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Thread: Driving to Port Antonio: Kingston or Montego Bay

  1. #11
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    Re: Driving to Port Antonio: Kingston or Montego Bay

    It's been a couple of years but the Junction road was a LOT better than the coast through St. Thomas. Hard to choose if you can only do one, though, both were gorgeous in different ways.

    Here's a little video I took on the Junction road...

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MoD_DivqUvo

    The coast road just had a lot of potholes but was otherwise pretty easy. Far fewer trucks.

    A tip - now that google allows you to download offline maps, you can do that for Jamaica (download it before you go) and then use your phone in airplane mode for navigation. That's what I would do in Kingston.

    That said...you could fly into MoBay then take the north coast highway to Porty - it's very easy and nice and new almost all the way so a nice soft intro to driving. Then take the south coast route through Kingston to go to Negril when you're rested and have a whole day and have been driving for a few days already.

  2. #12
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    Re: Driving to Port Antonio: Kingston or Montego Bay

    Thanks all.

    We have pulled the trigger. We land in Kingston and depart MoBay. Toyota Yaris booked with Island. I looked at Knutsford as it worked so well our last visit. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend to anyone. In our case, up at 4am, land at Norman Manley @ 11:45am, make our way to the bus terminal, depart at 5pm via Ochi and arrive at 9:20pm in PA. Leaving PA we'd have to be ready to depart 6am. It is $300/us for the car for the trip.

    @Ohliz, thanks for the video and your blog, I was hoping you'd wade in. I didn't originally relate A3 to Junction Road. I have a Jamaican colleague who has also been offering her insight as I plan our trip, I think she's as excited as me. Awesome to have her perspective as well. She spoke of the Junction Road route and the hills/curves too. I knew it only as A3 thanks to Google.

    I'm inclined to go via the South Coast and avoid trying to navigate Kingston. We'll enjoy the views and see that side of the island and get to experience the North Coast route between Port Antonio and Ochi on our way back to Negril. They will be long days of travelling but those Red Stripes at the end of the day will be delicious and Mrs Buffalo/navigator/trip recorder can have all she likes ;^O. I'll get my share over the trip I'm sure . The other thing that came to mind was driving on the left I'd be on the inside the entire time

    Kinda back to drawing board on accomodation. Rio Vista, Moonsan and Goblin Hill on our list. How important is AC in PA? We found we needed for sleeping in Duncans Bay and Negril (beach).

    Has anyone stayed at All Nations Guesthouse?

    Any other places we should look into?

    Staying in PA March 24-27.

    Buffalo.
    Last edited by BuffaloSoldier; 02-02-2017 at 10:45 PM.

  3. #13
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    Re: Driving to Port Antonio: Kingston or Montego Bay

    Great to hear things worked out BuffaloSolider!!!

    Some will say A/C is not needed and it can be pretty cool in PA but I do find I need it to sleep almost any time of the year while in Jamaica.

    If you are needing A/C Winnifred Breeze has several units that can accommodate you, comes with breakfast. The room I stay in has Wifi, A/C, microwave and fridge. it's close to Winnifred Beach and Mrs. Scott (owner) is very accommodating. 876-388-1129 if you download Whatsapp you can talk to her via Wifi.

    There is also a two bedroom, living area, kitchen , wifi and fan (no A/C) unit that is in an actual neighborhood that I can provide details if you are interested.

    Rio Vista - I have driven by many times and considered but don't have any other details

    Moonsan is in a great location

    Goblin Hill is very nice, haven't stayed there but did tour the property and a few units.

    I have enjoyed stays at Bayview Hotel as well.

    I have not heard of All Nations Guesthouse.

  4. #14
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    Re: Driving to Port Antonio: Kingston or Montego Bay

    I'm inclined to go via the South Coast and avoid trying to navigate Kingston.
    That's easy then, just turn right once you get off the Palisadoes and keep the sea pon your right

    There's a stretch in St Thomas where you leave the coast (and go through cane fields, mostly) but it's pretty straightforward. I still recommend downloading google map before you go - GPS works fine even when your phone is in airplane mode if the map is downloaded.

