Thursday, December 30, 2010

Why head to Jamaica this holiday season

To get the best out of your Caribbean holiday, you can consider heading to Jamaica. The high season began on 15 December and over the two weeks, the island has registered a record rise in visitors signalling even better turnout for the rest of the season, something which means good news to vacation rental communities like Silver Sands Villas, Jamaica. So what makes Jamaica so special? There are many reasons for this.

The weather: The island witnesses warm tropical weather through out the year with average temperature hovering between 80 to 90 degrees F. Near the mountains it is somewhat lower but you could manage with a light sweater. So Jamaica is a year round destination and you can plan your visit to suit your convenience.

The beaches: If it is Jamaica, it has to be the beaches. Negril boasts of plenty of beautiful beaches, notably the seven miles beach. Then there is Boston Beach where jerked food got its well-deserved fame. Talking about beaches, there are plenty of Jamaica accommodation rentals like the Silver Sands villas that encompass their own stretch of pristine white sandy beach.

The great outdoors: From exploring the colourful underwater world to hiking up the peaks of the mighty Blue Mountains and exploring the countryside, caves, grottos in between, Jamaica provides the perfect playground for a whole range of land and water activities. You can go kayaking, white water rafting, snorkelling, scuba diving, parasailing and deep sea fishing. On land explore rainforest trails, museums, parks, reserves, botanical gardens, plantations, estate houses….the list is endless.

The atmosphere: The beaches and the weather combine to provide a tropical charm that is so very unique to Jamaica. It is because of this, Jamaica also has a well-established reputation of being one of the ultimate romantic destinations in the world, a fact that is evident from the number of people who come here to get married or for honeymoon. This is not to say that families don’t come for a holiday here. Indeed there are a number of Jamaica accommodation rentals that cater specifically to families.

Jamaica is also a safe destination this despite the fact that it was in the news for the clashes that took place in Kingston over the arrest of a drug leader. These are stray incidences and can take place in any country. That being said it is always advisable to take certain precautions while travelling in foreign lands. While in Jamaica, avoid lonely areas at night or preferably travel in groups. Don’t flaunt your valuables and keep a low profile and you’ll be safe in the country.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Skydiving in Jamaica

Jamaica as a tourist destination needs no introduction. Apart from the sun and sand, there is plenty on offer in terms of land and water activities. Have your fill of the beaches and the beach activity and there is much in store for you to get your adrenalin running.

Skydiving is the latest feather in the cap of Jamaican outdoor activities. Safe and secure, it promises much fun and adventure and the opportunity to see Jamaica with your body flying at nothing less than 120 miles per hour. And if you thought that the activity was just for the experienced then you are entirely off the mark. If you are a novice, you will be given a hands on training by experienced and licensed masters so rest assured you are in safe hands. The tandem skydive is offered by Skydive Jamaica, which specialises in tandem skydives, and is perfectly safe. In fact their website says, it a low-pressure way to experience a high-thrill skydive.

The adventure unfurls from the height of 12,500 feet when at the green signal, you take the jump. There can be no better way to experience Jamaica than with your body flying at the speed of 120 miles per hour. And just when you have begun to relax, the instructor pulls your rip cord and you are all set to enjoy a six- to eight-minute parachute ride back to the landing area on the airport.

Well you actually did it and now it is all about convincing your friends back home about your adventure. In fact, you can capture the whole experience, from suiting to landing, on video at no extra costs. The package also includes 40 to 80 still pictures to relive the moments and take back beautiful memories to show back home.

There is nothing like the comfort of a home to come back to after a hard day of fun-filled adventure to relax, to soak in a tub, feel the tiredness drain from your body, and then enjoy a delicious meal catching your favorite movie on the DVD player. All this and much more is possible if you stay in your own private Jamaica villa or cottage that gives you convenient access not only to the Skydive at the Boscobel Aerodrome in St Mary but other attractions in Jamaica as well.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Adventure activities in Kingston

Beyond its vibrant cultural and music scene, Kingston, the capital of Jamaica has much to offer. If you are heading for Jamaica, you can consider staying in private Jamaican rental communities that offer tour and transfers to places of interest including Kingston for the convenience of their guests.

