One of the most isolated places in Jamaica, this hostel is located more than halfway up Blue Mountain. The main draw is the opportunity to see the mountains from a hill climber's point of view. Whitfield Hall is a coffee plantation dating from 1776, the last inhabited house from that colonial period. It provides basic accommodation for 30 guests in rooms containing two or more beds. Blankets and linens are provided, but personal items such as towels and soap are not. There is no official restaurant, but for a small fee all three meals can be provided. All water comes from a spring, and lighting is by kerosene pressure lamps called tilleys. A wood fire warms the hostel and its guests -- it gets cold in the mountains at night. Most guests request a pickup in Kingston by the hostel's Land Rover, which costs US$40 (£20) each way for up to six passengers; you can also drive yourself via Old Hope Road to the Kingston suburb of Papine, then to Gordon Town, turning right over the bridge near the police station and continuing into the hills another 16km (10 miles) to Mavis Bank.
- © Frommer's 2013
- Recommended 2010