Whether it’s the wall-to-wall sunny skies, palm-fringed beaches, or ‘home of reggae’ crown that tempts you, a holiday to Jamaica won’t disappoint.
Hear the word Jamaica and you’re likely to picture white beaches, spicy jerk chicken and a certain Bob Marley. And you’d be spot on – the Caribbean clichés come thick and fast on this laid-back island.
Lively or laid-back
On the north coast, there’s Ocho Rios. It’s one of the island’s liveliest hubs, with loads of bars and restaurants. There’s also the 180-metre cascade of Dunn’s River Falls just down the road. If you want to slow things down a bit, you’ve got the quiet sands of Runaway Bay half-an-hour away by car.
Follow the coast west for about 45 miles and you’ll hit Montego Bay, or Mo-Bay as it’s otherwise known. Here, you’ve got fantastic beaches, river rafting and Jeep safaris to get your teeth into. A bit further on is Lucea, which scores brownie points for its historical buildings, chaotic market and half-empty beaches.
Switch to the west coast and you’ll find Negril. With its peachy sunsets, ‘no worries’ attitude and famous Seven-Mile beach, it’s Jamaica’s original chill-out destination.
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Set on the northwest coast of Jamaica, Lucea is the sleepy capital of Hanover Province. The resort really hasn’t woken up to the big tourist boom – and that’s pretty much its appeal. You’ve got a quiet place here with just a clutch of hotels, shops, bars and restaurants. There is one thing the place does make a big noise about, though – the beach
You might recognise Negril – its famous black cliffs starred in the Bond movie Thunderball. When it’s not flashing its Equity card, this resort on Jamaica’s western coast is a low-rise kind of place where no hotel stands higher than the tallest palm tree. Back in the Sixties, hippies loved the laid-back vibe here – and that and the beach are still pulling in the crowds.
As resorts go, Montego Bay on the north-west coast of Jamaica is a big, vibrant place packed with Caribbean charm. It’s long been a magnet for the rich and famous, and with its reggae-infused nightlife and hot, spicy jerk cooking the place still pulls in the crowds. Oh, and the white sandy beaches might have something to do with its popularity as well.
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