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Travel » Destinations » Jamaica-marley-070319
Beyond Cricket

Jamaica: In Marley Country

Jamaica: In Marley Country Among the most densely populated islands in the West Indies, Jamaica is a hot dot on the world's tourism map. Think Jamaica and the first images that come to your mind are of powder beaches, brass bands and reggae on the sea shore.

Reggae legend Bob Marley, the man behind such hits as ''I Shot the Sheriff'', '' No Woman, No Cry'', ''Three Little Birds'', ''Exodus'', ''Could You Be Loved'', ''Jammin'', ''Redemption Song'', and ''One Love'' popularised the form of music outside the island. No wonder Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller announced ''One love, one heart. Welcome to Jamaica and feel all right,'' quoting Marley's lyrics in the opening ceremony of the World Cup 2007.


Once in Jamaica, the first stop of music aficionados is to take a trip up the Nine Mile to see the Bob Marley museum and pay their homage to the man who brought a global awareness to both reggae and the Rastafarian sect.

But there is more to Jamaica than Marley's music. Home to more than a third of the island's 2.7 billion people, and set against the backdrop of the stunning Blue Mountains, Kingston, the Capital city, offers plenty to the tourist. If you are the outdoors type, go trekking. If mountains and nature is not your scene, the clubbing scene in Kingston matches up to the best in the world. Montego Bay is a busy commercial city close to Jamaica's famous beaches; Ocho Rios offers the combination of shopping, unwinding and chilling out with its array of malls, restaurants and bars. And once you are ready to drop after you shop, put your feet up at Negril. Located on the west of the island, Negril is the place to go, if you want to watch the sun sink into the Caribbean Sea.

Jamaica: In Marley Country West of Ocho Rios in the town of Oracabessa, where 007 fans can stir up Hollywood nostalgia by visiting the James Bond Beach! Located near Ian Fleming's former home, Goldeneye, the beach has plenty of options for a day of activity: Wave Runners, helicopter tours and horseback rides.
South of Ocho Rios are the hills that make this region so beautiful. The Shaw Park Gardens and Coyaba River Garden and Museum, as well as the mind-blowing Enchanted Garden Resort are situated high in these green hills off Milford Road. Milford Road also travels through one of the island's most striking areas, Fern Gully, a tunnel of greenery.

But in World Cup season when cricket is on your mind, to soak in all the excitement, Sabina Park is where you may end up. This is the ground where legendary Caribbean cricketers such as George Headley, Michael Holding, Courtney Walsh and now Chris Gayle, have grown up. With a capacity of 22,000 people it has seen many an epic battle even before it hosted the World Cup opener between the hosts and Pakistan. It was the venue where Sir Garfield Sobers, who declared the Cup open, scored his legendary 365 not out against Pakistan.

Shaaditimes News Correspondent
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