Travels & Trails…Home & Away: Where You Can Learn About the Authentic Caribbean
by Lou-Ann Jordan May 3, 2022
It’s been a long time coming, but now many of our countries in the region are opening back up. We see a slow but steady resumption of home-based activities, cultural events and, yes, travel.
For many of us, after two years of being stationary, we’re rearing to go, excited about the possibilities of travel. Also, for many countries, the time has been spent preparing for the return of travellers. So, visitors can anticipate warm welcomes and exciting activities.
If you’re on the hunt for somewhere to travel, or if you’re researching Caribbean culture intending to immerse yourself in an experience, then we want to point you to Travel & Trails…Home & Away. Since 2018, the Facebook group has curated a wide range of Caribbean content. Focusing specifically on the region, visitors get a chance to interact with our stories, events, sights, sites and interests.
Founded by former travel blogger Kathy Gabriel the site is a depository of the diverse cultural experiences the Caribbean has to offer. Kathy, whose multi-disciplined background covers education, language and literary studies, and business communication and theatre arts, has curated content that similarly reflects our multi-faceted customs.
Peruse the page, and you’ll be met with fearsome but stunning Carnival characters from Trinbago, be lost in the beautiful sights and sounds of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Barbados, Grenada and other islands. Parades and festivals from across the region are frequently highlighted.
Excited about the work being done by Kathy and group members of Travel & Trails…Home & Away, we reached out to learn more.
What is Trails & Travels…Home & Away?
It’s a private social group seeking to bring together people from the Caribbean and the diaspora who are interested in travel, tourism, and Caribbean culture. The group is also managed by four other Admins, hailing from Grenada/US, Barbados, and Trinidad, each bringing their special flavour. As such, our interests are many and diverse and are based locally, regionally, or further afield.
What persuaded you to launch the group?
Travel and writing were always part of the vision. I started a writing and wellness blog on the Blogspot platform called ‘Writing into Wellness’, which pretty much provided a healing space while dealing with health issues. During that time, I also started another Blogspot site called ‘TrailSpots Travels’, which eventually morphed into ‘Trails & Travels … Home & Away!’
Trails & Travels…Home & Away began with the encouragement of a few close friends. I struck out to create a social space for persons with similar interests who would be willing to share their experiences from wherever they were in the world. So, it was always about going beyond local spaces, inclusivity and connecting persons with varied interests and undertakings.
I believe in the power of creative communication, which often requires us to step outside our familiar boxes. Inclusiveness, a hallmark of the group, is a means to explore and expand that sense of community and connection that is so easily overlooked.
What kind of content can viewers go there to see featured?
Members can use their fingertips to take extraordinary journeys at home and away! Trails & Travels is a one-stop-shop for sharing anything related to travel, culture, tourism, adventure and environment. Hikes, road trips, tours, community events, personality interviews, food, farms, gardens, beaches, small business promos, documentaries, celebrations, music, the arts, humour, trivia and most of all, good vibes are very welcome!
Visitors can browse the posted topics and get a quick view of what Trails & Travels…Home & Away is about! However, it must be said that an important goal is to keep the content varied and fresh. We want members to have fun and share their trails and travel experiences with us from wherever they are in the world!
What do you hope to achieve with the group?
A Caribbean/diaspora hub where we can share your experiences, any activity or content dedicated to information, development and enjoyment. Additionally, I would like to see it grow into a space where small business owners in the Caribbean can promote their products and services. Of course, another goal would be to expand the membership and see it transform into a go-to space for Caribbean content.
What are a few exciting posts that have been featured?
We’ve recently featured clips from Trinidad and Tobago, Martinique and Haiti’s 2022 Carnivals for those far from home. Additionally, we have highlighted personal travel experiences, small business features, promotions and group collages, which always capture interest. Also, members’ original photos frequently get pride of place as group and feature covers. One such post was taken in beautiful, scenic Grenada as a group cooked up a tasty pot of the island’s national dish. There are numerous fascinating elements.
A helpful feature is the ‘Topics’ section which has been hashtagged to take members directly to any topics that may interest them. This section also serves as a guide, with examples of what can be posted.
How can one join the group?
The group is private, which means that the public can view the ‘Home Page’ information, but only group members can view what is posted daily. Persons can request to join the group on their own and wait for approval from one of our Admins. Alternatively, interested persons will be automatically accepted if they know someone already a member. We employ this method because it helps to ensure group quality related to membership and shared content. It also makes for an all-around better group experience.
A cultural depository, Trails & Travels … Home & Away, affords members a chance to share their heritage and other related interests. Visit and join the group and begin posting your photos and videos … discover, share, connect!