I’m a joker
I’m a smoker
I’m a midnight toker
I sure don’t want to hurt no one…
(The Joker, Steve Miller Band, 1974)
Since the days of the hippies, travelling tokers have had just a handful of places to go, like Nepal, Morocco, or Thailand, to find exotic shit to smoke. But drugs were illegal everywhere then, and just a few grams of weed or hash put a western tourist in a foreign prison way too often. Remember, too, that we’ve long put people in jail for weed at home, and still do, in too many places. So most of us ‘midnight tokers’ have mostly stayed hidden in the shadows hurtin’ no one, like the song says, until recently.
In the last few years a lot has changed. 2 countries, Uruguay and Canada, have legalized cannabis nationally. Medical marijuana is now approved in more than 23 countries and 33 US states, plus D.C. Simple possession of pot is now a non-criminal offence in a growing number of jurisdictions, and many more simply ignore it. And why not?
Aside from the social benefits, the economic benefits of legal weed are obvious. Retail sales, tourism, pharmaceuticals, the list goes on. Seizing taxable revenue away from criminals by legalizing a harmless plant is smart policy, and more governments are likely to hop aboard the legalization train. It’s just a matter of time, and money.
Meanwhile, where does an adventure-seeking, toke-happy tourist go to inhale some legal reefer while exploring new ways to have fun? Here’s our answer. BestWebFinds’s first, totally current, and highly subjective list of the best 3 legal cannabis tourism destinations anywhere.
The reigning Queen of the best legal weed destinations of all time has to be The Bulldog, Amsterdam’s original and iconic cannabis coffee shop — the first of its name — opened December 17, 1975. The Bulldog was the best or only legal destination for weed tourists for a long time, and it’s now a thriving global business. Because of its legendary status and undisputed originality, The Bulldog doesn’t make this list – it’s in a zone of its own. We want to focus on the up and comers, the new kids on the block, so here they are…
Best Legal Cannabis Destination For Caribbean Sea
Vibrant and soulful Jamaica belongs at the top of the list of the best destinations for weed lovin’ travellers to take in, for many reasons. However, there is a small hitch tourists need to be aware of. Since 2015, possession of less than 2 ounces of weed is not a criminal offense in Jamaica — for the locals — but tourists must have an acceptable doctor’s note that states a medical condition and prescribes marijuana for it. Anxiety, chronic pain, whatever, they’re not fussy.
However, if you live in a U.S. state where medical marijuana is not approved, your doctor’s note won’t cut it. In that case, you can get a doc’s note while there (at Kaya Farms, for example) and purchase weed legally. Or, you could buy on the gray market — Jamaicans can legally grow up to five plants for personal consumption — and hope you won’t be caught. Here’s the kicker. If you are found guilty of possessing less than 2 ounces of weed you could be fined about $5 US. For real.
Now that’s some sensible and evolved Jamaican policy right there. Ain’t no place that’s perfect, we know, but the sun-drenched, fun-loving, musical-to-the-core Island nation of Jamaica oozes cool from it’s very pores, and the ganja is fine. Just bring a doctor’s note!
Best Legal Cannabis Destination For North America
Canada made cannabis legal for ‘recreational and medicinal purposes’ in June, 2018. There’s been huge demand for weed and some big glitches in the rollout, but overall, Canada’s national experiment commercializing all things cannabis is underway. They’re open for business. You can go there and easily score some legal weed right now. There are conditions, of course.
Honestly, it’s confusing. Each province has its own laws. In general, you must have ID and be 19 or older to buy bud. You can possess up to 30 grams of flower, or equivalent. Adults are allowed to make cannabis-infused food and drinks. Be careful where you smoke weed, local bylaws vary. Expect to pay between $7-$15 per gram.
Where and how to buy weed, and any of the many related products, depends on which province you visit. In several provinces you go to the liquor store. In other provinces a retail shop is the place to go. Most provinces also let you order online, similar to Ontario Cannabis Store.
Anyway, the rollout of the new weed economy has been bumpy and parts of the old black market are still running, with some new players filling in the gray areas. If you can’t find weed legally, you’ll be able to find it other ways as well. Canadians can grow up to four plants, except in Quebec and Manitoba, lol, so don’t go there if you’re out to snag a canuck weed-whisperer with the baddest bud ever…
Either way, Canada’s got your back if you want weed — or is working on it — and that’s cool news for all the cannabis culturists out there. Aside from legal weed there are lots of reasons to take a tokers tour of Canada, but we’d prefer to see your best 3 reasons to visit Canada in the comments below, so we can get back to the question we’re answering.
Best Legal Cannabis Destination For Europe
Viva Espagna! Live Spain. It’s like an order. Live it! But it also means long live Spain, and we can get behind that. First though, some housekeeping. We know weed is not legal in Spain. No problem. We trust Spain, and they want toker tourists to know how hip they are by issuing a clear policy about smoking weed responsibly in their country.
Spain discourages weed smoking in public, with possible fines starting at 600 Euros, but smoking weed in private is quite acceptable. The cannabis social clubs you’ll find in most tourist areas and by the way locales are private — like an English pub without the brawls — and a great place to meet locals and share some herb with them. You’re safe smoking weed in Spain, provided you observe the local standards and be dicreet in public. Finding weed won’t be difficult, it’s sold openly out of many bars, clubs, and shops.
There’s our list, and here’s your chance to weigh in on the best legal cannabis tourist destinations out there. Legalization is spreading and new zones of weed freedom are opening up. Use the comments section below to let us know if we’ve missed something!
*Always practice caution when you travel abroad. Be respectful of the local community standards. Always confirm for yourself what the laws are in the places you will travel to. Don’t take unnecessary risks. Responsible enjoyment of the privilege to smoke weed legally is a good enough reason to keep it real. Fostering a positive image of cannabis tourists is good for everybody. Be cool. /jl