Using the Melia Braco Village as home base, we were whisked away for the day by our driver Jermain from Paradise Travels. Can I just say that Jermain was amazing. He had to deal with 6 women from various parts of the United States and Canada and he kept his cool and professional attitude throughout. We really appreciated him and I suggest you look him up if you want to take any excursions while visiting Jamaica. www.paradisetravelsinja.com
The first thing we did was visit the historic town of Falmouth. This is also where the cruise ships dock while on the island and this town is the real deal, the real Jamaica. We were taken on a Food Tour www.jamaicaculinarytours.com visiting local vendors and sampling bits of what they were selling. From coconut water to coco bread wrapped patties (crazy good!) and ending with a small meal of jerk chicken and jerk pork. Along the way, we learned a good bit of history and met lovely locals, including the medicine man and his full array of herbs and such. This tour lasts about 3 hours and it is quite hot in Jamaica year round, so be prepared and know this in advance if you are sensitive to the heat.
With full stomachs, Jermain drove us to Good Hope Estate and the drive was really beautiful. This Estate was built in 1774 and the land is over 2,000 acres which provides an array of adventures or you can can just lay back. I took the Boomer laid back approach and hung by the pool and then went in the bar to sample a “dirty banana.” The others went tubing and I raised a glass to them! There is also zip lining, ATV trails and a challenge course. For the younger ones, there is gem mining as well as the pool and an aviary. Then there is of course, the tour of the Estate which is quite lovely, and if you arrange it right, they serve tea on the veranda. And you thought Jamaica was only about beaches and rum!
There was one more item on our agenda and that was a visit to the Glistening Waters Luminous Lagoon, which can only be done when it is truly dark, which in our case was about 8:00 PM. The lagoon is surrounded by mangroves with microscopic organisms that emit a phosphorescent light when agitated. The boat takes you out and you can either dive into the water or just lean out the side of the boat and move your hand in the water and see the beautiful blue glow. They say this phenomenon occurs in only 3 places in the world, so this is a real treat.
There is a lot more, so stay tuned for Part three of my Journey to Jamaica.
October 22, 2016