Maracas is Trinidad’s most popular beach thanks to excellent facilities and a swathe of fine yellow sand and cool, clear green water; several more stunning places to swim lie a few miles down the road at Las Cuevas and Blanchisseuse, though all are sometimes subject to rough seas and undertows. Away from the oil refineries, many parts of the south coast offer fabulous swimming as well, while the east coast boasts the fabulously scenic Manzanilla and Mayaro. Most agree, though, that T&T’s best beaches are in Tobago, where the water is calmer and tourist infrastructure more developed. The epitome of a Caribbean seashore, Pigeon Point is the queen of them all, with crystal-clear water, white sand and pretty palm-thatched gazebos, though its overt commerciality rather mars the spot. Nearby Store Bay and Mount Irvine are also lovely, but the undeveloped allure of Castara, Parlatuvier, Englishman’s Bay and Pirate’s Bay on the leeward side are far more stunning.
Bear in mind that undertows and strong currents make many of Trinidad’s (and some of Tobago’s) beaches risky; yellow and red flags indicate safe areas, in their absence, don’t swim until you’ve checked with someone local.