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-   -   Negril or Aruba? (https://www.fodors.com/community/caribbean-islands/negril-or-aruba-512452/)

08screenname Mar 14th, 2005 03:39 PM

Negril or Aruba?
 
2 single females mid twenties would like to visit an island with beautiful beaches but also like to party. going in May. what would you suggest?

cdt Mar 14th, 2005 04:26 PM

Two very, very different places.

Aruba has lots of nightlife but it's a bit more sedate than Negril - casinos, classy dance clubs, etc.

Negril has a much more casual ambience - beach bars, reggae, etc. Younger crowd.

In Negril you'll be approached by lots of people offering to sell you various stuff (some legal, some not).

Aruba is much more affluent and looks a lot more like the US than Jamaica does.

tobster Mar 14th, 2005 05:17 PM

Of the two, Aruba is definitely the safer place. Jamaica can be very dangerous outside the resort areas and as mentioned, you most likely will be approached by some sketchy looking people selling illegal items. I would rather walk around by myself in the red-light district in Amsterdam than walk outside of a resort in Negril. Aruba has ok nightlife and I felt perfectly safe walking around at night in Oranjestad. If you aren't set on those two, try Mexico. It is very popular with the younger crowd and there are tons of bars and dance clubs. Ixtapa is a nice pick.

CaribbeanSoul Mar 14th, 2005 06:46 PM

Here we go again. "Dangerous", "sketchy"....more blasphemous comments from another ill-informed poster. I am glad you feel that way....I'd hate to see Negril become Cancun or Aruba.

kfusto Mar 15th, 2005 03:31 AM

Negril is a great place and I have stayed there many times since 1974. I have NEVER felt threatened in any way and I do not restrict myself to the resort where I am laying my head.

The beaches are great as is the food. The Jamaican people are friendly and warm.

My opinion of Aruba is that I would have thought I was in Miami if there was more vegetation. It is quite sanitized and appeals to those seeking that kind of a vacation experience.


benj Mar 15th, 2005 03:56 AM

I have not been to Aruba but we were in Negril in May. The Jamaican people were great. I wanted to bottle their warmth & take it home.
The beaches are excellent- they were voted #3 in the Travel Channel's Top 10 Caribbean Beaches.
As for safety, we took our 2 kids (17 & 22) & everyone felt safe. There is a wide variety of nightlife there too.
Try going to www.negril.com to post on their message boards. Many local & repeat visitors post there & you will get a better picture of what Negril is really like.
We have been to Amsterdam many times & eat in the red light district sometimes because the food is good & cheap. Negril is much better. The scenery is better & never have we been approached to buy sex there. Mainly we were offered massages & hairbraiding in Negril.

NYGiants27 Mar 15th, 2005 04:37 AM

CaribbeanSoul attacks another person for sharing their opinion on a place. Maybe some people missed Jamaica on the list of safest places in the world.

christiegr Mar 15th, 2005 04:44 AM

Have been to Aruba.It is not a very pretty island flat, desert and the snorkeling is not good.The people and the food are wonderful.The beaches are beautiful just not very calm for snorkeling.It is voted one of the safest islands in the Caribbean.Nightlife is also a plus.They have party buses that travel around with music and drinking.It looked fun , but did not do it.We felt very safe there.
Have not been to Jamaica,however have friends that have been.I would not go there based on the reviews of it and what my friends told me.One of them was mugged, the other was harrassed (female) while walking around.She told me that if you stay on the resorts , that you will be fine.Oh,except ,you might be approached on the beach of the resorts by Jamaicans coming up on surfboards into the resorts trying to sell you drugs.
Good luck whatever you chose!!!

cartera Mar 15th, 2005 05:23 AM

"you might be approached on the beach of the resorts by Jamaicans coming up on surfboards into the resorts trying to sell you drugs"

Now I have officially heard it all! Do they then stealthfully slip off their surfboards and knock on your hotel door and announce "Candygram!"


