Think Zanzibar, for those who have been (I have never been, but I’ve heard), or Mozambique, or even the Seychelles. The resorts are to rave about but if you turn left you’ll see how the locals really live. One can only hope that tourism feeds back into the economy somehow. Which I’m sure it does. According to those who some of us managed to speak to on the flight there from Miami, Jamaica had gone through a massive infrastructure upgrade – this of course coming from people who hadn’t been there in the last 10 years. So, having heard this, it only makes sense for me to personally believe that tourism is contributing positively to the island.
The men are thirsty, the women are feisty, their jerk chicken is to die for as they have 40 different ways to serve chicken. Yes, you read correctly, FORTY. So it’s not strange that even though we were right on the coast for close to a week, all we ate in that week was an abundance of chicken.
So why Jamaica? Well, it was my friend Rethabile’s 30th birthday and for my 30th we went to Mexico, so for her 30th we decided to hit Jamaica. Now my birthday falls 4 days after hers, so it’s a win win really because I too got to celebrate my birthday in the land of the holy herb. And what a great birthday it was indeed – for the both of us even.
Click images to enlarge.
Speak to the locals. Find out about bars and parties, best places to eat and immerse yourself in the culture. Always double check taxi fairs – man do they try and get you with taxi fairs especially because they love them U.S Dollars. You’ll find yourself paying up to $20 to literally go down the road – walking distance. If this happens once, it’s game on. However, if you’re staying in one place, and constantly hitting the town or missioning around locally, make friends with your taxi driver. That’s what we did with Johnny, who was actually Kenny, who owned this old ass car that looked like it shouldn’t have been a taxi. Night one, he took us to some bar where right outside was what he said was “the best jerk chicken ever”. A little BBQ right outside the bar, chicken served in foil and off you go. He was right, it was the best. But then again, when there’s 40 ways to make chicken – they’re all the best. I don’t think we ever had bad jerk chicken. That’s unheard of. Funny enough, my self and the lady joked about how it felt like we were eating chicken for the first time ever, only because, the chicken in England is so bloody horrid.
Make sure you’re outside, looking over the sea and at a viewing point. Smoke a joint and take in mother nature’s golden beauty
Street art galore
I will say this though, hit the beach, go to the coves (Runaway Bay side), swim with the dolphins, eat all the jerk chicken, look out for the guy selling lobster on the beach, snorkel – even though Negril didn’t have much to offer underwater except for sea slugs and urchins – it’s still great under there. Allow yourself to get lost in a different world whether it’s filled with colourful fish or not. I’m sure other parts have more to offer. So suss it out for yourself.
P.S We went in April, just before the start of rainy season and the weather was FANTASTIC!!!
If you ever go to Jamaica, I hope you enjoy it as much as we did. I’m definitely going back!!
Love and Light (and happy travels)