How to Plan the Perfect Montego Bay Vacation

by Emese Graham
birds eye view of almost empty montego bay beach

Vacations in Montego Bay are the type of magic that lasts. You’ll find that long after you’ve returned home, you still feel a little piece of Jamaica with you. Here’s how to plan the perfect Montego Bay getaway, complete with our recommendations for all-inclusives, boutique hotels, local things to do, and nearby attractions.

Did you know?

Jamaica is already open to Canadian travellers, with some new policies in effect for everyone’s health and safety. For the most up to date information, bookmark our COVID-19 Travel Map to keep it handy.

Best All-Inclusive Resorts in Montego Bay

Montego Bay has no shortage of all-inclusive properties for every style of traveller. Our Travel Experts can help you pick out the perfect resort for your budget and interests. But here are a handful of our favourites.

1. Secrets St. James Montego Bay


Best For: Couples and Friend Groups

Fave Feature: This sophisticated all-inclusive resort offers more dining experiences than you can possible enjoy in one trip. And with free-flowing access to the sister property close by, your romantic date night options are endless!

2. Hyatt Zilara Rose Hall


Best For: Couples

Fave Feature: All of the accommodations are inviting and comfortable, but the swim-up collection is just spectacular. Bed to pool in 3 seconds flat? Love it.

3. Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall


Best For: Families

Fave Feature: Not all beaches are equal! Enhance your beach day, every day, with Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall’s ideal location on Montego Bay’s shores. Fun water sports, boating, and luxury beach cabanas are the icing on this sugary golden sand beach.

4. Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall


Best For: Families

Fave Feature: Kids and their parents love Iberostar’s Star Camp, specifically designed with three separate programs for kids ages 4 – 17. This kid’s club knocks most others out of the water, with over 140 fun activities to enjoy both indoors and out.

5. Jewel Grande Montego Bay Resort & Spa


Best For: (Can We Get Away with Saying “Everyone”?)

Fave Feature: Jewel Grande MoBay is all-inclusive, but it manages to make your experience feel personal, not just like you’re a number. The butler suites and villas especially give you that pampered feeling that you’re looking for in a luxury beach vacation.

6. SeaGarden Beach Resort – BIPOC Owned!


Best For: Families, Foodies

Fave Feature: As a Jamaican-owned and operated all-inclusive resort, you know the dining is going to be popping! Savouring the authentic Caribbean cuisine and tasty international eats is going to be the favourite parts of your vacation.

Best Boutique Hotels in Montego Bay

Jamaica is full to the brim of hidden gem boutique hotels, many of which are found right in Montego Bay. These quieter establishments are perfect for group trips, long-term stays, or just a taste of the Jamaica you haven’t experienced before. Ask our travel agents for more recommendations to add to this short list.

1. Half Moon Jamaica – BIPOC Owned!


Best For: Groups, Relaxed Travellers

Fave Feature: Don’t make the mistake of thinking all boutique hotels are small. Half Moon sits on a 3-kilometre beachfront and a private lagoon, so you can spread out as much as you like.

2. Altamont West Hotel – BIPOC Owned!


Best For: Solo Travellers, Work-from-Holiday Travellers

Fave Feature: The value of this Montego Bay hotel is hard to beat! Just 7 minutes from the airport and a stone’s throw from the beach, it offers spacious and homey accommodations for a steal! Making it the perfect budget-friendly hub for travellers who want to enjoy an extended stay by the beach.

3. Golden Castle Golf & Spa Villa – BIPOC Owned!


Best For: Groups, Active Travellers

Fave Feature: This 12-bedroom luxury villa beside Cinnamon Hill Golf Course includes a private chef, dedicated butler, and complimentary golf clubs and equipment in case you and your golfing buddies prefer to travel lightly.

ENQUIRE

Best Things to Do in Montego Bay

There’s nothing wrong with soaking up the sun all day. But if you’re interested in adding a little more variation to your itinerary, start with these local activities.

1. Fill up at Usain Bolt’s Tracks & Records


Located in Hip Strip, Montego Bay, this restaurant features mouthwatering items like oxtail mac’n’cheese, curry shrimp, and snapper.

2. Check Out Sam Sharpe Square

This downtown Montego Bay monument honours Sam Sharpe, who led the rebellion of Christmas Day, 1831, beginning the Emancipation War.

3. Feed Hummingbirds

jamaican hummingbird

Family-run Rocklands Bird Sanctuary makes for a beautiful afternoon. Discover thousands of birds, including Jamaica’s native hummingbird species, which you can feed with the help of the sanctuary’s owner.

4. Play a Round at Cinnamon Hill


While you’re playing the scenic 18 holes, keep an eye out for landmarks like Rose Hall Great House, a waterfall featured in Live and Let Die, and Johnny Cash’s home: Cinnamon Hill Great House.

Top Excursions from Montego

Montego Bay is ideally located within a short drive of several fun activities and day trips. Spice up your vacation with one or more of our favourite things to do near MoBay.

1. Luminous Lagoon

bio illuminescent water in luminous lagoon montego bay

Sail across the Luminous Lagoon on an after-dark pontoon boat tour. You’ll glide across the cold, blue iridescent water surface along Falmouth’s idyllic waterfront, then dive in to experience the phenomena up close.

2. Dunns River Falls Tour

dunns river falls jamaica

Cruise along Ochos Rios’ energetic coastline, stopping by Columbus Park & Museum at Discovery Bay. Then hike through the forest trail of Dunn’s River Falls Park to the White River Waterfall where you’ll climb its natural rock terrace steps 300 metres up the mountainside.

3.Mystic Mountain

woman ziplining at mystic mountain montego bay

Catch a bird’s eye view of Montego Bay from the Sky Explorer chairlift. Once you’ve reached the peak of Mystic Mountain, you can choose to bobsled your way down or zipline from platform to platform.

4. Chukka Cove & Cliffs

view of mans feet from river tube in chukka cove

Spend a day at Chukka Cove river tubing through Jamaica’s jungle, enjoying a scenic jeep safari adventure, or ziplining across a canopy of trees.

5. Jamaica Cave & Swamps Tour

black river jamaica

Calling all nature lovers and adventurers! Enjoy a guided tour into the beating heart of Jamaica’s wilderness, where you’ll visit the habitat of crocodiles, boa constrictors, and birds.

6. Black River Safari, YS Falls, & Appleton Estates

red flower blooms near ys falls jamaica

See the big draws in one day! Book a combo tour to visit the iconic Appleton Estates rum distillery, the beautiful YS Falls, and Black River, home to wild crocodiles. You’ll enjoy an authentic Jamaican meal to complete your adventure.

7. Martha Brae Rafting

man steers wooden raft floating on martha brae river

Float along the picturesque Martha Brae River at your own pace on a thirty-foot bamboo raft, guided expertly by a raftsman. Make a few stops along the way to enjoy authentic local refreshments and take in the Jamaican culture with captivating storytelling.


Looking for your next Jamaica vacation?

Search our latest deals on Jamaica Vacations or tailor-make your own Jamaica vacation with our fully customizable Better Beach holiday packages.

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