Caribbean Travel: Jamaica

Caribbean Travel: Jamaica

Jamaica Vacations

Jamaica, West Indies, is one of the world’s best known tourist attraction. This beautiful Island of the Caribbean located 90 miles from Cuba in the Atlantic, is home to the Caribbean’s’ most beautiful beaches and pristine ocean views. This country has made its mark on the world scene. Every year, millions upon millions of visitors flock to the illustrious island in the sun. Home to Reggae legend, Bob Marley, and many other well known personages, this land of evergreen and crisp air, has been the nation’s finest asset. Lending its beauty to admiring travelers all around, it is the perfect destination for any vacationer.

Jamaica has often been described as the biggest little country in the world. Why? Because its phenomenally large achievements are disproportionate to its very small size. It really is just a speck on the world map. But in Jamaican (Patois) Language, we would say, “We may be lickle, but we tallawah!” This translates to mean, “We may be a little country, but nevertheless we are strong and significant!” The brand “Made in Jamaica” is such an enviable brand that many companies and countries around the world fervently try to copy its products and culture, respectively. It has been said that no other small country in the world has ever had such a large impact on the rest of the world. Is this true? Let us check out the facts.

Hotels in Jamaica

One of the finest advantages that the island has is that it’s laced with some of the world’s most luxurious hotels & resorts. Tourists come all the way from abroad to experience the island hospitable accommodations from Negril, Ocho Rios, and Port Antonio. These three parishes host some the best resorts that Jamaica has to offer. Come let us explore some of this memorable

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Catcha Falling Star

Catcha Falling Star

We now make our way to the Catcha Falling Star in the Negril. This comfortable and affordable hotel in Negril, has one of the most breathtaking views. The hotel has gorgeous grounds, affordable rooms, and provides excellent food service. This hotel currently has the highest rating of all Negril’s accommodations. It’s quite clear that it offers the finest services there. Non-guests can enjoy dinner after reservations, however the policy regarding lunch and breakfast is only for the guests at the hotel. There are also various water activities that guest can enjoy during their stay.

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Geejam Hotel

Geejam Hotel

Geejam, an exclusive luxury hotel in San San, Port Antonio, has beautifully decked Ska-cottage accommodations. This has a hot tub and a remarkable view of the ocean. Perch up in the trees; this spot has a cool oasis of evergreen landscape. The rooms have high quality showers and accessories. There is a recording studio, the bush-bar with a music library and an in house band. This beautiful gem near Port Antonio has been a cool, serene haven for many tourists who can’t wait to come back.

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Iberostar Grande Rose Hall

Iberostar Grande Rose Hall

Iberostar Grande Rose Hall hotel in Montego Bay has the most breathtaking lobby and poolside view. The staff is professional and well trained. The rooms are spacious and have a magnificent luxury theme. Guest can enjoy the breezy scenic view from their balcony or frolic on the beachfront of the resort. Food and beverage are at its best at the Iberostar Grande. Guests can enjoy the fines wine and tasty cuisine at this all-inclusive five star hotel. This hotel is an adult-only getaway spot for travels looking to have a great time as a couple or just to relax. There is well over 200 rooms and 2 presidential suites. There are water sport activities and night shows that are available to any guests that visit this luxurious and delightful resort. Iberostar Grande is definitely a one stop All-inclusive romantic getaway.

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The Caves in Negril

The Caves in Negril

Our next visit is to the lovely hotel known as The Caves in Negril.  It has the homey atmosphere and clear-cut ocean views. It is such an amazing property, that guest enjoy jumping off the cliffs from their rooms. As is indicated by its name, this location has well decked caves that even have a dining room. There is also a pool available at this hotel. However, most guests enjoy just diving right into the open waters from the cliffs. Snorkeling is also a great pastime when staying at this hotel. Accommodation rates are reasonable, and its’ definitely an adventure to remember.