    You'll pass Golden Shores in Lyssons within an hour, you might make a quick rest stop there. There's a beachside bar and bathrooms and all that. http://www.goldenshorehotel.com/ Of course there are all the normal roadside things too, this is no superhighway, much more like the old road to Negril.

    In my experience dogs (and roosters and whatnot) are features of any place to stay that isn't right on the beach or cliff.

    I've visited Moon Sand and Goblin, if they are in budget both are very nice. I've done Ivanhoe's too, great place to save a lot of $$ over, say, Goblin, but still have amazing sea views and an AC option (though I never use it in winter it's nice to have in summer IMO).

  5. #15
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    Re: Driving to Port Antonio: Kingston or Montego Bay

    BuffaloSoldier…I applaud you for not only driving on your third visit to Jamaica, but venturing to the eastern side of that amazing country. Bravo!!! I’m glad to know my ramblings and photos did their job in peaking your (and anyone’s) interest in the place I call my second home. As I’ve written many, many times, the pictures I post don’t do that area justice. Nice you and Mrs. BuffaloSoldier are flying into Kingston. I actually prefer that airport to Sangsters but I’m hooked on the AA direct flight into Montego Bay and enjoy the ride on Knutsford to Port Antonio.

    I see you are on the search for accommodations?? Since you have a car, may I suggest Pimento Lodge in Long Bay. This place is beautiful. The layout and units reminds me of a mini Catch A Falling Star. I would love to stay there, but the ambiance is very romantic, thus best enjoyed by couples. The AC units are spacious and immaculate. Each has a balcony. And if he were available, I would have proposed to the owner, Mr. Edwards. This man has class and will treat you like distinguished guests.

    If you want to spend some time in town, park at the marina. I would not try to park on the side streets. You can walk to anywhere in town from the marina. While you are there, visit the lovely Bikini Beach and maybe have lunch & drinks at the grille. You can leave your car at the marina if you want to brave the very busy downtown Port Antonio.

    I just know you two are going to have a blast!!!! Promise to take a zillion pictures to post for us, okay??

  6. #16
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    Re: Driving to Port Antonio: Kingston or Montego Bay

    *VI*, In DA HOUSE!!! It's about to get REAL!!!!
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  7. #17
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    Re: Driving to Port Antonio: Kingston or Montego Bay

    *vi*, My wife found this likkle place. We are both SOLD on this place. Looks a likkle distance between PA to where we will hopefully stay. Here is the place VRBO Listing #698044. Have'nt pushed the button yet, got to get the ducks in a row 1st.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  8. #18
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    Re: Driving to Port Antonio: Kingston or Montego Bay

    That’s a splendid looking set up, Vince. LOVE the patio and yard. It is right before you reach Manchoneal. Yeah, it’s a bit outside of town, but there are cookshops and stores in Long Bay along the beach. Just don’t try swimming in the Long Bay waters…dem ruff for true!!! But I have one question for you my friend…

    Are you really going to Portland?????????????????

  9. #19
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    Re: Driving to Port Antonio: Kingston or Montego Bay

    So nice to hear from you Vi - I'm humbled IMO the Port Antonio Tourism Authority owes you a huge pat on the back as do all of us readers of this board.

    I had for a reason that escapes me now - perhaps I read No AC in a review - taken Pimento Lodge off the list. It is certainly back on now and I will show to Mrs Buffalo this evening as we attempt to finalize a place.

    You folks are the best
    The Buffalo's (Todd & Dale)

  10. #20
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    Re: Driving to Port Antonio: Kingston or Montego Bay

    BuffaloSoldier...I will bring pictures of Pimento Lodge tomorrow. So yes, at least put it back on the list

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