Jamaica is home to stunning family-friendly beaches and equally vibrant towns. Situated just 100 miles south of Cuba, the home of reggae enjoys a typical Caribbean climate, making it a destination worth visiting at any time of year. With daily temperatures averaging 28°C throughout the year, and sea temperatures not much lower, Jamaica is a true year round destination. Its combination of stunning beaches, rugged mountainous interior and vibrant towns make it a part of the Caribbean that shouldn’t be missed.
July and August are the perfect months to be out on the island’s beaches or taking advantage of the warm waters – averaging 28°C – to try the various water sports. Snorkeling, scuba diving, para-sailing and jet-skiing are all on offer. Despite coinciding with Europe and North America’s long school summer holidays, it is still not considered peak tourism season on the island. The peak season comes during the winter months, making December to February the busiest and most expensive months to visit the island. This period sees temperatures average 24°C, only a few degrees lower than the July and August average.
The weather turns windy for the months of March and April, which can prevent water sports on northern coast resorts including Montego Bay. Kingston, on the island’s southern coast has a more sheltered position, as do the resorts of Negril Beach on the east coast, where water sports are still possible during these months.
The months of June to November also see the highest rainfall. Locally, rain is considered to be at its heaviest in October and November. The rainy season is characterized by brief afternoon showers followed by sunshine. Although rainfall ranges from 12-20 cm, even heavy showers are normally limited to half an hour in the late afternoon. The only exception is Portland Parish, on the island’s north-east, and encompassing the Blue Mountains, where it can rain for days without stopping.
South coast towns including Kingston see very little rain at all, and June to November are the cheapest months to visit the island, with many hotels offering room prices half that of the December to February high season.