Kingston, Ocho Rios & Port Antonio, Jamaica: beach vacation travel guide for Canadians

Aug 26, 2022

We've covered some of the best beaches in Montego Bay and Negril, but Jamaica is full of hidden beaches and golden stretches of sand beyond these iconic regions. Our deal experts are always on the lookout for great deals for 5-star getaways and all-inclusive resorts in Jamaica , and some of the best deals we've featured have been for Ocho Rios, Kingston and Port Antonio. 

Ocho Rios is a popular tiny town, regularly visited by cruise ships. It is also home to numerous all-inclusive resorts, making it an easy and convenient getaway locale.

Things to do near Ocho Rios

Visit Dunn’s River Falls, a 55-meter waterfall that spans a distance of over 600 meters, creating stunning natural pools as the water falls. Dunn’s River Falls beach, located right in front of the falls, is a calm sand of strip and a great stopover on the way to and from the waterfalls.

The Instagram-ready water attraction Blue Hole is located about 25 minutes away from Ocho Rios. Nearby is also the village of Nine Mile, the birthplace of Bob Marley.  Nature lovers should visit Rainforest Adventure Mystic Mountain and try ziplining through the forest. Heights not your thing? Take your pick of guided rainforest walks. And don't miss the Green Grotto Caves, Jamaica’s best known limestone caves.

There are plenty of beaches here to explore. Bay Beach is packed with activities, and is  a buzzing stretch full of action. Mahogany Beach is a free beach popular with both locals and tourists. James Bond Beach is reportedly where Ian Flemming used to visit and actually write his novels.

Mammee Bay Beach is located 15 minutes away from Ocho Rios, and is a half public, half private beach. The waters are ideal for windsurfing, but even better, this beach hosts stunning sunsets.

After a day of sightseeing near Falmouth, consider spending the afternoon at Bamboo Beach, a private beach club flanked by large palm trees. With a shallow drop-off and white-sand shores, it’s a wonderful place to alternate between swimming and relaxing on a cushioned sun lounger.


Jamaica’s capital city of Kingston might not be a top beach destination, but our deal experts have a few recommendations they wanted to share. Located at the foot of the Blue Mountains, Kingston is the largest city on the island.

Visit Trench Town, a neighbourhood with a Bob Marley Museum, and where many influential reggae artists started their musical careers. Port Royal was home to the pirate Blackbeard. Plan a visit to the National Gallery of Jamaica, the largest and oldest public art gallery in the English speaking Caribbean.

Near Kingston, check out Blue and John Crow Mountains, the highest mountain range in Jamaica and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Make time for a stop at one of the several coffee plantations in Blue Mountain, such as the 200-year-old Old Tavern Coffee Estate.

If you have a bit more time, take a dip in Rockfort Mineral Bath, hot springs full of therapeutic and healing properties, or make a trip to Lime Cay, just 15 minutes by boat from Port Royal. It is one of the largest cays in the area, with sandy and rocky beaches. The Cay is known to disappear when the tide is high, making it an uninhabited paradise.  

Port Antonio

Port Antonio is located in the northeastern coast of Jamaica and is your destination if you’re looking for a more luxurious retreat. A favourite with celebrities, the white-sand beaches are less crowded and some of the finest in Jamaica.

Our deal experts are always on the hunt for amazing deals. Sign up for an alert and when we find a great deal for Port Antonio, you’ll be the first to know!  

Travelzoo Tip: While fresh fish are local to the region, did you know that shellfish aren't? We love our lobster as much as the next person, but if you’re looking for truly fresh, local seafood, stick to the fish.

Port Antonio is also home to some of the best deep sea-fishing in Jamaica, so consider booking a tour and trying your hand at reeling in tuna or kingfish. Or, take a dip at the Blue Lagoon, a popular destination with underwater explorers.  While you’re in the area visit Reach Falls or Rio Grande for freshwater swimming.

Three of the most famous beaches in the Port Antonio area are Frenchman’s Cove, Winnifred Beach and San San.

You might find it hard to tear yourself away from the picture-perfect Frenchman’s Cove, surrounded by tropical jungles and cliffs and fed by a freshwater river, The quiet stream means you’re swimming in a mix of freshwater and saltwater, which is said to feel especially invigorating. Winnifred Beach is one of the few truly public beaches on this coast, making it a popular destination. The trees provide relief against the sun, and there are rum shacks and jerk chicken stands on the beach.  Pellew Island and San San Beach are well worth exploring if time allows.

Love some waves? Slightly off away from Port Antonio is Boston Bay Beach, a popular destination for surfers.

Browse our Jamaica dealsor visit our Jamaica beach vacation guide for more inspiration.

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