Would you prefer to know extra about Jamaican tradition, traditions and heritage? My household and I went to Jamaica to immerse ourselves within the wealthy and vibrant fantastic thing about the island. It has a vibrant historical past that makes them stand out as a nation.

Jamaica sits within the coronary heart of the Caribbean. Recognized for his or her music, meals and historical past. Their flag symbolizes and represents the nation by way of its colors:

Yellow – signify the sunshine and the pure wealth of the nation.
Inexperienced – represents hope and the pure fantastic thing about the nation.
Black – represents the artistic and passionate individuals of Jamaica.

Learn extra: The Best Jamaica Itinerary For A Fun and Relaxing Week

Throughout our journey to Jamaica, I discovered about and skilled the wonderful and wealthy Jamaican tradition. Let me share with you the issues that I’ve discovered whereas exploring the cultural capital of Jamaica, Kingston.

My family and I in Kingston Jamaica
Nice Jamaican Tradition, Heritage and Traditions: My household and I are in Kingston, Jamaica

The Mockingbird Hill Hotel organized a historic music tour of Kingston with Amilcar Lewis and Philipp Lobban of Backayard Magazine. We additionally did the Jamaican Tradition and Heritage tour in Kingston with Olde Jamaica Tours additionally organized by the Lodge Mockingbird Hill.

Learn extra: Hotel Review: Mockingbird Hill Hotel in Port Antonio, Jamaica

Historical past and Arts

Throughout our go to to Kingston, We went to the Institute of Jamaica to see the galleries on the origins and historical past of Jamaica. It was actually attention-grabbing to be taught concerning the historical past of Jamaica, the New World and the darkish colonial instances.

The National Gallery of Jamaica in Kingston
Nice Jamaican Tradition, Heritage and Traditions: The Nationwide Gallery of Jamaica

The Nationwide Gallery of Jamaica shows a stunning assortment of work, murals and sculptures of various Jamaican artists. Visiting the gallery is a good way to know and recognize Jamaican tradition.

The primary inhabitants of Jamaica, The Tainos, named the nation as “Xaymaca”, which meant the land of wooden and water. They had been believed to be the Arawak Indians from South America, who migrated to the Caribbean round 650 A.D. They constructed their communities and agriculture was their most important livelihood.

National Heroes Park in Kingston Jamaica Grave of Micheal Manley
Nice Jamaican Tradition, Heritage and Traditions: On the Nationwide Heroes Park in Kingston Jamaica on the grave of Former PM Micheal Manley | Photograph Credit score: Jik Reuben

We additionally paid a go to and respect to the notable leaders and personalities of Jamaica on the Nationwide Heroes Park. We had been in luck to fulfill Ms Sarah Manley, the daughter of the previous Prime Minister of Jamaica Mr Michael Manley.

Colonial instances

In the course of the time of exploration to find new lands and constructing empires via drive and slavery, Jamaica was additionally held captive by invaders. The historical past of Jamaica throughout the colonial instances was a darkish time and gloomy.

The Spanish occupation

In 1494, throughout the time of the explorations, Christopher Columbus sailed west to discover a path to India by crusing to the west, and located the Caribbean and known as it the West Indies.

He landed in Discovery Bay, Jamaica with the intention to say the island and restore his vessel. The connection between the Spanish and the Tainos was not straightforward and easy.

Resistance to the occupation was current, however the Spanish succeeded to take and declare the island. The Spanish City was the capital of Jamaica and was the centre of the Catholic religion on the island.

The Tainos had been enslaved, captured and ultimately almost worn out by the ailments carried by the Spaniards. The Spaniards introduced the primary inflow of captive Africans as their slaves to the island.

The British occupation

In 1655, the British invaded Jamaica with the assistance of the buccaneers. They managed to take management of the island from the Spaniards. The preventing between the British and the Spaniards gave a chance to the plantation slaves to run away and search for shelter within the mountains.

They, afterward, known as themselves the Maroons. The British occupation additionally introduced the Slave Commerce within the Americas and the Caribbean from West Africa.

The British abolished slavery all through the British empire on 1833. Jamaica has been part of the British Empire for 307 years. On 1962, Jamaica lastly had their Independence from the British occupation to have its personal authorities.

The Maroons

Nanny The Maroons grave at the National Heroes Square in Kingston Jamaica
Nice Jamaican Tradition, Heritage and Traditions: Nanny of the Maroons grave on the Nationwide Heroes Sq. in Kingston Jamaica

Maroon got here from the Spanish phrase “cimarrones” which suggests “mountaineers”. The Maroons are the slaves who escaped the plantations throughout the invasion of the British to occupy Jamaica.

They went to hunt refuge within the thick forests and mountains of Jamaica so their earlier masters couldn’t observe them. The Maroons made their very own settlement within the mountains and lived as free males and established their very own legal guidelines.

At present, the Maroons are a revered and impartial neighborhood in Jamaica. They nonetheless have autonomy as much as this date inside their very own neighborhood.

