Everyone wants to know … What’s there to do in Jamaica? What’s the weather like? Is February a good time of year to visit Jamaica? We answer those questions plus give a few insider tips to help you enjoy your vacation.
Ash Wednesday – February 14, 2018
Take note: Most Jamaica event calendars are woefully inaccurate. Many popular websites still list events that have long been abandoned or happened in the distant past. Outdated websites and inactive Facebook pages are not uncommon.
If you are planning your vacation around a specific event, make sure you double-check the dates, ideally with the organizers, before confirming your travel plans. Realize that sometimes events are canceled if ticket sales are poor.
On the other hand, events, especially those attracting a more local clientele, often get announced with little notice followed by a lot of advertising on the local television and radio stations.
Rainforest Seafood Festival
Rainforest Seafood Festival is a family “fun day and concert”. The event boasts great food, excellent singers, kids activities, and giveaways. The proceeds from the event support the We Care for Cornwall Regional Hospital Fund.
Date: Ash Wednesday – February 14, 2018
Location: Catherine Hall Entertainment Center, Montego Bay
February was officially declared as Reggae month by the government of Jamaica back in 2008. There will be no shortage of reggae in Jamaica in February.
Bob Marley’s birthday week as well as his birthday, February 6th, generally have the most concerts and activities. There is usually a concert on February 6th at the Bob Marley Museum on Hope Road in Kingston. The Bob Marley’s Annual Birthday Bash is also held during that week in Negril on One Love Drive, formerly West End Road.
Sagicor Sigma Corporate Run is an annual 5K which is deemed the Caribbean’s largest road race. The event starts at Emancipation Park in New Kingston and ends with a celebration and awards ceremony.
Since 1999, over $JA200 million dollars in proceeds have been donated to various health and child-related charities. 2018 will mark the 20th staging of the event.
Date: February 19, 2017 at 7:30 am. The date for 2018 has not yet been announced.
Location: Emancipation Park, New Kingston
The Jamaica Biennial, previously known as the National Biennial, is the National Gallery’s flagship biennial exhibition. Designed to encourage the development and promotion of Jamaica art, the Jamaica Biennial includes works in all media and genres by a wide variety of artists who enter the exhibition through a juried system or by special invitation.
Jamaica’s Theatre season runs from December through May. The national pantomime, a central main event of the season, has been running annually since the 1940s.
The pantomime is a play which is usually a musical comedy making satirical reference to Jamaican culture, folklore, as well as historical and or current events and politics.
The costumes and sets are usually vibrant, creative and colorful. The dialog is primarily in Patois and without some local knowledge, it can be difficult for foreigners to follow along.
Most Jamaican plays cater to mature audiences; however, the pantomime caters to patrons of all ages and backgrounds.
The Ocho Rios Orchid Show often joins forces with the Classic Car Club at its annual show.
While the orchids steal the show, the cars bring nostalgia from a long gone era. Crafts are on sale and, of course, there is always food and entertainment.
Date: To be announced. Usually the show is in early February.
Location: Couples San Souci Hotel, Ocho Rios, St. Ann
Tamarind tends to be in season when most other fruits are not. It can often be found between January and March. The fruit is encased in a shell that must be removed to be eaten. The inner brown pulp surrounds a hard, black seed, which is inedible. The pulp is often mixed with sugar and rolled into balls called tamarind balls, which is a popular Jamaican candy or dessert. The sweet but tart pulp is also used to make jams, jellies and drinks.
This almost pear-shaped fruit is dark red on the outside and snow-white on the inside. There is a hard seed in the center. These apples bear fruit in February and April and also in June and July
The main citrus crop bears between November and April. In addition to the usual fare such as oranges, tangerines and grapefruits, Jamaica has some unique citrus fruits. The ortanique is a cross between an orange and a tangerine. The ugli, is like a tangelo. It is a cross between a tangerine, grapefruit and an orange. As the name suggests, it is an ugly fruit. With its thickened skin, prominent pores, and sometimes a shriveled appearance, it looks like a deformed grapefruit or orange. It is surprisingly sweet and juicy reminding us to never judge a book by its cover!
