Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Trinidad State of Emergency 2011 – ‘Curfew’ by Stephen Thorpe

The situation on the streets of Trinidad has been a cause for concern since the Government announced a curfew and state of emergency in August as a response to growing violence in some eastern sections of the capital Port of Spain.

While the curfew has now been lifted, a UK Channel 4 television programme entitled ‘Unreported World: Trinidad: Guns, Drugs and Secrets’ went out on primetime on November 25th highlighting alarming social problems engendered by gang culture and drugs trans-shipment which is an increasing menace throughout the region.

The twin island Republic of Trinidad and Tobago attracts half a million tourists per annum and visitor arrivals have undoubtedly been affected in recent months. However there is no reason for prospective travellers to abandon plans in the coming weeks as the Trinidad Carnival season gets into full swing before the climax on February 20 and 21.

The main social drag of Ariapita Avenue in Port of Spain with its buzzing bars and restaurants has been unaffected and the mantra for any newcomer to the country remains the same - stay alert, avoid ostentatious displays of wealth and never cross the central Savannah parkland at night. Commonsense is the watchword in fact, just like every other developing country.

Elsewhere, the established beach resort of Mt. Plaisir at Grande Riviere on the north coast and the birdwatching mecca of Asa Wright in the Northern Mountain range remain havens of tranquillity. The state of emergency has been mollified and is expected to be lifted entirely by early December.

For information on what to do and where to stay on island, please see the Definitive Caribbean Guide to Trinidad.

More from World Travel Market, November 2011:

World's Best Tourism Destination 2012

Visit and Invest in Trinidad and Tobago

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