Posted by: RasmaSandra | March 27, 2018

The Sun Shines in Jamaica


Jamaica is another Caribbean island nation with mountains, rainforests and reef-lined beaches. Most of its resorts can be found in Montego Bay. It is known-as the birthplace of reggae music.

Beautiful Kingston

jam king

Kingston the capital of Jamaica lies on the southeast coast. Northeast of the city are the Blue Mountains a coffee-growing region with trails and waterfalls.

jam national

The National Gallery has a great collection of Jamaican art and is the finest on the island. The collection is in chronological order starting with Taino carvings and traditional 18th-century British landscapes. There are ten galleries that represent the Jamaican school from 1922 to the present.

Among the highlights are the modernist sculptures by Edna Manley, the artwork of artists like John Dunkley and David Pottinger and revivalist bishop Mallica “Kapo” Reynolds. Galleries also chart the course of  “Jamaican art for Jamaicans” up to the recent past. Temporary exhibitions offer the best of contemporary Jamaican art.

jam bob

Bob Marley Museum is housed in a large colonial-era wooden house. This is where the singer lived and recorded from 1975 until his death in 1981. It has become a popular tourist site and is a museum and shrine. The tour lasts an hour. You can see his gold and platinum records on the walls as well as the Order of Merit presented by the Jamaican government. You can see pieces of his clothing and one room with clippings from his last tour. In this bedroom his favorite star-shaped guitar still stands by the bed. His recording studio out in back is now an exhibition hall with many great photos. The tour closes with a 20-minute film.

jam liberty

Liberty Hall stands at the end of a tree-lined courtyard that has been decorated with cheerful mosaics and a mural that depicts Marcus Garvey. The building has an excellent multimedia museum about Garvey and his work. You can find a community outreach program here that holds after-school programs and computer literacy classes. There is a reference library focusing on Garvey, African history and then Diaspora.

jam devon

Devon House is a lovely colonial house built in 1881 by George Stiebel, the first black millionaire in Jamaica. Among the highlights are some ornate porcelain chandeliers. You can relax on the tree-shaded lawns. There are several shops in the former carriage house and courtyard.

jam grant

William Grant Park is also known as Parade. It is right in the heart of downtown and originally hosted a fortress that was built in 1694 with guns that pointed toward the harbor. The park was named in honor of Black Nationalist and labor leader Sir William Grant.

jam grant manley

At the north entrance, you can find the statue of Norman Manley

jam grant bustemante

and at the south entrance the statue of Alexander Bustamante.

jam grant fountain

There is a large fountain in the center.

jam ward

At North Parade you’ll see the Ward Theater, it was built in 1911 and once hosted the annual Boxing Day pantomime. Today the building can be seen from the outside but has fallen into disrepair.

jam parish

Kingston Parish Church is home to a tomb dating from 1699. It is the tomb of Admiral Benbow commander of the Royal Navy in the West Indies at the turn of the 18th century. It is found near the high altar. Plaques commemorate soldiers of the colonial West Indian regiments.

jam coke

Facing East Parade is the 1840 Coke Memorial Hall and was named after the founder of the Methodist churches in the Caribbean, Thomas Coke.

jam victoria

This where you can also find a statue of Queen Victoria dating from 1897 which as her Diamond Jubilee. The statue notes that she was Empress of India and give her the unusual title of Jamaica Supreme Lady.

jam hope

Hope Gardens stretch for 18 hectares with exotic plants and beautiful flowers. The gardens were established in 1881 on the site of the former Hope Estate. There are spacious lawns, large palms, and flower-scented walkways. Some of the highlights here include an orchid house, greenhouses, ornamental ponds and a privet-hedge maze.

jam tosh

Peter Tosh Museum is dedicated to reggae legend Peter Tosh. This small museum opened in 2016. The museum tells his story and there is a collection of memorabilia that includes a pair of Mick Jagger’s gold microphones from when Tosh toured with the Rolling Stones, his famous guitar shaped like an M16 rifle and his beloved unicycle.

jam heroes national

National Heroes Park is home to the National Heroes Circle that is dedicated to Jamaica’s seven national heroes. Sir Alexander Bustamante, Norman Manley, and Marcus Garvey are all buried here, and there are symbolic memorials to Nanny, Sam Sharpe, and Paul Bogle and George William Gordon of the 1865 Morant Bay Rebellion.

