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19 Best Things to Do in Jamaica

19 Best Things to Do in Jamaica

A trip to Jamaica is so much more than laying on the beach soaking up the sun and drinking Jamaican rum punch. There are a ton of things to do in Jamaica, so plan on getting off the resort for a few days or making the most of your port day in Jamaica if you’re on a Caribbean cruise.

If you’re coming from the States, flights to Jamaica are really reasonably priced and only a few hours away. Even for those traveling to Jamaica from the USA or UK, there are crazy Jamaica deals for flights & hotels for under $1,000.

We’ve been traveling to Jamaica for over ten years, and with eight trips to Jamaica in our passports, we’re going to share with you some of what we think are the best things to do in Jamaica.


Top 19 Things To Do In Jamaica

1. Visit The Pelican Bar

If you’re looking for a fun day trip in Jamaica and are up for the adventure of getting there (a couple-hour drive and a boat ride), definitely put the Pelican Bar on your Jamaica itinerary. It’s the coolest bar in Jamaica, located in the middle of the ocean on the South Coast of Jamaica.

If you like fresh seafood, make sure to have your taxi driver call in your lobster order so it’s ready for you when you arrive. They have to arrange for a local fisherman to drop off a fresh catch.

Make sure to check out our Pelican Bar video on YouTube. We have some amazing drone footage of the bar that will make you wish you were there.

When looking for the best price and biggest selection of hotels in Jamaica, check prices on Booking.com, we’ve found they are the best option and have a great cancelation policy.*

Long exposure of Dunn's River Falls in Jamaica

2. Visit Some of the Best Waterfalls in Jamaica

Jamaica has some amazing waterfalls, including YS Falls, Mayfield Falls, Reach Falls, and the most famous, Dunns River Falls. No matter which part of Jamaica you are staying in, there is a waterfall day trip within a short distance.

We have personally visited YS Falls, Mayfield Falls, and Dunns River Falls. To avoid the crowds, we suggest going on weekdays and going early in the day or later in the afternoon. If you can find out what days the Jamaica cruises will be in port, try to avoid those days, too.

Related Article: Which Resort is the Best Sandals Resort?


If you’re looking for a reliable and safe driver in Jamaica, we personally recommend Jackson. We have booked him on several trips both for long day trips and for short trips around Negril. Email or call Jackson in advance to book and get rates.


Sunset from the drone in Negril is not to miss in Jamaica

3. Watch The Sunset

One of the main reasons we keep coming back is for those Jamaican sunsets. There is no better way to end the day than in a hammock on the beach with a drink in your hand, watching the sunset. Some of the best sunsets in Jamaica are on Seven Mile Beach in Negril.

Man playing a trumpet in a reggae band in Negril

4. Listen to live Reggae

Reggae music can be heard around the world, but it sounds the best where it was born. We love finding a local beach bar with live Reggae music. If you’re staying at an all-inclusive resort in Jamaica, they most likely will have a live reggae band come throughout the week otherwise, ask some of the staff if they know of any nearby bars with live music.

If you’re staying in Negril, we suggest going to Drifters Bar on Tuesdays from 3 pm-7 pm, where Hiyah Grade plays. We love the vibe at Drifters Bar and the Hiya Grade reggae band played at our destination wedding in Jamaica.

two beach chairs and lunch on the beach on Seven Mile Beach in Jamaica

5. Enjoy the Island Life

Remember, you’re on vacation. If you want to sleep till noon, do it. If you want to start drinking at 9 am, do it.

If you want to do nothing but lay on the beach and soak up the sun, do it! Sometimes, we all need a day of nothing, and Jamaica is a great place for that. If you are unsure where to stay in Jamaica, read our best Sandals Resort in Jamaica to see which suits you best.


Other Fun Things To Do In Jamaica

Top things to do in Negril Jamaica is cliff jumping from Rick's Cafe

6. Watch the Cliff Jumpers at Ricks Cafe

Jamaica’s most popular bar is Rick’s Cafe, located on the West End of Negril on the cliffs and is home to some amazing cliff jumping. Anyone can jump at their own risk. There are two platforms to jump from and a tree you could climb if you want to get some more height (local Jamaicans do this).

Several local cliff jumpers will get the crowd going and jump from the tree. After this jump, they will come around, collect tips, and bring some extra cash to give to the crowd.

Many of the snorkel tours in Negril and sunset cruises stop by Rick’s so you can get off the boat and jump. It’s a full restaurant and bar, so plan on spending a few hours here people watching, drinking, and enjoying the view.

Blue Mountains in Jamaica, the coffee region

7. Drink Blue Mountain Coffee

Make sure to start your morning with a freshly brewed cup of Jamaica’s finest coffee, Blue Mountain Coffee. If you really want to get the day started, add a little coconut rum cream to your coffee.

Make sure you get the real stuff. Lots of hotels in Jamaica say it’s Blue Mountain coffee, but it really isn’t. We suggest picking up a bag at the airport as a souvenir from Jamaica on your way home.

Mom & Daughter at a beach bar in Negril Jamaica

8. Indulge in a Jamaican Rum Punch

You can’t escape Jamaican Rum Punch; odds are it will be the welcome drink when checking into your hotel. We still remember our first rum punch experience—it was hot, hot pink, and strong! It’s often made with Overproof Rum, which is 126 proof, so proceed with caution.

