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“Awesome experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Nine Miles

Nine Miles
Jamaica
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Jamaica's Spirit of Reggae - the Bob Marley...
Ranked #51 of 198 Attractions in Jamaica
Type: Historic Sites, Landmarks/ Points of Interest, Cultural
Activities: City walk sightseeing, Driving, Group tours/walking tour
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Attraction details
Owner description: Birthplace and mausoleum of reggae legend Bob Marley.
Pittsburgh
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
“Awesome experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2013

I made my second trip to Nine Miles a week ago today (first trip was back in 2006). If you are a fan of Bob Marley and/or reggae music, and are in Jamaica, this trip is a must.

Nine Miles is a small town several miles south of Browns Town. It takes about an hour and ten minutes to get there from Runaway Bay and Discovery Bay, slightly more than that from Ocho Rios (it's not that far with respect to distance but there are no "main" roads to get there). If you have a problem with car sickness or think that you will get freaked out by having someone drive you over narrow, curvy roads that go up and down the mountains, I would not advise taking this trip (the roads getting there can be dangerous, but our driver was great). Also, if you have an aversion to people smoking (I don't mean cigarettes), do not take this trip.

If you can get past those issues, do it. Upon arrival, a large gate will be opened (the Marley family maintains a compound there that contains Bob's mausoleum, a very small museum, gift shop, and very small bar). You'll also note a small window on one of the walls next to the parking lot (about 2' by 4') where locals will sell you "stuff" (including baked goods, but not the kind that kids can eat if you know what I mean - - photos of the window are forbidden). If you haven't pre-arranged it through a tour company, you'll have to pay a small fee for the tour at the gift shop (not sure how much as mine was included with the trip). Smoking (again, not cigarettes) is permitted througout the property.

You'll be assigned a Rasta tour guide who will talk to you about the history of Nine Miles, Bob Marley, and Jamaica generally. You'll be walked up a hill to Bob's final resting place (in a small mausoleum, encased in marble and above ground), see his original house (actually a small hut with a bedroom and kitchen), and will also have a chance to see and sit on his meditation rock (a large stone embdedded in the ground next to his mausoleum). His bed from when he was a young adult is also there.

True story about the bed: when I first visited with my wife in 2006, our guide said to my wife, "You can sit on Bob's bed, but be careful, as Bob had lots of kids!" (the locals claim that sitting on it will cause a woman to become pregnant). My wife laughed and sat on the bed. Shortly after our return to the USA, we found out that my wife was pregnant!

The feeling of the place is very peaceful and serene - - hard to describe unless you're there. The views are beautiful, and you'll get to see and experience the beauty of Jamaica and its people that most tourists who never leave the resorts ever see. The compound is kept very secure, so you don't have to worry about anyone bugging you for money, trying to sell you anything (besides the window - - see above), or otherwise interfering with your enjoyment of the place.


You will be expected to tip your guide, but in my opinion the experience is worth it (our guide was great - - took the time to answer questions and was filled with knowledge about Bob, reggae, Jamaican history, etc.).

Visited June 2013
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Cornwall
Senior Contributor
45 reviews 45 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
62 helpful votes 62 helpful votes
“Bitterly Disappointing”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 20, 2013

Booked a trip to Nine Mile through our Thomson rep at our hotel, my husband and i were both really looking forward to visiting where Bob Marley was born, where he lived and to learn a little about his life and history.

We travelled by coach and it took us four hours to reach Nine Mile from Negril. The roads are rough but seeing the different parishes and how people lived was quite interesting.

When we arrived at Nine Mile, we were told we would be shown around the place by a guide, he would inform us of Bob Marley's history and family and the tour would take approximately an hour.

There are many people that go on this trip just to be able to smoke weed and take a photo with a spliff hanging out their mouth to post on their facebook or twitter page. I don't have a problem with people taking drugs, but the individuals that visit this place just for that reason, i think completely tarnish the trip for others.

The 'Guide' met us in the bar, and took us through to a courtyard where he burst into song with an invisable microphone in his hand, he then held his hand out waiting for tips.

