Jamaica’s ‘Second City’, Montego Bay is filled with a range of tourist attractions and historical sites. The urban city, also called MoBay by locals, is home to a cruise ship terminal, duty-free shopping, the historic Sam Sharpe Square and many resorts and beaches. Of course, there are a few things you can do in Montego Bay for free and we’ve picked out the best.
Visit the Sam Sharpe Square
The Sam Sharpe Square, located in the centre of Downtown Montego Bay, is named after Samuel Sharpe, one of Jamaica’s seven national heroes and leader of the 1831 Christmas Rebellion in Jamaica. The main monument here is a collection of statues that depict the struggles faced by Sharpe in his fight for freedom. The bustling area maintains a historic feel of Jamaica from the 1800s, while the vendors who set up stands here add a modern touch. The Sam Sharpe Square is also where its namesake national hero was hanged to his death in 1832.
The Harbour Street Craft Market is one of the largest, duty-free, open-market areas in Jamaica. Most popular among cruise ship passengers, here you’ll find a good selection of Jamaican-made products and souvenirs, such as straw hats, bags and baskets, wooden platters, musical instruments, beads, carved objects, and toys. Even if you decide not to buy anything, the environment of a Jamaican craft market is surely an entertaining one.
Relax on Dead End Beach
Dead End Beach, also called the Buccaneer Beach, is a free, public beach at the northern end of central Montego Bay. It’s located next to the Donald Sangster International Airport, so it’s perfectly situated near the hotels, shops and restaurants. There are no facilities here, except for a bar with a pool table opposite the beach, which is popular with local residents. Visitors can come and soak up the sun while enjoying the sight of airplanes landing and leaving the island.
Climb Fort Montego
Fort Montego is one of the many forts built by the British to protect the island from pirates in the 1700s. The fort once housed four 12-pound cannons and five lower-calibre guns, but the cannons have only been fired twice in history. Today, all that remains of the Fort is three cannons and the remnants of the artillery store. The fort is located near Montego Bay’s popular shopping area, the Hip Strip.
Hang out on the Hip Strip
As the name suggests, the Hip Strip is the coolest area in Montego Bay, lined with fun activities, entertainment and adventure. The Hip Strip is located on Gloucester Avenue and is loaded with almost all the fun activities you can find in Jamaica. The Strip is home to great bars, clubs, restaurants, shops, and other entertainment venues, and it’s also in close proximity to many of the popular beaches in Montego Bay. During the day, the Hip Strip buzzes with vendors and tourists engaging in the negotiation of Jamaican products and souvenirs. At night, it transforms into a street party scene, with loud Jamaican music, liquor and food.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.