Buccoo Reef
About
This 10-acre coral reef and the tropical fish that inhabit it have long been popular among tourists, but have suffered in recent years from the many visitors.
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

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4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles168 reviews
Excellent
75
Very good
51
Average
23
Poor
9
Terrible
10

Sharon
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2022 • Family
So enjoyed this short getaway to Tobago. The tour of the Buccoo reef and swimming in the Nylon Pool, which is not really a pool but part of the sea, with some of the clearest, silkyest water to be seen. Curried Crab,Roti, Roasted Breadfruit, were just some of the delicious meals we sampled. Getting around was easy and we were charged no more than the locals,polite and friendly people. Buccoo was beautiful at night,and we took a walk and photos on the boardwalk, as we enjoyed ice cream cones while sitting on the benches along the shoreline.
Written September 17, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

barbara t
9 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Friends
Local beach accessible by car. We drove right under the shade and parked for free. It was a Sunday and was very popular with many local families and a few tourists and visitors. There are life guards and safety flags displayed. I didn't see any facilties for changing showering or eating so you need to take your own things ( you can eat in the village). Can be noisy (load music) but a welcoming site with beautiful white sands and blue sea. Seemed clean despite lack if facilities....perhaps we didn't see them.
Written March 25, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

andycoldham
Crawley, UK1,001 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Couples
The reef is far from the best I have seen. Its was difficult to see from the glass bottom boat we were on with all customers fighting for a better view. Taking photos was almost an impossibility and I was just glad we did not spend to long over the reef, with is mostly rock and very little coral.
Written April 22, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

mhen1240
Saint Louis, MO7 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
Captain Phillips Tour was great. Very personable captain, had extensive knowledge of the reefs, and special colorful fish (named Fred) who appear at one particular location. It was really weird to find oneself in water 3 feet deep in the middle of the sea at the Nylon Pool! Went without a reservation for any tour and was able to get on a boat. If the boat is not at the dock just head over to the beach and enjoy the sand, sun and sea.
Written February 28, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Honest Review
278 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2023 • Family
One of the least developed reefs to be seen in Tobago. Kinda a tourist trap. The boat will likely take you to nylon pool & its uniquely located out in sea yet only waste deep. No man's land will likely be your last boat stop. There are dirty vendors here that don't clean up the sandy point. They should all be evicted unless they clean the beach spotless daily.
Written January 13, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ed A
Orlando, FL3 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2014 • Family
This boat was overloaded, the Captain / tour guide was very rude and continuosly insulted passengers. They had snorkeling gear for about 20 people out off 130 passengers. They gave the snorkelers approximately 10 minutes and then they were rudely called back unto the boat. Note: Do not pay more than $75.00 for your boat trip. The barkers will say anything for you (lie) to sell you tickets on Cool Runnings... Please run as fast as you can from this boat!
Written July 29, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

cmb2
Magnolia, Tx.1,201 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
All the guide sources tout this reef as the best snorkeling/diving in all Trinidad/Tobago, but this snorkeler found the site to be much less than expected. The current runs extremely hard & fast thru the reef, and winds normally cause 1-2 ft. swells which make snorkeling slightly hazardous & unpleasant. Very difficult to stay in 1 spot to look at something or take underwater photos because the current & waves keep pushing you too fast thru the water. As a result, we didn't see much underwater sea life because we were constantly battling to maintain a stationery position. If it weren't for the long rope & life ring the captain of the Miss Ayana glass bottom boat put out for all its passengers, we would've all been swept away from the boat, unable to swim back to it. (We were told the conditions that day were normal.) I would imagine diving is a much better experience here because you at least don't have to battle the surface waves, only the underwater current. Did see some interesting potato coral which I've never seen anywhere else in the Caribbean.
Written April 5, 2009
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

mapsrfun
USA20 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2015 • Friends
At ferry dock in Scarborough you'll find many taxi drivers vying for your business. Some trying to rush you in to their taxi. Caution - most taxis offer to take you to Store Bay to catch a ride on a Glass Bottom boat for taxi price of 80TTD. The "real" taxi price for such a trip for locals is 7TTD to 14TTD per person. Be sure to negotiate your taxi price before getting in to a taxi. License plates beginning with the letter "H" = Hired vehicle, bus, taxi, maxi-taxi. Taxi trip from Scarborough ferry dock to Store Bay is approximately 20 minutes with medium traffic.

Nice changing, shower and locker facilities available at Store Bay for 5TTD per person for all day access or 2TTD per person for one time access. Rental locker for all day was an additional fee of 4TTD. Many boat vendors vying for your business as soon as you arrive to Story Bay. Boat ride charge was 120TTD (approx. $20USD). Boat trip was worth the value of $20USD. You can negotiate the price down some depending how busy the day is for the boat vendors. No need for advance reservation booking online.

Only 30 people on our boat for 11am trip. Bright blue sunny sky day. Motored out to the reef and stopped for some snorkeling. Skipper had everyone view the waters through the glass bottom panels as he spoke of the reef and sea life present. Water had visible whitecaps and a good amount of current was present so plan to snorkel only if you are a confident good swimmer. Boat supplied snorkel equipment of mask and snorkel (no fins) if you did not bring your own. You jump off the boat to enter the water and to get back on the boat you place your feet on the edge of the boat and the skipper pulls you from the water. You should have good arm and shoulder strength to assist yourself in being pulled from the water after snorkeling. Snorkel time was approximately 15-20 minutes. I was one of only four people aboard who chose to snorkel that trip. Fair amount of fish present and clear water to photograph fish and reef. Reef had visible damage but was still interesting to visit.