Other celebrated Jamaicans buried here include Michael Manley, ‘Crown Prince of Reggae’ Dennis Brown, and ‘Miss Lou,’ the revered patois poet Louise Bennett.

jam half-way-tree2

Half Way Tree neighborhood, road junction, and major bus terminal was named for a venerable silk-cotton (kapok) tree that stood here in the 1870s, Today this landmark is marked by a clock tower that was erected in 1913 as a memorial to King Edward VII. There are giant advertising screens that broadcast national events.

jam st. andrew

St. Andrew Parish Church is a brick church that is popularly known as the Half Way Tree Church. There are lovely stained-glass windows and an impressive organ. Outside is an interesting graveyard.

jam emancipation

Emancipation Park is a big open space in the center of New Kingston. This is a great place for strolling. Here you’ll find the controversial statue Redemption Song by Laura Facey Cooper, depicting nude slaves looking to the heavens.

jam aroused

The Negro Aroused Statue is a controversial bronze statue that depicts a crouched black man breaking free from bondage. It is the artwork of Jamaican sculptor, the late Edna Manley. This statue is a replica as the original is in the National Gallery of Jamaica.

jam sculpture

Sculpture Park is located on the grounds of the University of Technology and features nine sculptures by acclaimed Caribbean artists. Among them is a sculpture of a woman’s torso stretched in a yoga position by Laura Facey and The Compass that depicts humanity shaping the environment with the use of technology.

jam secret

Secret Garden Memorial depicts a stylized dark head with silver tears running down its cheeks. This is a 2008 memorial that officially acknowledges the impact of the culture of violence on Kingston’ youth. It commemorates children who have died under tragic circumstances and there are names and ages carved into the plinth.

The Beauty of Jamaica

jam negril

Negril Beach is also known as Seven Mile Beach and is one of the most beautiful in Jamaica. It offers white sand and aqua sea. The beach extends from Bloody Bay to Long Bay and the Negri Cliffs south of town. There are lovely coconut palms and resorts along the shore.

jam negril cliffs

The Negril Cliffs are a great place for sunset views and cliff jumping. Some of the most luxurious resorts lie along the cliff.

jam martha

One of the most popular things to do is to raft the Martha Brae. At Martha Brae Rafter’s Village, you can enjoy gliding down a stretch of the river on a bamboo raft that is poled by local guides. You can enjoy the tropical scenery going by.

jam dunns

Dunn’s River Falls includes 180 meters of terraced waterfalls. It is one of Jamaica’s most well-known natural attractions. The falls go tumbling down over rocks and limestone ledges into the sea. Visitors can climb the natural tiers to the top of the falls and cool off in the refreshing pools.

jam blue 3

Amazing Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage site. At one time it was a refuge for former slaves and the indigenous Taino who fled here to escape slavery. There are jungle-clad mountains, waterfalls, lush rainforests, coffee plantations and exotic plants to see. There are 800 species of endemic plants and over 200 species of birds and the world’s second largest butterfly. The highlight here is a hike or mule ride up Jamaica’s highest peak, Blue Mountain Peak.

jam port antonio

Port Antonio sits between the mountains and a double harbor. It has great charm as a fishing village. Here visitors enjoy hiking jungle trails, rafting the Rio Grande, taking a tour of Reach Falls and snorkeling and diving in the coral reefs. A popular swimming spot if the lovely 60m deep Blue Lagoon that is fed by freshwater springs.

jam port antonio fort

Other highlights here include the 18th-century British stronghold Fort George and the beautiful Frenchman’s Cove, where a fish-filled river flows into the sea.

There are many great beaches. Daniel’s River plunges through a gorge of natural rock in a series of cascades and pools known as Somerset Falls.

jam navy

Located between Port Antonio’s two harbors and reached by ferry is Navy Island. At one time this island was owned by movie star Errol Flynn. Today it is a favorite place for picnics and day trips.

jam boston

This is the region where Jamaica’s spicy “jerk-style” cooking originated and you can find some of the best at Boston Beach.

jam rose hall

Rose Hall was built in 1770 and is a restored plantation that offers wonderful ocean views. The legendary Annie Palmer (The White Witch) ruled here until she met a violent death. Today the home has period furniture. You can choose to have a day tour or a candlelit evening tour for ghost sightings.

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