In the 1970s, the town of Negril, Jamaica, was party central—the site of clothing-optional beaches and wild evenings that usually involved, at some point, large groups of people steeping in a hot tub. In those carefree days, out-of-towners would rent rooms in the homes of locals or crash on hammocks. But given the west coast community's pristine, 7-mile stretch of white sandy beach, it was only a matter of time before resorts started to crop up. Negril Treehouse Resort fronts a wide strip of that Caribbean shoreline. Its onsite tour desk helps guests to take full advantage of the setting via jet ski, waterski, and parasailing excursions.
Though it's an expansive resort, it rises no higher than the palm trees, in accordance with local building codes designed to preserve the view. At the center of the complex stands a two-story rondoval crowned by an open-air restaurant that serves island specialties with an emphasis on fresh seafood and tropical fruit. Breakfast is included with your stay, and ice-cream treats are served throughout the day as an easier way to keep cool than flirting with the ice machine.
Standard guest rooms are simply decorated and boast views of the landscaped gardens. All rooms are located a short stroll from the palm-shaded beach and its rows of sun loungers.
Negril, Jamaica: 7-Mile Beach with Coral Reefs and Lively Nightlife
Negril lies on Jamaica's westernmost tip and is known for being one of the island's most laid-back towns—a trait held over from its bohemian past. The slow pace predominating in this area is characterized by coconut palms, sea grapes, and pervasive reggae music. Casual swimwear is standard attire, even in most restaurants. A protected coral reef lies offshore, drawing divers and snorkelers keen to catch an up-close glimpse of purple sea fans, star coral, and other marine life. Several shallow dive sites provide a good place for novices to start.
Come nightfall, Negril still attracts partiers to cliff-side clubs for pumping tunes, rum, and Red Stripe beer into the wee hours. Younger crowds gravitate to the sprawling nightclubs and their celebrity DJs, but the area also has a handful of more relaxed bars, including some that feature live reggae bands and karaoke.