Last October, me and my boyfriend went for two week vacation to Jamaica! We stayed in Secrets St James Resort and Spa in Montego Bay and here is our overall experience of the hotel and trips, the bad and mostly the good!
Secrets St James Resort and Spa:
Rooms: We stayed in preferred club, the view was incredible as you could see the sunset every evening with clear views of the ocean. I absolutely loved the bathroom with the stand alone bath tub and a huge mirror for getting dressed up in the evening! Comfortable bed and Okay mini bar.
Beach: The beach was really nice, white sand and clear blue sea. If you enjoy swimming quite far out, that can be hard to do as after some distance, there are rocks/reefs to get by. We went in October and there seemed to be a lot of Jelly fish around. We were never stung as I watched were we swam (like a hawk)!
The resort itself was beautiful and we found it was smaller (in a nice way) than other Caribbean resorts we had stayed in previously. Everything was in walking distance and all easily located. We opted for preferred club which had a quieter pool area than the main pool, but everyone was free to access all areas so going preferred did seem like a bit of a waste of money.
Food: Food was hit and miss in some restaurants but overall, we had some really good food.
Breakfast – we would order rooms service and eat on our balcony or we would go to the preferred lounge. I particularly loved the banana loaf and the bacon. Overall, you could get anything in regards to breakfast.
Lunch – We ate at the Sea side grill most of the time as they did a great variety of burgers and fries! We did try the buffet on one occasion but we didn’t enjoy any of the food offered so we avoided for the rest of the trip.
Restaurants (Evening) – By far, our favourite restaurants had the be the French, Italian and the Japanese. They were all delicious and menus had great choice. They were all situated at the entertainment area, so it was nice to eat in an enjoyable environment. We also paid extra to have a candle lit meal on the beach – well worth trying!
Dunns River Falls – This was my trip highlight! We booked this trip as a joint package with the Bob Marley tour at the hotel reception. The Trip cost me and my boyfriend around $100 each (don’t be afraid to ask the tour guide for discount too).
We were picked up at the hotel around 9am by our driver and tour guide who were a lot of fun and got the tour off to a great start. If you have water shoes then bring them as the rocks can be slippery and you’re going to have to climb. If not, they will stop off at a shop on the way to the falls and they cost around $10 USD.
You climb up the falls for around 45 minutes. Don’t be put off by the climbing as the guys are brilliant when giving you a hand up or you can always do the dry walk alternatively.
Bob Marley Tour: as soon as we had dried off, stopped off for some Jerked Chicken, rice and beans, we started our route to the home and resting place of Bob Marley. The drive to Bob’s is quite lengthy and you get to see “the real Jamaica” which we really enjoyed.
The tour includes a mini museum, offers “smoking” unofficially and there is also a bar to grab a drink before and after the tour. You will get the opportunity to visit Bobs bedroom, place of rest as well as his relatives. We got to watch a reggae band perform too which I am guessing they perform for each tour group.
We made it back to our hotel around 8pm so it is a long tour but I’d highly recommend! 8/10 for me 🙂
We got a catamaran to Rick’s Café as we guessed we would make a day out it. When we got to Ricks Café, I didn’t think it was anything spectacular. The drinks were not that great, pretty pricey and there were Bee’s everywhere!
The sunset was really pretty and watching the cliff divers was fun too. It had a good Reggae vibe but I did expect it to be better as its meant to be one of the best bars in the world!
Pro’s to going by boat: Food and drink provided, 1 hours snorkel (although hardly and fish were they stopped) and fun party vibe.
Con’s: Boat over crowded, drunk people (we didn’t mind as we had a couple), on arrival you only get 1 hour at Rick’s Café before you are picked up by the coach back to the hotel.
Over all Jamaica was a great place, lovely people, weather, music, beaches, food and culture! Go and visit!