The morning sun rose to the most beautiful sounds of bird song coming from near and far.
I was waking up to my first morning at Asa Wright Nature Center on the beautiful tropical island of Trinidad, and I was so excited to be starting my vacation on the veranda of this world-renowned birding hotspot. We had been planning this trip for months to celebrate our 20th anniversary with this grand birding adventure.
The day before had been very long and hectic: we got up at 3 am to be taken to the Baltimore airport by 4:30 (now that is friendship above and beyond for sure!), our flight left at 6:30 am and 5 hours later we landed in Houston (where we lost an hour to time zone changes), we had a 5 hour layover in Houston (which does not offer wifi, meaning I hope to never be stuck for a layover in this airport again), finally we boarded our flight to Trinidad where we landed at 10:30 pm (jumping ahead two hours to Atlantic time zone).
After clearing customs, we walked out of the airport into the balmy air of the tropics. How nice to have left winter behind! We were met by Sookdeo Ramdass (but he asked us to call him Ramdass). He told us he would be one of our local birding guides during our stay in Trinidad and that he would now drive us up to Asa Wright Nature Center.
If you’ve ever traveled along the Blanchissuise Rd from Asa Wright Nature Center in either direction, the idea of renting a car, driving on the wrong side of the road, navigating hundreds of hairpin turns along a road that seems hardly wide enough for one way traffic, let alone two way traffic, with a steady stream of large trucks heading to the quarries along a road with very few guard rails above cliffs that drop straight down for hundreds of feet.
I was so grateful to Ramdass for so expertly driving us along this road! It’s kind of a terrifying drive in the dark, but he got us safely to Asa Wright and checked in to our room.
He told us the rest of the group would meet on the Veranda the next morning at 6:30.
And that brings me back to the beautiful sunrise and the amazing sounds of bird song from this porch overlooking the Arima Valley.
The Asa Wright Nature Center is a world-renowned wildlife sanctuary located in Trinidad and Tobago. This stunning nature reserve is home to a vast array of flora and fauna, making it a must-visit destination for anyone interested in the beauty and diversity of the natural world.
The Asa Wright Nature Center covers over 1,500 acres of lush, tropical rainforest and is home to over 170 species of birds, including many rare and endangered species. Some of the most popular birds that can be seen at the center include the Trinidad Motmot, the White-tailed Sabrewing, and the Oilbird. In addition to birds, the center is also home to a variety of other wildlife, including monkeys, squirrels, and armadillos.
The Asa Wright Nature Center is not just a place to see wildlife, however. It’s also a center for conservation and research, working to protect the delicate balance of the ecosystem and to educate the public about the importance of preserving the natural world.
Visitors to the Asa Wright Nature Center can enjoy a variety of activities, including guided bird walks, wildlife watching, and nature photography. The center also offers a variety of educational programs, including workshops, presentations, and talks, designed to help visitors learn more about the natural world and the importance of conservation.
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