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Taking the Kids: A place that has been muse, idyllic respite and more

Eileen Ogintz, Tribune Content Agency on

Certainly, this is a place to do exactly that, especially when you are seeking somewhere to treat yourself and your family after being stuck at home for so long.

There are attractions nearby like the famous Dunn’s River Falls that you can climb; river tubing, horseback riding in the ocean; snorkel and diving trips, roadside places for Jerk chicken and fish, you may find yourself too comfortable to leave.

“I love everything here,” said George Grillo, here with his wife Michele and some friends from Maryland — he and his wife for the third time. “The staff is awesome, the food is delicious. It’s a little pricey, but you get what you pay for.”

“We came for the first time and fell in love with it,” said Michele Grillo.

There are COVID-19 protocols, as there are everywhere these days; You must get a travel authorization from Jamaica and present that as well as a negative COVID-19 test within three days of your travel to board your flight, even if you are fully vaccinated. You also will need to present another negative test before boarding a flight back to the U.S. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, meanwhile, has lowered Jamaica to a level 3 designation, meaning there are fewer cases. Ministry of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett noted that the infection rate within the “resilient corridors” is under 1 percent; Resilient corridors, which cover more than 85 percent of the island’s tourism product, is regulated by extensive protocols for Jamaica’s tourism sector.

Those we met thought the hoops were well worth it for the experience.

Blackwell designed the resort the way he wanted to live. Our beach hut had louvered windows, a pointed ceiling, a private veranda and the Snorkeler’s Lagoon on one side, Button Beach on the other. There are hidden coves everywhere it seems with beach lounges.

After our snorkel one morning — right from the beach to the reef — we enjoyed lunch (coconut water in a coconut) with grilled shrimp, jerk chicken, plantains, and sweet potato fries. One night we ordered takeout from a local spot in town.

This is a place, however, where older kids make their own fun and most times you will be responsible for the younger ones. (Bring your teen niece or nephew to help!)


“It’s so great and casual,” said Ella Meredith-Jones, 17, here from New York with her mom and younger twin siblings, Casper and Mirabelle.

“And the paddleboarding and snorkeling were great,” said Casper Meredith-Jones.

Their mom, Angela Meredith-Jones, said they had first planned to come in 2020 and were glad they finally made it. She especially loves the local dishes – ackee and salted cod for breakfast, for example, or freshly caught fish or jerk chicken served up with coconut rice.

“For some kids it might be boring,” said Ella Meredith-Jones. “But for us it’s perfect.”


(For more Taking the Kids, visit and also follow TakingTheKids on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram where Eileen Ogintz welcomes your questions and comments. The Kid’s Guide to Philadelphia, the 13th in the kid’s guide series, was published in 2020, with The Kid’s Guide to Camping coming in 2021.)

©2021 Eileen Ogintz. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.




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