Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Caribbean Islands
Reload this Page >

back to the drawing board: jamaica, barbados or mexico?

back to the drawing board: jamaica, barbados or mexico?

Old Jul 1st, 2012, 05:06 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,288
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
back to the drawing board: jamaica, barbados or mexico?

This is frustrating we are planning a special holiday in June 2013 and had settled on Negril (Couples Swept Away) but have started to question it again. A couple suggested that Barbados is much more attractive than Jamaica - so we have started re-looking and have brought Mexico back into the equation (Playa Del Carmen). We want great beaches and hotels but also option for experiencing nature and maybe history. We might even contemplate doubling this up with a cruise. Any help gratefully received.
stevelyon is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2012, 05:23 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,336
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I've been to all 3, and I think Seven Mile Beach in Negril is hard to beat. Swept Away is on an especially nice part of that beach, very wide and typically uncrowded except for the height of the winter season. There are other hotels- IDLE AWHILE, COCO LA PALM, CHARELA INN- that are also on beautiful sections of beach and closer in to town and the cliffs, which is where many of the restaurants/bars are located.

And about Barbados being more attractive? I think it's a matter of personal opinion. Jamaica is a lush, gorgeous country, with beautiful coastline. Unless you're traveling to Kingston, I disagree.
Weadles is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2012, 05:25 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,336
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Just reread and saw that you are planning for June. Please check weather stats before you book for all three destinations. June can be rainy in the islands.
Weadles is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2012, 06:17 AM
  #4  
KVR
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,077
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
It depends on what you are looking for in a vacation. Since you originally chose Couples, looks like you want an adults only all inclusive hotel. You won't find that in Barbados. Barbados has reqular hotels and many condo/apartment units. One of the Almond resorts is an adult only AI, but highly questionable compared to resorts in Jamaica and Mexico. AI hotels in Barbados are few and far between and cost significantly more than Jamaica or Mexico. The beach around the Gap area has pretty strong currents. The calm beaches are located where the hotel options are much more expensive.

We had planned our December vacation this year for Barbados, but the cost was quite significant and we ran into some home repair issues, so we are returning to Mexico.

We've been to Mexico over 10+ times and Jamaica twice. Also, been to many other Caribbean Islands. If you can provide more information as to what made you decide on Couples/Jamaica and what you are looking specifically for in your vacation, it would help us better give recommendations.

With regard to your idea of a cruise. Yes, it is a good way to see several destinations in one trip. Most cruise ships do not go to the Caribbean in the summer months as that is when they move them to Europe and Alaska. Carnival and RCCL has a few that still go to the Caribbean. Personally, those are not lines I would sail with due to the clientele they attract. ie; familes, partiers.

Also, you are planning a full year out, so second guessing your decision is quite common. You may want to just hold off and look around for another 6 months before setting your decision in stone. Otherwise, pick a destination/hotel and forget about it until it's time to go. Waiting is the hardest part.
KVR is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2012, 06:19 AM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,288
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks Weadles, with going AI I'm not sure being close to restaurants is an important factor, but really appreciate your views. Sounds as if I need to check the weather averages.
stevelyon is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2012, 06:33 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,336
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Sorry, I guess what I meant to and should have said, is that it's not necessary to go AI in Negril because there are lots of smaller hotels right on the beach that are nice, and food is reasonably cheap everywhere. Good luck with your choice!
Weadles is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2012, 10:04 AM
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,288
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Also thanks KVR, I must have been posting as you were writing, I want ignoring your message. Sounds as if Carnival and RCCL are the equivalent to our Butlins over here in the UK (although I actually quite like Butlins) and we do want to push the boat out (pardon the pun)this time. I am sure if we pick the right hotel in Barbados we are unlikely to be over-run with squawking babies and marauding teenagers
stevelyon is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2012, 03:30 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 100
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If you have more than a week I believe Carnival boards passengers for week long cruises in Barbados (most would board at San Juan P.R.). This way if you have two weeks you can do a week in Barbados followed by a cruise.
spook is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2012, 10:59 PM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,288
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks spook, thats what we are considering. With regard to Carnival - we may feel more comfortable on their cruises - we have what might be a rather prejudiced view of cruises being stuffy.
stevelyon is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2012, 11:09 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 4,968
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I would not say Barbados is more attractive than Jamaica, they are just different. Negril is one long beach with lots of hotels, restaurants and things going on the whole time. AI would be a pity since there are so many places to eat out. In terms of attractiveness of the area, the Rocks are stunning, 7 mile beach is stunning but the general area looks like alot of other places in the Caribbean.

The west coast of Barbados is more upmarket I would say, the beaches are also stunning and there are a number of very good hotels. Some of the comments about cost are from those based in the US so can't go by that since with so many direct flights and options from the UK it will not always be more expensive. Plus you don't need to go AI in Barbados. South & south west coast beaches are a bit rough and I'm not a fan of the Gap area (chavs, pubs etc).

Why limit to these 3 destinations? With the choice of direct flights from the UK to many islands, I would look at St Kitts/Nevis, Bermuda, Grenada etc as well. There are charters to Aruba. BTW getting to San Juan PR for picking up a cruise when you are UK based can be difficult as either no-one flies direct or it will be limited service or you'll have to go via MIA.
Odin is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2012, 11:55 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,805
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Love Negril and have stayed at Idle Awhile, Coco La Palm and also Jamaica Inn in Ochios Rios - that might be worth a look for you?

But I have to say that if Nisbet Plantation on Nevis isn't on your radar it should be, although you'll be surrounded by Brits and Canadians A nice small resort with only 36 rooms. Horatio Nelson married Fanny Nisbet so there are lots of small historical places on the island.

You can do a MAP plan (Breakfast, Afternoon Tea and Dinner) the dinner is 5*. The Deluxe cottages are the best since they have a screened porch with a sofa, coffee table, 3 wicker chairs (I hope you're getting some idea of the size) and a dining table. This allows night owl me to have a space to read and DH somewhere to sit with his early morning coffee without disturbing the other. The bathroom is a good size with a tub and 2 sinks.

We just got back from celebrating Fathers Day, my 48th birthday and our 30th wedding anniversary and I'm ready to back for our 4th visit.

36 square miles of paradise, they drive on the correct side of the road so getting out and about is so easy to visit other Plantation Inns and it's incredibly safe.

Check out the reviews on Trip Advisor - it is truly a magical place

Rave over
alya is offline  
Old Jul 2nd, 2012, 12:01 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,805
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
http://nisbetplantation.com/about.html

Forgot the link
alya is offline  
Old Jul 10th, 2012, 01:55 PM
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,288
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Many thanks everyone and many thanks alya, the place looks incredible ... maybe one day. We have decided on Barbados - mainly because the island reads safe and we are picking up a Cruise from there
stevelyon is offline  
Old Jul 10th, 2012, 04:02 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 94,634
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Jamaica is an incredibly gorgeous island. Negril is a fantastic place to go. Love it! I'm not a fan of Couples-styled resorts but that's your call. In Negril places like Coco La Palm, Idle Awhile as alya mentioned are terrific.

Oops, nevermind, I see you already chose Barbados because it 'reads safe'?
suze is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
lbswimmer
Caribbean Islands
12
Dec 14th, 2014 06:05 PM
AnneMarie16
Caribbean Islands
7
Feb 9th, 2013 08:13 PM
misslindsey
Caribbean Islands
30
Oct 5th, 2012 07:20 AM
two1woman
Mexico & Central America
10
Aug 30th, 2010 12:03 PM
runningtab
Caribbean Islands
18
Oct 4th, 2009 05:01 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 01:44 PM.