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Planning a January Jamaica Vacation: The Best Events and Festivals

Escape the cold weather of January for a Jamaica ocean vacation with an exciting event almost every day.

Planning a January vacation to Jamaica doesn’t have to be stressful. You’re coming here to escape the rat race after all, right?

With warm weather, exhilarating events and festivals, and everyone itching to go on holiday, Jamaica is surrounded by excitement and many things to do during January.

Stay at an all-inclusive Jamaica villa with staff to have every luxury you could desire. Keep reading this article for more ideas of what to do when you’re not getting pampered.

Why Should You Visit Jamaica in January?

January is one of the most popular times of the year to visit Jamaica, and for a good reason. Visitors love the:

  • Mild warm weather with low rainfall.
  • Escape from the cold of home.
  • Multiple cultural events and festivals.
  • Fun for families and adults alike.

Ready to escape the cold for the glistening shores of Jamaica? Book your stay today before it fills up!

Want to learn more about the exciting things going on in Jamaica in January? Read on.

Jamaican Weather in January

The weather in Jamaica is blissful year-round. January is one of the coldest months of the year, but that doesn’t mean much.

With temperatures around 82-84 degrees, the lowest chance of rain year-round, and, at most, a light breeze, the weather is pretty much perfect in January.

The ocean temperatures stay warm, too, settling around 81 degrees. You might want a light sweater at night, although temperatures are about 70-73 degrees – still warm enough to not have a coat.

Crowds and Accommodations in January

It’s no secret that the weather in January in Jamaica is phenomenal. For many people in the northern hemisphere, January is when they itch to go somewhere tropical.

Because of that, you’ll want to plan your Jamaican January holiday, months, if not a year in advance. Accommodations, activities, and events fill up fast during January.

Our villa is usually completely booked here at Villa Serenity for January and February, so planning is key. If you stay with us, we’ll help you navigate the activities and bookings ahead of time. Just let us know in advance, and our friendly staff will come to the rescue.

Holidays in January in Jamaica

The only national holiday in Jamaica in January is New Year’s Day, but what an event that it is. Sparkling fireworks, bubbly champagne, or songs of worship, there is something for everyone on New Year’s in Jamaica. Check out the local bars, beaches, and resorts for new year’s celebrations you’ll never forget.

Family Fun Events in Jamaica in January

Looking for activities that the whole family can enjoy? Look no further. Here are some must-do family-friendly activities that you can do with or without kids in Jamaica.

Visit the Secret Garden at Turtle River Gardens

Jamaica’s best-kept secret is Turtle River Gardens. More hidden than Dunn River Falls, the breathtaking garden feels hidden, and the 14 waterfalls and streams offer peaceful fun for the kids to splash in. You’ll also love the peacocks, macaws, and other birds found in the walk-in aviary.

Swim with Dolphins

Dolphin Cove in Ocho Rios is one of the top-rated attractions of all of Ocho Rios. All-ages will never forget playing and swimming with the friendly animals of the sea. The cove also offers swimming with stingrays, a glass-bottom boat for observation, and a shark show.

Zipline through the Forest at Mystic Mountain

Grab your kids over the age of five and head to Mystic Mountain for loads of tropical fun. Ziplining through the rainforest, you’ll see thundering waterfalls, teal ocean, and lush green foliage. If you’re lucky, you might spot some native Jamaican birds as well.

Check our Columbus Park Museum

The Columbus Park Museum is an outdoor museum located on the spot Christopher Columbus first set foot in Jamaica. A short history, ancient Arawak artifacts, and other historical pieces can be found on the plot of land overlooking the peaceful Caribbean sea.

Have fun on the Waterslides at Kool Runnings Water Park

Your kids probably love waterslides, and this waterpark has something for all ages. Located in Negril, 3 hours from Ocho Rios, the Cool Running Water Park has a lazy river, waterslides galore, go-karts, and a toddler-friendly splash area. The DJ and colorful tropical displays definitely make the event even more exciting.

January Festivals for Adults

January is full of festivals with food, dancing, and phenomenal music. Most of these festivals are oriented towards adults. Some of them may have child-friendly activities planned as well.

Rebel Salute 


Jamaica holds its most popular reggae festival every January in the parish of St. Ann, near Ocho Rios. The annual Rebel Salute festival has become one of the most anticipated cultural events in the country. The two-day festival celebrates Rastafari culture with Jamaican food, music, marijuana, and righteous performances from reggae and dancehall’s biggest names. 

Mocha Fest Blackout Party


Mocha Fest Blackout is a week-long event in May, but you don’t have to wait till then to have all the fun. You can attend the party on Montego Bay’s Jimmy Cliff Boulevard in January to have the party of a lifetime.

Peter’s Players Winterfest 

End of January

Music to your ears. The lineup for Peter’s Players Winterfest in Montego Bay is a must-see for those who enjoy rock ‘n’ roll, jazz, and blues. The multi-day music festival features performances by Paul Nelson, Peter Rivera with Ana Popovic, and Matt Andersen. 

Fan Matsuri

End of January

The Fan Matsuri 2020: Anime and Japanese Cultural Festival in Kingston will appeal to fans of Japanese culture. In addition to cosplay competitions, Japanese games, contests, and performances, there are booths selling Japanese-themed goods. 

CArt Show

End of January to the beginning of February

Milton Messam, a celebrated Jamaican painter, captures Caribbean life and our tropical landscapes masterfully in his canvas. This is your chance to meet the master and take home one of his famous creations at the CArt Show at the Mandeville Hotel.

What are you waiting for? Book your Jamaica vacation for January today.