Alluring sunscapes, lush mountain backdrops, friendly people, spicy flavours and island beats make Jamaica the vibrant heart of the Caribbean and one of the top destinations for Canadian travellers.
Jamaica is truly unique, with her gifts to the world including reggae music, fine rum, exquisite coffee and jerk seasoning. The island is also home to the widest variety of attractions in the Caribbean, from stunning waterfalls to cycling tours in the Blue Mountains to some of the region’s best golf courses.
Snorkeling tours, river rafting and breath-taking waterfalls are all in close proximity to most of the major hotel areas. Just outside Ocho Rios is Jamaica’s world-renowned attraction, Dunn’s River Falls, where visitors can climb the 183 metres of cascading waterfall. Other popular experiences on the island include horseback riding, river rafting, bicycle tours in the Blue Mountains, 4×4 Jeep safari tours and zipline canopy tours.
A rich Jamaican cultural history lesson is in the food Jamaicans enjoy. To conceal their whereabouts, the Maroons (African slaves that escaped to the mountains during the British occupation of Jamaica) devised “jerking,” a method of spicing and cooking meat underground so smoke couldn’t be seen. To feed slaves in the 1600s, ackee fruit was brought from Africa. The national dish of Jamaica is gently-spiced ackee and saltfish.
Of course, a visit to Jamaica would not be complete without tasting Blue Mountain coffee or sipping some island rum. Perhaps one of the most identifiable products associated with Jamaica is Appleton Rum. Its birthplace, the Appleton Estate in St. Elizabeth, was founded in 1749 and is the oldest sugar estate and distillery in Jamaica. A visit to the Appleton Estate in the South Coast region allows visitors to experience the history of rum and provides an intimate look at the creation of one of the most celebrated spirits in the world.
For full details on upcoming festivals/events, attractions and accommodations in Jamaica visit the Jamaica Tourist Board’s website at VisitJamaica.com
or call 1-800-JAMAICA.