The bars and restaurants at Beaches Jamaica Resort, which is geared for family travel, have tons of fun non-alcoholic drinks for kids. In the above photo, my daughter has a fun pink slushy drink, and I am enjoying a Bob Marley drink with rum.

9. Appleton Estate Rum Tour

Keep up with the boozing trend and tour Jamaica’s famous Appleton Rum. If you like rum, you already know that the best rum in the world comes from Jamaica!

Appleton Rum started in 1749, and it’s safe to say that with over 265 years in the rum business, they know what they are doing. After a guided tour of the estate, have fun sampling all the different rum varieties and some tasty rum cocktails.

Boat in Negril Parasailing with a colorful parachute

10. Go Parasailing

One of the best views of beaches in Jamaica is from above soaring high above. Parasailing in Jamaica is relatively affordable compared to other Caribbean Islands. It’s best to negotiate a price and agree in advance. Several of the parasailing companies can even dip you in the water at the end of your parasailing adventure.

For more amazing views consider getting a travel drone, the aerial photos and videos from drones in Jamaica are amazing. Make sure to pick up an ND filter for drones in order to get the tropical water to really pop in your photos.

11. Visit The Bob Marley Museum

Bob Marley’s music will live on forever. We’ve been to some of the remote islands in Thailand and found ourselves at a reggae bar playing “One Love.” If you’re into music, take the day trip to Kingston and visit the Bob Marley Museum at his old home. Make sure to pick up a Bob Marley record from the gift shop.

Must do in Negril Jamaica - Patties from the patty man on the beach

12. Eat Jamaican Patties

Jamaican patties are the perfect snack or meal, depending on how many you eat. It’s a flaky pastry shell filled with spices, vegetables, and chicken/ beef/pork. You can find local beach vendors selling them either from the shops or the locals who are selling their homemade patties.

If you don’t spot them on the beach, you can get them at the Montego Bay airport. Just past security, there is a local shop that sells them. They are around $1-$2, depending on the filling and size. We love the patties from the man in the above picture who sells them from his bike on Seven Mile Beach in Negril.

Jamaica with Kids – Beaches Negril Review

13. Get a massage on the beach

Skip the resort’s spa and overpriced massage and take a walk down the beach, supporting the local masseuses. You can typically find an hour-long full-body massage on the beach for $60 USD. If you’re staying in Negril, check out Natasha’s One Love Massage. She has raving reviews on TripAdvisor and includes free hotel pickup and drop-off.

NOTE: In almost all of the tourist places in Jamaica you can pay in USD or Jamaican if you pay in USD and the listed prices are in Jamaican confirm what the exchange rate is.

Unique Things To Do In Jamaica

14. Stay In An Overwater Bungalow in Jamaica

One of the best hotels in Jamaica is Sandals Resorts South Coast which features the famous overwater bungalows in Jamaica. The rooms are amazing, jump right into the ocean from your deck, watch the fish swimming by through the glass floor in the room, have a butler bring filet mignon to you, and much more. You’ll never have to leave your room!

NOTE: Sandals Resorts has two properties with overwater bungalows in Jamaica: Sandals South Coast and Sandals Royal Caribbean in Montego Bay. We stayed at the Sandals South Coast property.

15. Bamboo Rafting down the Martha Brae River

Bamboo rafting down the Martha Brae River is one of the best day trips in Jamaica and is easily accessible from Falmouth, Montego Bay, and Ocho Rios. Click here for tour options.

Jump on a 35-foot bamboo raft and head down the three-mile stretch on Martha Brae River. The raft captain will tell you some history and old legends about Martha Brae. If it’s a hot day, jump in and cool off.

IMG 2445

16. Get Married In Jamaica

If you’ve always dreamed of a destination wedding, there is no better place to get married than on the beach in Jamaica. We first visited when we were dating, and our love for travel, beaches, and Jamaica meant a destination wedding in Negril was perfect for us. We got married on Seven Mile Beach at sunset.


Non-Touristy Things To Do In Jamaica

Three Dives Jerk Chicken Restaurant and Bar in Jamaica on the cliffs at sunset

17. Visit a Jamaican Local Bar

Get off the resort and visit a real local bar. Some of our favorite bars are located on the back roads where we are the only tourists. It’s a great place to see how local Jamaicans live and chat with them. Local bars take USD and Jamaican.

18. Eat Jerk Chicken from a local street vendor

A plate of jerk chicken is a must in Jamaica. Some of the best jerk chicken in Jamaica isn’t found at a fancy resort or a resort it’s out on the street. You won’t see the vendors out on the street till after 7 pm, the good stuff takes a while to cook and do remember everything is on island time in Jamaica.

Get in a taxi and tell the driver you want to go to the best local jerk chicken place, and a street vendor is okay with you.

Jamaica boys at a local school

19. Donate To Pack For A Purpose Foundation

Many of the resorts and hotels in Jamaica have teamed up with Pack for a Purpose, which donates backpacks filled with school supplies to local schools. Their website lists all the resorts where you can bring a filled backpack, and they will bring it to the local schools. It is also possible to visit the schools as well. More details here on their website.


Panoramic Drone Photo of Sandals South Coast Resort in Jamaica with Overwater Bungalows in the foreground
things to do in Jamaica Infographic

There are a ton more things to do in Jamaica, but our list should keep you busy for the week and cover some of the best attractions.