Tourists shower Trench Town with praises
Netherlands natives Yalda Bashtavi and Peter Boateng Bonsu said that when they first saw a bad review of Trench Town on TripAdvisor, they were a bit hesitant to visit. However, their views changed just minutes after entering the Kingston 12 community.
When THE STAR caught up with the couple, they were just finishing up box lunches and drinks that they purchased at a nearby cookshop and settling inside their room at the Talking Blues Hostel.
"We have been here for a week now, and the experience is really good. There is a shop right across the road, and we have met a lot of nice people. The thing is when you go on TripAdvisor, the first review you will see is one that will tell you not to come to Trench Town, but the others are all good ones," Bashtavi said.
Both missionaries, the husband and wife team decided to visit Trench Town where they recently taught at a school in the area while spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The duo showered praises on Trench Town, adding that they are quite impressed with the community's history.
The community is said to be the birthplace of rocksteady and reggae music, as well as the home of reggae and Bob Marley. The neighbourhood gets its name from its previous designation as Trench Pen, 400 acres (162 hectares) of land once used for livestock by Daniel Power Trench, an Irish immigrant of the 18th century. The Trench family abandoned the land in the late 19th century. It is also home to the communities of Wilton Gardens [Rema], Federal Gardens, Arnett Gardens [Jungle], Havana, Buckers, and others.
In the 1960s, Trench Town was known as the Hollywood of Jamaica. Today, Trench Town is the location of the Trench Town Culture Yard Museum, a national heritage site presenting the unique history and contribution of Trench Town to Jamaica.
"To be honest, Trench Town has been the most welcoming place we have been, and we have stayed in Montego Bay and Port Antonio before. It's not what we expected, so I will continue to promote how friendly this place is wherever I go. Despite all the negative stories, I have never felt unsafe here," Bonsu added.