Asa Wright Nature Center is situated 36 miles into the Northern Range Mountains of Trinidad. The grounds are a former plantation with period buildings and furniture. While relaxing on the large veranndah, you will see an amazing variety of birds at close range, including Tannagers, Honey Creepers and Crest Orependolas. Then it's on to a 2 hour guided tour through the nature trails. You will have time to explore on your own and bath under a waterfall. Source: Sensational Tours
The World famous Asa Wright Nature Center is a natural wonder and Trinidad's gift to the World.“The continental origin and proximity of Trinidad to South America, along with its varied habitats, has resulted in an extremely diverse biota. Species lists for this island are impressive, including 97 native mammals, 400 birds, 55 reptiles, 25 amphibians, and 617 butterflies, as well as over 2,200 species of flowering plants! No other area in the West Indies, and few areas of comparable size in tropical America, can match this spectacular species diversity. Trinidad is 50 miles long by about 37 miles wide, and dominated by the Northern Range, which rises to about 3,000 feet and was historically covered by tropical rainforest. Here, in this lush part of this beautiful island, you will find the magical Asa Wright Nature Centre.” For more information about the center and to read the complete article please visit the official website https://www.asawright.org/about/index.html”
The Asa Wright Nature Center is nestled 1,200 feet in the bosom of the Northern range just about seven miles from my home town of Arima. As a matter of fact one needs to pass through Arima to get to the Blanchieusse road to access the Northern Range of Mountains to get to the Center. The Nature Center is the oldest of its kind in the West Indies and has been set up in what used to be an old cocoa, coffee and citrus plantation. There was a time in the history of Trinidad when the Arima plantations supplied the main exports of the country – cocoa, cocoa products and coffee. The importance of the cocoa crop meant that the estates were well cared for by their owners. The Asa Wright Nature Center is part of one of those plantations. The area affords beautiful views with the sound of streams and misty views waiting for the curious traveler/adventurer. I remember bicycling with my friend Claude from Arima all the way to the village of Blanchieusse. I know that the views of the valleys and the smell of the air and the purity of the streams are pristine in many areas. The tropical forests are dense and the terrain affords good perches for the birds that frequent this mountainous region. It is comprised of “1,500 acres of mainly forested land in the Arima and Aripo Valleys of the Northern Range, the AWNC's properties will be retained under forest cover in perpetuity, to protect the community watershed and provide important wildlife habitat.” In 1999, AUDUBON magazine selected the Centre as one of just nine eco-lodges worldwide that it considered one of "The World's Ultimate Outposts." In 1993, The President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago presented the Nature Centre with the Hummingbird Gold Medal for its community service in the field of environmental conservation. This award is among the country's highest national honors (information taken from the Nature Center’s home page).
Indeed the Center should be on the itinerary of nature lovers and it should be noted that this natural wonder,with just a touch of the islanders hands, offers various package deals for staying on site (see link below). So, if ever or whenever you visit my Sugar Island please stop by at the Nature Center where you will relax and unwind with nature and leave feeling recharged for the daily grind of the modern life.