Here are some adventure activities that you can check out in Kingston.

You can go hiking in The Blue Mountains-John Crow National Park, which is spread across 300 square miles and is the second largest park in the country. It offers great challenges for hikers, mountain bikers and birders. It is divided into three regions: the Blue Mountains Peak, Hollywell Recreational Park and the Clydesdale Forest Reserve.

If your holiday is incomplete without a pleasant round of golf, you can check out the
Caymanas Golf Club, Jamaica’s first major championship 18-hole course, dating from the 1950s. Another golf course here is Constant Spring that dates back to the 1920.

Not many are aware of the fact that Kingston also offers great scuba diving opportunities both for the novice and the advanced divers ranging from reefs to ship wrecks.

Jamaica has been voted as the world’s leading beach destination and though the honour went to Montego Bay, the second largest town on the island after Kingston, there are many interesting beaches here also including Gunboat Beach, Fort Clarence and Lime Cay, south of the peninsula where Port Royal and the airport are located.

Jamaican rental communities such as Silver Sands Villas in Jamaica offer tours and transfers to Kingston and if you are travelling with kids, will also provide car seats in the transportation vehicles absolutely free of cost.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Things to see and do in Kingston

Kingston is the cosmopolitan centre of not just Jamaica but the whole of Caribbean. Over a period of time the city has been witness to a number of earthquakes, epidemics, hurricanes and fire, but each time it has bounced back to tell the tale. It was a city where once pirates ran wild; today the arts are the king. Kingston is both yesterday and today. It is one city but two worlds.

There is much that you can see and do in Jamaica. To make the most of your stay on the island, you can consider staying in quaint Jamaica villas and cottages that offer you the perfect opportunity to experience the rich traditions of the island as also all possible modern amenities required for a comfortable stay.

Here are some activities that you can consider.

Hope Road: Attractions Road could be another name for this. Visit Marley Museum, which honours the king of reggae. Memorabilia, photos and clippings on display at his former residence and recording studio bring him to life. A rocking 20-minute video captures his best concert appearances.

Devon House: This early 19th century restored historic landmark is also on Hope Road. Commissioned by George Stiebel, a shipwright whose ship came in (he became Jamaica’s first millionaire), it is furnished with Caribbean antiques, including rich mahogany pieces. The courtyard has craft shops, restaurants, an internet cafĂ© and bakery.

Hope Botanical Gardens and Zoo: Again on Hope Road, it displays the West Indies’ largest collection of plants and flowering trees. You can spend some time in the beautiful gardens.

The Coins and Notes Museum: Also called the Bank of Jamaica’s Money Museum, it is situated near the waterfront down town. See uncut sheets of J$500 bills, tools used to make money, old beads, Spanish pieces of eight or more.

Emancipation Park: It is home to the Redemption Song Statue, named after Bob Marley’s celebration of freedom from slavery. The park features a jogging track and is the site of many cultural events.

The National Stadium: Kingston is the sports centre of Jamaica. The National Stadium hosts international soccer matches. Cricket fans can watch matches at Sabina Park.

Golf: Golfers can play a round two 18-hole courses, Constant Spring Golf Club and the Caymanas Golf Club, six miles west of Kingston.

If you are travelling with kids, you can consider staying in Jamaica accommodation rentals that are child-friendly. This will be especially convenient if you plan to go out for activities that are strictly meant for adults or you want to spend some moments with your partner, for after all Jamaica is also the ultimate romantic destination on earth.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Jamaica begins winter season on a high note

Jamaica’ official high tourist season began at a high note with cruise ships bringing in 12000 visitors at the ports in Ocho Rios and Montego Bay. Out of these 6000 disembarked to explore the various sights and attractions the island has to offer. Jamaican rentals in the immediate vicinity were all set to welcome them with attractive deals and offers.

The tourist industry of Jamaica is going from strength to strength. The island was voted the leading destination in the Caribbean and the world’s leading beach destination in the World Travel Awards ceremony held at London in November.

