It has been a couple of years since I last visited Jamaica for my cousin’s wedding around October 2016 and ohh how I miss that island 🌴. Yes, I am a Trinbagonian and I love my sweet twin-island Republic of Trinidad and Tobago but Jamaica has a special place in my heart especially since I did my undergraduate degree in UWI Mona Campus. So Why do I love Jamaica so much? Let me tell you a bit about sweet sweet Jamaica … Land Mi Love 🇯🇲 ❤️.
My favorite Jamaican Foods🍲🍵🍗
Honestly, when I was school in University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica, my favorite thing to have for breakfast was cornmeal porridge. I just loved a big cup of cornmeal porridge from Juici Patties first thing in the morning on my way to the Physics Department 😊. Whenever I was able to have my nice hot bowl of porridge, I knew it was going to be a good day. Recently, I have actually begun to make this at home for myself for dinner (PS. The key to smooth cornmeal porridge is to make a paste of the cornmeal first with warm water and then add your milk, condensed milk, coconut milk, cinnamon and other seasoning that you want).
One of my other favorite Jamaican meals is festival and Jerk Chicken or Jerk Pork. 🥰 NB. The term Pan chicken and Jerk Chicken is often used interchangeably, but according to my bestie Shana (a Jamaican who I met while at UWI), Pan chicken refers to chicken that is prepared or smoked in a repurposed oil drum whereas Jerk Chicken or Jerk Pork refers to chicken or pork prepared using jerk seasoning. Jerk chicken can also be Pan chicken. Just writing about this makes me hungry. I have tried using jerk seasoning to cook Jerk Chicken and even bought Jerk Chicken from Jamaican vendors in Trinidad but it isn’t the same, I think there is something about being in Jamaica and having Jerk chicken or Pan Chicken or Jerk Pork that is extra special (anything else is just a knock off 🙁) .
Pic 1: Island Grill – festival, rice and peas, jerk chicken. Pic 2 – Pan Chicken, Pic 3 – Scotchies Restaurant Jerk Chicken
Beaches and Waterfalls
When I tell you Jamaica has some of the best beaches in the world…. and some of the most beautiful waterfalls! 💧🌞🌊 It makes my heart smile just thinking about it…. if only I can teleport myself to Blue Hole in Ocho Rios right now. The last time I visited, I was only there for a couple of days but I had the good fortune to be staying very close to the Blue Hole and although it was an absolutely rainy day, I was able to convince my family to visit.
I also visited the beautiful Reggae Beach (see my cover photo, fyi the brain coral was just lying in the sand when I picked it up!). Maybe, sometime in the near future I will be chillin’ on this beach with a cocktail in my hand again in 2022.
Villas / Hotels
Looking for somewhere to stay? I think that Jamaica has some of the most beautiful and also affordable villas and hotels. The villas in particular are perfect if you are travelling with a large family (6 or more persons) or a large group of friends. The hotels and smaller AirBnBs are more suitable for smaller families and couples in my opinion. This was where my family and I stayed when we travelled to Jamaica for my cousin Jules wedding to my beautiful cousin-in-law Candace. The staff were really awesome and they cleaned and cooked for us, I could live that life….(The Garden House Villa Ocho Rios https://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g147312-d1147327-Reviews-Garden_House_Jamaica-Ocho_Rios_Saint_Ann_Parish_Jamaica.html ) 😍.
I don’t mind staying there again but there are also two lovely hotels that I really want to visit… GeeJam Hotel in Port Antonio and PoetReef Hotel in Hanover and also of course the Rock House Hotel in Negril 😎.
Anyways, I was sitting on my couch one day and was day dreaming about Jamaica and decided to do this blog post. Have you ever been to Jamaica? What did you enjoy about it? 😁 If you ever want to find about some of the most beautiful hidden gems of Jamaica check out my friend Rochelle’s blog where she will introduce you to everywhere that you will ever want to visit in Jamaica ( https://adventuresfromelle.com/travel/ ) 🙏. A special shout out to my friends Safiya and Leslie who are both Trinis who never seemed to have left Jamaica since we were in school in UWI.
Food Picture Sources: