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Help with our excursion day

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Help with our excursion day

I'm looking for advice regarding excursions. My husband, myself and another couple will be staying at CSA January 15th through the 24th. We have booked the One Love bus crawl for Friday the 17th and tentatively for Wednesday the 22nd (in case we're antsy at the resort or have to change plans for the 17th).

At some point we would also like to do a day trip and are interested in : YS Falls; Pelican Bar; Black River Safari; Rick's Cafe; dinner during sunset at Ivan's. We want to do what we can in one day as we plan on just relaxing all other days.

After searching TA for several hours, I still haven't figured out how to best arrange this one-day outing. We will most likely be hiring Ken Gracey with Doctor Bird Tours (recommended by a friend of our travel companions). We would like to hire a small private boat (not a pontoon) for Black River and Pelican Bar.

I would very much appreciate ANY advice. When to go where. Money-saving ideas. Anything!

Thanks so much!

Virginia
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1. Re: Help with our excursion day

Honestly, I wouldn't cram as much into one day as possible. On your list, there are 3 things that are normally paired together: YS, Black Falls, and the Pelican Bar. That's a full day with just those 3 things. The other things on your list are local, and could easily be done if you get antsy.

If this is your first trip to Negril, be prepared for something called Sand Gravity. It's a very powerful force that makes you never want to leave your lounger. We like to see lots of things on vacations, but Negril is our "recharging" vacation. It's the only place where we are perfectly content to let the Sand Gravity take over.

We used to start out with lots of plans, but many of them didn't happen. On our next trip, we have one excursion planned (the Pelican Bar all by itself) and we'd like to do the One Love Bus Bar Crawl. That's it for us, and we'll be there for 10 days. We've learned not to plan more than that because it just won't happen. :)

United States
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2. Re: Help with our excursion day

"we would also like to do a day trip and are interested in : YS Falls; Pelican Bar; Black River Safari; Rick's Cafe; dinner during sunset at Ivan's"

Doing all of this in one day is not possible. If you want to do it all then plan on two days.

Rick's and dinner at Ivan's can be done any time as they are both in Negril and 15 min. or less from your hotel. If you are antsy at the resort you might want to do them on the 17th. I might even consider doing them on different nights just to get out of the resort for a bit of time at the end of the day. You say you want dinner at Ivan's at sunset but remember that you also primarily go to Rick's to see the sunset. Just go out to the road and find a taxi to take you to either place.

The other three places, YS Falls; Pelican Bar; Black River Safari, are what I consider the real problem. I would plan on doing any two of these three attractions in a single day. Even then it will be a full day and you will probably want to relax at the hotel rather than go out after you return. If you want to do all three then plan a second day for the third attraction.

roxbury, ma
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3. Re: Help with our excursion day

I agree that you don't want to do YS Falls and Black River/Pelican in one day-not enoght travel and enjoyment time!

Do YS falls early one day and come back for a sunset dinner or dinner on the cliffs any other night. The Black River/Pelican is a longer drive and a boat ride...enjoy the entire day and have the driver stop at some local spots for dinner!

roxbury, ma
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4. Re: Help with our excursion day

...my post was sent before I was finished....

The Blue Hole in Brighton is a really cool spot and can be done on the way to either excursion or another day!

PEACE!

Central Ohio
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for Negril, Port Antonio, Treasure Beach
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5. Re: Help with our excursion day

OK. You CAN do all that in one day but you may not have as nice an experience as if you split it.

YS Falls can be a rushed swim and go experience or you can hang out there all day and optionally do the zipline, tubing, or just swim or hang out...there's food and a bar and a rope swing and a river fed swimming pool. Depending on your style that can be an all day thing, I'd personally give it at least a couple of hours even if you don't zip or do anything else. But I like to swim, a lot.

Pelican and Black River are very close and can be done with the same boat. I always hire Dennis Abrahams: http://www.captain-dennis.com/ but there are several boats that can do both trips. In the past year the gov't has clamped down on unlicensed boats going up Black River so there aren't as many as there used to be. Dennis is one, there are several more out of Treasure Beach. You can contact Dennis and see. He would pick you up in Treasure Beach if you were staying there but since you're not you might prefer to meet at Cloggy's near Black River or Basil's in Parrottee. Your driver can take you there. In fact your driver may know a boat guy himself - I'd ask. If not he can certainly work with Dennis to meet you wherever. That boat will go up Black River - way past the low bridge by Sister Lou's crab (yum) to where you can swim in the freshwater croc-free part of the river, if you like. Then out the river to Pelican Bar. Or the reverse, as you choose.

There are several options for food. Pelican cooks fresh seafood to order - and your boat guy needs to call ahead for that. Sister Lou's stuffed crab is a great snack, she makes other food too. On the road from Negril to YS/BR/Pelican you will pass two areas where there are roadside stands with spicy fish, spicy "shrimp" (crayfish), hot soup and other stuff. Not expensive, tasty, but a little overwhelming as everyone wants you to buy from them. Your driver can help you negotiate that, often they have a favorite vendor.

Rick's at sunset and dinner at Ivan's is an easy pairing that you can do anytime - they are almost next door to each other and just a 15 minute taxi form CSA . If you want to do it after your day on the south coast at the falls and river and Pelican, you will need to leave early in the morning for those things to get back before sunset.

Have fun!

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6. Re: Help with our excursion day

Thanks so much for the advice, folks!

I think we'll just do YS Falls for our excursion day then head to Rick's OR Ivan's before sunset. Who knows...maybe that sand gravity will hit us and we'll just sit on the beach for 10 days! : )

Only 25 more sleeps !!!!

Ormond Beach...
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7. Re: Help with our excursion day

Good call Monee. It's about 1:45 drive to YS, so you can head there in the morning, spend a couple of hours, grab lunch/snacks, then be back in mid-late afternoon for some relaxing time on the beach. If you like spicy seafood, have your driver stop in Middle Quarters on the way in or out of YS to buy some bags of pepper shrimp roadside. Delicious SPICY little devils that you peel & eat. Be sure to have a red stripe or ting to wash them down.

When you're on the cliffs near Rick's, you might want to tour the lighthouse. Gorgeous setting for photos in the late morning. Then you can walk ~10 min back to the LTU Pub for a snack, perhaps stopping to chat or have a beer with Sexy Rexy on the way.

Edited: 22 December 2013, 15:40
8. Re: Help with our excursion day

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