While general information on Jamaica can be found anywhere, no travel guide could better convey the country's beauty than Christopher Columbus who, when he first stepped foot on Jamaica in 1494, proclaimed it to be "the fairest isle mine eyes ever beheld". Little has changed in the five hundred years since, as Jamaica remains one of the world's most beautiful island retreats. The warm and inviting local people, a veritable fusion of ethnicities from around the world, would be proud to have the following information on Jamaica showcased - the country's vibrant culture, its wide selection of restaurants for both fine and casual dining, and the fabulous array of sports, tours, and activities to accommodate every type of visitor.
There is good reason; information on Jamaica's economy lists tourism as the island's biggest industry, catering to the over one million people who flock there annually.
Restaurants in Jamaica reflect the diversity of the people. Jamaica food has African, European, Asian, and Middle Eastern influences that combine to form a unique Jamaican cuisine in its own right. Restaurants cater to those seeking both haute cuisine and down-home cooking, as both genres are dotted across the island's popular resort regions and in some out-of-the-way mountain areas, with prices varying throughout. "Authentic" Jamaica food includes grilled meats and smoked fish, spicy seafood dishes, and lots of jerk (don't worry, it's a spice not an insult!). To complement the food, many restaurants serve customers on outdoor terraces so they can enjoy the Jamaican scenery as well.
Like any island nation, Jamaicans love their water sports and there are plenty of opportunities for visitors to get in on the fun. Scuba diving is a popular Jamaica water sport, with quality facilities ringing the island. While it is illegal to scuba dive without certification, many licensed operators around Jamaica offer certification courses. Most professional diving establishments like the Negril Scuba Centre, North Coast Marine Sports, and Dolphin Divers, will certify, equip, and guide you on your day in the water. Snorkeling is also available throughout Jamaica, and is a tamer way of exploring the island's undersea offerings (sunken ships included!).
Fishing is another Jamaica water sport to enjoy and, as fishing licenses are not required, all you need is a boat! Arrangements to renting a boat can be made at most hotels and resorts, as well as at local lagoons and harbors. For deep-sea fishing, chartering a boat complete with crew and equipment is recommended.
Sourced with thanks from Jamica Caribbean Way.
CRICKET WORLD CUP 2007
Cricket is Jamaica's most popular sport. Matches are played throughout the island most weekends during the season. The major matches hosted by the Jamaica Cricket Association are played at Sabina Park in Kingston, where Test Cricket has been played since 1929. Over sixty Jamaicans have played in the West Indian side since 1928, these include Michael Holding and Courtney Walsh.
Jamaica has been chosen as one of the venues for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2007 and it will be hosting the opening ceremony on 11 March at the new Trelawny Stadium, Greenfields (just east of Falmouth on the north coast). This is currently under construction and is due to seat 25,000 for the event. Four warm-up matches will also be played at the new stadium between 5th and 9th March, starting with West Indies v Kenya. The opening match of the tournament takes place between the West Indies and Pakistan on 13 March at Sabina Park in Kingston, and it will be followed by five more Group Stage matches, culminating with the West Indies versus Ireland on 23 March. Sabina Park stadium is to receive minor upgrades, and should seat approximately 30,000 for the actual event through the addition of temporary stands.
Sourced with thanks from Definitive Caribbean Jamaica Cricket
Graphic sourced with thanks from BBC UK Images Jamaica
Jamaica Cricket Association
Jamaica Vacation Packages from Caribbean Online
Comprehensive guide to Jamaica
Jamaica - Discover Jamaica ! - Resorts & Vacation in Negril, Ocho Rios
Jamaica - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia