An Overall Introduction to Jamaica
As the fourth-largest island country in the Caribbean Sea, it has the fourth-most population too. Among of 2.9 million Jamaicans, there are African ancestries, European, Chinese, Indian, Lebanese, and more. Over half of people in Jamaica can speak two languages, English and Jamaican Patois. English is the official language. And now Jamaican Sign Language (JSL) and American Sign Language (ASL) are widely used by Jamaicans.
The Caribbean Sea is one of the best snorkeling destinations in the world, including Belize, the Bahamas, and Costa Rica. Being an island country, the inland of Jamaica is dominated by Blue Mountains. A narrow coastal plain surrounds the inland. Jamaica has two large cities, Kingston (the capital city) and Montego Bay. Kingston is located on the south coast, and Kingston Harbour ranges the seventh-big natural harbour in the world. Montego Bay is a famous tourism city, locating on the north coast, attracting millions of people to visit every year.
Jamaica is tropical climate, hot all over the year. The humidity differs in rainy season, from April to October. The northern coast rain more than the southern, rainfall ranging from 1200 to 1800 millimeters per year. Thunderstorm occurs frequently in late afternoon. You may take a look at the weather forecast before you arrange the outdoor activities. However, the sunshine in capital Kingston is great all the year.
The sea temperature is floating from 27 °C (81 °F) between January and April to 29 °C (84 °F) between July and November. It’s warm and comfortable to swim. Considering the rainfall and temperature, the best time to visit Jamaica is from January to April.
Jamaican cuisine is famous for its Jamaican jerk spice, curries and rice and peas. Take a sip of Red Stripe bear, and spend the whole afternoon on the beach. Or drink a cup of Blue Mountain Coffee at a local cafe. Relax and enjoy the sunshine and fresh air.
You can travel in a plane, road trip, or railway in Jamaica. There are three international airports in Jamaica: Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston, lan Fleming International Airport in Boscobel, and Sir Donald Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay. And the roadways in Jamaica is more convenient than railways.
The Jamaican dollar is the official currency. In many tourist areas, you can use both Jamaican dollar and United States dollars. I will suggest you should exchange some Jamaican coins and dollars if possible, which maybe facilitate your trip in some certain conditions. Of course, don’t forget to exchange any Jamaican coins or dollars before you leave Jamaica.
Time zone in Jamaica is in Eastern Standard Time (EST), which is 5 hours behind Coordinated Universal Time (UTC -5).
The power plugs and sockets in Jamaica are Type A and B. The commonplace voltage is one hundred ten V and also the standard frequency is fifty cps.
Plug Type A is used in North and Central America, Japan, China, and more countries. Check the complete list of countries.
Plug Type B is mostly used in North and Central America and Japan. Check the complete list of countries.
Jamaica is a popular Caribbean vacation country. Offering tips is only common in tourist areas. In fact, the locals are not tipping in Jamaica.
Here is a table of tipping etiquette for your reference. Ask if tipping is allowed before you offer.
Now you know Jamaica generally. You are on the step of planing your snorkeling trip. Considering the geography and climate of Jamaica, the best snorkeling destination in Jamaica is Montego Bay.
Snorkeling Guide to Montego Bay
Montego Bay is an extraordinary enticing holiday destination. Donald Sangster International Airport, the second busiest airport in Jamaica and a word one, situated at 4.8 km east of city. Every day thousands of tourists are arriving here and start their pleasant journey.
People can also arrive and leave from Montego Bay Port through a cruise line terminal. The advanced tourist industry benefits the hotel industry. Big or small, luxurious or economic hotels are scattering all over the area, offering you masses of options.
As a popular tourist destination, Montego Bay is famous for shopping heaven featuring duty-free. You can plan a-day of shopping by the way.
The average temperature in Montego Bay is about 38.9°C (102.0°F), and the average humidity is 77%. Montego Bay is located at the northern coast, so in the rainy season there would be thunderstorms. Check the weather first, and then arrange your snorkeling trip.
The natural coral reefs and calm warm water makes Montego Bay be good to snorkeling. The marine park here protects a mass of fish species, coral reef species, and maintains a healthy marine ecosystem. You will see diverse tropical fish and coral reef during the snorkeling, such as angel fish, butterfly fish, clown fish.
If you would like to take a boat trip, you will find better snorkeling sites a little far away from the beach, such as Coyaba Reef, and Bogue Lagoon.
Here we have to mention Doctor’s Cave Beach, it gets overwhelming popularity because of its curing water. Mineral spring water flows into the ocean, making the warm warmer and improving the high visibility of water. Sir Herbert Barker, a famous British Osteopath, claimed in an article that the waters can cure some ailments. I am not sure if the waters really have the mysterious healing power, but an influx of people come here to experience.
Besides Doctor’s Cave Beach, some other great snorkeling sites nearby Airport North, Buccaneer Beach, Montego Bay Beach, Unity Hall and Great River Bay are also excellent options.
It’s not hard to book a snorkeling tour at local. They could provide you snorkeling guide and snorkeling equipment, which could be convenient. Even some hotels provide snorkeling kit as a benefit. On the other hand, you should consider how many people have used your snorkeling equipment. In the tourist peak, the hygiene safety is a big concern. It’s better and safer to carry your own snorkeling equipment. Seabeast AF90 full face snorkeling mask is an outstanding choice. The 100% anti-fogging performance has won the word of mouth.