Boat then moved on to the Nylon Pool. There they lowered a wooden ladder off the stern/transom of the boat for people to more easily exit and re-enter the boat. Skipper and 1st mate were helpful with assisting guests off and on the boat at the Nylon Pool. Water was warm and approximately three feet deep, clear with sandy bottom. There were several glass bottom boats in the area at the same time, although the water were not crowded. The Nylon Pool was a nice stop for those who did not have the swim skills or confidence to snorkel over the reef area. Nylon Pool stop was approximately 15-20 minutes. When in the Nylon Pool area, there were a couple jet skiers offering short rides to boat guests (what they charged for the rides was unknown to me). Everyone reboarded the boat and we departed for the next stop. Various soft drinks were available aboard complimentary to all boat guests.

Next stop was at a small island, where the boat was moored to a tree on land in waters shallow enough for boat guests to step off the two steps located near stern on the boat to access the island. Spent perhaps ten minutes at the island before we were herded back on to the boat for the return ride to Store Bay. Not quite sure why we stopped on that small island for a few minutes other than it added another "item" to the tour. I didn't bother walking on the mini island and instead waded in the waters next to the boat to watch the schools of small fish.

Return trip to Store Bay beach was approximately 20 minutes. Tipped the Skipper and 1st mate each 10TTD as we disembarked the boat. Both Skipper and 1st mate were polite and pleasant with guests. It was a nice way to spend a few hours and be out on the water.

Showered, changed and picked up our duffle bag from our rental locker and then perused the local souvenir vendor huts before departing the beach area for the road to hail a passing taxi.
A couple taxis that stopped wanted 80TTD to return us to the ferry dock in Scarborough and did not want to negotiate their rate. We declined the 80TTD fare offers and waited for another taxi to come by. A couple private vehicles stopped to offer us a ride for a small fee (private vehicle license plates start with the letter "P") and we politely declined their offers. Likely they were just friendly locals headed to Scarborough and looking to make a few dollars for gas money, although we did not feel secure in accepting a ride in a private vehicle. Third taxi that stopped for us offered to take us for 20TTD and we accepted that offer. He was a great driver, friendly and provided interesting local information enroute to Scarborough. We tipped him 10TTD as he was such a personable driver and did not attempt to take advantage of our tourist status with regard to his rate.

Was a pleasant way to spend a few hours and would recommend it to others.
Written February 4, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

georgefromatl
1 contribution
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2014
Boat leaks through glass. Not enough snorkels. Sexist jokes bad taste in front kids.go back to jamaica sir .you give my country bad name.
Written July 23, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

WellTraveled101
Boston, MA24 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2013 • Family
This internationally known reef is a must see on a visit to Tobago. Glass bottom boats glide over various types of coral and aquatic life; a true paradise and a relaxing trip.

The tours typically start from one of several locations on the island of Tobago: Store Bay (nearest beach to ANR Robinson Airport) and Pigeon Point (privately owned beach) are two easy places to get tickets. Pigeon Point Beach (US$3 entrance fee) is the closest place to the reef, and is a wonderful, clean and well - maintained resort area; it will save you 15-20 minutes off of your boat ride.

The tour typically starts with the boats trekking out to the reef; a brief glide over coral and fish beds will give you some idea of Nature's beauty. At a certain area, the boat will allow people to get into the water in about 10-15 feet (3-4M) of depth; life vests are mandatory for all except for strong swimmers. Reefs typically have currents going through them; this is no different.

After the coral beds and a guided tour, the boats head to the Nylon Pool. This is an area offshore with a sand bar, that is between 2-5 feet of crystal clear water. With a low current, it is a beautiful place to take a dip in the sea: safe for children and fun. The white sand at the Nylon Pool is actually made up of tiny coral fragments the consistency between fine sand and clay. It feels wonderful to squeeze or rub on your body; warm water (around 72 degrees) is refreshing and calming. Total time on the tour is about 4 hours.

The problem begins when booking your excursion. Many websites offer these tours and can charge as much as US$200 per person (transportation to the boat included.) If you get to Store Bay or Buccoo and buy a ticket from a tout, they will charge you TT$100 (approx. US$15).

The Trinidad & Tobago Tourist Authority has a ticket booth in Store Bay; they charge TT$60 (about US$10) per person. Many times, the touts working Store Bay will cover up the signs pointing to the ticket booth with clothing, bags and anything they can find. With the exception of a few of the larger party boats, the experience is the same. Find the booth and pay our US$10. A better option is to pay in local currency for just about anything you can on the island; the US dollar prices are generally a bit more expensive.

I have been on the boats numerous times; the best tours were from the Johnson Family in Buccoo Village. Other boats aren't bad; they all give you masks and snorkels for the reef swim, but they used to give swim fins before; a practice that seems to have stopped.All the skippers I encountered were pleasant and knowledgeable; the boats were in decent repair (don't expect a Princess Cruise ship) and they get along with their fellow captains.

Bring a camera and take pictures. The beach and tour is a great way to spend some relaxing vacation time, and is an absolute must see for first timers to Tobago. July and August are busy months; we didn't have a problem getting a boat at all.

Bring your food and drinks with you. None were available for purchase on the boats, but it didn't seem like an issue.

The reef is showing signs of overuse; at least in the area sectioned off for tourists. Other parts are non-anchor, non-travel. Still worth the trip.
Written January 16, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Buccoo Reef - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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