We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“View to a thrill.”
Review of Castara Retreats

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 1 more site!
Castara Retreats
Certificate of Excellence
Derby, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“View to a thrill.”
Reviewed May 30, 2013

The pictures of the views enjoyed by Castara retreats are amazing, the reality is even better. It really is an amazing location. The service is excellent, there is always someone around to answer a query or pass on a message to Porridge who organises most things. Although it is self catering, the staff made it feel more like a hotel, first names were used from day one onwards and as I mention, there is always someone around. The lodges themselves are as stunning as the scenery, fully equipped kitchens, mosquitoe nets around the beds, plantation shutters on the windows. The village itself is probably the friendliest we have ever stayed, we 'limed' with the fisherman, went to a block party, watched three local football games, all the while feeling perfectly safe (we had teenage daughter in tow). For us, this location brought us serene peace and we left with a sense of calm. The only downside to our trip (and this was due to my bad planning rather than the retreat or village) was the mosquitoes. Make sure you take good sprays and creams! The lodges are surrounded by mango trees which meant a steady supply of the freshest fruit. We did a couple of day trips to other parts of the island but to be honest, nowhere compared to this place. Book it now!

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Duncan M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

433 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    386
    34
    9
    3
    1
See reviews for
102
256
13
1
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (127)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
64 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
Reviewed May 13, 2013

It's difficult to find anything to add to all the other glowing reviews! This is a real gem of a place and well deserves five stars all round. This is partly due to the beautiful location, partly due to Porridge, his wife, son and others in the team at Castara who make everyone feel so welcome.

The Castara Retreats website does a really good job of explaining the set up, and it's important to understand that this is not a luxury hotel, and Tobago is the kind of place where you don't get five star amenities on tap (eg there might be a power cut, the shops shut at random times...), but it has so many other things going for it, it is all part of the charm.

We stayed in Coasthanger, and the view was spectacular. The lodge is lovely and has everything you need, and you can open up the sides to get fresh air and allow the colourful birds to swoop in and out. They will sort you out a pick up from the airport and stop at a big supermarket en route - try and get most of the stuff you need here as the local Castara shops are quite basic. When we arrived at the lodge there was a "starter pack" of bread, butter, marmalade, milk, beer and tea bags already in the kitchen which was a thoughtful and welcome touch. If arriving in the evening (as we were) you can pre-order a dinner for arrival from the restaurant for 100TT (c.£10) which was most welcome after the long flight.

Castara Retreats is on a hill leading into Castara Village. It is next to the road (and there is only one road in and out of the village) so you will get some traffic noise. Also, people in Tobago get up early to work before it gets too hot; so for example one day we were woken by someone cutting grass at 6.30am. That said, we fell into Tobago time very quickly - in bed between 9 & 10pm and up between 7 & 8am to enjoy the cooler mornings (and we are normally pretty lazy...).

The sea is a two minute walk, the beach is lovely and the sea a perfect temperature, sandy bottom, really clean and no seaweed. The main hub of the village is a couple minutes walk down the hill. There are a few eating options in the village, all fairly basic, generally no menu as the choice will be chicken leg or fish or shrimp plus various accompaniments (usually including rice, beans, salad). The best meals we had in the village were in the Boat House on the Little Bay, where the food was good and there was a bit more variety. The restaurant at Castara Retreats is very good and we ate there a few times, a simple menu including veggie options. The fresh homemade pasta in particular was excellent and Kenny who runs the restaurant with his partner is a really welcoming, friendly guy.

We did the boat trip offered through Porridge - definitely recommended. We were out 10am - 4pm, we stopped in two different bays to snorkel (loads of lovely fish) then lunch on a gorgeous beach (reachable only by sea so we were only people there) with a big BBQ and plenty of beer/rum punch, all included in the price. Plus there was the chance to try line fishing off the back of the boat too.

We'd also recommend Newton George for the rainforest walk and bird spotting - he's an incredible guide, really knowledgable. Again Porridge organised this for us. We also hired a car one day. Porridge does have some cars to hire, all his were out though so we went to Taylor's on the Little Bay, who were recommended by a family we met. It was 350 TT (£35) for a day, petrol is dirt cheap compare to UK and we got a small but perfect for the job jeep/car kind of thing, needed for some of Tobago's steeper/untarmaced roads. We visited Argyle Falls and the Cocoa Plantation by car, both worth a visit. I have to say, on our tour of the north of the island, Castara is definitely the most beautiful bay of those with a village/guest houses.

We met so many people who were on a repeat visit to Tobago (including repeat visitors to Castara Retreats itself) and it was easy to see why - it is a lovely island and we would wholeheartedly recommend Castara Retreats to anyone.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank LinzofLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
1 review
Reviewed May 7, 2013

Last piece of Heaven left on the earth. We had a great stay in Castara at Castara Retreats. A work trip but pure peacefulness while in Castara. Porridge, his wife, and even his son were most helpful. Porridge even gave me some limes to season our fish for dinner. Just great people in the village and amazing place at Castara retreats. Very clean, well furnished, and comfortable. We stayed in Birdsong....it doesn't even matter which lodge you choose. It is just beautiful and you will be pleased!