Moon Dance Cliffs

Another wonderful property for guests to stay is the illustrious Moon Dance Cliffs, Negril. It has a private villa, pool, three bars, two restaurants, and spa. Surrounded by beautiful gardens like atmosphere, it’s one of the coziest places to stay in Negril.  Guests have direct access to the sea from the cliffs. Throughout the year, many have utilized this beautiful accommodation for weddings and parties. It is all-inclusive and carries a botanical garden theme. Guests can enjoy deep-sea fishing, snorkeling, river rafting, jet skiing, gold, and many more activities. There is even a spa & health club available for guests. Guests can expect to be served freshly prepared meals at the restaurant of the Moon Dance Cliff Resort. There is no doubt that anyone who stays at this resort will have a memorable experience.

Sandals Royal Plantation Resort

Sandals Royal Plantation Resort is one of Jamaica’s most popular destinations. This five star gem is a place of many memorable vacationers. Whether a wedding or honeymoon vacation, tourists cannot get enough of this royal resort in Ocho Rios. It has well over 70 luxury suites, a very attractive dining area, a beautiful ocean view lounge. The rooms are very spacious, plush, and have the best top-notch appliances for the comforts of its guests. Poolside and other water activities are superb. The food at the restaurant area and the staff are exceptional.  They have tours such as deep-sea fishing, private horseback riding, Bamboo River rafting, and so much more.  Because of its grandeur, it is recommended that visitors come well equipped with their cameras to take home memories of this wonderful experience.

San Souci

The couples resort, San Souci is located on the emerald cost of Ocho Rios. A place, which most couples go for relaxation and a private getaway, this spot, is designed for honeymooners and anyone looking to have some fun in the sun.  There is such a large verity of food options, entertainment, romantic walks, and breathtaking beach view sunsets. They have three restaurants, one of which is the A La Carte Casanova. The grounds are perfectly manicured and have a luscious feel to it. They are various forms of activities available for couples straying at this exclusive resort. Some of these activities are golfing, scuba diving, yoga, other water sports, and a spa for relaxing. There is also nightly entertainment included in the package. It is certainly a hot spot for couples to enjoy on their vacation stay in the beautiful Ocho Rios, Jamaica.

Thinks to Do

Jamaica has so many fun activities to enjoy. There are water sports, beach activities, fishing, football (soccer), cricket – a well known sport in the Caribbean, and nature trials. The island also has a lot of seasonal festivals from the Jamaica Orchid Society show in Kingston to the Ocho Rios Jazz festival in Ocho Rios, St. Ann. Some may be aware of country’s massive music concerts such as the reggae sumfest four day festivals where reggae artist go to perform for both locals and tourist.

There are also many restaurants and nightlife that some have found very delightful. Some visitors travel every year to enjoy and be entertained by the tasty dishes and unique entertainments. There are many beaches and historical monuments to explore as well. One of the places that people have been visiting is the Rose Hall Plantation in Montego Bay. St. James.

Camping, safari tours, tennis, volleyball, surfing, shopping, beach trips, and diving is among much other form of activities to enjoy while exploring the island. Thousands of visitors have enjoyed staying at hotels and resorts that provides them with amazing amenities for the entertainment. Going to the beach is the most common form of activity that most Jamaicans and tourist enjoy doing. There are famous restaurants & bars that are also the local’s favorite pastimes.

beaches jamaica

One place that is also a favorite to visit is the National Gallery. This Kingston institution offers the country’s premier collection of local and region artworks. Many visitors have enjoyed gaping at the splendid pieces of artworks found at this institution. Rafting is another fun activity that many have found delightful. Jamaica has several rafting rivers. One of these is Rio Grande through John Crow Mountains. It has one of the most picturesque scenery. There are also many other country side sceneries that travelers can enjoy.

When it comes to stage shows, Jamaicans never fall short of boisterous entertaining. There are three major shows that both visitors and locals look forward to each year – Reggae Sumfest, Jamaica Jazz Festival and STING. These shows have many of the locals coming back for more. In more recent years, these shows have been favorites of more and more tourists. Whenever Jamaican’s are entertaining or showing off their beautiful country, visitors can be sure to have a memorable time exploring the wonders of the island an all that it has to offer.

