Matura is a place blessed with rivers and within its landscape, there is an abundance of natural resources. It coastline seven miles long is the favorite destination to observe the nesting of the leatherback turtles. The name Matura originated from Amerindian and Spanish dialect and referred to as a region of dense and unbroken forest. Traffic passes through the community en route to the various beaches, but its mystical beauty sometimes overlooked. However, meandering through the vast landscape of never-ending forest, there is the Matura River timeless, patient and uncontaminated from human interference.
To experience the natural treasures of Matura one has to explore the river to discover its fascinating pools, waterfall, and gorges. A favorite spot that attracts a lot of nature lovers is the Mermaid Basins where there is a large pool to swim, relax and enjoy the scenic ambiance of nature.
The river as it flows through the valleys passes through a region of uninhabited and unbroken woodland. The trees that border its bank are tall, majestic and consist mainly of Mora Forest, which adds splendor to the already picturesque terrain. The sun shining on the crystal clear waters radiate vibrant colors of emerald green. The name Mermaid refers to the serenity of the surrounding to sit on the rocks and sway one’s feet in the soothing waters of the river. Further, upstream there are fascinating pools to discover and a fabulous destination Manulot Falls.
The journey to Mermaid Pool starts at Thomas Trace located just before The Matura Outreach Centre. The walk down to the river will take thirty–five minutes, and there are two shallow areas to cross at knee deep. Noticeable are the towering pine trees (pinus caribae) planted by the Forestry Division to preserve the environment from numerous bush fires, which occur during the dry season. The pines upkeep the watershed, prevent soil erosion and at the same time beautify the forest. These trees can withstand the pressures of bush fires and built at a strategic site there is a fire observation tower used to oversee the miles of territory.
Over the years, public visits to Mermaid Pools have increased in popularity, and it is the responsibility of citizens to protect and preserve their environment by carrying out their litter. Please remember no garbage collectors are coming into the forest and bubbling a pot in forested areas can lead to bushfires.
For more info call hike leaders: Marcia 490 242, Jamal 761- 1889, Mario 749-2956, Dennis 678-2768, Robin 681-1389, Danny 372-7798 or www.islandhikers.com