At 5:00 AM, the morning of Labor Day and consequently one hour after we had thrown our party-hardy newlywed selves into bed, Chuck, my bridesmaid, Whitney and I hauled our hungover and sleep-deprived butts to the Dayton Airport. Whitney was headed back to home sweet San Diego while Chuck and I would be boarding a plane that would eventually lead us to the Sandals Grande Riviera Resort in Ocho Rios, Jamaica.
|En route to Montego Bay. Pretty sure we looked even better than we felt.|
After flying all day, we finally got settled into our room around 4 PM. I spontanteously grabbed a bag of bagels leftover from our bridesmaids' brunch the morning before as we were leaving for the airport and I'm so glad I did! We had zero layover time between flights so all we ate all day was my crummy bagels. Needless to say, by the time we got to Jamaica, we were hungry and exhausted. Step one was venturing to the nearest grill to eat an unsatisfying dinner of french fries and Caesar salad, followed by step two: passing out at 7 PM.
We weren't really sure what our room would look like since I booked the cheapest one available- but we were pleasantly surprised to find we had a room in this adorable villa complete with a balcony overlooking our semi-private pool.
Our digs clearly got hubby's stamp of approval.
The next morning, we met in the lobby to get a tour of our side of the resort. (There were three sides within the resort: the Sea side, the Club side and the Mountain side. We were on the mountain side). After we got acquainted with the Mountain side, we decided to have breakfast with the other couple on the tour- who we wound up spending a lot of time with! They were such nice, laid-back people and it was fun to do a lot of the activities as a group.
After breakfast, Chuck, our new friends and I made the decision to hit up the beach. The water was perfect, the rum drinks were in constant supply and we even rode one of those big water trikes (they're harder to drive than they look!)
We also used our first day in Jamaica to eat some phenomenal food (well, we actually did this every day) and stop by the Adventure Tours desk to plan all our activities for the week. Our mindset going into our honeymoon was, we can sleep when we're dead so let's do as much as we can while we're here!
Day Two's activity was...Mystic Mountain. Mystic Mountain was incredible- we got to ride the Sky Explorer (a ski lift through the mountains and trees) up to a museum which exhibited everything you'd ever want to know about the famous Jamaican bobsled team (as depicted in Cool Runnings).
Once we had perused the museum, we got harnessed up to zipline through the jungle! I'd been ziplining before at summer camp, so I thought I was all that and a bag of potato chips. I even went down one of the lines upside down. Our guides saw right through my badass act though, and when we got to the 30 foot vertical drop they totally messed with me and had me screaming like a little girl.
Once we had made it through the ziplining course, we hopped in line for a bobsled ride through the forest. They asked if we wanted to go by ourselves or together.
Then they asked who of the who of us was braver, because whoever was sitting in front would control the speed and brake at the end of the track.
The next day of activities consisted of snorkeling, climbing a waterfall and sailing back to our resort on what can only be described as a booze cruise. Unfortunately, I could not find my waterproof camera on this day for the life of me and we have close to zero proof of the amazing day we had with our honeymoon friends.
These were taken right after we got back on the boat from snorkeling. Next stop was Dunn's River Falls!
As usual, we got dressed up that evening for dinner and ate some drool-inducing food. One night, sushi. The next Caribbean fare. Seriously, I would recommend a Sandals resort solely based on the plethora of food and pina coladas! Holy moly, it was delicious.
On Day Four, the two of us embarked on the Zion Bus Line for a long and careening ride to Nine Mile: home of the king of reggae, Bob Marley. We were so psyched to see his birthplace and learn more about his legacy, but we were not as prepared for the availability of certain items. Although we had a good time on the tour, it would be an understatement to say that the Bob Marley foundation was hella sketchy.
Our tour guide, Captain Crazy, certainly lived up to his name. But it was so awesome hearing him jam to some Marley tunes with some local musicians. I think Chuck would have jumped at the chance to play the djembe on the right.
On our way home we stopped to nom on some authentic Jamaican jerk chicken. Hubby's face says it all.
At this point my camera had completely died (and I was kicking myself for taking so many less-than-savory pictures at my Bachelorette Party and forgetting to pack my cord). But we ended our honeymoon escapades with a river tubing trip with our honeymoon friends and a very special date night.
The highlight of the trip was on the last night, I wore my wedding dress to our dinner date (heck yes, for being able to wear my dress again!) and hubby looked at me with tears in his eyes. That moment completely epitomized how freaking crazy in love we felt the entire trip and how blessed we felt to be spending our week in Jamaica...and the rest of our lives, with only each other.