Ask anyone about Negril and the first thing they’ll mention is its beach. Nearly 5 miles long (though everyone claims it to be 7 miles) of unobstructed beach, it’s the place to go if you’re looking for the best white-sand beach and spectacular sunsets.
Negril straddles two of Jamaica’s western parishes – Westmoreland and Hanover – and hugs the coast from Bloody Bay (Hanover) to the lighthouse, in Westmoreland, which was built in 1894.
Along the rugged cliffs of the southwestern stretch in Westmoreland, the so-called West End, there are several underwater caves, restaurants and cottages and exclusive guest houses.
The northern end is home to the larger hotels and all-inclusives such as Couples, Riu, Hedonism II, Sandals by Beaches, etc.
The first time I visited Negril, I wasn’t yet in high school. The youth group I belonged to had our first camping trip there. Back then, Negril was a quiet place with a few houses, even fewer hotels, lots of land and sea crabs and its now famous beach.
Today, Negril still has the best stretch of beach in Jamaica. However, in the space of thirty years, it has been transformed from a tiny village to a bustling resort town with a mix of accommodation, an assortment of places to eat and an active night life. Negril however attracts couples, singles and families – some come year after year to this beautiful spot.
Beside the beach and the clear blue water of the Caribbean Sea, Negril is also known for its spectacular sunsets. As evening draws to a close, legions of visitors and locals alike flock to Rick’s Café, or one of the resorts on the water side, to watch the sun turn crimson and orange and purple before it disappears from view.
Getting to Negril:
Negril is about an hour and half’s drive from the Donald Sangster Airport in Montego Bay. You can also fly there from either the Montego Bay or Kingston airport.
With more than 90 places, from luxury retreats at $500 or more to rooms for $50 a night, you are sure to find the perfect place to spend a night, or two, in Negril.