.  No view is more popular than that at the lookout point, where you can also sample a variety of local snacks and preserves from the vendors who have become a staple stop 'on de way' to Maracas (Las Cuevas, and Blanchisseuse - other popular beach options along the North Coast).  Here you can fill up on chow or red- whatever fruit is in season, tamarind balls, and handmade jewelry - not edible.
From this view you can see the popular trio of bays; Maracas, Tyrico, and Las Cuevas on a perfectly clear day.
And then, you arrive!
Once on the beach, I would advise securing your meal of the day, ahem, Bake & Shark from one of the many options - some more popular than others, but none less enticing - before scouting the perfect spot on the beach to devour, I mean, delightfully enjoy lunch with the bes' view.  If you're not a fan of shark, fish, or seafood in general, there are other options including king fish, shrimp, aloo and cheese pies (respectively).  And don't forget the "extras", it would benefit you to select your Bake & Shark vendor wisely as depending on who and the day, your options can include but are not limited to: tamarind, chadon beni, garlic and pepper sauce, lettuce, cabbage slaw, tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, mango and pommecythere chutney, tomato ketchup, mustard, salad dressing... whew, I am known to create a most appetizing salad to accompany my meal by shifting the items in the box ;) clever, aren't I?
And some would argue that all that 'fluff' is unnecessary, just enjoy the bake & shark

After such a meal, its time to relax on the beach.  You have the option of renting chairs and an umbrella, or bringing along your own beach mat/blanket and spreading it under one of the many coconut palm trees that line the 2km long beach if you're looking for shade, or in the sun to work on injecting some richness into that melanin - is it just me, or do you find that you fade when removed from your natural sun-filled habitat? - while you enjoy a beverage of choice from the same Bake & Shark vendors or your stocked cooler that you smartly packed and brought along.
 About that exciting surf.  If you're looking water that is flat calm as a pool, Maracas is not for you! Stick to sun bathing and liming on the sand with a drink in hand - from your cooler.  Maracas provides rolling waves perfect for body/board surfing, or just jumping the waves from the time you arrive until the sun sets and you can't see the waves anymore, but! you can still hear them.  Fear not the beach is well staffed with lifeguards, and always be attentive to the flags which identify 'safe areas' for bathing.
If by some chance I forgot a 'must when on Maracas' please do include it in the comments below.

Is a visit to Maracas on your list for your trip to Trinidad?

~ Josie Jo ~


No comments:

Post a Comment

I enjoy your comments, questions and feedback, as do the TNT community. They're are welcome and truly appreciated!