Gardens & Wildlife
Access to Castara Retreats is via a paved and well-lit path that winds its way up the hill and through the gardens for 75 yards from the road. This sustains the unspoiled and natural environment of the gardens around these accommodations in Tobago, and all along the path your senses are assaulted with the sights and sounds of the Caribbean. Below, and fully visible, is the beach and bay of Castara with its constant sounds of waves and surf. This combines with an on-going air display by pelican and frigate birds, boobies, tern and osprey in the skies above, and manta rays and fishermen in the ocean below.
As you stroll around the gardens during your Caribbean vacation, enjoy the landscape of grassy banks, fragrant shrubs, exotic flowers, and towering trees. This forms the immediate environment for the two haiku lodges (Coasthanger and Birdsong), the three apartments (Rainforest, Hummingbird 1 and Hummingbird 2) and Fisherman's Lodge and is a feast for the eyes and a haven for wildlife.
The Visitor's Books abound with references to birds and wildlife that can be seen from all of our accommodations in Tobago. Hummingbirds appear outside the apartments every few minutes; Mot Mots, together with Blue Tanagers and Bananaquits, visit the bird feeders; Green Parrotlets squawk by in flocks, interspersed with the noisy Cocricos. Visitors have reported seeing more than 50 species of birds just from their deck and the garden.
Clients who are not avid bird-watchers just sit back and enjoy the views. The pagoda/viewing deck is a great place to hang out, read a book or chat to other guests. People often get together to share a rum punch and watch the sunset. Sometimes a barbeque is arranged between guests who have formed holiday friendships and Porridge is happy to organise this for you.
There are comfortable seats and tables in shady spots. The views everywhere are different in aspect, yet all are wonderful. There is no shortage of places to sit and be quiet and take some ease whilst enjoying your Caribbean holiday.
The rare Agouti (like a small hairy pig with translucent pink ears and long back legs for bounding up hills) is regularly seen in the garden, as is a 4ft 6in bright green Iguana that comes down for water out of the Mango trees. Carrington, our gardener, is a poacher turned gamekeeper who has given up hunting them and is now assiduous in their protection.
Visiting naturalists have written lots more in the Visitors' Books about the tropical gardens and the wildlife that you can expect to see whilst staying at Castara Retreats apartments in Tobago or our three eco lodges.
As part of the development of the haiku lodges we arranged for the electricity supply to be brought underground, thus enabling us to remove the three electricity poles and related cables from the gardens and allow guests to enjoy uninterrupted views during their vacations in Tobago at Castara Retreats.