For years, Jamaica has been referred to as the heart of the Caribbean. What do you think of when you think of Jamaica? Is it reggae music, sugar cane, beautiful beaches and sugar cane? You’d be right. Jamaica is also full of mountains, waterfalls, jungles and all the adventure that a couple on their honeymoon could dream of.
The island is the third largest in the Caribbean so covering it all in one trip is rather difficult. Because of this, it’s best to pick a part of the island and set up camp there. Places like Montego Bay, Ochos Rios, Negri, Port Antonio and Kingston are some of the options that travelers have to visit. Before you make your decision about where to go and what to see, there are a few things you should know about the exotic island of Jamaica.
When to go:
The best time to head to the island is from November to Mid December. The weather stays between the mid 70’s to high 80’s all year long. Hotel and flight deals are easiest to find during this time and while resort deals may be cheaper during summer, you always risk hurricane season throwing off your plans. January to March are peak travel seasons for the island and because of that, room rates can climb upwards of $700 extra dollars.
Is it safe?
Jamaica, despite being one of the most popular honeymoon and travel destinations in the world, also has one of the world’s highest crime and homicide rates. Yes, that’s a red flag. Is it safe? Travelers claim that while the statistics aren’t favorable, millions of newlyweds have unforgettable honeymoons here. If you stick to luxury resorts and stay in crowded parts of town that are deemed safe, you’ll be just fine. Be warned though, there are regular reports of thefts! So keep an eye on your bag and purse while you travel.
Montego Bay, arguably one of the most famous parts of Jamaica is the capital of Saint James Parish and is settled on the northern coast. Plenty of cruise ships and traffic come through this area. Looking for Jamaican beaches, an amusement park and a beautiful golf course? This is your spot.
Things to do:
River raft down the Martha Brae River: experts call this one of the most peaceful and romantic things to do in Montego and it’s a great way to encounter Jamaica’s natural rivers and countryside. Local guides will raft you down five kilometers of the Martha Brae that cuts through the jungle.
Hangout at Doctor’s Cave Beach: This beach has white sand and is a great place to catch some sun. Doctor’s Cave Beach is beautiful and many believe it’s mineral fed water and has curative healing powers. Find out for yourself!
Play a round at White Witch Golf Course: This is often called the the most beautiful golf course in Jamaica. The course is 4,000 acres on the Rose Hall plantation. Legend says that the golf course is even haunted.
Most locals refer to this area as Mo-bay and it’s certainly a tourist hub. The international airport can be found here along with plenty of high security resorts. If you want to be in the middle of all the action, this is a great option. Honeymooners will also have access to day trips around the island if they stay in Montego.
Where to Stay in Montego Bay:
- Half Moon Hotel: This celebrity hot spot has luxury accommodations on 400 acres of beautiful property. Beaches on either side of the resort make sure that honeymooners can relax and enjoy the view. This hotel is huge. There are 400 rooms, a shopping mall, and five upscale restaurants. Looking to relax with a drink in your hand? You can do that here. Looking to explore and be adventurous? There’s plenty of room at the Half Moon to do that as well. Basically, it’s impossible to be disappointed. They do it all.
- Sandals Montego Bay: This classic resort has ocean views, good rooms, and good amenities like golf, tennis and a gym. There is plenty of space around the resort to explore nature, take eco tours, zipline through the jungle canopy, snorkel and swim with dolphins. They’ve also got a spa that comes stocked with massage and beauty treatments. Plenty of people go with the traditional Sandals Montego Bay resort and are happy they did.
- Rose Hall: This property is found near Montego Bay and are quite famous for the weddings they put on. Couples can stay at the Great House and take haunted or garden tours. They also offer the Annee’s Escape Bundle, which includes golfing, lunch and the chance to do some shopping. Are you a country music fan? You can also opt to stay in the Cinnamon Hill House, former home of Johnny Cash and June Carter. This private and beautiful house is secluded, relaxing and chalk full of history.
Ocho Rios can be found in the center of the northern shore of the island. You’ll find many fellow honeymooners here because they have a wide spread selection of resorts; something for everyone. This also means you’ll be close to good shopping and dining. Located in the center of the northern shore of the island. Ocho Rios has been a honeymoon hot spot for many years.
