Walking off the plane in Montego Bay Jamaica you can smell the sweet fresh air! The atmosphere is like none I’ve been to before smiling faces everywhere. No worries mon! My husband Kevin and I wanted to bring our friends Brandy and Pat down for an authentic Jamaican Experience while discovering the world famous Negril on Stand-up Paddle Boards. Psyche our driver and now good friend was waiting for us at the airport. I’ve always wanted someone to be at the airport waiting with my name on a sign it made it so much cooler when it also read Paddle Boarder! After loading all our Paddle gear and luggage he took us right to the best Jerk Chicken spot we had all ever had!
Kevin and I had spent some time in Negril before and while we loved the 7 mile beach we wanted to spend some time in the West End of Negril where it was a more laid back feel with miles of sea cliffs, reef, and crystal clear Caribbean water! We stayed in a local Jamaican community called One Love Rasta Cottages with two old time Rastas, Jubbee and Boston, as our hosts. They are so in harmony with everything surrounding them you felt blessed to be in their presence. Every morning they awoke early to work in the garden. They taught us so much about the plants and trees and their medicinal uses. The Morninga Tree (tree of life) is used to prevent or cure cancer & diabetes. I felt its healing powers the moment I ingested it. They cooked us amazing Rasta foods from their garden and even took us to the fish market and had us pick out some conch and lobsters. Our cottage had a kitchen so we made tropical fruit smoothies and blue mountain coffee every morning.
The paddling in Jamaica is Unreal!! Five of us set out on a full day of paddling and snorkeling with only 2 of our Pau Hana Surf Supply Inflatable Big EZ’s and our Kialoa paddles. We rotated from paddling to swimming every so often but the current and light breeze gently pushed us along miles of sea cliffs and caves. We called it a Jamaican Downwinder. We were blown away with how clear the water is and the beautiful coral reefs, we did some free climbing on the sea cliffs then jumped off into the water. There was amazing cliff jumping the entire way and a few restaurants and bars that had ladders we could climb and grab a drink. Another day we set off to paddle to an island bar. When we reached the Island we enjoyed some nice cold Red Stripes and hung out while they prepared some jerk chicken and lobsters for us!
Island Life is good and Jamaica is an incredible place to go not just for the paddling but for an amazing experience. The people are the nicest people we have ever encountered and their positive vibrations rub off on you! It was such a blessing to be introduced to this amazing culture. We cannot wait to go back and visit again with the folks from One Love Rasta Cottages, Blue Mountain Coffee shop, and Tony Montana’s! Check out the video below from our time in West End Negril Jamaica!
Kevin and Christian are two athletes that love to travel. Follow their adventures as they explore the diverse places and activities they encounter around Western New York and beyond.