Cities in Jamaica


In the island capital, Kingston is the true heart of Jamaica. A place full of vivaciousness and character, it’s highly known as the island’s political capital. In Kingston, you will find most of the nation’s high rises. There is where most of the major business giants of the island are located. Full of art, music and theater, and top-class hotels & other accommodations, travelers can experience the most splendid nightlife. Visitors can eat the some of the best fried fish at Hellshire Beach, and later maker their way to visit the legendary Blue Mountains. Visitors desiring to see this magnificent giant will enjoy hiking and many other activities through the mountainous region. Then there is the marvelous Port Royal with its historic flare. Port Royal is a former pirate city and was once the capital of the well known Spanish Town. When going through Kingston, visitors will notice that it contains many streets that lead them to almost anywhere around town. There are many places to visit and shop when traveling through the capital.



Whether taking a ride to Buff Bay or visiting Musgrave Market, Port Antonio offers a range of interesting places to site-see. This city is known as one of the best places to see fishermen catch the best fishes around the island. As a result, there is a great deal of restaurants to dine and have a relaxing afternoon. The ocean air alone is enough to make any island traveler feel captivated by the natural wonder of the Caribbean Sea. Being the capital of the Portland, Port Antonio is home to many famous hotels & resorts. Every year thousands of visitors lodge at these plush and very inviting accommodations. There are many things to do when staying in this city. Some of the activities include Rio Grande Valley, Blue Lagoon, and the adventurous Port Antonio Walking Tour. Anyone looking to have a good time will enjoy the tantalizing atmosphere of Port Antonio, Jamaica.


Ocho Rios, Jamaica

Ocho Rios is perhaps the first word that comes to the mind of many travelers design to visits the island of Jamaica. Home to the well-known Dunn’s River Falls, it has some of the most interesting views. An intended tourist attraction, this city has so many fun activities and comfortable accommodations. Each week, cruise lines from around the world dock at the Ocho Rios Cruise Ship Pier. When tourists set foot in this city, they embark upon a verity of crafts shops and street-side entertainment. Here is the famous Margaritaville where many enjoy fun and fine dining. The Taj Mahal shopping center is also one of the first places to see when visitors tour the city. There are also stores and many souvenir filled gift shops.


Montego Bay, Jamaica

Montego Bay has been celebrated for its beaches and is ideal for visitors looking for an escape from their daily life. It is known as the resort town of Jamaica. Many locals have enjoyed the renown, Doctor’s Cave Beach. It’s a private beach that has the best looking sea water around the island. This city is home of the Sangster International Airport. As soon as visitors onto the island, they can see the long stretch of hotels and resorts laced by the beautiful waterfront. As one of the Northern Rivera, it has so many activities and downtown entertainment. Visitors can also get to tour the Great White House in Rose Hall. There are many restaurants that serve some of the best local dishes.


beaches jamaica

This region is a large beach community in the western coast of the island. There are so many resorts and restaurants in this city, and visitors can have access to the beaches. Prices are reasonable, so anyone can afford enjoy the views. One of the best places is Seven Mile Beach. There are so many things to do such as parasailing, jet skiing, to glass bottom boat touring. The well known Ricks Café offers diving and the best meals and entertainment on the coast. There is cliff jumping and many other beach activities in the city Negril. Negril’s soft sands and exciting allure is definitely one of the top listed places to visit in Jamaica.

Jamaica Attractions

In this land that’s most admired and alluring, Jamaica offers a verity of attractions. Besides its natural beauty, there are many places on the island that keeps visitors coming back for more. When any visitor comes to the island, they always have a piece of the island experience to share with their friends and family. Part of the reason for this is because the people of this beautiful country utilize their magnificent surroundings for visitors to explore. In this article, we will take a look at just a few places that travelers may want to add to their vacation experience. These places even have some locals wanting more. Now let us see what anyone desiring to enjoy themselves during their stay on the island. We’ll first take a look at one particular spot that has been a favorite for both locals & visitors.