It further consolidated its position by being voted as the 'Best Caribbean Destination' at the annual Travel Weekly Readers' Choice Awards at the New York Plaza Hotel in Manhattan this week. The recognition could not have come at a better time since a majority of visitors who come to the island are from the USA. In fact airlines in both the USA and Canada have added additional flights to cater to the holiday rush.

Jamaica also continues to invest heavily in its infrastructure a case point being the development of the new pier in the historic town in Falmouth which will become operational in January 2011. In fact, given its potential as an important historic destination even private players like the award winning tour operator company Chukka Caribbean Adventures have invested heavily in Good Hope Estate to offer interesting and fun-filled tours that bring to life the rich heritage of the country.

Private Jamaican rental communities like Silver Sands Villas Jamaica too are looking forward to offering the best of services and hospitality to the visitors.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Sightseeing and activities tours in Jamaica

Are you planning a trip to Jamaica? If you are, this will be one visit that will surely become a memory of a lifetime. As a first step, you can consider making your accommodation arrangements in Jamaica villas, cottages or apartments that are suitable for all budgets, size of group and requirements. Whether you are travelling single, as couples, with families or friends, you will find Jamaica villas that are well-suited to your needs. Realize that where you stay in Jamaica can make all the difference to your trip and so if it is privacy, space, comfort and affordability you need, Jamaica villas are for you. Besides, these rentals allow you to experience and discover the real Jamaica and not the usual tourist traps.

After making your travel arrangements, you can start examining the nearby attractions that you can visit and activities that you can do. When doing so, you will realize there are many tours that you can choose from. With so much on offer, which one should you choose?

This will depend on what your preferences are. Do you want to go sightseeing or indulge in activities? Are you adults travelling together or is it a family trip? If you are planning a family trip with kids, then staying in Jamaica villas will make all the more sense. This is because most of these villas also provide childcare facilities, which means you can go out with your spouse/partner for activities strictly meant for adults secure in the knowledge that the kids will be well taken care of and will have enough to keep them busy and delighted.

Activities: For those who love the outdoors, Jamaica is a dream come true. Here you can have adventures of a lifetime. There are many agencies offering guided tours of both land and water activities. For example, you can take a guided tour of the Blue Mountains. If it is biodiversity that interests you, you can take a boat ride on the Luminous Lagoon. The lagoon is home to a rare phosphorescent microbe known as dinoflagellate. The movement of the water causes the microbes to move and glow with an ethereal neon-green color, making the lagoon luminous. This phenomenon can be witnessed only in four places in the world and Jamaica is considered to be the best amongst them.

History and culture: To gain an insight into the rich history and culture of Jamaica, you can enjoy guided tours of various estate houses that dot the island. One such estate is the Prospect Plantation dating back to 1721, which is in working condition even today. For those interested in Gothic horror and witch craft, there is the Great Rose Hall and for those who want a glimpse of the Caribbean art, there is Harmony Hall waiting to be explored.

Sightseeing opportunities: You can enjoy a guided tour of the Dunn’s River Falls, one of Jamaica’s most popular attractions. You’ll be given life jackets after which you can wade right into the pool at the base and join a human chain making its way to the top of the waterfall up the slippery natural staircase.

Water activities: Jamaica is all about beaches and water activities so whether you want to go kayaking, white water rafting, swimming, snorkelling or scuba diving, you can enjoy all sorts of tours.

Family activities: If you are family activities you are looking for, you can tour the Dolphins cove and the Kool Runnings Park that promises thrills for the adventurous and staid activities for those who just want to keep the activities simple and relaxed.

As a closing note, it is important to point out that Jamaica is a small island and it doesn’t take much time travelling from one community to the other; however you can save time if you choose your Jamaica rentals in the right location. If you can reach your destination in five minutes then why drive for an hour.

Things to do in Jamaica this winter season

Jamaica is often seen as a romantic destination offering exotic locales for weddings and honeymoons. But the island promises much fun and activities for a family vacation. So if you are visiting Jamaica with your family that includes grandparents and kids, here are some things you can do.

