Jamaica for that special vacation
JAMAICA FOR THAT SPECIAL VACATION.
Jamaica,situated in the Caribbean, has historically been a center of the sugar trade and has a well-earned place in the swashbuckling tales of Piracy on the high seas, which so typified the 17th and 18th century Caribbean.Of course, without sugar, there can be no Rum, so that deserves a worthy mention.
Jamaica is the third largest island in the Caribbean, after Cuba and Hispaniola ( this is not a country, but rather an island which is shared by the Dominican Republic and Haiti).
Jamaica's warm tropical climate has long been favored by the rich and famous; indeed one of its airports is named after Ian Fleming, the creator of James Bond (who frequented the island in the 1940's and 1950's).
Since the 1960's, Jamaica has opened up to medium/long haul package tourism with a large U.S. and European clientele attracted by its all year round hot weather and miles of white sandy beaches, as well as that azure Caribbean sea.
ATTRACTIONS IN JAMAICA
- Of course, there are those spectacular beaches, and you might want to spend your days there, but the evenings are a different thing. The incredible music, particularly the laid back beats of reggae, draw you into the many bars and restaurants where you can sample the unique Jamaican cuisine.Why not try the curried goat with rice and peas washed down with an ice-cold Jamaican beer. Curried Goat may seem a bit odd, but those who have sampled it say it is delicious and is virtually the national dish.Alternatives might include ackee and saltfish, (which really is the national dish) usually served with coleslaw. The fish is soaked overnight, and the dish is flavored with tomatoes, onions, spices and peppers. Fried dumplings are also a local delicacy.
- Time to work off all that food and drink: horse-riding and hiking in the scenic Blue Mountains are a popular pastime. Rafting, Scuba, river swimming and 4 x 4 off-road adventures are also oft-chosen pursuits.
- Kingston offers some superb colonial architecture plus an enormous range of restaurants reflecting British, Spanish, Chinese, African and Asian influences which make up the island's colorful history. And of course, the Bob Marley Museum is unmissable.
- Montego Bay in the North-West of the Island is something of a hotspot for golf with the Cinamon Hill and White Witch courses being particularly well regarded. For the non-golfer, the Reggae Sumfest held in mid-July is one not to be missed by the music lover. While the Jerk Festival (held every 31, July-1, August) fills the hungry stomach with mouth-watering jerk meats, all accompanied by yet more music, but this time Gospel.
- Other attractions on the South Coast include some healing mineral baths (in the appropriately named 'Bubbling Spring.') and a chance to visit an authentic Colonial-era Coffee Plantation Mansion in the form of Bloomfield Great House. Now it is devoted to fine dining and some great live music.
- Ocho Rios, (located East of Montego Bay in the middle of the north coast) offers the chance to swim with Dolphins in the Marine Park or, if you don't fancy getting wet, take a catamaran tour along the majestic coastline. For the history buffs, there is the opportunity to take a tour round Firefly House the world-famous Jamaican home of the playwright Noel Coward.
- Jamaica has three main airports. The busiest one is Montego Bay (Sangster International Airport) with an annual seat capacity of 2.9 million (69% of the total). Kingston is the second airport in Jamaica with 1.2 million seats. There is another airport in Kingston, Tinson Pen Aerodrome but this is for private and domestic flights. There is also an Airport in Boscobel (Ian Fleming International Airport), but no airlines fly there.
- Regarding Airlines, American Airlines, has the lion's share, with 20% of the seating capacity they travel from Kingston to Miami, and also operate services from Montego Bay to Dallas/Fort Worth, Chicago O'Hare, Philadelphia, Boston, Charlotte Douglas, L.A., and Boston. Delta, British Airways, JetBlue, and Condor are amongst the other airlines flying to Jamaica, but U.S. carriers take 55% of the market.