I've traveled to many parts of the world and would rate my stay at zimbali as the best . Incredible! I can't wait to go back. Mark and Alicia and staff treat you as family. The activities...if you choose, are a genuine taste of Jamaica. The food is outstanding and they'll even show you how to prepare it. If you want a swim up bar at the pool, book at a Sandals generic resort hotel but if you want the real deal and the most relaxing vacation ever, Zimbali retreat is for you!!!!!
The best part of our four day stay was the food. Mark and Alicia, the owners, personalities ran hot & cold. There is not a lot of communication about the activities nor what to expect when you do an activity. In my opinion, they have some work to do if they want to remain in business.
My husband and I LOVED staying at Zimbali. The hosts were amazingly friendly and warm, the massage was fantastic and the chefs were both fantastic. I am 5 months pregnant and just got back from the trip where everyone treated us like family and was so excited for our new baby. I highly recommend this place but hope that people know that this is not a resort and is very much in the mountains. It is an experience that is unique but not for everyone i.e. you have to be ok with no AC or TV etc.
The farm tour with Clifford, fabulous meals by O.J. and Chris, Rasta tour with Fire, fresh juices and meals served by Cynthia, "Shorty", and everyone else - it was all amazing! The staff here really engage everyone staying at Zimbali, to the point where everyone is dancing together after dinner, smiles and laughter is in abundance, and you wake up in the morning with a slight ache in your side from laughing so much. We met and made new friends here from all over, and toasted our last meal together cheering "same time next year!" We came to Jamaica this time (not our first) with the intent to see more of "real Jamaica" - thanks all at Zimbali for completely exceeding our expectations and welcoming us into the family.
Beautiful property with an amazing staff. Food was outstanding. They provided us delicious vegan meals as we requested. The offered tours were equally impressive. I would and will highly recommend to everyone headed to Jamaica and will absolutely stay there again!!
We spent 3 nights at Zimbali. WOW!!!! The location is remote and absolutely beautiful. The property is setup very well. One has to remember this is a remote location in the mountains of Westmoreland parish, and the ability to build, run, and maintain this small, beautiful eco-resort amazes me. The owners and staff were always helpful and great people. The dining is out of this world. There is not one negative thing that I can say about Zimbali. We already plan to return and extend our stay to 5 or 7 days on our next visit. Respect to everyone at Zimbali.
Zimbali is an exotic outpost tucked away in the Canaan Mountains. It has a wonderful atmosphere , everyone was helpful and friendly. The food was delicious and the service exceptional. My sister and I had a fantastic week and can't wait to come back!
We spent five nights at Zimbali to celebrate our honeymoon, and it was a wonderful experience--exactly what we were looking for. The staff are very responsive to guest preferences and desires, and the facility is neat and clean despite also being a working farm. We also learned a lot about Jamaica, its delicious food, and its wonderful people in the process.
Zimbali retreat was quite the culinary experience and much different than most places you think of when you think about Jamaica! The staff was incredible and the food was out of this world. Truly a very special place and I will be returning sooner rather than later!
Booked a two night stay after reading dozens of fantastic reviews. Nice lodging accommodations but there was a power cut which meant a cold water shower, and dinner by candlelight. I had purposely come for the dinner tour and African drummers both of which didn't happen because despite it being my birthday I was the only guest. I hadn't been made previously aware that without other guests there wouldn't be any drummers. The food was bland and flavourless, I expected much better. One chef, Shayna I think - a female - cooked great! The food on the rasta tour was actually the most seasoned despite being cooked out in the open. Fire walks really quickly, said he'd help me on the way down because I was scared but he rushed off ahead of me and I actually couldn't see him behind the bend of trees. I barely saved myself from faling because the trail becomes slippery and is very steep. I paid a lot of money and don't have anything to show for it, I would rather have stayed in a hostel and had a much better experience. Wayne was professional, can't say the same for some of the other men, who were too friendly! I appreciate that the power cut was outside of their control, but they could have made a better effort to ensure the cooking tour still commenced since the stove was a gas burner, and I should have been informed prior to booking there was no guarantee of the African drummers. The fruits were nice, all organic.