Things to do:
Treasure Beach: The small town of Treasure Beach has slowly been gaining popularity over the years. The chill and relaxed beach vibe makes it a great honeymoon hideaway. It’s also close to day trip spots like YS Falls and Floyd’s Pelican Bar.
YS Falls: This is many people’s favorite waterfall in Jamaica. If you’re around the area, seeing the falls is a great day trip activity. The falls are easy to reach from multiple locations including Ocho Rivers, Negril and Montego Bay. There are plenty of different tour rates, options and ways to experience the pristine waterfall. You won’t regret it.
Pelican Bar: This unique beach hangout is made up of bamboo rafters and palm trees. Grab a Red Stripe and go relax on the beach.
The locals call this area of Jamaica “ochi” and is well known for the first James Bond film which was released in 1962. Ochi, while famous from the movie, is also well known for offering plenty of delicious spiced meets at the Jerk center.
Where to Stay in Ocho Rios:
- Couples San Souci: Sans Souci is french for “without a care” and the hotel lives up to its name. The world class resort is designed for new couples and is an ideal spot to honeymoon. Lush tropical scenery, nearly vacant beaches and suites with private balconies make sure that couples can relax in privacy. The completely inclusive hotel’s nature means you have access to food, drink, wifi, planned trips and watersports. This spot also is close to Dunn’s River Falls and Dolphin Cave, two infamous Jamaican attractions.
- Jamaica Inn: Looking to go more boutique? Jamaica Inn provides private indulgence, relaxation and romance. Exactly what honeymooners want. Rustic charm, beautiful and exotic sights and white sand beaches make sure that couples can unwind and relax. The Jamaica Inn has private pools for select rooms, big bathtubs and the property’s spa. Sounds perfect.
- Moon Palace: This is the Palace’s first resort outside of Mexico and they’re killing it in Jamaica. It may be the most luxurious resort in all of Jamaica. Although it is family friendly, they 17-acre on white sand private beaches makes sure that you’ll have plenty of alone time. The resort has a wave simulator for surfing newbies, a waterpark for kids, plenty of places to eat, swim and drink. There’s also a fun nightclub on property. They also have the largest on site spa on the island and also offer Catamaran Rides down the ocho along with just about any other water sport activity you can think of.
This part of Jamaica is located at the western tip of the island and is the most low key spot to hangout. So low key in fact, that many people walk around nude at Seven Mile Beach. Seven Mile is one of the longest stretches of beach on the island. Here honeymooners can find romance, privacy and beautiful views.
Things to do:
Seven Mile Beach: One of the most famous things to do in Negril is head to Seven Mile Beach. The beautiful rocky coast combined with soft sand and turquoise blue water is something you’re not going to want to miss. Seven Mile also has a spot called Couples Swept Away which is right on the beach and a fun spot for newlyweds to hangout.
The Negril Lighthouse: Head over to the scenic landmark for a picnic and a picture.
Snorkeling in Negril: There are plenty different boating tours and prices to consider but most start at $30.00. This is a great way to experience the beautiful water and the sea life that lives within it.
Many Jamaican first timers compare Negril with other small Caribbean towns. The small fishing town has some reasonably priced resorts but this beautiful area has gained popularity despite itself and is surrounded by third world conditions. Don’t be afraid to explore, but be smart about it.
Where to stay in Negril:
- The Caves: This is arguably one of the most famous and fantastic spots in Negril. The property for The Caves is set on solid rock and gets its name from the chambers that are carved out of rocks and sit up against the sea. The resort has twelve cottages, each with a unique design to fully utilize the rock that it sits in. Private caves let honeymooners enjoy romantic candlelit dinners. There’s also a spa, private hot tub, a salt water pool and many other amenities. Plus, it’s close to Seven Mile Beach, so there’s plenty to keep you occupied.
- Azul Beach Resort Negril is was recently named one of the World’s 10 best beaches by Tripadvisor. The all suite resort is one of the most romantic resorts not only in Jamaica, but all of the Caribbean. Travelers are assured to have an ocean view suite and couples can spring for a room in the adults-only section of the hotel. Their free honeymoon package includes champagne, turndown service, a 15% discount on spa activities and late checkout.
This Jamaican city on the northeast coast is the capital of Portland Parish. Tropical jungles and beautiful waterfalls are waiting for honeymooners to explore them. The John Crow Mountains, Hope Bay and Somerset Falls are only a few of the many places you’ll want to hit while spending some time in Port Antonio.