Stay in Jamaica villas and cottages: In a time challenged world where you are constantly burdened with the pressures of your work, there is no time like a family holiday to reconnect with your loved ones and to do this, you would definitely require some privacy and space. These are two things that set Jamaica villas and cottages apart from hotels. In a hotel there is not much chance that you’ll all get your rooms next to each other. These vacation rentals are your home away from home in that they provide you all the comfort, space, services and attention you need for a memorable holiday. They are also different from your home in that they allow you to live like natives amidst natives and gain a first hand perspective of the place.

Take advantage of the Jamaica villas facilities: Jamaican accommodation rentals also provide all the facilities to keep the family happy. The villas, cottages and apartments include TV, DVD/CD players, Internet etc so if you are not in a mood to venture out, you can watch your favourite movie in the comfort of your room or take in the spectacular view of the Caribbean Sea from the comfort of your veranda. Some villas like the Silver Sands villas also have their own stretch of private beaches where you can go snorkelling and swimming or enjoy a picnic. You can also mingle with other guests and make new friends and acquaintances. These rentals also have separate play area for kids. If you want to try out activities that are strictly meant for adults, you can inform the staff and they will arrange childcare services and activities.

Dolphins Cove: Ocho Rios is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Jamaica. It boasts some great natural attractions such as the Dunn’s River Falls and Dolphins Cove, a marine park that promises much fun for both adults and kids. The park is encompassed by four acres of rain forests where you can view marine species such as rays, eels and sharks as well as tropical birds, like the macaw. The main attraction however are the dolphins and whats more, you can jump into the water and swim with them.

Kool Runnings Park: Located in Negril, this man made park is a great hit with the tourists and locals alike. This state-of-the-art water park features attractions for visitors of all ages. Enter the park and you will be confronted with a water world complete with rivers and waterslides to suit all tastes and ages from the gentle for the kids and the exciting for the adventurous.

Luminous Lagoon: Enjoy a boat ride on the Luminous Lagoon and discover one of the rare phenomenons of nature. The lagoon is home to a rare phosphorescent microbe known as dinoflagellate. Any movement in water causes the microbes to glow with a neon green colour giving the lagoon an ethereal look. This phenomenon can be witnessed only in four places in the world and Jamaica is considered to be the best amongst them.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Where to stay and what to see in Jamaica

The island nation of Jamaica is dominated by sandy beaches, mountains, rainforests, caves and waterfalls. The country provides the ideal base for water activities such as
snorkeling, scuba diving, deep sea fishing, river rafting and swimming. The land too promises its share of fun and so you can go horseback riding, hiking, caving and golfing. With so much to see and do, it is little wonder then Jamaica is a favourite destination for a family holiday. And catering to the requirements of families are a large number of Jamaica rentals varying from private villas and cottages to apartments, studios and condos.


The most sought out tourist attractions in Jamaica are located in Ocho Rios. It features the famous Dunn’s River Falls and the Dolphins cove. Then there are the Y.S. Falls in Negril where the water falls into seven pools in which you can swim, swing or take a tube ride. Negril is also famous for its sunsets and world famous beaches including the Seven Miles Beach. For the nature enthusiasts there is the Royal Palm Reserve spread across 300 acres and featuring the exotic flora and some rare birds of the island. The reserve is also home to some ponds, nature museum and also a restaurant and bar. Those interested in arts, can head to the National Gallery of Jamaica in Kingston. The gallery is home to numerous artifacts, paintings, sculptures, pottery and other pieces of artwork from different periods. You can also explore the Luminous Lagoon which is home to the rare microbes that glow with a greenish neon light when the water moves. The phenomenon is nothing less than ethereal and can be witnessed in four places in the world.

Accommodation in Jamaica

Although there are many all-inclusive resorts and hotels on the island, a better alternative can be to book your own private villa, cottage or apartment on the island. The reason is simple; why book a room when you can book a whole house for the same rate and get more value for your money. Jamaica villas and cottages are perfect for families and have amenities that cater to all age groups. As a case point, consider the Silver Sands villas, conveniently located in Jamaica’s north coast where most of the tourist towns including Ocho Rios, Negril, Montego Bay and Port Antonio are located. These villas encompass their own private beach and have a separate play areas for kids. If you want to stay indoors, you can simply lounge away in the porch reading your favourite book or taking in the views of the Caribbean. The staff also arranges a weekly entertainment/welcome party where the guests get the opportunity to mingle with each other.


