Montego Bay Travel Guide & Information

Montego Bay is the capital of St. James Parish and the second largest city in Jamaica. The premier tourist destination has long been known for its duty free shopping, cruise line terminals and the sheltered Doctor's Cave beach; with clear turquoise waters. In fact, it’s one of the most famous beaches on the island. Montego Bay is the gateway to lots of tourist activity on the north coast. The city is located on the bay with mountains rising in the background.

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Travel to Montego Bay, a city that offers lots of shopping, dining, sightseeing, and the beaches are lined with all-inclusive resorts. Flights to Montego Bay are your passport to a cosmopolitan vacation, offering a wide choice of amenities. Due in part to its location on the island's north shore, Montego Bay has earned the title as the "Tourist Capital of Jamaica." Montego Bay has miles of shoreline filled with coral reefs and aquamarine blue lagoons. All of this beauty has a backdrop of the green hills masked in sugar cane, banana palms and lush tropical vegetation.

The beaches in the area are picture postcard perfect. Visitors can choose from a variety of activities, from bird watching, to music festivals, golfing, riding a river on a bamboo raft, sailing, swimming and much more. Montego Bay is a world class destination for family vacations, romantic travelers, students, seniors and adventure travelers. Montego Bay has something for everyone.

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Things to do in Montego Bay

Museums:

A vacation to Montego Bay must to include visiting at least one of the museums highlighting the city’s past.

Blue Hole Museum: is an 18th century estate and former sugar mill with a Great House and boiling house, among other things. The property has much history and offers insight into some of the island's history. The museum's exhibits also include a reconstruction of an Arawak village and a mini-zoo.

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Montego Bay Museum: is a fairly new attraction located in Sam Sharpe Square. The exhibits highlight the rich history of the island; particularly those who helped build and cultivate Montego Bay. The museum specifically focuses on what has driven Montego Bay's economy for over a hundred years.

Prominent Attractions:

Besides museums, Montego Bay has several other attractions that deem the city a world class tourist destination.

Doctor’s Cave Beach: has been one of the most famous beaches in Jamaica for nearly a century. The beach is known for its crystal clear turquoise waters and nearly white sand. Its sheltered location provides calm waters, encouraging even the most hesitant swimmers to practice safely; fringed by trees with numerous facilities: bars, restaurants, well appointed changing rooms & showers and more.

Montego Bay Marine Park: is a large area of sea and shore located adjacent to the city of Montego Bay, designed to protect some of Jamaica’s best coral reefs and marine life. This is Jamaica's first national park and the very idea of it being completely underwater makes it an even more fascinating excursion.

Bob Marley Experience & Theatre: Known as the "Bob Marley Experience", the center carries an enormous collection of Bob Marley t-shirts, music, gifts and souvenir items. Considered the largest in the world, the experience gives travelers an opportunity to discover the legend and spirit of Bob Marley. Visitors can watch a film on the life and work of Bob Marley on the big screen at the air-conditioned theater.

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Where to Stay in Montego Bay:

Montego Bay has cheap hotels, 4-Star Hotels Under $99, spas and resorts, beach hotels and quaint inns.

Gloucester Avenue: Gloucester Avenue is a trendy section of Montego Bay with art galleries, cafes and shops. The area is lined with tourist attractions, hotels, shops and restaurants; it is an ideal place to take a leisurely stroll.

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Sam Sharpe Square: The Square is one of the busiest sections of the town, as it forms the intersection of two major streets: Market Street and St. James Street. The area is a cobblestone square in Montego Bay and is filled with some great hotels to suit every travelers taste and budget. One can also find some renowned hotel chains in this area.

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Passport & Visa Requirements

For US Citizens:

As per the latest travel information available to Montego Bay, here are the following passport and visa guidelines to assist you further.

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* All U.S. citizens must have a valid U.S. passport for all air travel, including to and from Montego Bay.

* Visitors to Jamaica may be asked to show onward/return tickets, proof of sufficient funds and proof of lodging accommodations for their stay.

* Visit the Embassy of Jamaica website for the most current information about Jamaican visas for Americans.

For Canadian Citizens:

* A Canadian passport is required for Canadians intending to visit the Jamaica.

* The passport must be valid for at least three months beyond the date of the expected departure from the country.

* Canadians must also have proof of sufficient funds in order to buy a return airline ticket.

This requirement applies to all travelers, regardless of age, including children.

We recommend that you check the latest travel alerts, various airlines baggage policies and travel safety tips, so that you do not miss out on any of the fun while visiting Montego.

*Kindly note that we take the utmost care in providing you with correct information at all times. However, the passport and visa regulations are subject to change and we strongly urge you to check the requirements directly with the US passport office and, or the Canadian Passport Office before traveling.

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When to visit Montego Bay

Beautiful beaches, year round festivities and great weather, Montego Bay is an ideal travel destination all year. However, the best time to travel to Montego Bay is during mid-December to mid-April, when the city hosts several world-class festivals, like Air Jamaica's Jazz and Blues Festival in January.

Budget travelers can also choose to travel during the off season of May to November when visitors will find considerable discounts on flights and hotels.

Planning your Visit:

High season: (Mid-December to Mid April)

Low season: (May to November)

Montego Bay Weather

Montego Bay lies on the northwest coast of Jamaica, on the Caribbean Sea and has a tropical climate, with the year divided into a rainy season and a dry season.

* There is very little range in temperatures throughout the year, though on average the hottest months of the year are July and August.

* Due to its location, Montego Bay experiences slightly more rainfall than the south coast, though the rainy season is from May through until October, with September and October generally being the wettest months.

Currency and Language:

Currency:

The official currency of Montego Bay is the Jamaican Dollar or JMD

The US Dollar is widely accepted and can be exchanged in banks. Be sure to let your bank know your dates of travel and find out what the cost is for cash withdraws.

Languages:

* The official language of Jamaica is English.