The lush, tropical island of Jamaica is one of the closest Caribbean island escapes, at just 90 minutes flying time from Miami. Colonized variously by African, Spanish, British, Indian and Chinese settlers, the island and its inhabitants proudly embody the national motto, “out of many, one people,” offering exotic African- and European-inspired cuisine and friendly people. In addition to boasting some of the fastest sprinters on earth, Jamaica is also home to reggae music and incredible natural beauty — the turquoise water and white sand beaches, including Negril’s famous Seven-Mile Beach, have the majestic Blue Mountain range as their scenic backdrop. The peaks run down the center of the island, providing a playground for outdoor adventurers in search of horseback riding trails and waterfall hikes. With temperatures that average between 80 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit, you can visit Jamaica’s six resort areas year-round — including laid-back Negril in the west, Montego Bay and Ocho Rios on the north coast and the sparsely-settled south coast of that feels a little more wild. Shoppers can find a healthy selection of top-notch jewelers (David Yurman, Chopard, and Cartier, to name a few), but the true spirit of Jamaica resides in the spirited local population and unique cuisine.