faithie Mar 15th, 2005 05:37 AM

We went to Jamaica with our 2 young children . We did not stay at an a.i. , we did leave our hotel room , we did not feel threatened , we were never offered anything except some 7-UP while rafting on the Rio Grande ..... It might not be the place for everyone , but we certainly loved it and will return. Faith

christiegr Mar 15th, 2005 05:38 AM

I really don't care if you believe that my friend was approached on her honeymoon last year by obnoxious locals in Jamaica to buy drugsor not.When I think of vacation,I think of relaxation not harrassment.Everyone is allowed there opinion .

rubia2605 Mar 15th, 2005 08:05 AM

So what? These people are trying to sell you things to make some money and maybe feed their families. I could see if your friend was approached and robbed then you have a legitimate complaint. Approaching tourists to try and sell them things goes on EVERYWHERE. I have been approached many times in the carribbean, mexico and even here in the states to buy different items and yes, even drugs. My friend was approached on her honeymoon in Aruba also. Maybe they approach so many tourists because a good majority buy them! If you don't want them just say no! (like the slogan we have here in the U.S.). I also was hesitant to go to jamaica, having heard the same stories but realized that it was all hearsay and decided I really want to go and see for myself. I'm booked for June and couldn't be happier with my decision. Thanks to all the people on this forum who take the time to answer people's questions and give honest opinions, it makes a difference!

Michaelpl Mar 15th, 2005 08:27 AM

Like I keep saying. Jamaica is not for everyone and thank goodness for that. There are plenty of islands to keep us all happy. It's the day that we all want to go to the same place, that we'll have a real problem!

christiegr Mar 15th, 2005 10:51 AM

True! Michael

CaribbeanSoul Mar 15th, 2005 11:06 AM

NYG: There are opinions and ignorance. It is ignorance I may "attack". Although not my intent to "attack"....sorry if i hurt any feelings.

Knowing Mar 15th, 2005 11:12 AM

Both islands have nightlife and beautiful beaches. But in Jamaica, people sing as they cook and tend bar. We were never approached to buy drugs on either island. Jamaica doesn't have the money like Aruba does, but we had more fun there.

pkgronda1 Mar 17th, 2005 07:19 AM

just don't pick any of the superclubs or you'll be upset sandels is good or couples swept away, or afew of the others just had a bad trip but wasn't harrassment it was bad service and an 1120.00 added cost for a room bigger than a thimble.

SenecaGirl Mar 17th, 2005 10:01 AM

I've been to both places..in my mid-20's as well. I stayed at an AI in Negril, and was on my honeymoon, & only left the resort once for a booze cruise (which was GREAT!!!). So, I can't comment too much on the party scene in Negril. Beaches and weather are very comparable (and great!). As far as what everyone has been saying about safety and being offered drugs...I was offered drugs in BOTH places, but also felt very safe in BOTH places. I'm sure you'll use your common sense to stay safe...we're all big girls now!

We went partying in Aruba and had a blast. The cruise ship docks in Oranjestad, so you get to meet a ton of people (but that also makes the clubs very crowed on those nights a ship is docked).

I do have to say that I felt Negril is much more laid back, relaxed, & casual than Aruba. My opinion -- you'll have as much fun as you want to in either place!!

christiegr Mar 28th, 2005 05:38 AM

It is real funny how people are so ready to attack someone if they say something negative about a place.
I thought that the whole purpose of this discussion board is for people to get information about destinations..which means some of the comments might not be good ones..but could help someone choice a BETTER destination if they are looking for the same things as the person with the negative comment.So to each his own.

iw Mar 28th, 2005 07:21 AM

I have not been to Negril, but we went to Aruba 2 years ago. It has it's own charm....the rocky jeep tour and the natural bridge were fantastic. The "drunk bus tour" to 3 different island bars was amusing and Carlos and Charlies was fun. I am in my mid-30's and there was plenty to do. Lots of couples on their honeymoons. The casinos were fun, too. In Aruba, I saw everything from single people to families. It is not a cheap island, so that may help make a decision. Have fun wherever you go!!


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