Jamaica is the third largest island in the Caribbean being 234kms long and 80kms wide. It has a population of 2.8 million most being of African extraction. The island is dominated by the Blue Mountains inland surrounded by a narrow coastal plain. The climate is tropical with hot humid weather although inland on the higher ground it is more temperate. The island lies in the hurricane belt of the Atlantic Ocean with the hurricane season running from June to November, peaking in August and September.

Once a Spanish possession, Jamaica became a British colony in 1655 and achieved full independence in 1962.

Jamaica has a world renowned musical culture with reggae, dancehall and raga all originating from the islands vibrant, popular urban recording industry. Jamaica also has a strong sporting culture especially in athletics (Usain Bolt), cricket and boxing.

Fact file

Capital: Kingston
Currency: Dollar (Jamaican)
Religions: Christianity
Languages: English

GOV.UK travel advice for Jamaica



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