Most international airlines go through the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay while there are others that go through the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston. You can reach your destination in Jamaica by taxi or bus. Alternatively, if you are staying in a private accommodation, you can ask the staff of the villas to arrange for an airport pick up. Silver Sands villas in Jamaica arrange transfers from the airport.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Heritage tours in Jamaica: The Outameni Experience

Jamaica has much more to offer than its beaches. In fact, the best way to experience the island is to gain a first hand perspective of the rich culture and heritage of the island. And if this is what you would like to do, you can try out the Outameni Experience, an interactive walk that takes you to a journey through five centuries.

The term Outameni which means come together was first used by the Taino Indians and reflects the island’s motto, ‘Out of Many, One People.’

The Experience is located in Trelawny, on the hills overlooking the famed north coast of the island between Ocho Rios and Montego Bay and Ocho Rios. In fact most attractions are located in this part of the island and so you can consider staying in Jamaican rentals located within close proximity.

The interactive walk first introduces you to the Taino Indians and their peaceful way of life which lasted till Columbus discovered the island. It then goes on to reflect the period of Spanish conquest and rule.

The walk then focuses on the time when the Spanish were overthrown by the British and Jamaica became an English colony. It was during this sugar estate era that slavery became entrenched. Gradually, over the years, this was replaced by labour from India and China and Jamaica became a melting pot of various cultures whose influences are reflected in the cuisine, heritage and customs of the island.

The experience then takes you through 21st century Jamaica and traces the politics and the industrial development of this developing nation.

The Outameni Experience took 11 years to conceptualize and implement. It was launched in 2007 and is today a runaway success with the visitors.

Should you wish to enjoy this experience, you can stay in Silver Sands Villas on the north coast of the island. This Jamaican rental community prides itself in offering the best rates and services and also arranges for tours and transfers on the island.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Best Beaches in Jamaica

The beaches in Jamaica need no introduction. The beautiful island nation is the leading beach destination in the world, an award that was conferred on Montego Bay, Jamaica’s second largest town, in the recently concluded World Travel Awards ceremony held in London on 7 November. Given that these awards are seen as the ‘Oscars of the travel industry’ the recognition goes a long way in substantiating the island’s image as a favourite destination for a tropical escape under the Caribbean sun.

If you are planning a beach holiday with your family or friends, you can literally have a pristine, white sand right at your step by staying in rentals in Jamaica that encompass their own stretch of private beach. Away from the crowds, you can swim, snorkel, play volleyball, make sand castles and enjoy beautiful long walks under the starlit sky.

Outside the beaches of your own Jamaica rental, you can explore the miles of inviting beaches, some secluded, some buzzing with social activity and at all time alive to the sounds of reggae music floating through the breeze. Whether you are on a honeymoon or on a family vacation, you’ll find a beach that is just perfect for you.

Jamaica’s beaches are as beautiful as they are plentiful. However, there are some that really stand out and these are listed below.

Seven Miles Beach: Located in Negril, this beautiful beach has been consistently voted as amongst the best in the world. The water here is crystal clear and so calm that on most days you can wade out close to half a mile. It is also perfect for water activities such as scuba diving and snorkelling. Some stretches are secluded while others buzz with activity. There are also some clothing-optional stretches along the beach.

Doctor’s Cove Beach: This is one of the best beaches in Montego Bay and is appropriately named. It was founded in 1906 by a group of doctors who came to swim there. The crystal clear water here is fed by mineral springs, so it's usually a comfortable temperature. The water is also known for its healing properties. The beach is popular with both tourists and locals and there are many places to grab a Jamaican pattie and cold Red Stripe for lunch.

Boston Bay Beach: Located just outside Port Antonio, one of Jamaica’s best kept secrets, this small beach is much sought out by the locals and tourists. It is also from this beach that jerked meat, Jamaica’s most famous fast food, got its well-deserved fame. The beach was owned by "Happy Hooker" author Roger Moore, who later donated it to the Jamaican government.

