Since its early days as a haven for hippies in the 1970s, the city has long harbored an image as a wild vacation destination. Nudity is common on the beaches of Bloody Bay. Reggae clubs bring some of the island’s best music to the cliffs that overlook spectacular sunsets. And, while not as popular as it was during the 70s, more than one establishment still sells hallucinogenic teas and vendors still hawk ganja.

Jamaica Adventure Guide – This travel guide walks with the adventurous traveler to the heart of Jamaica, to the miles of sand beaches, to the rugged Blue Mountains, to the country villages that provide a peek at the real Jamaica


The real wildness in Negril lies just outside the city limits. Here, in an area known as the Great Morass, you can see a side of the country that most visitors never glimpse. Crocodiles, not vacationers, lie in the steamy afternoon sunshine. Peddlers sell, not marijuana, but shrimp caught using techniques over 400 years old. And spectacular birds, not parasailers, fill the air with dashes of color and a cacophony of exotic sounds.

Today, Negril has gained respectability and is home to all types of resorts that attract everyone from swingers to families. Law mandates that no building here can be taller than a palm tree so low-rises follow the coast from Bloody Bay(named for the days when the whalers cleaned their catch here) to the cliffs at its southern end, where the Negril Lighthouse still signals the rocks to ships.

Negril is best known for its seven miles of beach, home to the largest share of accommodations and plenty of small restaurants. Travelers staying along this stretch can walk the beach from property to property.

INTERESTING FACT: Booby Cay on the north end of Negril doubled as the South Sea for Disney’s Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea movie.

More information on Negril

About the author

Jamaica Adventure Guide