Will definitely be back!!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank TobagoLovers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal, Canada
1 review
Reviewed April 19, 2013

We spend a wonderful 6 days at Castara Retreats in Hummingbird 1 and the studio and both apartments can be very much recommended. The rooms were tastefully furnished and entirely made out of wood. They fitted in very nicely with the surrounding nature. For people who like to have an ac at night the studio would be the choice. Views from Hummingbird 1 are unbeatable though. Dinner is exellent too, we particularly enjoyed the BBQ night (every Friday). Cocktails menu could be expanded and improved. However the Pina Colada was delicious.
Castara is a beautiful fishermen's village and tourism is luckily a secondary bussiness only. Ice-cream at the COFFEE SHOP (CHENO'S) by the river is very good.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank janscha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Windsor, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
82 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed April 18, 2013

We stayed in the rainforest apartment for a week, this is the third time we've been to Tobago but this was our first time in Castara , however it def wont be our last. The views from the balcony alone make the holiday exceptional and we saw loads of great wild life just eating our breakfast.
We had grand plans of doing our own cooking but as soon as we ate at the restaurant run by Kenny and Patricia we couldn't bear to go anywhere else. They were even kind enough to cook the fish we caught on a fishing trip with Seon which was the highlight of my little boys holiday. A special mention has to go Wesley for his great cocktails as well.

Porridge gets the perfect balance between supportive and allowing you your own space, nothing is too much trouble for him to arrange and both him and Kenny were fantastic with the kids. The accommodation and food are both excellent , however it's made even better by the kindness and friendliness of al the residents of Castara who go out of their way to make sure you have a great hol.

Eat breakfast at Cheno's the coconut bake is fab, if you get the chance watch a local football match as the commentating alone makes it worthwhile.

Can't wait to go again!

Room Tip: The apartments all have wonderful views and hammocks but I think the rainforest is the best!
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank CarysC006
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed April 17, 2013

We stayed two weeks at the Retreats again this Easter, and enjoyed it even more. Why even better? Anticipation for one thing, knowing how good it is from our first visit; the restaurant run by Kenny and Patricia which produces excellent food (and Wes mixes a mean cocktail!); the welcome and service from Porridge and Jeanell; got to join in the hauling of nets; saw more wildlife (and fed the agouti); sunbeds for hire on the beach (the best bit of beach without a doubt is right below Castara); fewer bug bites (more deet); great trip to Charlotteville catching our own fish on the way. Downside? Ummmm.....we'll get back to you on that one.....

Room Tip: Coasthanger has fabulous views and lots of breeze....
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Lazlo_Almasy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
59 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
Reviewed April 2, 2013

A beautiful location, with incredible views. Our apartment, Rainforest, was very big and open and had 180 degree views to the beach, ocean and village/mountains. The accommodations were well appointed and had everything we needed for a comfortable stay. Evening meals at Castara Retreats were delicious and varied. Dining in town was a little more affordable. Take a tour to the rainforest - it was absolutely beautiful. I would definitely go back.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Ericthebee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Castara
13.3 mi away
Tropikist Beach Hotel & Resort
0.2 mi away
Naturalist Beach Resort
Naturalist Beach Resort
#2 of 11 in Castara
217 reviews
12.9 mi away
Coco Reef Tobago
Coco Reef Tobago
#1 of 3 in Crown Point
1,518 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
10.5 mi away
Magdalena Grand Beach & Golf Resort
7.1 mi away
Turtle Beach by Rex Resorts
11.5 mi away
Blue Waters Inn
Blue Waters Inn
#1 of 5 in Speyside
617 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Castara Retreats? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Castara Retreats

Property: Castara Retreats
Address: Northside Road | Castara, Castara, Tobago
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Trinidad and Tobago > Tobago > Castara
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 11 Specialty Lodging in Castara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Castara Retreats 3.5*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Castara Retreats is a small Tobago eco resort superbly located overlooking the Bay of Castara, with stunning views of the Caribbean and mountains. For those seeking holidays in Tobago the seven tropical hardwood accommodations are built to the highest standards and are set right above Castara beach in lush tropical gardens. Backed by the deep green of the oldest protected rainforest in the Western Hemisphere and framed by mango trees and bamboo, Castara Retreats offers Caribbean vacations in a lush tropical paradise where guests can relax and live in the landscape around them. The lodge accommodation offers 15 separately available areas, each with wonderful privacy and exclusive terraces, which can be rented individually by couples, or together for larger groups and families. The accommodation is specially designed to create open, spacious living areas that allow uninterrupted views of the beach and rainforest, cool sea breezes and the natural sights and sounds of the ocean, rainforest and village. Each lodge or apartment is constructed of red cedar, a local hardwood, and is from sustainable sources. The bedrooms, each with en suite showers and either queen size or twin beds all have full size mosquito nets on suspended wooden frames. The spacious living areas have panoramic views of the two beaches looking north-west and also to the coastline looking south-west, and stunning sunsets over the Caribbean. Each accommodation has the advantage of free Wi-Fi internet access. There is comfortable and stylish seating with both indoor and outdoor dining and all three areas are equipped to a very high standard for self-catering. We have recently completed open-decked Pavilion Bar and Restaurant - already receiving excellent ratings - perfect for a romantic dinner for two or for family groups and events. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Hotels.com and Priceline so you can book your Castara Retreats reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Castara Retreats Hotel Tobago
Castara Retreats Tobago

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing