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Trinidad and Tobago Vacation and Travel Guide
Trinidad and Tobago, officially the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, is a twin island country situated off the northern edge of South America mainland, lying (6.8 miles) just off the coast of northeastern Venezuela and (81 miles) south of Grenada. Bordering the Caribbean to the north, it shares maritime boundaries with other nations including Barbados to the northeast, Grenada to the northwest, Guyana to the southeast, and Venezuela to the south and west.
Trinidad is 1,841 sq mi in area (comprising 93.0% of the country's total area) with an average length of 50 mi and an average width of 37 mi. Tobago has an area of about 120 sq mi, or 5.8% of the country's area, is 25 mi long and 7.5 mi at its greatest width.
Trinidad and Tobago is the third richest country by GDP (PPP) per capita in the Americas after the United States and Canada. Furthermore, it is recognised as a high income economy by the World Bank.
Unlike most of the English-speaking Caribbean, the country's economy is primarily industrial, with an emphasis on petroleum and petrochemicals. The country's wealth is attributed to its large reserves and exploitation of oil and natural gas.
The terrain of the islands is a mixture of mountains and plains. The highest point in the country is found on the Northern Range at El Cerro del Aripo, which is 3,080 ft above sea level.
As the majority of the population live in the island of Trinidad, this is the location of most major towns and cities. There are four major municipalities in Trinidad: Port of Spain, the capital, San Fernando, Arima and Chaguanas. The main town in Tobago is Scarborough
Trinidad is made up of a variety of soil types, the majority being fine sands and heavy clays. The alluvial valleys of the Northern Range and the soils of the East-West Corridor are the most fertile.
The climate is tropical. There are two seasons annually: the dry season for the first five months of the year, and the rainy season in the remaining seven of the year. Winds are predominantly from the northeast and are dominated by the northeast trade winds. Unlike most of the other Caribbean islands, both Trinidad and Tobago have frequently escaped the wrath of major devastating hurricanes.
Because Trinidad and Tobago lie on the continental shelf of South America, their biological diversity is unlike that of most other Caribbean islands, and has much in common with that of Venezuela. The main ecosystems are: coastal and marine (coral reefs, mangrove swamps, open ocean and seagrass beds); forest; freshwater (rivers and streams); karst; man-made ecosystems (agricultural land, freshwater dams, secondary forest); and savanna.
Tourism in Trinidad and Tobago
Tourism is another area which it is believed will soon develop rapidly, and an increased demand for jobs. The European Union Council on Tourism and Trade (EUCTT) has also awarded the nation as being "The Best Tourist Destination for 2012".
The country is also a regional financial center, and tourism is a growing sector, although it is not proportionately as important as in many other Caribbean islands.
Local hotels have already begun to make plans to facilitate an influx of European tourists upon the nation receiving this designation. However, the EUCTT is not affiliated with any part of the European Union's Institutions.
Trinidad and Tobago is known for its Carnival and is the birthplace of steelpan, limbo, and the music styles of calypso, soca, Parang and chutney. The nation is also rich in wildlife and is one of the most biodiverse nations per square mile in the Caribbean. Over 400 species of birds and 100 species of mammals can be found in the country's small area.
The transport system in Trinidad and Tobago consists of a dense network of highways and roads across both major islands, ferries connecting Port of Spain with Scarborough and San Fernando, and international airports on both islands. The Uriah Butler Highway and Churchill Roosevelt Highway links the nation together. Public transportation options on land are public buses, private taxis and minibuses. By sea, the options are inter-island ferries and inter-city water taxis.
The Island of Trinidad is served by Piarco International Airport located in Piarco. It is the seventh busiest airport in the Caribbean and the third busiest in the English-speaking Caribbean, after Sangster International Airport and Lynden Pindling International Airport.
Caribbean Airlines, the national and state-owned airline of Trinidad and Tobago, is the largest in the Caribbean. After the acquisition of the now defunct Air Jamaica, it became the largest airline and was voted as the Caribbean's leading airline.
The Island of Tobago is served by the A.N.R. Robinson International Airport in Crown Point Tobago. This airport has regular services to North America and Europe. There are regular flights between the two islands, with fares being heavily subsidised by the Government.
Map of Trinidad and Tobago