Montego Bay – the complete resort
Montego Bay, or MoBay as it is known in Jamaica, is the capital of the parish of Saint James and is one of the prime tourist destinations, chosen for its fine shops, beautiful beaches and exciting nightlife. When Columbus sailed into the area in May 1494 he became the first European visitor to the island.
There is a Fort Montego on a bluff, but today, however, the bays that this fort once looked over have been filled in to expand Montego Bay and for a highway. Montego Bay originated as port for the export of sugar. You can still visit some sugar plantations and sip the famous side product, rum in delicious punches or straight up on the rocks.
Cruise ship passengers can visit Harbour Street to do their shopping or they might just want to lie on the white sand beaches at Doctor’s Cave Beach or visit the ‘Hip Strip’ Gloucester Avenue, near Doctor’s Cave Beach, for souvenir stores and art galleries. Or you may want to get away from the touristy areas and try a trip to a working plantation at Croyden in the Mountains, where coffee and pineapples are grown and a barbecue lunch is served.
If you want to be taken down river on a raft, you will find this special activity on the Martha Brae River; the tour includes a visit to a medicinal herb garden.
Places to visit include Rose Hall, once a sugar plantation, is about twenty minutes outside of Montego Bay, where you will hear about the legendary Annie Palmer, some say the night time tour is spine chilling. On the other hand, the visitor might prefer to visit the home of the famous English poet Elizabeth Barrett-Browning, at Greenwood Great House, to enjoy the antique furniture that fills the rooms and view the spectacular panoramas.
In the hills, not far from Montego Bay, is the town of Anchovy and the Rocklands Bird Sanctuary, where visitors can hand feed one of Jamaica’s national symbols, the Doctor Bird.
Montego Bay is also known for its nightlife, some of the places to go include Margaritaville and Pier One, where you can also eat some good seafood.
Or, if you prefer you can go scuba diving. The reefs are 500 ft or around 152 m from the shore and you can see many spectacular fish; although you are warned that Montego Bay is not a prime location to go scuba diving since visibility is sometimes clouded with sand.