We were taken to where Bob Marley and his mum rest, and although it felt sacred, it also felt very tacky and manufactured.

There is a lot of history to this place and if we had known before we booked the tour that we wouldn't know anymore than when we entered, we wouldn't have booked it.

If your looking for an informative and in depth tour, this isn't the thing for you.

Visited June 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Uplifting, humbling experience.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2013

I have been a fan of Bob Marley since I was a child so a trip to his birthplace and final resting was a beautiful experience.

The drive up to nine miles from Montego Bay takes about two hours, it takes about an hour along the highway, then a turn up into the hills takes an additional hour. The scenery up to Nine Miles is completely breath taking, Our driver was very careful and seemed to navigate the narrow winding roads like a pro which put me at ease immediately.

On arriving we drive up to some large gates which are opened and closed as soon as we arrive into the compound. A small hatch opened up in the wall where a guy sells bags of ganja and joints, be sure to have an open mind and maybe take a puff for a true reggae legend. The area Bob lived has been changed to make it easier for tourists to navigate the steep walk to Mount Zion where he now rests.

The trip starts with a refreshment at the bar and then a meet with the guide, our guide was funny, informative and very passionate about the history of the place, we saw where Bob's grandparents rest, his mother Cedella and The home where he lived as a child and later with Rita and the bed which inspired the song 'is this love'.
The area is extremely touristy and having read a lot about Bob in life I'm not sure he would have agreed with all of this, however his music and words have inspired and touched people worldwide no matter what colour or nationality so it seems fitting that people from all walks of life want to pay tribute to a remarkable man. I can see why he came back as a grown man to write his music and look out at the awe inspiring views, there truly is a natural mystic at this site.

I lay my head on his stone which millions have done before me, but most importantly it was where Bob liked to meditate and relax 'Cold ground was my bed last night and rock was my pillow too'.

I was the first to enter his mausoleum with my guide and it took the breath out of me, my guide seen my reaction and just nodded his head in recognition of such a spiritual place, he took my hand and placed it on the head of the tomb which is where his head lays. I don't know if it was the experience of being there or the joint I had smoked in his memory, but my husband and I agreed that an energy lay within and I am sure many people will agree, we walked around the large tomb where he is encased 6 feet above the ground, I had tears in my eyes in memory of a man with such simple beginnings who managed to change people through the power of his music. I left feeling extremely humbled and honoured to have been able to visit the 'graceland' of true reggae music, and I feel his songs and words mean even more to me now than ever before.

'One bright morning, when my work is over, ima flyy away home'

And that is what he did, on Mount Zion, where a legend was born and now rests.

Jah!!! Rastafarii

Visited June 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kitchener, Canada
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
“Bob Marley is the one and only true Jamaican Legend!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2013

Bob Marley died more than 30 years ago and his legacy is stronger than ever. Think about what Nine Mile represents, The birthplace and resting place off a worldwide historic person. Say his name and everyone knows he is a Jamaican-Reggae-Superstar.
Possitives: A very informative historical tour, our guide was funny and high as a kite, mon., drive up was very beautitiful, reggae band was a treat, learned a lot about the Rastafarian religion.
Negatives: Very scary arriving at gate to property, the locals were staring us down and looking in vehicle for something. They proceeded to push thru gate trying to sell us ganja, our driver pointed at them and said no as security tried to close gate. Pot is smoked here with no restriction other than a posted sign. Children were trying to sell under fence to tourists inside and several kids were hanging from a tree asking for money! Not recommended for small children, teens not so bad. The price was not bad $20 plus tip to guide. You can find Marley merchandise elsewhere for cheaper, skip the gift shop.

Visited May 2013
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Spartanburg, South Carolina
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“It was ok...”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2013 via mobile

I went to this bob marley tour thinking that it was going to be a big, indepth thing. However, I was mistaken. There is A LOT of marijuana smoking when you first get there. Then, you proceed to TWO giftshops, before you can go through to see some Rastas playing music, the you see the graves of bob and his mother, and that's about it.

Visited June 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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