Caroni Swamp is a 12,000-acre swamp situated just south of Port of Spain on Trinidad & Tobago’s west coast. Being the second largest mangrove wetlands on the island and the natural nesting home for one of the country’s national birds, Caroni Swamp is protected under the Ramsar Convention as a wetland of international importance.
The swamp runs along the banks of the Caroni River and features a maze of channels and lagoons. The central section is designated as a wildlife sanctuary, with the mangrove trees providing the ideal nesting place for the distinctive Scarlet Ibis birds, along with around 100 species of migratory birds, making it perfect for birdwatchers. The main attraction for nature lovers occurs just before sunset, when the ritualistic roosting habits of thousands of the brightly-colored Ibis can be observed close-up. The birds fly in unison to feed and nest here, creating a dazzling cloud of red against the evening sky.
Caroni Swamp is naturally a popular tourist destination, and flat-bottom boats with experienced guides conduct regular tours through the mangroves, helping you to spot the many bird species and other swamp inhabitants, such as crabs, caimans, and boa constrictors. Book a Caroni wetlands boat tour or a Caroni Bird Sanctuary tour from Port of Spain to experience the natural wonders of this unique swamp for yourself.
Did You Know? While the Scarlet Ibis birds are the main attraction at Caroni Swamp, other birds you’re likely to spot here include the neotropic cormorant, large-billed tern, red-capped cardinal, tricolored heron, snowy egret, and the bicolored conebill.
If not arriving as part of an organized tour that includes hotel pickup and drop-off from your Port of Spain accommodation, you’ll need to make your own way south until you reach Caroni Swamp along the Uriah Butler Highway. The drive takes around 15 to 20 minutes.