Perfect beaches, top-class rum and plenty of jerk chicken, Jamaica is a one-of-a-kind island that comes with a built-in soundtrack of reggae beats and island vibes. Beach lovers will fall head over heels for the palm-fringed white sands and turquoise-hued waters, while foodies will be in their element exploring the island’s world-famous cuisine – one food market at a time. If you’re looking for a holiday that packs a punch (a rum one that is!), then Jamaica is the place for you.
Beach holidays to Jamaica
Negril’s Seven Mile Beach (it’s actually only five miles long) is the place to go for all things Jamaican. Expect to see a lot of tourists, plenty of water sport huts and a buzzing atmosphere all day long. The sands are lined with beach bars, there are tons of amenities and you’ll hear those famous island beats throughout the day. Looking for something a little less ‘touristy’? Head to Doctor’s Cave Beach! Radios and street vendors are banned here resulting in a much quieter alternative to Negril Beach and making the nominal entrance fee well worth it. To the north of Doctor’s Cave Beach is Cornwall Beach. Take a walk here and you’ll find fewer tourists again – heaven. If snorkelling and diving are more your thing, then a trip to Winnifred Beach is a must.
The brightly-coloured coral reefs found just off shore here are easily accessible for all abilities and a truly breath-taking sight to see.
Food and drink in Jamaica
Start your day right with a traditional Jamaican breakfast staple – ackee and saltfish. A dried and salted fish (usually cod) is fried together with pre-cooked ackee (a soft fruit found across the island), a choice of vegetables and a healthy amount of scotch bonnet chilli. It’ll definitely put a spring in your step for the rest of the day. Then, there’s the infamous jerk spice – possibly Jamaica’s most famous gift to the world. Usually – but certainly not limited to – chicken, the meat is dry-rubbed with a blend of spices such as cinnamon, cloves, garlic and ginger and slowly cooked over a wood-burning grill. Serve traditionally with rice and peas and Jamaican dumplings known locally as festival, and there you have it – the quintessential Jamaican jerk chicken. No trip to Jamaica would be complete without sampling the super-fresh fish served up around the island. Try the Jamaican escovitch fish – a whole fish served with a topping of spicy sauces and pickled vegetables. And if pickled veg doesn’t take your fancy then try callaloo – a green vegetable side dish that pretty much goes with anything.
Did we mention the rum? Jamaica is well known for the world-class rum produced on this colourful island. Made with locally-grown sugarcane, the golden rums produced here such as Appleton’s Rum are a deep golden colour with subtle caramel hints and bursting with Jamaican character. If cocktails are usually your drink of choice then try the Bob Marley – because where else would try such an aptly named cocktail? Rum is blended with strawberry, mango and blue curacao and carefully layered producing a colourful and fruity frozen cocktail that oozes island vibes. And finally there’s the world-famous Red Stripe lager. Found in bars across the planet, this refreshing drink is best enjoyed under the Caribbean sun.
When it comes to nightlife, the Jamaicans really know how to have a good time. Whether you’re looking for a laid-back beach bar to watch the sunset, a live music venue to enjoy after-dinner drinks or a dancehall with booming reggae beats to keep you dancing until dawn, they have you covered in Jamaica. Make sure to check out the one-of-a-kind Rick’s Café in Negril – a cliffside live music jaunt with romantic cabanas overlooking the sea, an awesome soundtrack and a few brave visitors who jump from the cliff, putting on a pretty amazing show. Towards the other side of the island you’ll find Usain Bolt’s famous Tracks and Records. No trip to Kingston would be complete without enjoying dinner and a dance here.
Useful information for your Jamaica holiday
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