Dolphin Cove

Dolphin Cove, Jamaica

A most popular and highly valued tourist attraction is the lovely Dolphin Cove in the parish of St. Ann, Jamaica. A Marine attraction, it offers many different activities. These include, taking photos with the dolphins in the water, swim with the sharks under staff supervision, and snorkeling. This beautiful has other land animals too where visitors can trek through the forest-like cove and take photos with them. There are iguanas, snakes, birds, and goats. Whether old or young; locals or visitors, this attraction has activities for everyone.

River Tubing & Rafting

There are quite a few River Tubing & Rafting in Jamaica. There is the Irie Adventure, Jungle River Tubing Safari, and Ocho Rios White River Valley Tubing Safari. For years, tourists have enjoyed these wonderful fun activities for the entire family. There are many rivers and falls on the island, and tubing and rafting is one of the most enjoyable pastimes for visitors. You can enjoy the scenic view of the River Grande while rafting alone its embankments. Tubing along the rushing waters at the River Safari in Negril, is one of the most exciting and thrilling things to experience.

Water Sports in Jamaica


There are basically four places on the island that you can find water sporting activities. In Negril, you will find Water Skiing, Windsurfing, Sailing Scuba Diving, Yachting and Deep Sea Fishing, just to name a few. Another place for water sport activities in is the city of Montego Bay. There visitors can engage in Kayaking, Big Boat Deep Sea Fishing, Free Diving, Snorkeling, and many more. One of the most famous is found in Ocho Rios. The famous Dunn’s River Falls is a 600 feet high water falls that many tourists and locals frequent. You can climb the falls from the beach front or from the top of this natural wonder. There also opportunities for Red Strip Cruises, Water Skiing, Sailing, Private Boat Charter, windsurfing, or go onto the Catamaran Cruise. The other water sport city is Port Antonio. Visitors can do just about the same activities in this city such as Deep Sea Fishing, Snorkeling, Water Skiing, Yachting, Parasailing, and Scuba Diving. When tourists travel the island of Jamaica, they are sure to enjoy all the fresh water activities that it has to offer.

Luminous Lagoon

One of the most amazing things about visiting Jamaica is that visitors get a rare opportunity to see one of four most mystifying attractions on the world. The Luminous Lagoon has mesmerized tourists and locals alike. It’s a lagoon that is filled with glowing micro organisms, which glow in the dark. There are many colorful rays of light on the water. Located in Falmouth, Jamaica, it’s the most amazing thing to experience. Visitors can explore this lagoon by boat that allows them to get out on a step or ladder into the water. In order for visitors to enjoy the effervescent glowing in the dark, the water has to be agitated. There are tour transportation’s to get there, while some may chose to charter a private cab. This lagoon will leave you awe-struck of it natural wonder

Reggae Sumfest

Reggae Sumfest is a major Jamaican annual festival that is held at the Catherine Hall Entertainment Center in Montego Bay, Jamaica. This four night event has all the big entertainers on the music scene. There is also international artist that is art of this festive event. There are also associated events held at this festival such as street jams and beach parties. Many locals look forward to this event and travel from across the island to see their favorite artists. It’s also an even that thousand of tourist from Europe and North America come to hang loose and let go.

Chukka Cove Jamaica Adventures

If you love horses, you will certain enjoy you time at the Chukka Cove Adventures in Montego Bay, Ocho Rios, and St. Mary, Jamaica, it’s a relaxing horseback riding through the water. Tourists can even swim with this beautiful creature sin the water. One of the famous rivers known as the White River is a place where you can go horseback riding and tubing. Refreshments are offered at the Chukka Cove Adventures for visitors. Visitors can relax in during their tubing adventure as the tour guide assists them and show them around the forest like scenery.

