Jamaica Vets

Old Jun 17th, 2005, 11:15 AM
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Jamaica Vets

Been to Playa the last three years. yesterday I posted about choosing between Aruba and Punta Cana. I am also considering Negril in Jamaica. Anyone been? Thoughts?

I have been to Ocho Rios and did nto care for it. I have heard from others that Negril is completely different than Ocho Rios and that it is beautfulo, calm, and breathtaking? Anyone been to the Negril side of Jamaica? I love the rum, the sun, and the food in Jamaica, but really have a big job to do to convice my wife about returning to Jamaica.

Questions:

1. Is Negril alot different than Ocho Rios area?

2. What other areas (Cancun, Riviera Maya, D.R, etc..) can Negril be compared with?

3. How far from Montego Bay airport is
Negril (were looking at Beaches)

4. Any thoughts on resort in Negril? Beaches? RIU Tropical?
MarkBinPA is offline  
Old Jun 17th, 2005, 11:22 AM
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Mark..hopefully CaribbeanSoul will respond to this.He has been going to Jamaica since the 80s.He recommended a resort to me named Coco la palms and it looks to be a nice place to stay.Good luck
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Old Jun 17th, 2005, 11:54 AM
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Hi Mark! My first trip to Jamaica was in 1985 and I went to Ocho Rios with my parents….I was 18 years old at the time. Later that same year we went back, as a family again, and stayed in Negril for 2 weeks. Well….I have never been back to Ochi. Negril is in a class all its own and you really can’t compare it to anywhere else in the Caribbean. Negril has a vibe and a soul that is deeply entrenched from the cliffs to the beach and beyond. I have been to Negril about 15 times for various lengths of time….usually 10-14 days. My wife, whom I married in 2002, and I honeymooned in Negril and have returned with her 3 times since. She is a Negrilaholic now. It is hard for me to convince her to go anywhere but Negril. I recommend staying on the beach, the 7 mile beach and not Bloody Bay where all the All Inclusive resorts are. It is probably more like 5 miles….but it is beach full of color, flavor, amazing sand and great swimming with a sandy bottom and calm seas. In the 50’s & 60’s when the government of JA was building the area for tourism reasons, they implemented a citywide moratorium restricting development of buildings. No building could be taller than the tallest palm tree. That moratorium still is in effect, although some hotels have tested the threshold. Nonetheless, it is a beach without high rises. The hotels/resorts are mostly small boutique style places. Funky beach bars and restaurants line the beach, up and down. There are small jerk barrels run by “sole proprietors” up and down Norman Manley Blvd (beach road). The place is amazing….but do yourself a favor and do not stay in an AI. Check out CocoLaPalm or Idle Awhile, located mid-beach. You are walking distance to most restaurants and a short cab ride from town. I am suffering from PNS (post negril syndrome) as I type this. We are looking to return in November to cure this ailment. Give it a try….it isn’t for everybody….but those that it is….it can be addictive. Oh yeah....it is a little over an hour to get to Negril from MBJ.
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Old Jun 17th, 2005, 01:13 PM
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Hi Mark, Interesting question!

I have been to Playa many times, and the closest two places to PDC are Negril and Isla Mujeres.

I saw your post and meant to get back with you but have been very busy.

I did not care for Ochi either. Too touristy. Negril is 180 from that. Funky, laid back irie vibe.

Check out Idle Awhile in Negril. Great place, wonderful staff, on the best part of the beach.

My recommendation would be DON'T go AI. Many great places to eat there.
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Old Jun 17th, 2005, 10:21 PM
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Idle Awhile, Idle Awhile, Idle Awhile!!!!!!

we loved it! very quiet, in the middle of the beach with so many places to eat.

We felt very safe walking on the beach late at night, although since we went off season perhaps there were fewer 'vendors'.
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Old Jun 18th, 2005, 08:37 AM
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CaribbeanSoul,

Man, we are the same age...go figure. Have you made it over to Port Antonio?
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Old Jun 18th, 2005, 09:33 AM
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Water in Negril is warm and calm because it is at the leeward side of the island. Depending on you stay, you may see beautiful sunset everyday. It takes about 1 hour and 20 minutes to get to Negril if Montego Bay traffic is not too congested. Beaches and Riu are very nice resorts for family. Other resorts may be specialized for couples. We have been to Jamaica many times and stayed mostly at all-inclusive resorts; however, we always ventured out and visited other places.
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Old Jun 18th, 2005, 01:04 PM
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jray:
What part of Jamaica are you from?? I would love to make my next trip to Jamaica and do not know whether to go to Negril,Treasure beach, or Port Antonio.Thanks
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Old Jun 18th, 2005, 01:21 PM
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Mark,
I had never been to Jamaica & we went to Negril last May. It was the best!! I loved the people, the water, the sense of peace & just everything in general. Now I am not a real water person & not super adventurous but I would go again in a heartbeat. The food has such a wide variety that even the pickiest can be pleased. The sunset view from the cliffs is better than you could imagine.
I have not been to Ocho but my husband had been to Montego Bay years ago & he said Negril was much better.

