Jamaica is the Caribbean country that comes with its own soundtrack. Groove to its singular rhythm as you explore beyond the beaches and all-inclusives. With Bob Marley, Jamaica gifted us the first global superstar from the developing world. But he didn’t spring from nowhere – this tiny island has musical roots that reach back to the folk songs of West Africa and forward to the electronic beats of contemporary dancehall.
Like many aspects of Jamaican culture, the food is a creole, born somewhere between the Old and New Worlds. African spice rubs have evolved into delicious jerk, while yam, rice and plantain form the basis of rich stews and the fish that abound in local waters. Throw in the astounding array of tropical fruits that seem to drip from the trees, washed down with a shot of rum, and you can see and taste how the Jamaican cultural story retains its original voice.
While Jamaica’s beaches are certainly alluring, this is a country to dive into, literally and figuratively. Beneath the waves there’s great scuba diving and snorkeling, and you can float on the water too with lazy bamboo-raft trips. The adventurous can go caving, or get their hiking boots on to explore the remote crags and forests of this crumpled landscape.
Interesting facts about Jamaica:
- In 2008 a beach was stolen in Jamaica. The 500 truckloads of sand remain missing to this very day.
- Chocolate milk was invented by Jamaicans, then popularized in Europe by an Irish botanist who sold it as medicine.
- There are only 2 countries in the world whose flags contain neither red, white, nor blue: Jamaica and Mauritania.