Naturalist Beach Resort - Reader Reports & Opinion
Philip Gould from U.K. visited in January 2013 and awarded
We spent the majority of our time on Tobago staying in Speyside on the eastern side of the island. This gave us easy access to our excellent birding guide, Newton George, who lives over there and allowed for a quick and easy trip to Little Tobago.
However, we had left our last few nights unbooked and, thankfully, we decided to spend them in Castara. On the recommendation of our landlady in Speyside, we contacted Ancle and were lucky enough to find that he had room for us.
We arrived before the room had been cleaned after its previous occupants had moved out. No problem - we sat and chatted with Ancle who, although he had only just met us, was generous in sharing useful information ... and some of his favourite whiskey!
The very reasonably priced room was basic but clean. We had one of the downstairs rooms in the original building and, to be fair, it had probably seen better days. However, with the beach only a few metres away and lots of other things to see and do, all we were going to use it for was sleeping, so it was perfect! There are also newer rooms and small apartments at the Naturalist, so there should be something for everyone.
The beach is beautiful and the sea warm and clear, with some excellent snorkelling to be had. There is an easy and enjoyable walk to a small waterfall, and other small beaches can be reached on foot. There are several small shops in Castara where supplies can be bought, and various restaurants provide a mixture of tasty dishes ... definitely check out Hazel's rotis and fresh bread at Bingi the Fruit King!
We shall certainly return to Castara one day and, if there's room for us, we will be sure to partake of Ancle's hospitality and friendliness again!
Thanks again for a great stay, Phil & Becky
Mats Svensson from Sweden visited in December 2012 and awarded
We stayed at the Naturalist between Dec 20-31. Since it was our first visit to Tobago we asked to be picked up at the airport when arriving. Everything worked perfect. The Naturalist is located practically on the beach with some 30 meters to the water. Our appartment or it was actually more a room with cooking facillities had all practicallities you needed. Our familly(my wife and two daughters, age 12,15) shared one room with two king size beds in one room. It worked better then anticipated since you could use the veranda as an extra living room. What also saved us parents was that wifi was free of charge and worked well. This helped us a lot especially during the first couple of days when the rain was pooring down(not what anyone wanted)
The staff and Ancle(who owns the place), his familly was very helpfull and created a nice atmosphere.
At the very end of our stay they also finished some newly built appartments(2 and 3 bedrooms) which looked realy nice.
Overall we had a great stay in a very nice village and we hope to come back there again
Mike Feeny from U.S.A. visited in October 2012 and awarded
I just got home from a week in Tobago. While there, I stayed at The Naturalist Beach Resort in Castara. I had a wonderful week. I was treated very well by everyone I encountered. My host, Ancle George, put me in touch with very good people for my tour of Tobago, and scuba. He told me what I needed to see, what I could miss, and what I could expect to pay. My only regret is that a week was not enough time. Schedule at least two weeks.
My room, The Dolphin was always spotlessly clean, and very comfortable. Petra, Florid, and Mr George were always pleasant and helpful. They were always ready and willing to help me with any need. The laundry service was a real perk; it gets hot in Castara. The views from my outside my room were spectacular.
The town of Castara, and the Naturalist are a perfect vacation destination for anyone who prefers quiet, unspoiled beaches to those crowded with t-shirt shops and bars. This vacation for me was a wonderful get away that provided me welcome relief from all the hassles of day to day life.
On my ride to the airport, my driver said that he has had passengers cry as they left for the airport. I understand this.
Bob Vanwyk from U.S.A. visited in October 2012 and awarded
My wife and I just returned from two weeks at the Naturalist Resort. It was an amazing, experience.
We make frequent self-catering trips to The Caribbean. We have made several trips each to Guadeloupe, Curacao and Grenada. Our preference is small hotels or bungalows that are not in tourist areas - places like The Naturalist. For us, The Naturalist is ideal.
Tobago is a marvelous island in that it retains its Caribbean essence. It is very well maintained. The roads are on a par with the Dutch and French islands, and generally wider than those on Grenada. Castara is a wonderful little fishing village with an excellent beach. We had fresh caught Mahi all the first week and fresh tuna the second. A ten-minute walk from The Naturalist will put you on the trail to the waterfall. It is peaceful and beautiful.
We stayed in The Grouper. It is directly on the water with a superb view of the beach and bay. The kitchen is large with good appliances. The cookware and dishes supplied were everything we would have wanted. The room is large and the bed and furniture excellent. Waves break on the beach less than twenty feet from the room and you can hear them all night. The room has good privacy. When we return we will stay in the same room again.
The Naturalist is the only lodging directly on Castara Beach. The Grouper is the room closest to the water.
Ancle is a excellent host - an all-around great guy with whom we had some very thoughtful conversations. And Petra is terrific also. The housekeepers always kept our rooms clean and well-stocked. The other guests were interesting cool people.
For those desiring a relaxing break in a beautiful, tranquil, island environment, we give The Naturalist our highest, unqualified recommendation and look forward to our next visit. And we are grateful to Ancle for providing such a wonderful unique experience.
from Germany visited in October 2012 and awarded
My fiancé and I, together with two friends spent one week at the Naturalist Beach Resort. We stayed in the Whale apartment which has a separate room with bathroom, the Crown´s Nest, upstairs. The apartment is spacious enough for four people (even five could sleep there) with a fully equipped kitchen and a veranda all around, from where you can see the sea. We loved to have our breakfast there (although breakfast is provided, we sometimes made our own) and watch the birds or enjoy a glas of rum in the evening.
The room was cleaned every day and the free laundry service was very convenient.
Ancle is a great host and takes good care of his guests. Also his team was really nice and helpful.
We rented one of Ancle´s jeeps which was a great way to experience the island.
The Naturalist is nicely located directly at the Castara beach. We enjoyed several breathtaking sunsets over the bay or watched the fishermen hauling their nets.
Castara has several small nice restaurants, which all served delicious (sea)food. Especially the Almond Tree next to The Naturalist was very good.
During our vacation on Tobago we stayed at different places and all of them were nice, but Castara and the Naturalist was the place we definitely liked the most.
Tobago is nice, but The Naturalist is paradise ;-)