Jamaica Travel Guide: The Best Beaches, Sights & Tips

Jamaica Travel Guide

Jamaica is a Caribbean island with a rich landscape of mountains, jungles, and reef-lined beaches. Many of its all-inclusive resorts are concentrated in Montego Bay, famed for its British-colonial architecture, and Negril, known for its diving and snorkelling spots. Jamaica is the cradle of reggae music, and the Bob Marley Museum in Kingston is devoted to the late artist.

Today in this article, we will cover all the aspects of a travel guide to Jamaica. 

Why Go to Jamaica

There are too many reasons to visit. Jamaica is the Caribbean’s beating heart. Jamaica, the cradle of reggae music, the Rastafari movement, and all-inclusive resorts, embodies many of the region’s most valued and misunderstood characteristics. An easy solution to the problem? Establish your view in sugar cane, coffee, and limestone regions. Your new thoughts will almost certainly be surrounded by cream-coloured beaches, bounded by the steep Blue Mountains and anchored by frothy waterfalls.

Jamaica, the third-largest island in the area, has more churches per square mile and rum bars per person than any other country on earth.

It should be no surprise that the island draws a sizable crowd and has a lot to offer tourists of all types. Jamaica covers you if you want to unwind, splurge, or party.

Although it’s simple to spend most of your time on the beach, make an effort to immerse yourself in the Rastafarian and local music scenes while you’re here. It is what lends the island its recognizable style.

Things to do / Place to Visit

There are various places to visit in Jamaica. Some of the top spots are listed below, which you can take advantage of. 

1. Hang out at the beach

There are several gentle, pristine beaches in Jamaica. Visit Doctor’s Cave Beach in Montego Bay. Cornwall Beach is the place to go if you prefer a more private setting. Seven Mile Beach in Negril has something for everyone. You may also discover calmer stretches of immaculate beach behind the expensive area near Margaritaville.

2. Visit Kingston

Kingston, the capital of Jamaica, is a rough-and-tumble city. A day or two spent on it is worthwhile. Examine some significant sites, such as Devon House, constructed in the Jamaican Georgian style characteristic of the plantation residences built by colonists during the slave trade. Visitor entry is 1,775 JMD and includes a snack or beverage. Remember to visit the Bob Marley Museum, the Prime Minister’s mansion, and King’s House, which serves as the Governor-official General’s residence. While here, venture out and enjoy live reggae music at the Dub Club, the National Gallery of Jamaica, Coronation Market shopping, and Emancipation Park relaxation.

3. Explore Montego Bay

The best tourist bars, foreign eateries, and wild parties are found at Montego Bay. Most opulent resorts are in Ironshore, a suburb of the boisterous city of MoBay. Gloucester Ave has the best of both worlds: a tranquil tourist area with inexpensive jerk eateries and dive pubs.

4. Cliff jump at Rick’s Cafe

Both residents and tourists use this restaurant and pub with a view of the ocean. There are also large cliffs from which to leap. If the height is too much for you, you may relax and drink while taking in the view, as it is only around 35 feet from the ocean.

5. Get lost in the clouds

The Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park is east of the island, in a region of 41,198 hectares. The Holywell Nature Walks, which lead you through a cloud forest, let you go on a trek and see birds. This park is only a short drive from Kingston and can be readily accessible in one afternoon. 1,480 JMD will get you in the park.

How to get there

Taxis are Jamaica’s most significant mode of transportation, whether you’re travelling throughout the island or arriving at one of the airports (Montego Bay’s Sangster International Airport (MBJ) is the closest to the tourist regions). Renting a car is another alternative. However, driving on the left side of the road might be challenging, with many potholes and unclear road signs.

The safest and easiest method to get to Jamaica is by taxi or minibus. However, only official taxis run by the Jamaica Union of Travelers Association (JUTA) or Jamaica Co-operative Automobile & Limousine Tours (JCAL), as denoted by the acronym on their cars, shall be used.

Public transportation in Jamaica can be inconsistent in terms of arrival times and frequently has terrible road conditions, so you should avoid it. Additionally, the U.S. State Department advises travellers to stay away from them for their protection. However, buses are the most affordable mode of transportation on the island. The 450 yellow buses operated by the Jamaica Urban Transit Association have fares that start at 100 Jamaican dollars.

In Jamaica, owning a car offers benefits and drawbacks. The island will be yours to explore, but you must deal with the bumpy roads, unpredictable drivers, and few road signs. Remember that you must also drive on the left side of the road.

Where to Stay

There are all-inclusive resorts all across the island that welcome families with children of all ages if you’re seeking the finest location to stay in Jamaica for families. We’ve selected some of the top Jamaican hotels and beach resorts, whether all-inclusive accommodations are your preference or not, to assist you in choosing where to stay in Jamaica.

Numerous claim that the Montego Bay region is the greatest in Jamaica for snorkelling, despite the absence of many lovely sandy beaches. If you’re seeking inexpensive or moderately priced hotels, you may find a more fantastic selection of Jamaica resorts here.

If all-inclusive resorts aren’t your thing, Negril offers a variety of accommodations, such as beach bungalows and villas. There is enough entertainment to keep you busy in this modest, laid-back town without the commotion of Jamaica’s bigger cities. Negril is the finest area to stay in Jamaica for first-time visitors because of the great combination of culture and beaches.

Travel Cost

Travelling to Jamaica is made simple by the island’s two major airport hubs, a smaller airport, and numerous significant cruise ship ports. With so many easy entry points, getting to your desired area is simple.

Flights from New York to Jamaica typically cost between $300 and $400 roundtrip. Flights from Miami start at $200-$300, and European flights start at around $800.

Cheap flights to Jamaica are frequently available, especially during the offseason. ​ ​

Hotel cost

Prices for inexpensive hotels start at 6,000 JMD per night in less visited regions like Port Antonio but rise to closer to 8,000 JMD in areas with beach resorts. Simple conveniences like free Wi-Fi, TV, and occasionally breakfast are to be expected.

In Jamaica, Airbnb is accessible everywhere. A private room will cost you around 5,700 JMD each night. However, a whole house or apartment would cost you more than 12,000 JMD.

Average food cost

Because so many nations have occupied the island throughout the years, the Caribbean, Africa, and Europe have all impacted Jamaican food. Here, tropical fruits and seafood are prevalent, and meals like goat curry, patties (a savoury turnover), saltfish (dried and salted cod), and dumplings are all very well-liked.

An informal lunch at a budget eatery costs about 700 JMD. Most meals cost around 450 JMD for stewed chicken or beef, while jerk chicken costs approximately the same.

At McDonald’s, a giant pizza costs roughly 2,200 JMD, whereas a combination meal costs about 800 JMD.

If you want to splurge, a three-course meal with drinks at a mid-range restaurant costs about 3,300 JMD.

A latte or cappuccino costs roughly 400 JMD, as does beer. Water in bottles costs closer to 100 JMD.

Suppose you intend to prepare meals and budget 7,000 JMD weekly for groceries. Included in that are common foods like pasta, rice, fresh produce in season, and some meat or seafood.

Total Average cost

A mid-range budget of 16,500 JMD per day will allow you to stay in an Airbnb, eat out occasionally, indulge in a few drinks, sometimes rent a taxi to get around and participate in some paid activities like snorkelling or whitewater rafting.

You can use the chart below to estimate how much money you need to set aside daily according to your travel preferences. Remember that these are daily averages and that there may be days when you spend more or less (you might pay less every day). We are providing you with a rough outline for creating your budget. The currency is JMD.

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