Did you know that sugar, molasses, and rum all come from sugar cane?
Back in the 1800s, Jamaica was one of the leading producers of sugar. Now, barely enough is produced to serve the nation as most of the sugar factories have long closed.
The crop season is from December through March.
The Jamaican Government can change the end date to close the season, but so far we haven’t heard anything about that.
We all want perfect weather conditions on our vacations. The reality is that nature has its own agenda. Here is a guide as to historical weather conditions in the Discovery Bay – Braco area during February in Jamaica.
On average, there are 3002 hours of sunshine per year in Jamaica out of a possible 4383 hours. The sunniest months are January through April, as well as July and August.
Average amount of bright sunshine per day in February: 7 hrs
Average amount of daylight per day in February: 12 hrs
Sunrise: between 6:29 and 6:43 am
Sunset: between 6:04and 6:15 pm
Northeasterly trade winds keep the coastal areas cool with island temperatures averaging around 71-88°F year round. Nevertheless, there aren’t wide variations in temperature across the island.
Temperatures do tend to be lower in the mountainous areas such as in the Blue Mountains. Temperatures decrease by about 1°F for every 300ft increase in elevation. The plains such as in Kingston and the more flat and arid southern areas of the island, such as Clarendon, Manchester and St. Elizabeth, are hotter.
The warmest months in Jamaica are July and August with average maximum daytime temperature of about 89-90°F. The coolest months are December through February with maximum temperatures of about 84.
Average maximum daytime temperature in Discovery Bay – Braco area in Jamaica in February is about 82°F/28°C. Average minimum temperature is around 64°F/18°C.
How much rain can you expect? It varies.
Traditionally, the rainy periods are April and May/June and again October to November/December. June and July are generally the driest months. February and March are also traditionally dry months too. This pattern does vary from year to year with much more variability noted in recent years.
The amount of rainfall and the frequency of showers or days of rain can vary quite a bit in Jamaica, even in nearby towns. For example, there could be significant rainfall in the town of Discovery Bay with hardly a rain drop in our area, five minutes drive away. In general, the more north-easterly sections of Jamaica get the most rain. These areas would represent areas east of Ocho Rios and on into Portland, where rainfall averages can be significant.
Rain in Jamaica often is at night or early mornings. Sometimes, rain comes on during the daytime in short quick spurts only to disappear just as quickly as it came. In the rainy period, there can be several consecutive days of rain.
On average, there are about 6 days with some rainfall, defined as any rain at all, during the month of February.
Average monthly rainfall for the month of February is 3.8 inches. Discovery Bay area gets less rain than Ocho Rios.
If there are heavy rains, on-river activities, such as river rafting, might be canceled due to high water levels or rapid rivers. Water clarity could also be affected depending on how much rain occurred in the mountains.
The sea is warmest during July through October. Average sea water temperature in Discovery Bay in February is about 81°F/27°C.
Hurricane season is June 1 – November 30.
Tropical storm risk for the month of February is, historically, zero.
Be sure to get trip insurance when you travel, especially internationally. This is particularly true during hurricane season.
February is high season. High season starts on December 15th and runs through April 14th. Hotel rates go up during high season; but, tourists come to Jamaica to escape the cold and enjoy’s the islands wonderful weather.
Tourist crowds continue to increase in February as the high season picks up. February is a fairly popular month for arrivals at Montego Bay Airport.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.
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‘Til next time.
Think and dream Jamaica!
Sherry, Darrell, and Darrian
Considering a visit to Jamaica with a group? Contact us today for more information about, Mais Oui Tennis & Spa Villa, our boutique 8-BR ocean view Jamaica villa rental experience in beautiful Discovery Bay, Jamaica. Perfect for multi-generational families and groups, retreats, and intimate destination weddings and vow renewals.
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Sherry & Darrell, owners of Mais Oui Tenis & Spa Villa in Discovery Bay, Jamaica, consider themselves unofficial ambassadors for Jamaica. They look forward to using their insider knowledge to help guests create priceless vacation memories. Feel free to say hi!