Honeymoon review: Sandals Jamaica

Editor-at-large Peta Hunt goes on an adventure in sunny Jamaica

This glorious trip to beautiful Jamaica is divided between two luxury resorts. First stop is the amazing Sandals South Coast – and checking in here is like arriving at a whole new world. The huge, 500-acre resort has three mini villages, nine restaurants and is home
to the island’s largest pool. Each of the rooms has a beachfront view, so you’re in for a treat.

If you want something particularly special, opt for a gorgeous over-water bungalow. The villas form a heart shape as they go out into the ocean, and they certainly have romance written all over them, with hammocks, an exclusive in-room dining menu and full butler service.

10 REASONS TO HONEYMOON IN THE CARIBBEAN

Caribbean blue

The resort is a hub of activity and has a real buzz about it. Try a spot of tennis first thing in the morning, or feel the burn in the state-of-the-art fitness centre. I see all sorts of watersports from the comfort of my sunlounger, but just observing the action is enough for me.

If relaxation is more your thing, check out the stunning Red Lane spa – with its plunge pools and quiet gardens, it’s ideal for a tranquil afternoon. And if you’d like a holiday tipple, premium alcohol is unlimited, even in the privacy of your accommodation.

My afternoon is worlds away from the serenity of the spa, as I head out
on a three-hour cruise with rum, food and a live DJ! The boat stops at various idyllic spots ready for everyone to jump off into the crystal clear Caribbean Sea. Or, like me, you can choose to stay on-board and soak up the sun.

A bath with a view at Sandals Montego Bay
A bath with a view at Sandals Montego Bay

Wedding bliss

The next stop on my Jamaican trip is the idyllic Sandals Montego Bay, complete with a powdery- soft private beach. What I liked the most about this resort is that it feels like a home-from-home, albeit a rather luxurious one. The highlight of my amazing room has to be the gorgeous bath, perfectly positioned outside on the balcony. Who wouldn’t want to enjoy a soak in the tub under the stars? 

The resort has endless locations just perfect for picturesque weddings. I love the jetty where you can say your vows with the sight and sound of lapping waves, but there’s also an on-site chapel. Both resorts have wedding teams to take care of every detail of your day, from ensuring your beautiful flowers match the colour scheme perfectly, to organising post-wedding activities for your guests. They are like fairy godmothers! 

Their ‘Aisle to Isle’ experience starts with you planning your wedding here in the UK, talking to the team on the ground in the Caribbean about your vision for the day. Then, once you arrive on the island, you can relax knowing that they have everything covered. Plus, if you stay three nights or longer, your wedding cost is free!

Imagine saying your vows right here!
Imagine saying your vows right here!

INCREDIBLE HONEYMOON DESTINATIONS WITH DIRECT FLIGHTS

After admiring the scenery and snapping for Instagram, I’ve worked up quite an appetite. Dining at Tokyo Jo’s, a pan-Asian restaurant, is a unique experience where chefs whip up fresh dishes right before your eyes. With nine restaurant options at the resort, I’m hard pushed to try them all during my stay, but my favourite dinner has to be the traditional Jamaican meal at Oleander – get dressed up and have a night to remember here when you visit! The ice-cream café was also the perfect place for a mid-afternoon snack – so don’t leave without checking it out.

During our stay, we also managed to pop to the nearby Sandals Royal Caribbean. The resort has an intriguingly British charm about it – it’s a Georgian-style house, surrounded by gardens and peacocks. You can even go old school and have afternoon tea followed by a game of croquet if you wish! Or, catch the boat over to their private island, which is home to a beautiful a Thai restaurant, and a whole host of honeymoon-worthy bungalows. These gorgeous over-the-water villas make the most of the Caribbean Sea with floating water hammocks and mesmerising glass floors! The private island experience doesn’t stop there though, it also comes with butler service too. So, if you want a candlelit on the beach, or cocktails in the gardens, your dedicated butler will take care of everything.

Beachside bliss!
Beachside bliss!

FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENED WHEN WE STAYED IN SUNNY ST LUCIA

Thrill rides 

You can’t go all the way to Jamaica without experiencing a bit of life outside a resort. 
I opt for a tour operated by Island Routes (islandroutes.co.uk) that is quite unusual, heading out to see the sights in a convoy of Minis! I drive a nippy convertible and follow 
our amazing tour guide, who discusses points of interest and dispenses historical facts via walkie-talkie. We make a pit stop at a roadside shack to refuel with fresh coconut water and honey bananas. Then we travel on to Rick’s Café, a famous hangout, to try local drinks 
and – for the brave – partake in cliff-jumping.

Whether you’re seeking a relaxed resort for a stress-free wedding day, or looking for fun in the sun and adventure, you can do both in Jamaica. 

Book Seven nights at Sandals South Coast in an Italian Honeymoon Beachfront Room starts from £1,765 per person. Seven nights at Sandals Montego Bay in a Beachfront One Bedroom Butler Villa Suite starts from £2,019 per person. Both resort prices include Sandals Luxury Included® accommodation, return economy flights from London Gatwick, and resort transfers. Prices for both resorts are based on two adults sharing, are subject to availability, and valid for travel between 9 April 2018 to 1 July 2018. For more information and for booking, call the Sandals call centre on 0800 597 0002, or visit sandals.co.uk

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