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“Me Wan Go Back!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Baboo's Garden

Baboo's Garden
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Baboo's Garden
Accompong, Lacovia, Jamaica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 Lacovia B&B and Inns
Ottawa, Canada
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Me Wan Go Back!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2012

It's been a couple years since I last stayed at Baboo's Garden, but after doing some nostalgic googling, I came across this page and felt the need to leave my review. First a word of warning – My ideal style of travel is backpacking. I don’t like being pampered in luxury resorts, being sheltered from experiencing what a country has to offer. I like to take as little as possible with me and go exploring. That being said, here’s my review -
I love Baboo’s garden! I’ll take tree-hut tents and long conversations over coffee and Red Stripe with Tony and Dowdy over getting elbowed by obnoxious tourists on their way to the buffet at an all-inclusive any day! Not only do you get away from the hustle and bustle of the regular tourist-traps, you get to actually talk to genuine locals and explore the real Jamaica. Having been once before, I took 3 friends who were new to the island to Baboo’s on our first night in Jamaica. At the end of the trip they all agreed we should have saved it for our last stop because it was definitely one of the best! The bbq pork he made for us was delicious, the red stripe was cold, and the conversation was entertaining enough to keep our jetlagged selves up way past a reasonable bedtime. When talking to him you can tell that Tony, the ex-pat American who owns Baboo’s, really cares about not only his guesthouse, but the people of his town. He’s not there to exploit the people or resources for his own gain…he’s there because he was sick of the rat race and wanted to escape to paradise. Which is exactly where this place is – there are no words to describe watching the sunset or sunrise from the hills here. Dowdy, the caretaker, also understands the importance of hospitality and will make you feel at home in a matter of minutes.
An earlier review wasn’t too positive for various reasons and I can understand some of them. But there’s a reason this place isn’t walled off with barbwire fences like the resorts in Mo Bay – it doesn’t need to be. Thieves go where the marks are and the marks are all in the tourist traps. I never for a second felt unsafe leaving my personal belongings with Tony or Dowdy. I loved the “au naturel” shower – the heating worked just fine when I used it and watching the miles of valley below while you scrub behind your ears is nothing short of an invigorating start to the day.
It’s an ideal place to stop for a couple days if you’re heading south to treasure beach (also highly recommended) or north back towards the airport. In my opinion, even if it is a little bit more on the “roughing it” side, this is way more relaxing than jostling with some 300 lb mouth breather from Detroit trying to find a chair by a pool at a mega-resort. I don’t know if Tony still offers rides to/from the airport, but it’s worth enquiring. If you’re adventurous enough to go off the beaten path and away from the resorts (which, if you’re reading this, implies that you are), then this place is a must-stay. Take the chance, you won’t regret it.

Room Tip: One tent has the best view by far - make sure to call dibs over your friends when you get there!
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  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    2.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room Tips
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Toronto, Canada
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2011

Baboo's Garden was a pleasant surprise during a 1 month tour around Jamaica. It is basic although a bit unusual (but works) accommodation of tents in huts. Incredible views of the surrounding mountains, especially while sipping coffee and chatting with the owner Tony during relaxing sunny mornings. Doadi is a great cook serving up typical local dishes such as the best cornmeal porridge anywhere, stewed chicken, etc. The place to stay if visiting the maroon village of Accompong Town about a kilometre away. The Appleton sugarcane/rum estate is in the surrounding lowlands 30 minute drive through the winding mountain road passing by numerous little communities.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gloucestershire
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2011

Although we could see what the owner was trying to do with this accommodation, it's vital that you know what to expect if you stay there. It's much more akin to camping than to staying in a guest-house.

You sleep in a tent within a bamboo hut. The tent is big enough to contain a bed on the floor, and that's it. No room to put luggage, no furniture of any other kind and certainly no electricity or other services. You zip yourself into your tent and that's it - so no security either.

Central amongst the scattered 'bungalows', that is tents within bamboo huts, is a large bamboo shelter, open to the sides, where you can sit and eat, drink and talk in the evenings. (No electricity here by the way either - we were provided with head-torches so we could read our books. ) Part of this is partitioned off as a very rudimentary 'kitchen'. The standard of hygiene (and, honestly, we are not fussy types) is scary - our host cut fruit for us with a knife that had been used for raw chicken after a quick wipe with a dish cloth that was laying around, clearly rarely washed. Dead flies cover most of the dishes that are draining on a dusty board. I've travelled to many countries in four continents, drunk the water, taken ice in my drinks, eaten the street food - that is, broken all the rules - and after eating here for the the first time I had a stomach upset. It spoiled the last week of the holiday and didn't get better until after I was back home. I was probably lucky it wasn't a lot worse.

We were promised 'hot showers' - there was one shower in a concrete shed with no roof, open to the elements. Though there was a bottled gas supply, there was some problem with hooking it up so it was cold. There was one usable toilet too, a good walk (with your head-torch if you've remembered to take it to bed with you) from your tent - quite scary at night in this totally unfenced, unsecured, lonely hill top camp with just a couple of howling dogs roaming around, who may remember you're a 'friend' or may not.

Having said all that, we were looked after by a delightful young chap (Dodi) who couldn't have been better company. We were the only guests and it was worth getting covered in fierce, angry mosquito bites to spend the evening with him under the bamboo canopy talking about what means most to him in life. (He would probably be a fine cook if only he was allowed to go on a hygiene course.) He had some great stories to tell and I could imagine a group of young travellers, who didn't mind the basic conditions, would have a fantastic time here.

There is nothing but nature all around - it is fine and we're glad we stayed here (despite catching god-knows-what tummy bug) but we could only stick it for two nights and then moved on. If you read this and go, you'll know what to expect - and make sure you have a plan for insisting on food hygiene or cook your own.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Baboo's Garden

Address: Accompong, Lacovia, Jamaica
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Elizabeth Parish > Lacovia
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Lacovia

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