My girlfriend and I found this on LinvingSocial and was very surprised by the price. Upon our arrival we did not know what to expect. As the days went on we were overwhelmed with the amount of service and the peace of mind that Zimbali staff place you in. You are truly relaxed. You really feel like you are IN Jamaica and not just on a island with all the American resorts. Truly a life altering experience to have been there. When visiting I will only go to Zambali, it's well worth every dime!
Loved our time at Zimbali. Fire and ishanti are wonderful and amazing men. Miss the fellowship, Chris and Ven's cooking creations, the nightly jungle concerts, but most importantly the way of life. Good luck Mama D. Much respect to Mark and Alecia and "management" :) hugs, Wayne. We are excited to return home in December.
this was the best time I have had in a long time, it was totally out of my comfort zone. it was basic, a commune with nature. It became spiritual retreat for me. The staff all of them were so accommodating and took such good care of me, I took this trip alone, however once I got there I was not alone, it was like my family was there and I had come home to visit. I want to take other people back so that they can experience what I did I loved Zimbali retreat and all the people I met. tow thumbs up. thank you for the experience. Stephanie S.
Without a doubt the best vacation ever! I no sooner got home and I began making plans for a return retreat! I can't remember a more relaxing vacation. I would take up residence at Zimbali if I could find a way.
Zimbali is a really special place. We loved every minute of our stay there and would absolutely go back or recommend it. If have an adventurous spirit and a desire to experience Jamaican culture, away from the tourist areas, Zimbali is for you.
Excellent experience in one of Jamaica's unique locations. Meals varied and prepared with guests in mind. Staff and service exceptional. Recommend this for anyone to get away from the hustle and bustle of large hotels. Meet people of like mind, environmentally friendly. Relax and enjoy.
I spent 3 nights here back in February. The location is very remote, so it's a good thing the food is so wonderful. All food is included with stay, and is very fresh and delicious. Fresh juices are always available as well. Many books are available, and you will appreciate that as, aside from some drinking, the dinner show and some socializing, you will likely be sending your time resting and reading. Better for couples than singles. The mountain cottage is the best for privacy.
We had a wonderful time! We were disappointed that the waterfall had been damaged and wasnt there anymore, but the hike with Fyah, the rasta man, was amazing! The food was fabulous and the fresh juices were exactly what we wanted. Loved it!
If you are looking for a place away from the crowds and the exact opposite of the touristy all-inclusive resorts then this is the place for you. The pictures can not begin to show the beauty of this retreat and the warmth of this family-owned blissful space. The food and staff are excellent. It was one of the best vacations of my life...I came back home rejuvenated and planning my next time to visit my new home away from home.
I have just spent a few days of relaxation at Zimbali, The owners and staff are extremely attentive and interesting to chill with. The area around the retreat is very interesting and great to explore with or without a guide,
Zimbali is ZIMAZING!!!! The owners are extremely lovely, considerate, and just all together exceptional! They have turned there business into a real gem! I cannot begin to express how awesome they all were to my sister and I and I look forward to staying in contact and visiting again one day!
Upon arrival we were warmly welcomed by Alicia and Mark and offered drinks. The good service continued throughout the entire stay. The food was specially catered to our needs and desires with thoughtfully prepared healtyhy meals and fruit smoothies. We stayed in the villa which has two bedrooms and a beautiful living room and a roof covered verandah overlooking the Canaan mountains (breathtaking) were the meals were served. A special shout out to Apbheelu our vegan chef for all the delicious meals. Besides filling our bellies, we were guided around the Zimbali farm. We took walks to a spring and visited organic farmers who cultivated all kinds of vegetables and fruits. The evenings were spent chilling and reasoning with Alicia, Mark and Erin (who also was a guest there). Didn't feel as if I was in a resort, felt more as I was visiting good friends. They even had some instruments for jamming (acoustic bass, electric piano, congas). I highly recomend Zimbali resort for an authentic experience of Jamaica from a warm and fun loving staff.