Even though Rick’s Cafe is a popular spot, it’s one of those places you must visit when traveling to Negril.
You might have heard of Rick’s Cafe. But, should you make the trip to this famous Caribbean bar?
Well, if you’re staying at a hotel or resort in Negril…yes, it’s worth spending some time here! Even though it’s pretty touristy, it’s iconic for a good reason. I’ll let you know about a few great reasons to check out Rick’s Cafe.
HOW TO VISIT
While there are many boat tours that will take you to Rick’s Cafe, I recommend that you visit on your own. A taxi ride from your hotel or resort won’t amount to the same price as the tour. Even though there might be unlimited drinks on the boat cruises, you probably have something similar at your resort. And when you get to Rick’s Cafe, you’ll end up buying a drink there anyway. Most of the boat cruises take off before sunset, and that’s the best part of visiting Rick’s Cafe. You don’t want to miss out on that.
Through the Riu Palace Tropical Bay (our resort), a driver took us to a couple of places in Negril and it was all included in the fare. He dropped us off at the Times Square shopping mall, where we purchased some souvenirs and gifts for friends back at home. We arranged a time in advance when he would pick us up. Then, the driver took us to Rick’s Cafe. We were able to leave our shopping bags in the car while we visited Rick’s (we were his only clients during this time). Finally, we arranged a time in advance to be picked up and taken back to the resort.
If you’re staying in Negril, I’ve read that you can call Rick’s Cafe directly and they will pick you up. A return shuttle service is $8 per person.
CLIFF JUMPING AT RICK’S CAFE
This vacation was a girl’s getaway, though Rick’s Cafe is great for all kinds of travelers. Whether you’re traveling as a couple, with friends, or as a family, the dynamic is great for all kinds of groups. I visited Rick’s Cafe with my best friend, Shannon and her mom – my traveling companions in Jamaica. It’s free admission to enter, although it’s probably a good idea to buy a beer while you’re there. With that said, we didn’t feel any sales pressure to buy anything from the bar staff. (The only pressure we did feel was from some of the locals who wanted to jump from the cliffs for us, for a tip.)
One of the main attractions at Rick’s Cafe is the cliff jumping. While some of the locals will jump from time to time, tourists are encouraged to jump from the cliffs, too.
Did I try it? Oh, hell no! Sorry to disappoint!
I tried some cliff jumping in Bermuda. It was ridiculously thrilling and lots of fun. But, when we visited Rick’s Cafe, the weather wasn’t cooperating. It was raining from time to time, and the water was a little choppy. When the clouds moved in, the weather wasn’t as hot anymore. I didn’t end up wearing my bathing suit that day as I didn’t intend to jump from the start. While my two travel companions wouldn’t have minded if I did jump, it wasn’t something they wanted to do. When I arrived and saw how high the tower was, I’m not sure that I could have worked up the courage to jump. It’s very high. We had a much more enjoyable time watching others make the leap.
There are three heights to jump from: 10 feet, 25 feet, and 35 feet. Most people jumped from 25 feet, but we witnessed a few daredevils jump from the highest spot. I’m sure it was scary even for the greatest adventurers, as I actually felt nervous for them. I don’t think I could offer any advice for someone wanting to do this. Don’t look down? Take a deep breath and jump? Don’t hesitate – just go for it?
We found a great place to sit and watch the cliff jumpers, down a flight of stairs on the rocks. From there, we watched some small boats approach the shore filled with thrill-seekers. Even when there weren’t any cliff jumpers to entertain us, I didn’t mind admiring the scenery. A few trees grew from the tops of the cliffs lining the shore. The water was turquoise in the cove and deep blue stretching out to the horizon. I even spotted the profile of a face naturally carved from the rocks (see if you can spot it!).
A DRINK WITH A VIEW
After all, Rick’s Cafe is a bar! It’s always a good idea to order a cold drink, especially on a hot day. There are tons of seats right along the ocean offering some of the best views in Negril. Sit beneath a beach cabana, under an umbrella, or near the bar. Either way, you’re going to be treated to some stunning scenery. I recommend ordering a Red Stripe, one of the local beers in Jamaica. While the weather ranged from sunny to cloudy to rainy for us, it wasn’t all doom and gloom. It really wasn’t busy there at all, so we had our choice of seats.
THE BEST SUNSET IN JAMAICA?
Is it the best sunset in Jamaica? It’s quite possible. Rick’s Cafe is positioned perfectly for the most awesome sunset views, completely unobstructed. Our only hope was that the clouds would dissipate for the show.
We were in luck. The rain disappeared and the clouds moved aside, if even for a few moments. The fiercely glowing sun dazzled with a brilliant light show before fading into the horizon. The sky was stained with vibrant reds and oranges. A small crowd gathered to watch the sunset. Everyone was silent as we watched one of nature’s greatest spectacles.
If anything, go to Rick’s Cafe for the sunset, and nothing more.
Tip: Don’t eat at Rick’s Cafe. You’re going to want some authentic, Ital cuisine! There’s an incredible food hut down the road, about a 3 minute walk from Rick’s Cafe. It’s called Ras Rody’s Roadside Organic, and you must eat there. It’s one of the best meals I’ve ever had on my travels. Read my full review.
Even though it’s a much-hyped destination, I recommend checking out Ricks Cafe Negril Jamaica. If you have a spare day in your schedule between lounging at the beach and…lounging at the beach…I suggest leaving the barriers of your resort. See a little bit of Jamaica if you can, even if it’s just for that amazing sunset.
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