Best of Jamaica

So much more than the homeland of reggae superstar Bob Marley, Jamaica is a land of white sand beaches, native cuisine that gave the word 'jerk' a delicious connotation, an artistic culture that punches well above its weight and an Africa-centred religion that for many is a way of life. See and hear Rastafari culture on a tour of an indigenous Rastafari village, stroll among the bright and bold artworks at the National Gallery of Jamaica and swim the azure blue waters of Seven Mile Beach. From an authentic Jamaican cooking class to a traditional dinner with Montego Bay locals, this eight-day trip will provide plenty of proof Jamaica's truly the Home of All Right.

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Terms & Conditions

Start
Montego Bay, Jamaica
Finish
Montego Bay, Jamaica
Countries
Style
Original
Code
QJSA
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why we love this trip

  • Short and sweet, this eight-day trip hits the 'must-sees' of Jamaica while allowing you to explore and sample Jamaica's 'real' side.

  • Impress family and friends with newly acquired, Jamaican-style cooking skills.

  • A visit to the National Gallery of Jamaica in culturally vital Kingston is essential to appreciating the modern history of art in this island nation.

  • Practically untouched until the 1960s, the spectacular beaches and laid-back vibe of Negril have yet to be devoured by development. 

  • Enjoy a home-cooked meal at a private home with locals to get a ground-level sense of daily life in Jamaica.

Is this trip right for you?

  • The tropical climate of Central America means conditions can be really hot and humid. Always carry plenty of water with you and stay hydrated, especially on walking tours.

Itinerary

Welcome to Jamaica! You will be transferred to your hotel upon arrival and your adventure begins with a Welcome Meeting at 6pm. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Everyone does a bad Jamaican impression so today you'll receive a lesson on how to speak proper Jamaican patois (also known as 'patwa', 'patwah' and 'Jamaican Creole'), the language spoken in everyday conversation. Standard English is Jamaica's official language but it's reserved for professional environments and situations. You can put your newly learned patois to use on an included tour of an indigenous Rastafari village, where local musicians, farmers and artisans will help you understand the reverence for nature and humanity at the core of the Rastafarian philosophy and lifestyle. Next you'll visit a variety of Montego Bay hotspots including the Hip Strip, Charles Garden Market, Dome Street and Sam Sharpe Square. After these included activities you're free to explore on your own. Perhaps admire the view from the Richmond Hill Inn, a former 18th-century plantation house perched 150 metres above Montego Bay.
Included Activities
  • Montego Bay - Montego Bay visit including the Hip Strip, Charles Garden Market, Dome Street and Sam Sharpe Square
  • Montego Bay - Rastafari village tour
  • Montego Bay - Jamaican Patois speaking lesson
Optional Activities
  • Montego Bay - Richmond Hill - USD7
  • Montego Bay - Civic Centre - USD12
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Not surprisingly, the flavours and spices found in Jamaican cuisine have been greatly influenced by the Spanish, British, Africans, Indian and Chinese who have inhabited the island. No matter where you are in the world, however, nothing recalls Jamaica like a plate of jerk chicken with rice, plantains, carrots and green beans. Today you'll learn some basics of Jamaican cooking before sampling what you've made for lunch, followed by a cultural experience with locals. In the afternoon it's off to witness the natural phenomenon of bioluminescence at Glistening Waters Luminous Lagoon. Marvel at the eerie glow created by the millions of microscopic organisms that thrive due to the convergence of salt and fresh waters in the lagoon's shallow waters. Bioluminescence isn't an unusual occurrence, but this is one of the best places in the world to view it from the comfort of a boat. The rest of your day is free.
Included Activities
  • Montego Bay - Glistening waters (Luminous Lagoon) visit
  • Montego Bay - Jamaican cooking class
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Gain an appreciation for both the history of art in Jamaica and the remarkably talented artists who hail from the island nation at the National Gallery of Jamaica. Collections include artworks and artefacts dating from as early as 1000 AD to the arrival and subsequent colonization periods of the Spanish and English, Jamaican art in the 20th century, the Jamaican school from 1922 to the present, and many special collections and temporary exhibitions highlighting the best of contemporary Jamaican art. The evening is free for you to explore Jamaica's cultural capital.
Included Activities
  • Kingston - National Gallery of Jamaica visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
After breakfast, perhaps take a tour of Kingston's most-visited site, the Bob Marley Museum, the colonial house where the reggae legend lived and recorded from 1975 until his death in 1981. After lunch you'll make an included visit to Spanish Town, one of the oldest continuously occupied places in the Western hemisphere. It was settled by the Spanish in 1534 and established as the nation’s capital city. In 1655 it was captured by the British and continued to serve as Jamaica’s capital for another 217 years, when that designation was given to Kingston. Today the historic centre contains the Caribbean’s most extensive assortment of Georgian architecture (albeit decayed). You will visit Spanish Town's Rodney's Memorial, Emancipation Square, Old Kings House and the Old Iron Bridge.
Included Activities
  • Kingston - Spanish Town Heritage visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Travel from Kingston to Jamaica's western tip, the laid-back beach town of Negril, for a day of aquamarine waters and swaying palms. Take a dip at the incongruously labelled Seven Mile Beach (it's really four miles), the finest stretch of sand in the land. Then head south to the section of Negril originally settled by hippies in the 1960s and where cliffs as high as 15 metres lure daring divers. Watch them as you sip cocktails at Rick's Cafe while the sun dips into the Caribbean Sea. 
Included Activities
  • Negril - Sunset watch at Rick's Cafe
  • Negril - Seven Mile Beach visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
After breakfast return to Montego Bay for a free afternoon. Perhaps take a tour of Rose Hall, one of Jamaica’s most historic plantation homes, and learn about the legend of the 'White Witch of Rose Hall'. Your final dinner in Jamaica will be at a private home, where you'll enjoy a traditional meal and conversation with the locals.
Included Activities
  • Montego Bay - Dinner with locals
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
The trip ends after breakfast this morning.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

7 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 1 dinner

Transport

Local bus, minivan, taxi

Accommodation

Hotel (7 nights)

Included activities

  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
  • Montego Bay - Montego Bay visit including the Hip Strip, Charles Garden Market, Dome Street and Sam Sharpe Square
  • Montego Bay - Rastafari village tour
  • Montego Bay - Jamaican Patois speaking lesson
  • Montego Bay - Glistening waters (Luminous Lagoon) visit
  • Montego Bay - Jamaican cooking class
  • Kingston - National Gallery of Jamaica visit
  • Kingston - Spanish Town Heritage visit
  • Negril - Sunset watch at Rick's Cafe
  • Negril - Seven Mile Beach visit
  • Montego Bay - Dinner with locals

Dates & availability

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Important notes

START AND END TIME:
On Day 1 there are no activities planned until the important welcome meeting at approximately 6pm. There are no activities planned for the final day.

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.