We headed to Jamaica for the very first time a few weeks ago and it was pure magic. I can’t believe we didn’t travel there sooner! We were really craving a trip to the caribbean where we could just sit back, relax and enjoy the beautiful water and Jamaica was just that! It’s the third largest island in the Caribbean and the perfect mix of tropical paradise, lush mountains and rainforests.
Where to stay:
We stayed at Sandals Ochi Rios and had the most amazing time. If you have been around for awhile, you know that we are already big fans of Sandals resorts. We honeymooned at one of their resorts and celebrated an anniversary at another one- highly recommend. The best part about staying at a Sandals resort is that 1. it’s all-inclusive so once you arrive at the resort, you don’t have to worry about anything but relaxing and having a good time 2. you know you will be getting top notch service, food, drinks and a very luxurious stay. Ochi Rios is located in Ocho Rios and it’s actually the largest Sandals property! It has 16 restaurants and 11 bars… yes, you read that right and has the Caribbean’s only speak easy!
Ochi Beach features a variety of rooms types, both on the beach and tucked into the hillsides of Ocho Rios. We stayed in the Butler Village One Bedroom Poolside Villa Estate Suite which featured a spacious bedroom, living room, a semi-private pool and a butler! Having a pool right outside your bedroom door was incredible. We spent so much of our time out there, especially in the evenings after dinner. While we have stayed at other Sandals properties, this was our first time having a butler and let me tell you, it’s worth the money! They give you a phone for the entirety of your stay and your butler is always just a phone call away. They will book your dinner reservations, reserve pool/beach chairs, bring you lunch and drinks to the pool, you name it and they will make it happen!
What to do:
Relax at the Great House Pool
We normally would choose the beach over a pool but we found ourselves at this pool A LOT. Not only does it have a swim up bar, but it has a variety of restaurants nearby for lunch. It was so lively, fun and made for the perfect pool day. Ps. the frozen drinks are to die for- my fav is the Miami Vice and Logan’s is the Dirty Banana!
Ochi Beach Club
Head down to the beautiful beach to relax and swim! We loved this beach- the water is beautiful and crystal clear plus you have beautiful trees that meet the water and it’s such a vibe.
Book an Excursion with Island Routes
This might of been our favorite day of the trip! We did the Dunn’s River Falls excursion with Island Routes and I can’t recommend it enough! You will head out on the catamaran and stop for a swim and snorkel. After you snorkel, you head to the falls! Dunn’s River Falls is the most popular attraction in Jamaica and you can’t miss it! You start from the bottom of the falls on the beach and climb all the way up (with the help of a guide) and it’s incredible. We had so much fun swimming in the falls. After you are finished at the falls, you will head back to the boat to have lunch and drinks then head back to Sandals. The boat picks you up and drops you off right at Sandals. There are SO many excursions to choose from and you can book directly at the resort when you arrive.
Sandals offers every water sport you could ever imagine! Everything from paddle boards, kayaks, aquatrikes, wind surfing, snorkeling and more. You’ll definitely want to spend a day at the water sports beach. You won’t regret it.
Private Dinner on the Beach
Highly recommend booking a private dinner on the beach. It’s so romantic and the perfect way to end your vacation- we did it on the last night. The dinner comes with bottle of champagne, an appetizer, main course and dessert. This is one thing I wouldn’t skip.
Where to eat:
The food at Sandals always exceeds our expectations! With 16 restaurants to choose from you’ll never have to eat the same thing twice (although you might want to because it’s so good). The food is always really important to me because I am a vegetarian. There’s nothing worse than traveling somewhere and not having good vegetarian options. Sandals is great about allergies and dietary restrictions- it’s the first thing they ask when you sit down to eat. They are very accommodating and are willing to make almost any dish vegetarian! You can check out the restaurant list here and a list of our favs below.
Soy is the sushi restaurant on property and it’s our favorite! It is always SO fresh and the signature cocktail is delish. There are tons of vegetarian options- we loved the spring rolls, tempura veggies and veggie roll.
Kelly’s is the over water restaurant and another one of our favs! It offers mediterranean cuisine and fresh seafood with a side of waves crashing 😉 We loved this spot so much! We ate there twice! I got the seafood alfredo (no seafood) and it was DELISH!
Ya’ll know italian food is my absolute favorite so this restaurant is at the top of my list as well. The bread they give you is TO DIE FOR- we’re still talking about it haha! As for the main coures- I got the gnocchi and my husband got the chicken parm!
Neapolitan-style, made to order pizza just steps from the pool? Sign me up! We had this for lunch more times than I’m willing to admit. We loved the Ortolana and Margherita.
Sandals Ochi was a luxurious and relaxing all-inclusive stay in every way and we can’t recommend it enough if you are heading to Jamaica. We will definitely be back!