Blue Lagoon Beach: Again in Port Antonio, this is the beach where Brook Shields starred in the movie "Blue Lagoon." The beach is beautiful and generally secluded. Given its depth, the colour of the water here is deep blue.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Places to visit in Jamaica

Jamaica as a tourist destination has lots to offer. The island is relatively small and so going from one place to another doesn’t take time. However, most attractions are concentrated on the north coast of the island and so if you want to set base here you can choose among a wide range of Jamaica rentals comprising private villas and cottages facing the sea or located in town centers within walking distance of attractions, restaurants, bars and shops. Here are some places that are definitely worth a visit.

Ocho Rios: Fondly referred to as Ochee by the locals, this is Jamaica’s most famous tourist town located in the beautiful green parish of St. Ann. In fact the parish is known for its beautiful gardens.

Ocho Rios is famous for Jamaica’s signature attraction, the Dunn’s River Falls. While the waterfalls are beautiful what is more interesting is the fact that you can actually climb up the slippery limestone rocks over which the water cascades on its way to the Caribbean Sea. There is the Dolphins cove nearby where you can spend an entire fun-filled day swimming with the dolphins, exploring rainforest trails and enjoying a picnic on the beach. You can also visit the nearby Green Grotto caves that once served as home to the original inhabitants of the island and later to the runaway slaves, pirates etc.

Montego Bay: The second largest town on the island, after Kingston, is home to five challenging golf courses. It is also the ultimate party destination boasting the famous ‘Hip Strip’ where you can shop, eat and party at the numerous bars and nightclubs.

Negril: This laid back sleepy town is world renowned for its beaches, most notably the Seven Miles Beach has been voted as one of the best consistently. The sunsets here are equally spectacular.

Kingston: The capital, cultural and commercial hub of the island has lots to offer in terms of museums, galleries and a thriving music scene. Fans of Bob Marley can visit the interactive Bob Marley museum and gain an insight into the legend’s life and works.

Port Antonio: Considered to be Jamaica’s best kept secret, Port Antonio has attracted the rich, the famous and the celebrities from across all walks of life. You can hike up the misty Blue Mountains and explore the awe-inspiring trails around the Rio Grande Valley.

There is much more on offer on the island than these places. Stay in Jamaica rentals which are staffed by the locals and they will provide you insider’s tips of what to see and do both in terms of seeing the main attractions as also going off the beaten path.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Jamaica offers better infrastructure to its visitors during the high season

The high season in Jamaica will jump start on 16th December and both the government and private players are leaving no stone unturned to provide a memorable experience to the visitors. Jamaican rental communities are offering great services and rates to attract visitors and ensuring they have a great stay.

Tourism is the leading industry of this beautiful Caribbean nation and the government has taken great efforts to promote it as an attractive and affordable destination. In fact, the Jamaica Tourism Board (JTB) became the first ever board to showcase its country using 3D technology. The 3D film, first premiered at the World Travel Market at London aroused great curiosity and interest in Jamaica. In fact, the island walked away with seven awards during the World Travel Awards ceremony including the leading destination in the Caribbean award and the world’s leading beach destination award. So those looking for sun, sand and the sea can head to Montego Bay, the town that ensured Jamaica’s win in this category. Apart from the beaches, Montego Bay is also a haven for the golf enthusiasts boasting not less than four world-class championship courses.

The development of the new pier in Falmouth which will begin to welcome ships in January next year is also expected to give a huge boost to the economy. Jamaican rentals like Silver Sands Villas in Jamaica are upbeat about the increase in business opportunities this will bring to them.

The new Ian Fleming airport will soon begin operation. The country is also opening a new casino and is investing in the gaming industry to target the emerging markets in Asia.

Silver Sands Villas Jamaica
is going the extra mile to ensure that the guests have a comfortable stay. The company is well aware that the guests with children are worried about the safety of their children while traveling in vehicles and so is offering free car seats to children traveling in its transport facilities.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Jamaica hot spots

Visitors to Jamaica who want to gain a first hand perspective of the place can be among the residents and enjoy the taste and feel of a true Jamaican lifestyle by staying in a ‘home’ instead of a hotel. The ‘homes’ refer to Jamaica villas, cottages, condos or apartments that you can rent for the duration of your stay. Known by various names such as Jamaica accommodation rentals or Jamaica villas, these homes are clean, well staffed and located in garden settings with beautiful views of the beautiful Caribbean Sea. Service of these Jamaica villas is excellent and the price quite reasonable. Here you can be a part of the local community and contribute to community.