We stayed at Beaches & I wouldn't again. It was nice & good for a 1st time but very much geared towards families with small kids. Our next trip will probably find us at Moon Dance Villas. It is comparable in price to what we spent at Beaches but you get your own villa with cook & bartender. They do your laundry, you decide what you want for each meal & they cater to your every need. Your wife would find this the most relaxing vacation. It is located on the pretty part of the beach & the villas are gorgeous. My sis-in-law stayed there & just showed us her brochure. It beat Beaches in comfort by a lot.

Wherever you decide to stay if it's in Negril then you have made a good decision. Be sure to go during lobster season & try the dinner at 3 Dives. The food & sunsets are worth the trip!
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Old Jun 18th, 2005, 01:49 PM
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jray: I have not been to Port Antonio. Next time we go for two weeks, I'd like to take in PA for a couple of nights, head west along the north shore and take in a night or two in Runaway Bay. After RB, I'd like to check out Treasure Beach for a few nights....then relax for the remainder of the trip in Negril. An aggressive itinerary....but we are still young! They say turning 50 today is like turning 40 twenty years ago. So I guess turning 40 today would be equivalent to turning 35 or something like that, using the same philosophy.
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Old Jun 18th, 2005, 05:29 PM
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Christie,

I am from just outside Spanish Town, but family currently have a home in Mandeville. I was fortunate enough to have bought land in Trelwany where some day if all my plans come together I will build a "one room shack" and retire. I think for a first time trip Negril should do the trick.

CS.. you plan is not too aggressive. I have actually done the same route - except the Runaway Bay part: PA-TB-Negril (brief stops at family in Kingston and Mandeville thrown in). The best part about the trip was that I did not stay one single night in an AI. I know what you mean about the age thing. I actually feel much younger at 38 than I did at 30. Go figure.
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Old Jun 18th, 2005, 06:54 PM
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jray:
Thanks for the advice...and I hope that your retirement dream will come true.
Sounds nice.
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Old Jun 19th, 2005, 01:18 AM
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Jray:You might want to check your land's proximity to the two new 500 acre resorts being developed by Spanish concerns in Trelawney. Now that the water shed/systems are under control by resort interests, your one-room shack might be more valuable as investment land property worth selling if it's too close to the resorts. See Ronnie Thwaite's scheme near Sandals/Whitehouse for a good example...
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Old Jun 20th, 2005, 05:11 AM
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Tiverton,

I bought the land in Trelawny because it was so undeveloped, not too far from Mobay, so quiet, so peaceful and I figure one day Butch and his friends will come in and develop. Thanks for the tip on the two new resorts, I will check it out. However, its not too far from the new cricket stadium being built (or atleast proposed).
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Old Jun 20th, 2005, 08:27 AM
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Butch has his hands full with Dragon Bay, the new airport at Font Hill and Sandals/Whitehouse probs tho it's rumored not only a Beaches but also a Riu are headed to area. The Spanish developers for Trelawny are planning Riu=style huge and downscale package joints with considerably more impact than the new cricket grounds...
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Old Jun 20th, 2005, 09:37 AM
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I thought the Spanish developers were building a 500 room hotel near Whitehouse. The airport is long over due, people on the south coast have been waiting for this a long time.
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Old Jun 20th, 2005, 11:57 AM
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On the contrary, the people on the South Coast have NOT been waiting for this Sandals funnel airport for some time/nor have they been pining with desire for Sandals, nor Beaches nor the new Spanish place to be developed on Crab Pond Point, currently UDC land.
Living on island,jray,you should know far better than that...just as the new 'tourism enhancement tax' goes to
benefit 'the people', not the building of yet nutha big house pon de hill.
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Old Jun 20th, 2005, 12:14 PM
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Tiverton,
I agree with you on the false Jamaica, ie. mega resorts etc., but beleive me as one who return to Jamaica at least once a year, the airport is a blessing. I know it brings the other side which is more crowd, but I guess thats a sign of "progress". The new highway helps, almost makes the drive pleasant, but after a long flight and the excitement of being home and being able to sit on the verandah and drink stout, ahhh. Now if then can only come up with a bridge between the Airport and Portmore!!!
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