The island of Jamaica is surrounded by the Caribbean Sea and covered in lush mountains, rainforests, and reef-lined beaches. The birthplace of reggae, it’s a location filled with unforgettable experiences, from crocodile safaris to horseback riding in the sea. If you’re getting married in Jamaica, I’m sure you’ll want to see and do as much as possible while you’re there. And if your guests are treating your wedding as the perfect excuse for a holiday, they’ll be looking for inspiration too.
With its magnificent British-colonial architecture, many of the island’s most popular all-inclusive resorts are clustered in Montego Bay. Negril on the west coast is known for its shallow bays with calm, turquoise waters ideal for snorkelling and scuba-diving. If you or your guests would prefer to base yourselves in a bustling city location, you can’t beat Port Antonio or the island’s capital, Kingston.
Jamaica is a nature lover’s dream! From sandy beaches to scenic hillsides, there’s plenty to explore. Of all the places you can visit, Dunn's River Falls may be the most unique. Considered a living and growing phenomenon, it continuously regenerates itself from deposits of travertine rock. These deposits are the result of precipitation of calcium carbonate from the river as it flows over the falls. The small dome-shaped cataracts that form are usually associated with thermal spring activity found in limestone caves. This, combined with its location near the sea, gives Dunn's River the distinction of being the only one of its kind in the Caribbean, if not the world.
If you prefer calmer waters, consider the Luminous Lagoon, a bioluminescent lagoon east of Falmouth. One of Jamaica’s most magical spots, its water glows an eerie turquoise due to micro-organisms that produce photochemical reactions when disturbed. Try to pick a starry night and be sure to swim into different patches – the water changes from hot to cold thanks to a mixing of sea salt and the Martha Brae River.
The reportedly haunted Georgian manor, Rose Hall, was once home to European landowners. A tour here reveals what 18th-century life was like on a sugar plantation, both for those in charge and the enslaved people forced to labour under their oppressive rule. If you’re brave enough, opt for a candlelight tour and prepare to be immersed in the local legend of Annie Palmer. Nicknamed the ‘White Witch of Rose Hall’, she supposedly had multiple husbands and lovers who died in mysterious circumstances on the property. Weekly ghost sightings are still reported, so keep your eyes peeled!
A must-see for reggae fans, The Bob Marley Museum allows you to explore the former home of this musical legend. All the original rooms have been kept as they were when Bob lived there, and the displays include a life size 3D hologram of the late musician from the One Love Peace Concert in 1978. You’ll also be able to see his Grammy Lifetime Achievement award, his personal recording studio, his bedroom, favourite clothing and a vast array of gold and platinum records.
Jamaican Carnival or ‘Bacchanal’ is a combination of tailgate parties, concerts, dance sessions and more. A vibrant mix of Soca, Calypso, Reggae and Dancehall music can be heard at every event. It’s the biggest party of the year and many would say the most genuine expression of the island’s spirit. You won’t want to miss this explosion of colour, music, food and good vibes!
Although in recent years there has been some disruption due to Covid, Jamaican Carnival is usually celebrated from Easter Sunday until the end of the following week. There are also weekly events across the entire island during the run-up in March.
Whether you visit one of the island’s internationally renowned fine dining restaurants or grab something to eat at a corner shop, jerk shack or fruit stand, Jamaican food is guaranteed to excite your taste buds. You’ll discover delicious seasonal fruits bursting with flavour, deep earthy spices and an array of culinary traditions. The island is also home to celebrated rums and exotic blends, including Tia Maria coffee liqueur. Jamaica really is the perfect foodie escape!
You’ll find more information about getting married in Jamaica here. If you’re considering other islands in the Caribbean, you may find the following links useful:
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