The birthplace of reggae and Bob Marley as well as Blue Mountain coffee and Usain Bolt, Jamaica has a lot going for it. Along with these cultural icons, the Caribbean island boasts natural wonders galore, including lush rainforests, dramatic mountains and reef-lined, golden sand beaches. Get in the swing of the reggae beat and read on for our list of things to do in Jamaica…

Visit the Bob Marley Museum

Music lovers mustn’t miss the Bob Marley Museum in Jamaica’s capital, Kingston. Located inside his former home at 56 Hope Road, the museum is a mecca for reggae fanatics, featuring artifacts and treasured mementos from throughout Marley’s life. Your pilgrimage can also include a tour inside the museum to witness the process of creating a vinyl record, from recording to pressed 45 or LP.

Climb Dunn’s River Falls

Situated near the port town of Ocho Rios, Dunn’s River Falls is renowned for being one of the island’s most impressive waterfalls. Extending across more than 960 feet, the flow of the current has crafted unique terraces, crevices and natural pools over the years. Climbing the Falls with a guide is a great way to appreciate the full magnitude of the cascades, and there are several lagoons where you can stop for a dip as you ascend.

Shop for crafts in Ocho Rios

The former fishing village of Ocho Rios, on Jamaica’s north coast, is a great place to stock up on keepsakes and souvenirs from your trip. At Ocho Rios Craft Market you’ll find multi-coloured artworks, hand carved wooden ornaments and eclectic folk jewellery.

Hike or Bike in the Blue Mountains

Jamaica’s Blue Mountains house a wealth of diverse flora and fauna, including the largest butterfly in the Americas (the Homerus swallowtail) and a whopping 32 endemic bird species found nowhere else in the world. The summit, Blue Mountain Peak, is the island’s highest point and can be reached by hiking or biking the Blue Mountain Peak Trail – the climb is challenging, but the panoramic vistas from the top more than make up for it. Once here, you’ll find yourself surrounded by the namesake blue mist that encircles the mountain top. The Blue Mountains aren’t just for active types either, and caffeine fiends can visit one of the coffee farms that produce the famed Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee (a trademark reserved for Arabica beans grown in the mountains between 3,500 and 5,500 feet above sea level).

Unwind on the Beaches

It’s a truth universally acknowledged that the Caribbean is blessed with some of the world’s best beaches, and Jamaica is no exception. The island nation boasts around 50 heavenly strips of golden sand, each with its own inviting attributes, so we believe that lounging on a beach should be high on your list things to do in Jamaica. Negril is known for its snorkelling and diving sites, as well as its vibrant nightlife, while Montego Bay is the real heart of Jamaica’s party scene. If you’re looking to leave the crowds behind, head for Treasure Beach, a sleepier stretch of sand with a laid-back feel.

Indulge in Local Specialties

Caribbean cuisine is always wonderfully well-seasoned, so if you’re a fan of flavour you’ll want to get stuck into Jamaica’s food scene. Sample the national dish of ackee and saltfish for breakfast, fried with peppers, onions and spices and rumoured to be a favourite of Usain Bolt. Sink your teeth into spicy jerk pork and chicken, or a flaky beef patty — Jamaica’s answer to meat pies, filled with a blend of spicy beef, saltfish or goat meat. Seafood lovers won’t be short of options, with steamed fish, peppered shrimps and fish stews found on most menus.

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