Written by COG on 28 Jan, 2005
The Town of Port Antonio is a bustling market town on the northeast coast of Jamaica in Portland. It is a town where people live, shop, go to school, work, and meet up with friends. It is not a tourist town, and you…Read More
The Town of Port Antonio is a bustling market town on the northeast coast of Jamaica in Portland. It is a town where people live, shop, go to school, work, and meet up with friends. It is not a tourist town, and you will notice that you are very much left alone to go about your business. Wander through the shops that the locals shop at--I can't even recall a "souvenir" shop. The market that sells vegetables, meat, household goods, and clothing at the front has a small craft market tucked into the back--that is where you can buy your carvings, T-shirts, or other treasures. No one pressures you, and they are more than happy to show their wares or skills. Rock Bottom is working on traditional carvings, and tells his whole story to you--he is famous in these parts, as he has been featured in some travel brochures.
If you dare test your tummy and you are unable to get to Boston Beach, try the jerk pork sold at the front of the market--it is delicious if you can handle the spice. If you are looking for something a little calmer to eat, try the juicy patties on one of the side streets--they are fresh, delicious, and very inexpensive (approximately $1 each).
Port Antonio has a couple of banks with ABMs--a better bet than going to the bank, since they have limited hours. There are grocery stores in town where you can buy foodstuff, snacks, and drinks.
Tbe sidewalks are narrow, which isn't a problem except when it rains, and you will want to stay off the muddy streets.
There is a police presence throughout town, and the police officers can't be missed in their finely starched uniforms with flashes of bright red--there is no sense of intimidation; it just adds to the feeling of safety.
This private beach was free entry for us through our villa rental (Goblin Hill). You arrive at the front gate and have to walk through a natural garden, crossing small bridges over the river that flows to the ocean. The walk is short,…Read More
This private beach was free entry for us through our villa rental (Goblin Hill). You arrive at the front gate and have to walk through a natural garden, crossing small bridges over the river that flows to the ocean. The walk is short, but there's lots to see along the way, such as interesting birds, butterflies, flowers, and luxourious foliage.
Upon arrival at the beach, one of the staff usually greets you to explain all the facilities they offer--they have a small change room with a washroom just up the hill, the beach provides a bar and lunch service, and the service is impeccable. We had Ray helping us all week while we were there, and he got to know where to put our lounge chairs and what our favourite drinks were--he made a fabulous rum punch.
The beach is spectacular--it is groomed every day by the staff, and there is a lifeguard on duty. The water is the kind of blue you see in postcards. The water can be a bit rough on the ocean opening, but the shallow water makes it fun to jump the waves. The river is perfect for kids, because it is shallow and still.
We had lunch a couple of times on the beach ($9 for chicken or fish and up to $20 for lobster). We tried everything, and it was all delicious. The fish was delicious and fresh, with a nice, slightly spicy sauce, the chicken was BBQ one day and jerk another, and the lobster was grilled to perfection. The portions were large and came with salads (at least two), rice and beans, bread, and garnishes like tomatoes and cucumbers. Lunch is brought to you beside your beach chair, on a small table covered with white linen, and real cutlery and napkins are offered--pure luxury. There are also a few standard tables with chairs--your choice. After a fantastic lunch, a peaceful nap on the beach--there is no loud music, no game-playing, and very few people on the beach at any one time.
This is one of the most private and perfect-looking beaches I have ever been to. There are even showers to get the sand off when the end of the day means you have to leave.