Jamaica may be one of the most visited places in the Caribbean but are visitors really experiencing the real Jamaica? It’s one of the many stops on cruise routes and is a huge tourist destination along its coast like Montego Bay. It definitely gives you the island feel most vacationers long for but Jamaica has more culture than beaches! The carnival in Jamaica is one of those cultural experiences that visitors should participate in. Originated in Trinidad and Tobago, Carnival is the biggest street party on earth according to their tourism board. The event normally occurs the Monday and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday but has gained popularity in not only the Caribbean but all over the world. One of the places that have been successful in pulling off a comparable Carnival is Jamaica.
Here are four reasons you should attend Jamaica Carnival in 2020.
The Music. Carnival was founded on the sounds of Soca which remain true during Jamaica carnival with some dashes of reggae! If you’re looking for hip-hop and R&B this isn’t the place for you! But why would you want that? You’ve come to embrace the culture and engulf yourself in their heritage. If you haven’t seen a Jamaican wine, you haven’t seen real Caribbean dancing!
The Culture. Jamaica is rich with so much culture from the patois dialect to the beautiful scenery that fills the island. Being around authentic Jamaicans for a week had me changing up words. “Weh yeh deh“, “Wah gwan“, and “Everything Ire”. When you actually go inland, you can see the authenticity of the country and the people.
The Food. I’ve had Jamaica food in the United States but clearly, it’s nothing compared to having it where it originated. I’m not talking about the food served at the hotel, I’m talking about the food served in the actual restaurants and food stops in the city. From the curry chicken to the red bean soup, you will be craving their food weeks after you left.
The Experience. The actual Carnival where you see all the colorful outfits on the road is on Monday but there are parties before and after. There is jourvet which is a party that starts at the crack of dawn (literally) where you drink and party while paint is thrown on you. I recommend wearing clothes and sneakers you would be okay with throwing away when the “party done”. There’s a party on the beach at night which is massive! Then Carnival Monday is a party on the streets of Kingston where beautiful people play mask (where costumes). There are multiple groups who travel the streets and when you choose the group you will follow this is called playing band. The feeling of dancing and drinking on this road will make you forget that you are around strangers. It’s like being at a cookout with your aunts, uncles and cousins.
Jamaica Carnival will take place next year in April. For all your Jamaica Carnival needs, check out WeConceirge. From hiring a driver to getting your tickets for all the parties during Jamaica Carnival, WeConceirge is able to help!