Jamaica's best beaches

Jamaica is home to more than 70 incredible beaches, each one a glistening Caribbean treasure. Whether you're looking for a secluded spot to enjoy a Robinson Crusoe moment or a bustling beach filled with water sports and activities, you're going to find it on one of Jamaica's best beaches.

Jamaica's best beaches © Atomazul - Dreamstime.com
Jamaica's best beaches © Atomazul - Dreamstime.com

Jamaica's best beaches: top six bays & beach clubs

Jamaica is a big hit with winter sun seekers, and if you're thinking of escaping the chill with a break to this colourful Caribbean island, use our tried and tested guide to visit Jamaica's best beaches, including these six unmissable bays and beach clubs:

1. Seven Mile Beach

Seven Mile Beach in Negril is one of the most popular beaches on Jamaica's west coast, and for a very good reason. The beach may attract over 400,000 visitors each year but it retains a laid back, relaxed vibe. Seven Mile Beach gained popularity in the 1960s and was known as a hippy hangout for American tourists. These days it has a family friendly feel as it's the perfect place for children.

Seven Mile Beach in the far west of Jamaica © Peter Q - Flickr Creative Commons
Seven Mile Beach in the far west of Jamaica © Peter Q - Flickr Creative Commons

The beach is protected by a reef so the water is warm and calm, and it's never too windy, while the nearby cliffs make it a popular place for cliff jumping. If you're not quite that adventurous, it's also a very pretty spot to sit and watch the sunset.

Sadly, this beach is under severe threat of erosion and experts have warned Seven Mile Beach may not be around in 30 years time. Our advice? Get there as soon as you can to enjoy this incredible beach before it's too late.

2. Boston Bay Beach

Boston Bay, just east of Port Antonio, is one of Jamaica's most popular surf beaches. Whether you're a pro surfer or you'd rather sit back and enjoy the views, you're sure to fall in love with Boston Bay Beach. Surf lessons are available and the crystal clear sea is great for swimming.

Boston Bay Beach, Jamaica © Kent MacElwee - Flickr Creative Commons
Boston Bay Beach, Jamaica © Kent MacElwee - Flickr Creative Commons

The beach doesn't attract too many tourists so it has an authentic and local vibe. The area is famous for its jerk chicken and you'll find food stalls serving the local specialty - it's spicy but delicious and well worth a try.

3. Cosmo's Beach

Cosmo's Beach in Negril is close to Seven Mile Beach but private with a small fee to enter. However, this fee is waived if you dine at Cosmo's Restaurant, a delicious seafood destination that's well worth feasting at to make use of the beach.

Jamaican jerk chicken cooking © Glennia - Flickr Creative Commons
Jamaican jerk chicken cooking © Glennia - Flickr Creative Commons

If you're looking for a quieter and more relaxed day at the beach then Cosmo's is the place to be. Hammocks swing lazily from the trees as happy restaurant customers snooze off a tasty lunch.

4. Long Bay Beach

Long Bay Beach in northern Jamaica is especially popular with surfers, although there are strong currents here so only expert swimmers should enter the water. However, the beach is so beautiful it's still worth a visit. Canoes are available to hire and surf lessons can also be booked.

Long Bay Beach, eastern Jamaica © Heather and Mike - Flickr Creative Commons
Long Bay Beach, eastern Jamaica © Heather and Mike - Flickr Creative Commons

The quiet beach is free from resorts and has a local, chilled out atmosphere. Jerk stalls sell freshly cooked chicken and icy cold Red Stripe. This delicious but simple feast is best enjoyed under the shade of a palm tree.

5. Reggae Beach

Reggae Beach is located halfway between Ocho Rios and Oracabessa and is often considered to be Jamaica's best kept secret - so shhh, don't tell too many people about this hidden gem! There's a small fee to enter the beach but for this you get sun loungers and great facilities. It's a popular spot for snorkeling and you can hire all your gear when you arrive.

Reggae Beach, Jamaica © Monkeyscrews - Flickr Creative Commons
Reggae Beach, Jamaica © Monkeyscrews - Flickr Creative Commons

This is a quiet beach for much of the week but on Friday afternoons it comes alive with its renowned 'after work jams'. Reggae music is played quietly along the beach and it gradually becomes louder and livelier as more people join the party. Enjoy fresh lobster and jerk chicken at the small bars that pop up. A bonfire is lit once the sun has set and a DJ will keep the party going into the early hours.

6. Burwood Beach

Burwood Beach is a quiet, low key stretch in Trelawny Parish, best known for being the birthplace of Usain Bolt. The facilities here are basic but what more do you need when you have such a beautiful beach? Bring a towel and a good book and you'll be sure to have a great day.

Burwood Beach, Trelawny Parish © lambdachi - Flickr Creative Commons
Burwood Beach, Trelawny Parish © lambdachi - Flickr Creative Commons

Local vendors cook fresh fish on the beach and there are nearby restaurants serving cold drinks. This is the place to kick-back and soak up the sun while relaxing on the sugary white sand. The sea is calm so it's perfect for swimming but be aware that there isn't much shade.

If you fancy trying some of Jamaica's best beaches for yourself, check out the latest offers from Sandals as well as winter sun breaks from British Airways. You can also visit our holiday deals and discounts sections for all the latest online savings.

Monica Stott

Monica Stott
Posted on Tuesday 25th August 2015 in: Beach Caribbean Excursions Winter sun

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