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a VirtualTourist member asked on Mar 18, 2016


Lost In Jamaica

A group of my closest girlfriends are traveling to Jamaica for a girls getaway in July. I've viewed plenty of all inclusive hotel packages; which sound great, with the glass bottom boats, messages and buffets but I would also like to be near real Jamaican night life, clubs, restaurants, locals etc. Can anyone please tell me where to book a hotel like this. Basically have my pampering and be able to party with locals and taste authentic food at night *Still being in a Area*

3 Answers

answered on 3/18/16 by
a VT member

Don't know why I'm being asked this question since I've never been to Jamaica.

answered on 3/19/16 by
a VT member from New York City

head to Negril. There are plenty non all inclusive hotels. Great beach, real Jamaican food aimed at locals and tourists alike. Has more of real Jamaica flavor.
Another option is Port Antonio further East in Jamaica. This was the place to be years ago and is now on the verge of coming back but its more real Jamaica than Montego Bay to Ocho Rios.

answered on 3/22/16 by
a VT member from Hesperia

Hello there and welcome to VT........d:o)

Below is a fairly generic post I often use to introduce people to Jamaica. I also agree with the above post, that you likely should consider Negril rather than MoBay or Ocho Rios. Here you go. Use what helps and discard the rest.

What is your budget range? I use to live in JA and, return often, so I know a bit about it. What activities are you looking for? Relaxing? Fishing? Sailing? Exploring? Approximate ages would help. This is just too broad to give specific advise

Most likely areas for you are MoBay (Montego Bay), Ocho Rios (north coast), and Negril (north west coast). If you are first timers MoBay is likely what you should be looking at. I am not a big fan of all inclusives but that is just me, and there are times that I do enjoy doing nothing and just be pampered. However for first timers, it may not be the best idea. Unless doing nothing is exactly what you want to do. Of course you can go wherever you want, but consider the things that you have already paid for that you may miss by exploring the island.

That being said, lets take a look at some AIs. First it will depend somewhat on your budget. Consider this. The more expensive (more luxury), the less chance of partying 20 year olds. Here is a overview of some of the properties located in MoBay. The Ritz is excellent. So is the Breezes. Probably want to stay away from Couples and Sandals, and Hedonism.

The Rose Hall is fabulous....

For details on what you like, Google the name to get the actual website for each property. More often than not you can get a better deal by dealing directly with the property.

Here is just a sample of a very nice affordable villa accommodation on Treasure Beach, - small but stylish and cozy. I added this to get a perspective of what you are looking for. Bigger? Smaller? Cheaper?

Here is a look at some of the things to do in Jamaica.,Jamai...

This should give you a start. Come back with specifics and we will go from there. Don't be afraid to ask.

I will add this. Most people that go to Jamaica, never go to Kingston, usually due to being told that it is dangerous. It is no more dangerous than say, New York. If you have not been to Kingston, you really have not been to Jamaica. Yes I am biased, I spent considerable time in Jah Town. Being a huge reggae fan, to miss the Bob Marley Museum is a crime. However this may not be what you want, but i would not be true to my Jamaica if I did not include it.

Negril is likely the nicest of the three main tourist areas on the north and west sides of Jamaica. The RIU on Bloody Beach is probably the nicest.

I would rather go to a resort that is not all inclusive and have more freedom to pick and choose. Don't worry about, finding things to do, bars and such. Plenty within reach. Here are a few: I can recommend Rick’s, and Mi Yard.

Oh, - one thing. You may want to check out Rick's once you hear all about the cliff diving. Everyone gets caught up in that one. If you are serious about jumping off the cliff at Rick's, at Treasure Beach, perhaps you need to take a look at their fatality rate.....

Here is some stuff from our VT members about Negril, including cliff jumping.

[original VT link]

I would perhaps try to make a trip to the Royal Palm Reserve, a protected flora/fauna area just a few miles inland from Negril close to the town of Sheffield. It is just breathtaking. There is a a long boardwalk that you can walk deep into the reserve, and they have over 40 observation towers that give you just spectacular views over the area.

Nearby is the Lighthouse Inn, where the cuisine is very good. What they do have, that in quite good, is a local "Mento" show. They used to do this once a week but if you check with them you can find out the day(s) they do this. They will also pick you up and drop you off at your hotel if you make dinner reservations.

Mento, by the way, is Jamaican folk music that is similar to Calypso but different. It predates ska and reggae, and if not for Mento, there likely would be no reggae. Well worth seeing. (Reggae is the soundtrack to my live/movie....)

Don't know if this is your style, but this is a little known hideaway on the beach in Negril, that is just beautiful, and serene. I do like this place a lot. No, it is not a huge place, but for a couple it is definately worth it. Just though I would throw it in here.

If you are interested in the "real" Jamaica, relatively unspoiled still, a drive past the Lighthouse down the south western coast is the place to go. Relatively void of tourism, the people are friendly and the scenery is great.

Enjoy my Jamaica. Hope this all helps a bit! One love......d:o)

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