Trinidad, the larger island in the pair of Trinidad and Tobago, offers a genuinely unspoiled travel experience in the Caribbean. Trinidad has industries other than tourism, so visitors to the island can get away from the busy all-inclusive resorts that dominate other Caribbean islands. Whether you're lounging on the beach or hiking in the rain forest, some of Trinidad's major landmarks provide opportunities for exploration and sightseeing.
The Coat of Arms of Trinidad and Tobago - The Coat of Arms of Trinidad and Tobago was designed in 1962, by a committee of distinguished citizens established to select and design the country's national emblems. Committee members included noted artist Carlyle Chang and Carnival Designer George Bailey.
The National Birds of Trinidad and Tobago - The Scarlet Ibis, The Scarlet Ibis (Eudocimus Ruber) is a species of ibis that occurs in tropical South America and Trinidad and Tobago. The largest habitat of the Scarlet Ibis is the Caroni Swamp in central Trinidad. This beautiful bird is brown when young and, its colour changes to red when it is mature.
The Cocrico - The Cocrico (Red tailed Guan or Rufus -tailed Chachalaca) is a native of Tobago and Venezuela, but is not found in Trinidad. It is the only game bird on the island of Tobago, and is referred to as the Tobago Pheasant. It is about the size of a common fowl, brownish in colour with a long tail. Both birds are featured on the Coat of Arms of Trinidad and Tobago and are protected by law.
The National Flower - The National Flower, the Chaconia, (Warszewiczia Coccinea), called "Wild Poinsetta" or "Pride of Trinidad and Tobago" is a flaming red forest flower of the family Rubianceae. The title is in honour of the last Spanish Governor of Trinidad and Tobago, Don Jose Maria Chacon. This flower which is known by its long sprays of magnificent vermillion blooms on every anniversary of our Independence. As an indigenous flower it has been witness to our entire history. It can therefore be said to represent the imperishability of life and the continuity of our Nation. With its colour matching the flaming red of our Flag and Coat of Arms, and bearing the same symbolism, the Chaconia harmonizes with the national Emblems.
The National Flag - Red is the colour most expressive of our country. It represents the vitality of the land and its people; it is the warmth and energy of the sun, the courage and friendliness of the people. White is the sea by which these lands are bound: the cradle of our heritage; the purity of our aspirations and the equality of all men and women under the sun. The Black represents for us the dedication of the people joined together by one strong bond. It is the colour of strength, of unity, of purpose and of the wealth of the land. The colours chosen represent the elements Earth, Water and Fire which encompass all our past, present and future and inspire us as one united, vital, free and dedicated people.
The National Instrument - The steelpan was invented in Trinidad and Tobago and is widely regarded as the only major musical instrument to be invented in the 20th century. The Trinidad and Tobago Bureau of Standards describes the steelpan as “a definite pitch percussion instrument in the idiophone class, traditionally made from a steel drum or steel container. The metallic playing surface is concave with a skirt attached. The playing surface is divided into convex sections by channels, groves and/or bores. Each convex section is played by striking the pan with sticks to produce musical note."
The National Dishes - Trinidad and Tobago cuisine is indicative of the blends of Indian, African, Creole, Amerindian, European, Chinese and Lebanese gastronomic influences. Trinidad and Tobago has one of the most diverse cuisines in the Caribbean and is known throughout the world. There are more than one national dishes, in fact, there are so many that T&T may have more national dishes than any other country, national dhishes include Callaloo, Bake & Shark, Doubles, Pelau, Curried crab & dumplings, Oil Down, Pastelles, Black Cake, DHal Puri Roti, Buss-up-shot Roti (Paratha), Murtanie (a.k.a. Mother-in-law) and Souse....more info
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The Trinidad and Tobago Carnival is an annual event held on the Monday and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday in Trinidad and Tobago. The event is well known for participants' colourful costumes and exuberant celebrations. Carnival is the most significant event on the islands' cultural and tourism calendar, with numerous cultural events such as "band launch fetes" running in the lead up to the street parade on Carnival Monday and Tuesday. It is said that if the islanders are not celebrating it, then they are preparing for it, while reminiscing about the past year's festival. Traditionally, the festival is associated with calypso music; however, recently Soca music has replaced calypso as the most celebrated type of music. Costumes, stick-fighting and limbo competitions are also important components of the festival. Carnival as it is celebrated in Trinidad and Tobago is also celebrated in cities worldwide. These including Toronto's Caribana, Miami's Miami Carnival, Houston Carifest, London's Notting Hill Carnival as well as New York City's Labor Day Carnival to name a few.
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The TRINBAGO Association of Central Florida