From heritage and culinary to patriotic celebrations and thrill seeking spectator events, Tobago has something to offer everyone this August. The island provides you with the perfect chance to kick back and enjoy, whether its spending time with the family, relaxing on the beach or liming with your friends. Here is just a selection of what you can experience in Tobago this August.
Every August 1st, Tobago remembers its African roots with colourful, historic parades and displays to mark the liberation of Tobago slaves in 1838. The main focus is usually at Crown Point, with a freedom walk through the streets which ends with a cultural extravaganza at Pigeon Point Heritage Park. This features traditional costume, dancing, steel pan, African drumming, cultural artifacts and authentic African dishes. Trinidad and Tobago became the first country in the world to declare a national holiday to commemorate the abolition of slavery.
Popularly known as Eid, this Muslim festival celebrates the end of Ramadan, the holy month of fasting. For Muslims, Eid is a joyful celebration of the achievement of enhanced piety. It is a day of forgiveness, moral victory and peace, of congregation, fellowship, brotherhood and unity. Families attend special prayers which are held in mosques or in large open areas followed by a khutba (public preaching). Then it is time for festivities and merriment, with many Muslims opening their doors to the whole community, renewing friendship and family ties. Houses are decorated and guests are provided with a delicious range of food, the most common of which is meethi sawine, a traditional sweet made with vermicelli. This year Eid is held on August 8th – the perfect time to experience the warm hospitality of Tobago.
The Great Drinks Festival
Sample the best of Tobago’s drink at the Great Drinks Festival happening on August 23rd at Scarborough Esplanade. This is the third year the festival has been held and features exclusive tropical drinks that are indigenous to the island. Many are made using blends of local fruits, ground provisions and vegetables, as core ingredients in punches, juices and virgin or alcoholic drinks. The Esplanade facility in downtown Scarborough will be transformed into a drinks village and will include mixology, punch making and punch drinking competitions; educational displays on beer brewing; prizes for the most innovative drink and an evening concert.
Carib Great Race
Hundreds of people will be descending on Scarborough on the morning of August 24th to witness the adrenaline-fueled finish to the annual Carib Great Race. First held in 1969, this 84-mile speedboat race starts in Port of Spain, Trinidad and ends at Scarborough Esplanade, Tobago. Its a fierce, high-octane contest which tests the driver’s skill, speed and concentration. Over the years the race has grown to become one of the most important power boating competitions in the region. Although the race is usually all over by 9am, the thrills still continue with the post-race lime – you’ll need stamina but it’s not to be missed!
A patriotic celebration held every August 31st to mark Trinidad and Tobago’s independence from Britain in 1962. The day starts with a parade of the island’s protective services through the capital, Scarborough before an extravaganza of performances in the evening which reflect Tobago’s unique culture and heritage. This is usually a mix of traditional dance and song which speak of the island’s national pride and includes performers from all over Tobago. The gathered crowd is then invited to start the countdown to the fireworks which fill the skies over Scarborough with colour. It will certainly get you oohing and aahing.
To find out more about these and many more exciting ocean adventures on Tobago or to book your holiday visit the Tobago Hotel and Tourism Association’s new website at www.tobagohoteltourism.com or phone (868) 639-9543.