Prohibited Use of the Buccoo Reef Marine Protected Area

In an effort to address the emergent unauthorized use of the Buccoo Reef Marine Park Area especially for the hosting of party events, the Division of Food Security, Natural Resources, the Environment and Sustainable Development wishes to inform all members of the public of the following:

  • The Buccoo Reef Marine Park is a restricted marine area pursuant to the Marine Areas (Preservation and Enhancement) Act, chapter 37:02, Act 1 of 1970 as amended (the “Act”).
  • Pursuant to Regulation 3 of the Act’s subsidiary legislation:
  • Except with the written permission of the Minister, or a person duly authorised by him in writing to grant such permission, no person shall—
    1. go in or alight upon a restricted area;
    2. operate a boat or other vessel within a restricted area or cause or allow a boat or other vessel to enter such an area;
    3. take or remove any fish or bird from a restricted area;
    4. take or remove any mangrove from a restricted area; or
    5. dig, dredge, or otherwise interfere with the seabed of a restricted area.
  • The provisions of sub regulation (1) do not apply to a public officer acting in the execution of his duties.

According to Section 3 (1) of the Public Health [2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)] (No. 6) Regulations, 2022:

“No person shall, without reasonable excuse, travel in a vehicle or a   vessel without wearing a face mask, face shield or face covering in a manner which covers his nose, mouth and chin.”

The general public is hereby also advised of the following, according to the Buccoo Reef Marine Park User Policy, which was approved by the Executive Council in May of 2016:

  • Tours to the Buccoo Reef Marine Park shall only be permitted during the Park’s opening hours of 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.;
  • Access to the Marine Park is allowed to registered and insured vessels holding Access and/or Transit Permits issued by the Division;
  • Parties and the consumption of alcohol within the Buccoo Reef Marine Park is strictly prohibited.
  • Navigation through the Park is to be done by way of the marked channel.
  • Fishing, of any kind is strictly prohibited within the Marine Park.

 The public is further reminded that tickets to the Buccoo Reef Marine Park are accessible ONLY through ticketing booths operated by authorized Reef Operators Associations, which are located at the following sites:

  • Booth #15 at the Store Bay Beach Facility
  • Blue Booth at the left of Waterfall inside the Pigeon Point Heritage Park.

It should be further noted that access to the Buccoo Reef Marine Protected Area is permitted only by way of a Valid Access Permit, issued by the Division. Commercial fishing vessels will be issued a Transit Permit; and are not registered for the transportation of passengers to conduct reef tours. Jet Skis are not permitted at this time, to operate within the Buccoo Reef Marine Park. All potential users wishing to access or transit this Restricted Area are required to complete and submit an Application Form for consideration by the Division. Permit fees continues to be waived.

Application Forms, Permit Fees along with the Terms and Conditions for access to the Buccoo Reef Marine Park are available at the Department of Marine Resources and Fisheries at the Milshirv Administrative Complex, Shirvan Road, Tobago. For further information, please contact the Department of Marine Resources and Fisheries at 639-4354/4446.

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