A Visit to Jamaica: Amazing Caribbean Vacation Experience

There are many features that lore travelers to the Caribbean region. Vacationers will enjoy the beautiful sandy beaches as they bask in the tropical sun. The Caribbean is a region filled with a rich history. Its diverse historical features make it an area to explore many cultures. Like Jamaica, an amazing place to visit for an authentic Caribbean experience.

The name of the island was Santiago back in the early 1600s when the Spanish ruled it. But that name changed to Jamaica when it came under British rule. Jamaica achieved independence on 6th August 1962 from Great Britain. Before that, they were a British colony for over 300 years. Today, it is a popular Caribbean island and a beautiful tourist attraction.

A Caribbean trip is perfect for tourists who love to take in the natural essence of the world. It is a touristy place to experience beauty. All islands in the Caribbean are unique and can unite tourists with nature in various ways. Many Caribbean islands can enthrall nature lovers with captivating panoramic views.

Basic Information of Jamaica

  • Official Name: Jamaica
  • Alias: The Land of Wood And Water The aboriginal people of Jamaica called it Xaymaca. Xaymaca is an Arawakan word which means in English “Land of Wood and Water” or the “Land of Springs”. Thus, Jamaica’s nickname is “The Land of Wood and Water”.
  • Population: The nationals and all those who were born on the island are Jamaicans. Being a large island Jamaica has a population of close to 3 million. 76% of blacks make up the island. The island also has quite a large number of whites and other mixed races. The mixed race forms the second largest ethnic group on the island.
  • Capital: The capital of Jamaica is Kingston and it’s also its largest city. On the south coast of Jamaica, you will find Kingston. Other famous and large towns include; Negril and Montego Bay among others.
  • Language: Jamaica’s official language is English. For this reason, Jamaica happens to be the largest island in the West Indies that speaks English. But the locals speak a dialect known as the Jamaica Patois. Nationals from countries around the world try to imitate Jamaica Patios’ uniqueness.
Detailed image of Jamaican map
  • Religion: Christianity is the main religion on the island. But other practiced faiths include Rastafarianism, Judaism, and Islam among others.
  • Climate: The climate in Jamaica is great all year round. Jamaica is very warm with its average temperature being 82 degrees. But the temperature tends to be way hotter in the afternoons due to the island’s humidity. Rainfall is about 78 inches a yr.
  • Location: Jamaica is a large island. It is the third-largest island of the Greater Antilles. In length, it is 145 miles and 50 miles wide (4320 square miles). It is also the fifth-largest island in the entire Caribbean.
  • Neighbors: Cuba is 90 miles south of Jamaica; 600 miles south of Florida and 119 miles west of Hispaniola.
  • Currency: The official currency is the Jamaican Dollar or the JMD. Other currencies used and converted on the island are USD and Pounds Sterling.

Explore Jamaica: The Land of Wood and Water

Jamaica is a large island in the Caribbean Sea that welcomes nature lovers with open arms. With natural jewels, Jamaica boasts a rich cultural heritage and beauty.

It is also the “birthplace of reggae”. Jamaica is the home of well-known athletes, like Usain Bolt and musicians such as Bob Marley. It’s an island with a unique, rich culture that has influenced many people across the globe.

Getting to Jamaica

By Air – Upon entry into Jamaica by air, depending on where you’re coming from, you may not need a visa to enter the territory. Without a visa, it means your stay may only be for a period of up to 6 months. With a visa, it could extend longer. But if you don’t have any then the length of stay depends on the discretion of the immigration officers. The main airport is the Norman Manley International Airport, located in Kingston. If you’re planning on staying in the Montego Bay area then you can land at the Sangster’s International Airport. Jamaica’s airport has incoming flights from Canada, Europe, North America, and the Caribbean. Getting there won’t be much of a problem.

By Sea – Jamaica has grown when it comes to large cruise ships visiting the territory. Ships from all over the world embark on days of traveling to meet to the shores of Jamaica. They are different ports at which a cruise ship can dock. They have Ocho Rios, Port Antonio, Trelawney, and Montego Bay. The sea views are magnificent from the seaports. Visitors tend to become involved in lots of water sport activities. While others go on tours nearby or relax on the lovely white sand beaches. A cruise ship stays on the island for about 12 hours or less.

Getting Around Jamaica

The island is very mountainous and less than 1/5th of the island is flat land. This means that most of the roads around the island are not leveled. The highest point on the island is the Blue Mountain peak which stands at 2,256 meters high or 7,402 feet high. They are uneven because the roads are on mountains and in valleys. Not everywhere on the island, access with a vehicle. You may have to do a little traversing on foot. Are you looking to explore Jamaica? You have various options to view the island from different angles. You can use buses, motor scooters, and taxis as well as boats.