Things to do:
Frenchman’s Cove: If you’re searching for the perfect cocktail to sip on a gorgeous beach, this is where you should go. The cove offers beach views, surfing and great service.
Reach Falls: This waterfall is just east of the city and seeing it is something spectacular.
Port Antonio often draws in the expensive and well traveled type because it is less crowded. The well priced all inclusive resorts can’t be found in Port Antonio. Instead, honeymooners will find upscale beach areas, river rafting on the Rio Grande River and scuba diving and snorkeling
Where to Stay in Port Antonio:
- Trident Hotel: This high end villa styled property, which is situated on a rocky bank, is close to Errol Flynn Marina and Navy Island. It’s also close to Frenchman’s Cove Beach, although there is a private beach on property if guests don’t want to travel. Contemporary oceanfront villas set against a 1950’s artistry backdrop make sure that honeymooners can relax and take in the views. Each room sports a terrace, plunge pool, minibar and 24 hour room service. Their open-air sea-view restaurant serves gourmet food so you won’t have to go far for a good meal.
- Great Huts Resort: It is what is sounds like. Travelers call this a true destination resort. This resort is overlooking the Caribbean and surrounded by exotic forest and it’s only four minutes walk from Boston Beach. The African-inspired rooms are set in bamboo or clay huts. Although the roofs are thatched, they still offer fans and free wifi. There’s an option to rent out a treehouse where you get a private bathroom, mini fridges and a jacuzzi tub in the bathroom. Although AC isn’t available, you won’t miss it with mild Jamaican weather and beautiful views. Overlooking the Caribbean Sea, this relaxed resort surrounded by lush tropical forest is 4 minutes’ walk from the scenic Boston Beach and 15 km from Folly Lighthouse.
- Goblin Hill Villas At San San: This hotel overlooks a secluded bay and is close to San San Beach and the Folly Lighthouse. Rooms have either terrace or balconies that face the bay. Most rooms have wifi, kitchens, living rooms and dining areas. They also offer a private housekeeper that will even cook for you (for a little extra money). The outdoor pool, tennis court and view will help you instantly get in a Jamaican mood.
This city is the capital of the island of Jamaica and can be found on the Southeast Coast. The Bob Marley Museum, which is located in the city center is rather famous. Kingston also has Botanical Gardens with beautiful flora and fauna. The Blue Mountains are also close where travelers can see trails and waterfalls and unbelievable jungle.
Things to do
Bob Marley Museum: Want to see where Rastafarian culture got it start? Head into town and check out the museum.
Blue Mountains: Hiking through this picturesque area will relax and awe honeymooners. Waterfalls, jungle and some of the best coffee in the world can be found in the Blue Mountains.
Lime Cay: If you’re looking for something to do on the water, Lime Cay isn’t a far boat ride. This cluster of islands out in the ocean is beautiful, scenic and sure to be romantic and relaxing. There’s not much out on the Cay, just one shack that serves food, but if you’re looking for a secluded lunch, this may be the place.
Some say that Kingston is hard to explain- you just have to see it for yourself. Travelers also claim that some of the best ice cream, pastries and food can be found at Devon House, one of the cities most popular historical mansions.
Where to stay in Kingston:
- Terra Nova: This 4 star suite hotel is close to the Bob Marley Museum and surrounded by tropical greenery. The beautiful suites are made of dark wood and come with free wifi and living areas. Some have private terraces, wet bars and whirlpool tubs. 24/7 room service keeps guests well accommodated and their breakfast buffet is complimentary. Spending time here would make any honeymooners happy.
- Eden Gardens Wellness Resort and Spa: This property is close to the biggest botanical gardens in the entire Caribbean. Eden’s modern and colorful rooms are equipped with wifi, balconies and some contain mini fridges. Want to upgrade? Suites have separate living rooms, private terraces and a fully stocked bar. The upscale international restaurant and wine bar are a great place to hangout if you’re not too busy getting pampered at the spa.
Jamaica is a beautiful and well known honeymoon resort. The sprawling island divides up into different areas that each has a set of unique characteristics and exploring any of them is sure to leave travelers awestruck and full of even more wanderlust. Any time spent in Jamaica is time well spent.