Over this past Christmas/New Year holiday, Jave and I spent a week in his hometown of Negril followed by a week road tripping around the island.
During our week in Negril, we actually stayed in Hanover Parish nearby in a cute AirBnB rental located in a gated community. The drive from our house in Hanover to Westmoreland where Negril is was about 15 minutes or so.
Since our house was set just off the main road, we probably could’ve relied on taxis to get us to and from, but Jave has family and friends all over Westmoreland, and we needed the freedom to easily get around whenever and wherever; so we rented a scooter. We’ve decided that for future Jamaica trips, we’ll always rent our own place and our own ride because doing so actually helps us to save on hotels and taxis, and it keeps us from being dependent on family for accommodation and rides which we absolutely hate.
Our little scooter was such a blessing as we were able to easily get to the beach, Ketto, Jave’s grandmother’s house in Savanna-la-Mar (“Sav” for short), and we were able to easily run a bunch of errands. Plus, there’s just something so liberating about riding a scooter in a foreign country.
We agreed that we had to wear helmets at all times (Jave grew up riding motorcycles island style – i.e., helmet-free – so at first, he was a bit resistant), and we agreed not to be out on the road too late at night (we broke this rule a few times). But thankfully, we were able to get around without any problems or accidents.
Here are some photos from our week scooting around Westmoreland…
To kick off our road trip around the island during our second week in Jamaica, we returned our scooter and picked up a car rental from a home-based taxi business in Hanover.
From there, we headed southwest through Savanna-la-Mar to our first stop, Treasure Beach.
Now, can you drive around Jamaica in a single day? Jave and other locals swear it can be done in about 8 hours or so.
Do I recommend driving around the island in a single day? Absolutely not! I think it’s best to pace yourself and spend a few days in various visit-worthy destinations around the island.
So after a few nights in Treasure Beach where we backtracked one day to cruise Black River, we headed to Kingston for a few days. We spent the majority of our second day in Kingston in Port Royal. Then, we headed to gorgeous Port Antonio for a few nights. Afterward, we originally planned on spending two nights in Ocho Rios (or “Ochi” as locals call it), but instead, we spent one night there, and headed back to Negril to spend one extra night close to family before heading back to L.A.
I fell in love with Jamaica during my first visit to Montego Bay back in 2006, and I have to say that our road trip only deepened my love for Jamaica because we got to see so much of its beautiful nooks and crannies, many of which neither of us had ever seen before.
In future posts, I’ll share more about Black River, Kingston, Port Royal, and Port Antonio, but for now, here are several pictures I snapped from the road…