When visiting the capital city of Trinidad and Tobago, it’s imperative that
at some point you head over to see what the Brian Lara Promenade is all about.
Joined to Independence Square, the Brian Lara Promenade and the square together
form one of the best spots in Port
of Spain to “lime.” In Trinidad
and Tobago, liming translates
to hanging out, basically, and the relaxed pace of Brian Lara Promenade and
Independence Square Trinidad certainly encourages plenty of liming. Locals like
to come here to people watch and to relax, perhaps engaging in a game of chess,
and it’s really just a great place to grab a beer and watch the world go by.
Independence Square is Port of Spain’s most cherished public spot, especially
with the addition of the Brian Lara Promenade, which is found on the square’s
western end. Coincidentally, the promenade is a great place to book regional
tours, as tour operators
are in good number here. One of the more popular tours that visitors to Port
of Spain book are sightseeing tours that include the city, a drive through a
rainforest, and time on the beach at Maracas
The Brian Lara Promenade in Port of Spain had been planned for decades before work began on the pedestrian avenue in 1993. Banks in the immediate area of the square and promenade helped to finance the rehabilitation of a couple of city squares early on, and as these squares were being renovated, support for the project grew. Other businesses based on or near Independence Square Trinidad have become representatives of the association that manages the Brian Lara Promenade, and today there are no less than ten different squares that can be found along the wide walkway’s stretch. These squares are akin to little parks, most offering shade trees and nice places to sit. The rehabilitation of Independence Square has far exceeded the expectations of those involved, and together with the addition of the Brian Lara Promenade, the revived area was deemed the country’s first Business Improvement District. Other municipalities in the country, such as Chaguanas and San Fernando, have taken notice of the square’s success and are considering their own Business Improvement District initiatives.
Independence Square was formerly known as Marine Square, but its name was
changed to honor Trinidad and Tobago’s 1962 independence break from the United
Kingdom. On the square’s eastern end is the Cathedral of the Immaculate
Conception, and its western end, which features the Brian Lara Promenade, ends
at the Cipriani Statue. While sitting in the square or strolling along the Brian
Lara Promenade in Port of Spain, you’ll enjoy views of the Eric Williams Financial
Complex, which is the tallest building in the country. You can also easily spot
the second-tallest Nicholas Tower, and the Twin Towers, which are two of the
skyline’s most identifiable landmarks. The Central Bank Auditorium, which is
part of the Eric Williams Financial Complex, is one of the more remarkable performing
arts facilities in Trinidad and Tobago. If Trinidad
and Tobago events of the cultural variety are on your list of things
to do, the Central Bank Auditorium is a good place to look. Independence
Square is often the sight of weekly concerts and other public shows as well,
so you never know what might be going on here when you arrive.
Surrounding the Brian Lara Promenade and Independence Square Trinidad are a number of fast food establishments, and there are also street vendors hawking some local food favorites should you feel like going that route. Bringing a packed lunch and liming the day away in this attractive part of town is always a possibility as well. Plans are in the works to further improve the southern end of Port of Spain, which is where Independence Square and the Brian Lara Promenade are found, and new skyscrapers are part of those plans. So, don’t be surprised to see construction going on in the area in the near future, as Port of Spain continues on a road to improvement.
As a side note, you might be wondering who Brian Lara is. As you may well already know, the sport of cricket is huge in Trinidad and Tobago and in the rest of the West Indies. Brian Lara, for whom the Brian Lara Promenade in Port of Spain is named, is one of the most celebrated cricketers in Trinidad and Tobago’s history. Lara, who was born in 1969, carries nicknames like “The Prince of Trinidad" and “The Prince of Port of Spain,” which goes to show the love that the island and its capital city have for their record-breaking batsman.