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Local & International Achievements – Reggae Music, Bob Marley, Usain Bolt

Reggae music was “Made in Jamaica” and the world embraced it. Bob Marley was Made in Jamaica, not only did the world embrace him and his music, but Time Magazine declared him “Artist of the 20th Century”. The African-Centred religion, Rastafarianism, was Made in Jamaica, but embraced all over the Caribbean, with many followers in America, Canada and Europe. The Fastest Man in the World, the Olympic 100 m and 200 m record breaking athlete, Usain Bolt, was Made in Jamaica too.
The 1988 phenomenal Bobsled Team, who inspired the popular Disney Movie, Cool Runnings, was Made in Jamaica. When you come to Jamaica, you might just encounter Usain Bolt, if you go to the University of the West Indies sports complex where he trains. You may also meet the meet the incomparable original Bobsled Captains, Tal and Chris Stokes on the streets of Kingston.

World Impacting Features – Cuisine, James Bond, Dunn’s River Falls

The type of seasoning and cooking called “Jerk”, was Made In Jamaica. But many foreign companies with no connection to Jamaica, use the term “Jamaican Style” Jerk Seasoning on their products in an effort to enhance their profitability. Even the James Bond spy-thriller books, which inspired the world’s longest-surviving movie franchise, were Made In Jamaica, when written by the original author, Ian Fleming.
Dunn’s River Falls, is by far the number one tourist attraction in Jamaica and the entire Caribbean. It has been visited by millions of tourists from all over the world since the 1950’s. You simply cannot visit Jamaica without tasting some Jamaican Jerk Chicken or Jerk Pork! This would be a national crime!

Second Generation Jamaican-Americans – Soldier, Politician, Actors, Sports Stars

Sometimes it is the children of Jamaicans who have migrated that excel, by building on the foundations laid by their Jamaican parents. One outstanding example of this is General Colin Powell, the first African-American to be Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Secretary of the United States. Other famous Jamaican-Americans include the incomparable singers Harry Belafonte and Alicia Keys, actors, Madge Sinclair (Eddie Murphy’s Coming To America, deceased), Sherryl Lee Ralph (It’s A Living, Moesha), Grace Jones (James Bond’s A View to a Kill), Delroy Lindo (Malcolm X), Carl Lumbly (Alien), Tyson Beckford (Hotel California); model, Naomi Campbell, sports stars, basket baller, Patrick Ewing and Olympic 400m relay Gold Medallist, Sanya Richards.

How would you like these celebrities to be your tour guides when you visit Jamaica? Clearly the Made In Jamaica list is vast. We believe we have made our point quite effectively. The phenomenal achievements of Jamaica are in fact very disproportionate to the small size of this amazing country!

Geographical Profile

How can one little island produce so many giants of Jamaican and American culture? This phenomenon is still being analysed by sociologists and anthropologists. However, we can confirm that this little island is 145 miles long and 50 miles wide, with an area of 4,411 square miles. Jamaica is located only 90 miles south of Cuba, and is west of Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Being the third largest island in the Caribbean (after Cuba and Hispaniola), the population in Jamaica is estimated to be approximately 2.8 million.

Diaspora Hospitality Services

However, at least triple this number, are estimated to live in the United States, England and Canada (The Diaspora). They are often Jamaica’s best tour guides and ambassadors. If you live in these countries, they can tell you in advance where to find the best beaches, hotels, restaurants, food and attractions. So take advantage of this free and convenient resource. Jamaicans are very proud of their country and hospitable. All you need to do is just tell them what kind of vacation you are planning. And. you will be surprised how enthusiastic their responses will be!

Diverse Racial Backgrounds – Out of Many One People

Jamaica has a dominant British heritage. However many other Caribbean islands have strong Danish, French, Spanish, Dutch, Indian heritages which change the character and culture of the islands. So clearly Jamaica does not have that particular diversity. It has others though. Jamaica’s motto is like the United States, “Out of Many, One People.” This refers to the many ethnic backgrounds – African, Chinese, Indian, Spanish, British, European, Syrian, Lebanese – which have blended to form one people, a new nation.

