Official language: English
Time zone: UTC -5
Currency: Jamaican dollar (JMD)
Jamaica is barely 250 km long and 70 km wide. It is worth renting a car to visit all the most interesting places during your holiday.
In the mountains north of Kingston, there is the plantation of Blue Mountain coffee, considered one of the best varieties in the world. Less than 0.5 kg of grains costs the equivalent of approx. 15 USD.
The Rose Hall, a former sugar plantation, used to be the home of Jamaican harridan Annie Palmer called the White Witch. If you are courageous enough, go there for an evening stroll.
Jamaica is called an island created for relaxation. The sweet state of doing nothing is fostered by gorgeous beaches of white sand, robust vegetation, cordial, straightforward residents, the ever-present joyful reggae music, and… easy access to marihuana. The island itself is not big, so you’ll be able to see much more than just Montego Bay.
Montego Bay is the second biggest city on the island and it usually serves tourists as a starting point of their visit to Jamaica. An interesting spot in the city might be The Cage – a place where prisoners were kept at the beginning of the 19th century. Unfortunately, you will find no more historic spots here – they were all destroyed in an immense fire at the turn of the 18th and 19th centuries. No worries yet, you will not get bored! The main advantage of this place is not architecture, but amazing nature, kind Jamaicans and delicious local cuisine.
Montego Bay can boast of many gorgeous beaches, and the city is famous mainly as a perfect snorkeling and diving spot. The best-known urban beaches include Doctor’s Cave, Negril, and the Half Moon Beach. You can also ride a horse along the coastline, sightsee the coral reef, rent a motorboat or take a catamaran cruise. It also worth getting out of the center to see the Green Grotto Caves surrounded by lush jungle vegetation, take a raft cruise on the Martha Brae River or visit the Columbus Park with numerous artifacts that testify to the centuries-old history of this place.
Things to eat in Jamaica? Most of all, the jerk chicken – pulled poultry meat, seasoned with a mix of 20 hot spices, grilled or roasted on the fire. It tastes best with cold local Red Stripe beer. Other popular dishes include curry goat and a salt fish (cod) served with typically Jamaican ackee fruit. The natives often eat “run down” – a one-pot dish of boiled fish, vegetables, and coconut milk, and callaloo – boiled Amaranthus, taro or xanthosomo leaves. Fresh and tasty food is served at beach bars or in the streets. You can also go to a restaurant, e.g., Scotchies, The Pelican Grill or the Sugar Mill.