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nature Take another look at beach paradise Tobago to uncover its wilder side, says Kirsten Henton


DESTINATIONS TOBAGO | CARIBBEAN


l travelweekly.co.uk


ying on my back, legs in the air, enjoying the peace of the ‘happy baby’ pose,


it struck me how very pleasant it was practising yoga in this thatched, open-sided studio. The trickling water feature, chirping birds and fragrant herbs at boutique residence Kariwak Village all added to the ambience, so it was impossible not to feel right at home in this holistic hideaway. No great surprise when you consider connecting with the natural world is what Tobago is all about. Forget large, branded hotels and intensely developed resorts – nature, wellbeing and the great outdoors are at the heart of what makes this island so appealing. It’s a place where the beaches, colonial history and easy-going vibe are distinctly Caribbean, while the biodiversity, affordability and authenticity are uniquely Tobagonian.


FRUITS OF THE FOREST Main Ridge Forest Reserve sprawls over the island’s mountainous spine to the north. A symbol of Tobago’s long-standing relationship with the environment, some 15 square miles of Main Ridge formed the world’s first legally protected forest for the purpose of conservation, having been granted protected status by the British in 1776. Stopping at the park’s


entrance, we were met by William Trim of Nature To and Fro Tours (prices from $100 per couple per day), whose vast experience and knowledge shone through instantly. After equipping us with wellies, he guided us along a trail, thick with gloopy mud and slippery stones.


Cocooned under this dense


canopy, it was as though someone had fired up a sounds of the rainforest playlist. The air, heavy and humid, hummed ²


5 MARCH 2020 47


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