Caribbean Rivalry – Jamaica, Trinidad & Barbados

Whereas Jamaica’s population is about 2.8 million, Trinidad’s population is estimated at 1.2 million and Barbados has approximately 284,589. Jamaica created Reggae Music. Trinidad created soca and calypso music. Jamaica’s Reggae icon is Bob Marley. Trinidad’s Soca icon is The Mighty Sparrow. Is there any rivalry amongst these three islands? Absolutely! They are constantly competing against each other in trade treaties, diplomatic rows, academic accomplishments, football, cricket and much more. The residents of the other islands often think Jamaicans are boasty … And they are probably right! What do Jamaicans say about this perception? They would say, “Well, don’t we have a lot to be boasty about?”

Jamaican Hospitality Industry Affected

Jamaica faced an economic crisis in its financial sector in the 1990’s. Many Jamaican banks and insurance companies owned hotels. So the ownership and management of various hotels were serious affected with instability and cash flow problems. However, there is one successful hotel recovery story that should be noted. When Jamaica’s Century National Bank collapsed, it was also the owner of the largest hotel in Jamaica at the time, Jamaica Grande in Ocho Rios. It was put up for sale. Would it be bought by a foreign investor?

One of Jamaica’s largest baking companies, National Continental, owned by the Hendrickson Family, bought the hotel. Today the hotel has been re-branded as Sunset Jamaica Grande, with branches in Montego Bay and Negril. The same group of companies also owns Cooking Best Chicken, Knutsford Court Hotel, the Courtleigh Hotel, Pegasus Hotel – in Kingston – and the Ruins Restaurant in Ocho Rios. This was a big success story for Jamaica’s tourism industry!

Jamaica Lost its Dominant Status

Jamaica used to be economically dominant in the Caribbean, because of its diverse economy based on Tourism, Bauxite, Agriculture, Manufacturing and Financial Services. However, it lost a lot of its status and prestige when between 1995 and 2005 the “small islands” of Trinidad and Barbados rescued the Jamaican economy, by buying out some of its largest assets – Mutual Life, Life of Jamaica, Union Bank, Caribbean Cement Company, Air Jamaica, Terra Nova Hotel, Sandals Dunn’s River. These were replaced with Trinidad’s Guardian Life, Royal Bank of Trinidad and Tobago (RBTT), Trinidad Cement Company, Caribbean Airlines, Jewel Dunn’s River and Sagicor Insurance of Barbados.

New Regional Strength – CARICOM – Regional Tourism Benefits

CARICOM is a partnership of 15 Caribbean nations whose main goals are to encourage economic integration, cooperation among its members, equity in sharing out the benefits and coordinate foreign policy as a regional entity. Jamaica’s economic crisis created one blessing in disguise. The Caribbean economies are now more economically integrated and interdependent, having increased the investment in each other’s countries – similar to the European Union.

So the long-desired goal of increased Caribbean integration has been accomplished – through adversity. This has been one of the long-time goals of CARICOM, which was established way back in 1973. The most visible benefit to tourists visiting Jamaica and the Caribbean region is that they should be able to get to the region easier, “island hop” around the Caribbean more conveniently and cheaper via Caribbean Airlines.

All Three Highly Educated – What Tourists Should Not Say

It takes about 2 ½ hours to fly from Jamaica, in the Western Caribbean, to Trinidad and Barbados, in the Eastern Caribbean. But how does Jamaica compare with the other two islands in the Caribbean – Trinidad and Barbados? Jamaica, Trinidad and Barbados are the politically and economically dominant leaders in Caribbean in the region.

One of the rationales for this dominance is that all three countries host campuses of the regional academic entity, known as The University of the West Indies. Hence all three have sections of its population which are highly educated. Jamaica’s campus is the largest. Even though they are all small islands, Jamaica is the largest in size and population. However none of them like to be referred to as “small islands” by the other – or by outsiders (i.e. tourists). Tourists who visit these three countries, or any other Caribbean island, would be well advised to remember this precaution.

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