Truly the Wickedest City in the World, IMG Cred; Kristi Keller

Port Royal


How many places in the world can you say you walked in the same footsteps as REAL pirates of the Caribbean?  I would love to tell you that you can indeed do this in Port Royal, Jamaica.  However, since two thirds of the city along with all its real life treasures actually lies under the sea in present day, you may not be so lucky.
Modern day Port Royal is a quiet, sleepy little town on an arm of land that seems as though it’s separate from the rest of Jamaica.  Once you’re there it’s hard to even believe the population is over 3000 as you look around and wonder where they all live.  Driving from Jamaica’s capital of Kingston to Port Royal feels as if you are right at sea level and that any wave beyond lazy would sweep over the road and carry you off.  Once you arrive in the town it’s not hard to find your way around; there’s one way in and one way out.
For less than $3.00usd you can time-travel back to the 1600’s, when Port Royal was the center of shipping throughout the Caribbean and the only other place that rivaled it in importance was Boston, Massachusetts.   A place that was once inhabited by historical villains such as the infamous “Blackbeard” is now a salty grave at the bottom of the Caribbean Sea.  It is estimated that 2000 people died immediately as a result of an earthquake and subsequently another 3000 perished from injuries, hurricanes and flooding that followed.
All that’s left in Port Royal are ruins and remnants of a battle site that conjures images of marauding pirates, looting, riches, destruction and devastation.  The walking tour through this historical playground is intriguing to say the least, and our tour guide filled our minds with plenty of factual information while sprinkling his own bits of folklore in for good measure.  You really get a feel for its true grit when you see the forts, canons, bunkers and the half-sunk “Giddy House” that are left intact.
If you’re an adventure/history junkie at all you can easily find online documentaries about what happened in Port Royal centuries ago, and what real treasures went down with it.  Fascinating is an absolute understatement.  And you thought Jamaica was just a sun and sand vacation destination.  Far from the truth, unless that’s all you want it to be.
truly the Wickedest City in the WorldKristi Keller is a two-time award winning Jamaica blogger and although I like to think I’ve conquered the island it would be safer to assume  Jamaica has conquered me. It’s turned me into a full-time addict and my allegiance has slowly shifted from “Canadian office worker” to “random Jamaica thrill seeker.” I have been traveling to the island since 2003, writing about rare finds and local Jamaican charm since 2009, and finally in 2011 I took the plunge and attempted living there.

FROM: Calgary, Alberta, Canada


Photo: Kristi keller

One Response

  1. Jamaica My Way

    Thanks for reading this article you guys! @Diana, I hope you do get to Jamaica and enjoy it to the fullest!! There’s so much to see there! And Jamaica Travels, they say Port Royal kind of was the capital as far as reputation goes. Then Spanish Town became capital for a period of time…then Kingston. I agree with you though…I wish more of this city remained. Although there have been talks about bring the place back as a tourist trap….I hope that never happens either LOL


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