Places of interest

Offering miles of beaches along the Caribbean Sea, Jamaica is a perfect holiday destination for singles, honeymooners and families. Some of the most popular areas for vacationers include Montego Bay, Ocho Rios and Negril. Then there are other areas of cultural interest such as Port Antonio, the South Coast and Kingston.

Accommodation options
There are numerous hotels, vacation homes, villas, cottages and all-inclusive resorts catering to all tastes and budgets. By far, the most popular option is Jamaica villas that provide the best of services and hospitality at the most affordable rates.

There is no death of attractions in Jamaica. You can visit, amongst others, Dunn's River Falls and the Green Grotto Caves in Ocho Rios. Then you can go trekking up the majestic Blue Mountains. Besides, there are historic plantations, museums, and parks you can explore and cultural events that you can enjoy.

Most activities in Jamaica center around water including swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, windsurfing and boating. From the famous Blue Lagoon to Seven Mile Beach in Negril to the Luminous Lagoon, you will be spoilt for choice.

The high season in Jamaica is fast approaching and so if you are planning a visit to the island, do make sure to book your Jamaican rental well on time to get the best deals and avoid disappointment.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Things to do in Jamaica: Visit Dolphin Cove

If you are planning a family trip to Jamaica, you can include a visit to the Dolphins Cove in Ocho Rios. To deviate a bit from the topic, you can stay in Jamaica rentals that cater especially to families, couples and large groups and offer a personalized experience and value for money than hotels and all-inclusive resorts.

Coming back to the Dolphins Cove. It is a perfect venue for a family trip. You can inform the staff of the Jamaica villas and they will arrange transport to the marine park. The park is an idyllic tropical retreat set against the backdrop of Jamaica’s picturesque North Coast. It is surrounded by 5 acres of lush tropical rain forest encompassing a natural cove.

The park promises you an experience of a lifetime—you can swim with the dolphins, and if you are adventurous enough, swim with the sharks also. Besides, you can also go kayaking in a glass-bottom boat on the Caribbean Sea and even captain your own mini-boat. Spend some interesting time interacting with stingrays (barbs clipped) and if you are tired, relax on the pearly white beach.

The park offers something for everyone. The entrance fee allows the visitors to enjoy the following activities as often as they wish: Captain their own mini-boat, explore the coast, interact with the stingays, enjoy a glass-bottom kayak ride and explore the under water world, appreciate a hilarious shark show and interact with the exotic birds, iguanas, birds and snakes on the jungle trail.

And then there are other activities, the most fascinating being swimming with the dolphins. The trainers will give you a basic lesson on how to deal with the dolphins and what you can expect. Once you are in the water, two bottleneck dolphins will join you. Once you start floating, they’ll push you forward with their fins. The dolphins are trained to obey their trainer’s whistle and once he blows it, they’ll immediately leave you fending for yourself!

For the adventurous, there is a swim with the sharks. You can head to the shark enclosure and sit holding a trained nurse shark on your lap and also swim with them, hold and feed them and learn about their evolutionary secrets.

Once you are done with the activities or want a break, you can relax on the glistening white sandy beaches, enjoying a picnic or simply appreciating the tropical surroundings. You can also shop here for the famous Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee and other souvenirs such as jewellery and wood carvings. And finally, don’t forget to enjoy the Shark Show while the one-legged pirates roam freely along the boardwalk of “Little Port Royal” and perform a “jig or two”.

And if all this activity leaves you happy but tired, head to your Jamaica villas to relax, relieve the moments, and be pampered to the choicest of dishes prepared by the cook.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Health and wellness tourism in Jamaica

Jamaica’s natural bounty and year round warm, tropical weather is largely responsible for its growing reputation as an important health and wellness destination. Catering to the increase in demand for wellness services, Jamaican rentals are now offering their guests personalized spa services to their guests in the privacy of their own accommodations.

