Posted by Admin On December - 24 - 2011 0 Comment

Jamaica  is Perfect for the Romantic Couple 

First time to Jamaica – it’s a state of mind as much as a destination. Sure, I knew it for many of the preconceived notions I already had. You know, things like rasta, reggae music, dreadlocks and lazing’ on the beach under a sky that is perpetually sunny. It came as quite a surprise when I discovered just how lovely Jamaica really is, both for the romantic couple, the partying 20-something or the retired golf junkie.

Getting Off the Plane

Getting off the plane, I jumped in the car and was reminded that Jamaica was, after all, an English colony for many years. In fact, it was only a mere 40 years ago that Jamaica gained independence from the British. Much of the British influence still exists though, but none quite as noticeable as the fact that they drive on the opposite side of the road than we do in the United States. And then, of course, there is the culture. The culture is refined too (afternoon tea and scones) with a Caribbean flavor that makes it just right.

Historical Places

Other British influences abound as well; for example there’s James Bond.  Who can forget Ian Fleming lived here and wrote many of the Bond books here. Other influences are the 200-year-old great houses that housed the rich and oversaw the Jamaica Great House Plantations. The few great houses that still exist on the island today taunt the visitor into a deeper look at the lifestyles of long ago. In fact, the great houses are as much a part of Jamaica as the sun and easy-going attitude

Many tourists have heard of Rose Hall because it is known worldwide for the legend of the White Witch, who was originally named Annie Palmer, the husband-murderer who ruled with cruelty and eventually met with a violent death. I visited Greenwood Great House in Montego Bay, which was owned by Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s family, but there are others as well such as Brimmer Hall Plantation and Seville Great House in Ocho Rios or Belvedere Estate in Montego Bay.

The great houses link the past with the future in Jamaica and as I toured Greenwood I realized how little I knew about the history of the island. As I looked outside from the second story porch at Greenwood I could see the ocean down the mountain in the distance and imagine hearing music from 100 years ago when the owner of the house entertained guests from miles around – the dancing, the singing and the food. It was so simple in a world lit by candles and cooled by the ocean breeze.

Unfortunately, all things must come to an end and in 1831 during a brutal slave revolt, hundreds of these homes were burned to the ground. Of the dozen that still exist, several are maintained for visitors and a few have been converted into bed and breakfasts. The houses are sprinkled around the island as a reminder of what used to be.

As I toured Greenwood, I searched in every nook and cranny for a ghost. They have one there, or at least that’s the rumor. In fact, there’s an old photograph on the wall of a past owner sitting in the chair on the verandah and there is the distinct outline of another person who was not present the day the photograph was taken, not physically anyway.

An island with so much tradition is bound to be ripe with stories of hauntings.   I searched everywhere, however, and was met with a tight lip. But even without the ghosts Jamaica is a place where you can do and find just about anything and you can feel the presence of an old-world Caribbean charm. Several days after I arrived, I found myself floating down the Martha Brae River on a raft reminiscent of Tom Sawyer on a Sunday afternoon. The raft, a 30-foot bamboo raft, is a popular Jamaican experience holding two adults as they laze away the day for a little over an hour.

Food Jamaican Style

Jamaica is also known for jerked chicken, pork and fish. Therefore, you must try it in some form – I enjoyed the jerk chicken. You can’t miss it since jerk stands are all over the island. I drove to Walkers Wood, famous for their jerk seasoning. It was a sunny morning and I was eager to find out what all the excitement was about with their product. Two hours later and loaded down with three of their 20 seasonings, I walked away with a better understanding of the jerk process and with the knowledge of why Walkers Wood is the best in the business.

Jamaica is also equally famous for rum, Blue Mountain coffee and a homegrown liqueur called Tia Maria. Tia Maria is said to be a cocktail that was created in honor of the country’s independence in 1962.

For general information, or more information on romantic travel destinations, please feel free to contact me via e-mail or my web-form any time of the day….. I will respond back as soon as possible. Thank you for visiting my website …..  I hope to hear from you soon!

Fred Tankersley
6420 E. Tropicana Blvd # 288
Las Vegas, NV 89122

Comments are closed.