Where to Stay in Jamaica

You expect comfort and good customer service from your travel accommodation. This is so whether it is a vacation rental, hotel, or resort. There are many places to stay in Jamaica. You can check them out to see if they have the amenities you desire.

Ocean Coral Spring Resort is an all-inclusive Caribbean resort. It offers accommodation, a restaurant, a fitness center, and more amenities.

Vacation Rentals are alternative options. If you are looking for a holiday home, Caribbean Estate Portmore Jamaica offers a restaurant, a bar, and a garden. Alternatively, the beautiful Villa Rialto @ The Palms provides accommodation in Ocho Rios and features an outdoor swimming pool.

GoldenEye hotel offers world-class service and celebrity treatment. If you are a James Bond fan, here is a fast fact. The beautiful tropical property (GoldenEye hotel) was Ian Fleming’s Jamaican retreat. Rumor has it, that 14 James Bond novels were written at the GoldenEye hotel in Jamaica.

Things to do in Jamaica (Tourist Attractions)

The island is very scenic and it tends to be very quiet in certain areas. But every island has its share due to problems. Jamaica has a very high crime rate. So be careful and vigilant when visiting Jamaica. Seek advice from trustworthy sources.

The island has landmarks dating back to the times of slavery. Many other landmarks are available, each telling its own story. Upon entry into the island, be sure to collect a map with the different attractions around the island. This will make it very much easier to get to them. A tourism attraction that’s very much a delight to the eyes of tourists is Dunns River Falls. You can access these tourist points via self-tour or you can arrange to have a tour guide.

The touristy part of the island is Negril, located on the Southern side of the island. Here is where many tourists come to enjoy lovely reggae music among its locals and to have a nice time. They enjoy water sports, snorkeling, diving, and the island’s tasty delicacies. Negril also has a resort so feel free to have your stay there as well. One of the most spectacular things about Negril is its sunset.

Many tourists even the locals go to enjoy it. If you are in Ocho Rios, you can visit attractions such as Dunns River Falls, Mystic Mountains, Margaritaville, and Dolphin Cove. At Montego Bay, you can visit Dolphin Cove, Rose Hell Great House, Doctors Cave Beach, and Margaritaville.

Various other attractions to Jamaica that nature lovers find interesting are its aquatic life, reptiles, rain forest, woodland, wetlands, caves, rivers, and coral reefs.

Jamaica Festivals & Culture

Jamaica has a very rich culture. It started with the aboriginals, then Spanish followed by the English. The rich culture continues now being an independent nation. There are lots to take in when you’re in Jamaica. You’re never short of entertainment and there is always something new to do. The island has museums in different parts of the island. There you can get free information about the island’s rich historic heritage and from where it came to where it is.

Jamaicans are very fond of their musical culture so nowhere on the island would you be short of music. The island is the birthplace of many musical artists.

Jamaica is known as the island of reggae due to its rich culture in reggae music. It also homes reggae artiste known on the international scene. Such as the late Bob Marley, Gregory Isaacs, Beres Hammond, Ziggy Marley, Jah Cure, and many more.

While on the island be sure to try a lovely game of cricket at its national stadium (Sabrina Park). Their world-class batsmen go to play. Or you can even go into its track and field stadium. Catch a glimpse of the great Jamaican athletes in sprint races and relays.

Food Tourism in Jamaica

Jamaican cuisine includes flavors influenced by many cultures and customs. The national dish of Jamaica is Jerk Chicken. Jamaican jerk chicken is a mouth-watering spicy chicken recipe.

Ackee and saltfish are a must-try Jamaican food. As well as curry goat, fried dumplings, boiled green bananas, and Jamaican saltfish.

Besides Jamaica breadfruit, some other popular edibles tourists enjoy are mamajuana rum, Red Stripe beer, Blue Mountain Coffee, and Caribbean hot sauces. Cooked in various ways, breadfruit in Jamaica makes delicious starchy-rich meals.

If you are planning a Caribbean trip to Jamaica enjoy the scenery. Relax in the environment and visit Jamaican hotspots, landmarks, and museums. Enjoy the delicious Jamaican dishes. But, when leaving, do carry back a small token. A Jamaican souvenir of your time on the island/land of wood and water. Hope you enjoy your time on the beautiful Jamaica island.

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