Indeed, the island has witnessed an increase in the number of spas across the country, and more specifically in towns of high tourist interest. And as already stated above, the people can also enjoy these services in the comfort of their own private Jamaica rentals.

A recent research by the American Academy of Family Physicians has highlighted the fact that 60% of all problems brought to the physicians are related to stress. It has also reported that US corporations lose approximately $150 billion each year to stress-related disorders. It is little wonder then that these corporations are now offering spa experiences to the employees to mix business with pleasure such as to provide healing experiences as also a platform to motivate and build relationships.

Jamaica has emerged as a leading health and wellness destination given its proximity to the USA, the affordability of its high quality services and the healing environment provided by the sun, sand and the sea.

Sensing business opportunities, Jamaica’s investment and export promotion agency, JAMPRO, has secured technical assistance from the Commonwealth Secretariat to undertake the development of a road map for the growth of health and wellness tourism in Jamaica to facilitate the country's foray into the multi-billion dollar global medical tourism industry.

Jamaican rentals like Silver Sands Villas are upbeat about the increased in business opportunities this has opened up and are already providing spa services to their guests at affordable costs.

Cruise destinations Jamaica: Ocho Rios and Falmouth

Ocho Rios is the cruise capital of Jamaica. However the development of the new pier in Falmouth which will become operational in January will mean that the town too will get its fair share of limelight. Vacation rental communities such as Silver Sands Villas Jamaica are sure to benefit from the influx of tourists when the new pier opens.

Both Ocho Rios and Falmouth have much to offer to the visitors. Let us first start with Ocho Rios.

There are many interesting attractions that will keep you occupied all day long in Ocho Rios, however, if you were to start at one place, the ideal spot would be Dunn’s River Falls. It is a magnificent series of falls that cascade from a height of 600feet and trickle down slippery steps to finally join the vast expanse of the blue sea. You can even climb up the steps and reach the top of the waterfalls, and then from there, proceed to the vibrant and a colorful local market.

If you are traveling with your kids, you must take them to Dolphin’s Cove. Here your kids and you can enjoy watching the adorable antics of the dolphins and even swim with them.

However, this is just the beginning of your exciting adventure in Ocho Rios since there is much more that this beautiful paradise offers. A visit to the Coyaba River Garden and Museum will give you the opportunity to enjoy a colorful display of a species of different flowers and plants. Among the many beautiful varieties, one, which is worth marveling at, is the multi-colored New Guinea impatiens, also known as Busy Lizzie.

Ocho Rios is also famed worldwide because it is known to be the home of the legendary writer Ian Fleming, who made this place his base for penning down the famous James Bond novels. You can visit his hilltop home Goldeneye and also enjoy live music performances in the evening at the popular James Bond Beach.

Falmouth, the beautiful town of the Georgian era also has much to offer. There are many historical buildings in Falmouth that are remnants of the colonial era. One such building is the old courthouse which was built in 1815. The church reflects a Georgian design complete with well proportioned vertical and horizontal grads crossing the building as also fanlights, shingled walls and jalousies. It was damaged by a fire in 1926 but was later rebuilt.

Stroll through the lively old town where you can appreciate the 18th century architecture. You can bask in the old-world charm and talk to the locals to gain an insight into its background and culture.

Jamaica is well known for its plantations and great estates one of which is the Good Hope Plantation spread across 2000 acres. This coconut and cattle plantation is best explored on horseback. The history of the plantation dates back to the 18th century. One of ht greatest attractions here is the 18th century Great House named Good Hope set against the dramatic blue–gray mountains. It is renowned for its exquisite gardens and country trails. The road up from Falmouth winds its way by 200–year–old stone fences past fields and orchards, cattle and horses, a living testimony to an era of grace and gentility.

You can also visit the Luminous Lagoon at Glistening Waters. The lagoon gets its name from the bio–luminescent micro–organisms that inhabit the waters and emit a phosphorescent light when the water is agitated. The best time to visit the lagoon is at dusk and enjoy a boat ride. If you take along a stick, you can disturb the waters and see the phenomenon. If you wish, you can also swim in the luminous waters.

Falmouth is located on the north coast of the island and at a convenient distance for day trips from Silver Sands Jamaica.