I will start my new parish project with the parish of Westmoreland since it’s the first place in Jamaica that I experienced, and ultimately is the place where I fell in love with the island.
My very first time in Jamaica – the trip I won – was to Negril. That was in 2003 and let me tell you….what I THOUGHT I knew back then and what I know now are worlds apart. Bear with me because the summary of what I’ve learned in each parish includes a 10-year learning curve so if you’re a pro you’ll already know some of this.
Things I’ve Learned In Westmoreland
- The parish is bordered by Hanover and St Elizabeth.
- I learned that Negril is in Westmoreland. I traveled to Negril my first three trips and soon learned that Negril is not a good cross-section of “real” Jamaica. I find it extremely touristy, overpriced, and overrun with hustlers. Not my idea of what I like in a vacation.
- I learned that Savanna-La-Mar is in Westmoreland and I was fortunate to stay in a community called Llandillo just outside of Sav on my second trip. Back then I thought Sav was a small town in Jamaica, but lately (2013) I learned that it’s really a BIG town with a ton of traffic and action, and it’s really easy to get turned around and get lost in the bustle.
- In 2008 I learned that there are real, live medicine men in Jamaica, by discovering one in the country near Darliston, Westmoreland. I wasn’t blogging yet in 2008 so I didn’t pay as close attention to the details of where I was or what was going on but it was a really neat experience.
- There is a place called Rat Trap in Westmoreland.
- Driving through the parish is gorgeous! But I guess that’s no different than driving through every other parish in Jamaica – they all have their spectacular parts. Going through Bluefields is one of the prettiest parts of Westmoreland for me. I’ve done it a few times now and could easily stop and enjoy each time.
UPDATES SINCE THE ORIGINAL POST
After this blog post went live I got a tweet from
@JamaicaNational informing me that Jamaica National (the bank) was established in Westmoreland as well. I did not know that!
One of my readers, Richard made a comment below about his grandmother who was a descendent of Seaford Town in Westmoreland, also known as “German Town“. It reminded me of a documentary that I was made aware of some months ago which explores the history of German heritage and history within Westmoreland Jamaica. I have corresponded a little bit with the producer of the film, David Ritter who is now trying to get distribution for the project. CLICK HERE to check out the website and film trailer.
I think that concludes what I have personally learned about Westmoreland. I haven’t explored it as extensively as I’ve explored other parts of the island and I probably forgot some things because ten years is a lot to remember. If I think of anything else along the way I will update this post. PLEASE feel free to add what YOU know about Westmoreland below in the comments section!