Jamaica holiday travel guide, tips for visiting the island

Trip to Jamaica, general information, things to know before leaving, documents required, the best times to go and how to get there.

Jamaica in brief

  • Capital: Kingston
  • Surface area in square kilometers: 10,991
  • Population: 2,713,782 (2007)
  • Religion: Protestant majority with minorities of Catholics, Jews, Muslims and religious forms as Rastafari and pocomania

Where is it

Jamaica is a state of Central and insular island of the Greater Antilles (the third largest), is located in the Caribbean Sea south of Cuba. The territory mostly mountainous rises in the east with mountain range of the Blue Mountains, west while extending a series of plateaus covered by tropical forests. A region characteristic, in the central west of the island, is the Cockpit Country, calcareous, with deep depressions, subterranean caves and hills covered with lush vegetation and varied with hundreds of different species including trees of tropical fruits such as mango and banana trees. In the northern part of the island, the vegetation is lush and the narrow coastal plain is often interrupted by bays and white sand beaches protected by coral reefs. South widen flat areas that overlook low coasts with black sand beaches, no reef. As for the animals, there are especially many types of birds and reptiles usually not poisonous.


The hydrographic network is characterized by short courses of water and impetuous, often interrupted by waterfalls and extensive underground circulation, due to the limestone soil. Only the River Black River is partially navigable.


The climate in Jamaica is tropical, with high temperatures throughout the year. In the mountainous areas the temperature is mitigated by the altitude. Rainfall is abundant, especially in the months of May-June and September-November. The south coast and the west is more protected and less rain than the eastern section of the island. In late summer this island is hit by violent hurricanes.

Population of Jamaica

The Jamaican population is made up almost entirely of blacks and mestizos, descendants of slaves from Africa and from minorities of Asian (Indian, Chinese) and European.

Time zone

Jamaica must move the clock back six hours (-7 hours when in Italy is in daylight saving time).

Spoken language

The official language is English. Very popular is the Patois, a language that was born after the Spanish colonialism and English. Slaves were forced to learn English, so ‘born this very colorful language (a fusion of English Creole, with African words, Portuguese and Spanish), which tells the history of this people.


Jamaica’s economy is developing and a social situation that has to deal with frequent episodes of violence. Bearing in mind that tourism is the driving force of the economy, the main resources are deposits of bauxite with its derivatives and agriculture with plantations of sugar cane from which we get, in addition to sugar, also a very valuable Rhum . Other plantations are those of coffee, tobacco, spices (including Jamaican ginger and pepper), bananas, coconut palm, citrus. To these agricultural products are related sectors of transformation of the same. Many food products have to be imported. They are also active installations for the production of alumina, chemical plants, petrochemical and textiles.

When you go to Jamaica

The tropical maritime climate of Jamaica, with temperatures that remain constant around 27 ° / 30 ° C, invites you to visit this country throughout the year. The rainy season runs from May to November (especially in May, June and September-November), but usually it rains for a few hours (usually late afternoon) and probably for the rest of the day the sun shines. Note that the west coast are more protected than those of the East and that in September, October hurricanes can occur. The high season runs from mid-December to mid-April, during the weeks of Christmas and Easter prices are higher and there is more crowded.

Documents needed

To visit Jamaica need a passport valid for at least six months from the time of entry into the country and the return ticket. Up to 90 days of stay does not need a visa.


– The international code for calls to Jamaica is: 001-876

As for cell phone use should use a tri band phone with prepaid card Jamaican. With a cell phone dual band (used in Italy and Europe) there is no guarantee of full coverage.


The electric current is 110 V 50 Hz, are necessary taken flat slats American type. Therefore are useful in an adapter and a current transformer.

Money and credit card Jamaica

The official currency of Jamaica is the Jamaican dollar. The US dollar is in current use. The travelers’ checks and American credit cards are welcome. E ‘can change money at banks, exchange offices and hotels, bearing in mind that the Jamaican dollar can not be exported or changed again in another currency.


To visit Jamaica NOT required vaccination. And ‘mandatory vaccination against yellow fever if you are coming from infected areas. They are recommended vaccinations against hepatitis A and typhoid. Also it is good to take out health insurance before departure to cover, if necessary, medical expenses and repatriation. It is recommended to drink only bottled water without adding ice, eat vegetables only if cooked and fruit peeled yourself, carry products mosquito repellents and other types of insects.