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Cheap flights to Jamaica

Jamaica is a riotously colourful reggae inspired island, floating in an extraordinarily blue Caribbean Sea. Sand is as soft as cotton wool while lush green palms sway in a warm gentle breeze. Perfectly appointed mountain peaks with enchanting names like Mystic Mountain, rise up from out of lush, steaming rainforests where tropical birds and flowers make their homes.

Another famous islander is the legendary Bob Barley, who turned reggae into a religion. It is music, rum, coffee and cricket that make up Jamaica’s soul, but while this picture-perfect paradise is as laid back as they come, it’s quaint, sleepy colonial towns, luxurious resorts and sweeping golf courses hide a livelier side. By night, beach bars, clubs and restaurants overflow with dancing and lively local banter, showing off the energetic and spirited side of this tropical island.

The main holiday resorts can be found in Negril and Montego Bay with their seven miles of sandy beach. However, to see the ‘real’ Jamaica, a visit to Montego Bay City is highly recommended. Chaotic, noisy and overwhelming, this is Jamaica at her most authentic. Street markets throng to ghetto blaster beats; the aroma of ackee wafts from local eateries and rum is drunk by the gallon.

The crystal clear waters of Montego Bay Marine Park with their underwater gardens, nurse sharks, rays, jellyfish, caverns, coral and sunken shipwrecks are spectacular for snorkelling while the Dunns River Falls offer a glimmer of tranquillity away from the fun, frenetic energy of the city.

For another side of the island, visit wonderfully named Treasure Beach to wander its sleep fishing village harbour. Visit Lover’s Leap, a 1,700 foot drop that overlooks Treasure Beach, where two slave lovers were said to have leaped to their deaths on threat of separation. However, be warned, this is not a view for the faint hearted.

Escape to the misty magic of the Blue Mountains for hiking, trekking and mountain biking through forests and coffee plantations. Spot dolphins in aptly named Dolphin Cove in Ocho Rios where it’s possible to swim with them in a natural lagoon. Sail a bamboo raft along the Rio Grande; get lost in the eerie Limestone Caves with their grottos, crags and subterranean lakes or simply enjoy the blissful sensation of a day in the Milk River spa with its warm mineral pools.  

Head to Spanish Town, the former capital, for historical walking tours through the elegant plazas of this once magnificent metropolis or to pulsating Kingston with its equally elegant mansions, boulevards, squares and of course, its world famous Bob Marley Museum – the most visited place o the island.

The following information is correct as of February 2015 and is subject to change. Please check with the airline directly for complete accuracy.

Fly In

Kingston Norman Manley International Airport is located 11 miles from the city centre of Kingston. It is approximately a 25 minutes drive by car. There is a public bus service that operates from the airport to the city centre taking just 30 minutes. Taxis are also available for hire.

Montego Bay Sangster International Airport is located 3 miles from Montego Bay, taking just 5-10 minutes by car. Some hotels offer shuttle bus services to the airport, but otherwise it is just taxis available for hire outside the terminal building.

What you need to know

Currency: The Jamaican Dollar

Visas: UK nationals do not require a visa to enter Jamaica for a period of up to 90 days. A passport valid for at least six months from the date of entry is required. Nationals of other countries may require a visa to enter Jamaica. More information can be obtained from a local embassy or from the Foreign Office website.

Laws: Jamaica has a ban on smoking in all public places. This includes bars, cafes, restaurants and clubs and all public transport. The legal age for drinking alcohol is 16. Drug offences carry severe penalties in Jamaica. Even possession of small quantities can lead to a lengthy sentence.

Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Jamaica depends on the temperature you can withstand. Summers are hot hot hot and the busiest period in terms of tourist numbers. Spring and autumn are much quieter and cooler and the best seasons to visit the country. Coastal temperatures can reach over 30 degree in the summer. Peak season is between December and April, May and October are the wettest months and between June and November are the most hurricanes. Overall, Jamaica is a year round destination with sunny winter’s ideal for escaping to from the UK.

There are some wonderful festivals in Jamaica like the Jerk Rum and Reggae Festival and the Rebel Salute both held in January. February sees country-wide celebrations of Bob Marley’s birthday while the Montego Bay Pineapple Cup yacht race is an incredible sight! The Folk Festival and Misty Bliss bring more music to Jamaica in February while the Jamaica Carnival kicks off the month of April in style. Yams and literature are also celebrated in April while Caribbean Fashion weeks is the talk of the town in June. July is Jerk seasoning month and covers every available food from pork to seafood. Surf contests, Reggae and wine festivals, Oktoberfest and a Reggae Marathon are just a few more of the wacky events happening across Jamaica.  

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