Independence Day in Trinidad And Tobago
Observed annually on August 31st in Trinidad and Tobago, Independence Day is a holiday that marks the country’s independence from the UK in 1962. Also known as Trinidad and Tobago’s National Day, this holiday is a patriotic event for all involved and there are numerous events held for the general public to enjoy.
Although there are official ceremonies in Scarborough, Tobago, and Port of Spain, there are also other smaller celebrations held as well. Because it’s a public holiday, it’s also a day off for the general population, and non-essential government agencies, schools, and some businesses are closed for the celebrations.
The History Of Independence Day In Trinidad And Tobago
From the moment that Trinidad was encountered by Christopher Columbus, the islands would come under the colonial rule of various European powers. First by the Spanish, then the French, and eventually the British. In 1802, the country would officially become a Crown Colony of Great Britain. During the Napoleonic Wars, Great Britain took control of Tobago, and the two islands would be combined into a singular territory in 1889.
From 1958 to 1962, the country would become a part of the West Indies Federation. On August 31st, 1962, Trinidad and Tobago would officially gain its independence from the UK. The first Prime Minister of the country was Eric Williams, and he is now widely known as the father of the nation. In 1976, Trinidad and Tobago officially became a republic.
Observing Independence Day In Trinidad And Tobago
Official Independence Day celebrations begin in Port of Spain and Scarborough, Tobago. These events feature parades of all sizes, but the main one is through Queen’s Park Savannah. This is also where there are musicians playing Trinidadian folk music, and where people congregate to celebrate the day.
All across the country, there are open-air concerts, exhibitions, and other special events as well. This is a day off for the general population, so people can attend these events or spend time with their loved ones. At the conclusion of the day is a huge fireworks display that’s enjoyed by thousands upon thousands of people.