Port Royal

Port Royal was as soon as thought of the “wickedest metropolis on earth”. On the fringe of Kingston was the notorious metropolis of the buccaneers, the place the true pirates of the Caribbean dominated and plundered galleon ships and ransacked villages and islands.

Port Royal in Kingston Jamaica
Nice Jamaican Tradition, Heritage and Traditions: View of the Port Royal in Kingston, Jamaica

The town was crammed with brothels, taverns and the ill-gotten wealth of the pirates. The British requested the buccaneers to assist ceased the Spaniards and in return, the Buccaneers wished to make use of Port Royal as their hub.

Within the devastating earthquake of 1692, nearly all of Port Royal was claimed and submerged beneath the Caribbean sea along with their plundered gold and different treasures.

Religion and Religions

Catholicism was launched by the Spaniards and the Church of England (Anglican) was launched by the British. Judaism can also be a identified faith in Jamaica, introduced over by the Jewish refugees who stayed on the island.

Rastafarianism is the one that actually caught my consideration throughout our go to to Jamaica. The king of Reggae Music, Bob Marley is without doubt one of the well-known Rastas (An individual who practices Rastafarianism) and he helped to unfold the preachings of the faith and H.I.M Haile Selassie I by way of his songs.

Rastafari is a younger faith that originates in Jamaica throughout the Nineteen Thirties. They’re extra socially accepted now than earlier than. Rastafari is generally known as Rasta, Ras or Natty.  

Rastafarianism is now a spiritual sect that’s revered and recognised around the globe.

Jamaican Meals and drinks

Jamaican breakfast
Nice Jamaican Tradition, Heritage and Traditions:
Jamaican conventional breakfast

A go to to Jamaica received’t be full with out attempting their native and conventional Jamaican meals and drinks. Jamaican food is understood for its scrumptious Jerks, goat curry and patties to call a number of.

Ackee & saltfish is without doubt one of the most beloved dishes in Jamaica, which is usually served with callaloo, fried plantain, dumplings, bammy and rice & beans.

Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
Nice Jamaican Tradition, Heritage and Traditions: Jamaican Blue Mountain Espresso

Blue Mountain espresso is without doubt one of the costliest and best coffees in the world.  Solely grown within the Blue Mountains of Jamaica! For all of the espresso lovers on the market, I would like not clarify how good and attractive this espresso is!

Jamaica is understood for his or her finest rum and the overproof rum leads the scene on this class. A regular rum will vary from 80 – 100 proof, however the Overproof rum is starting from 125 – 160 proof!

Jamaican Language

Jamaica is an English-speaking nation. The locals additionally use their native Jamaican Patois or Patwah. Patwah is principally a language derived from the English language with an affect from Central and West African dialects or phrases.

Pattern Jamaican Patois phrases: 

Wah Gwaan  =  Greetings that actually translate as “What’s happening?” or “What’s up?”
Yahso =  proper right here
Irie =  Rastafarian time period to explain when one is feeling good; all the pieces is alright
likkle =  little or small
raggamuffin = a insurgent or rugged trying
pickney = youngsters
Again a Yard = used to seek advice from any individual’s hometown or nation.
Large Up = give respect



A properly – celebrated pageant and parade in Jamaica and in different Caribbean islands throughout the Christmas period. A mix of West African and English influenced this vibrant and vibrant pageant.

It started again within the colonial time when the slaves received a day without work engaged on the plantation to have a good time Christmas.

Accompong Maroon Competition

Each sixth of January, the Maroons have a good time the signing of the peace treaty between the Maroons and the British Empire. Accompong City is a “nation inside a nation”, led by its personal elected neighborhood chief known as “colonel”,  with no police, no crimes and no taxes to pay, this autonomous city is without doubt one of the off-the-beaten locations to see in Jamaica.

The celebration begins as they begin blowing their Abeng horn to name all of the Maroons, commemorating what they did nearly 300 years in the past. The Maroons may have a personal ceremony to pay respect to their ancestors. The entire day is crammed with a great deal of music, dance and attractive Jamaican meals.


Alpha Boys School in Kingston Jamaica
Nice Jamaican Tradition, Heritage and Traditions: Alpha Boys in Kingston

Music is the common language that everybody can perceive. A robust method of expression to ship a message to everyone. Jamaicans love music and it’s fairly evident from the works of Bob Marley and different well-known Jamaican music artists.  

We went to Alpha Boys College in Kingston, an establishment in Jamaican music. The alumni of this college grew to become pioneers and well-known artists within the music scene. Try this superior Alpha Boys School Radio.

The Alpha Boys School is run by the nuns so any donations which you could share are additionally welcome and can certainly assist the younger Jamaican youngsters to succeed in their desires.


Ska is a extremely popular music style from Jamaica within the 50s with a distinct sound of calypso and mento with a mix of rock, jazz and rhythm and blues. One of many identified artists on this style is Eddie Thornton, an alumnus of Alpha Boys College. Listen to the sample of Ska music.


Rocksteady is one other precursor and affect of reggae music. Rocksteady is much less energetic in comparison with Ska. It’s also a mix of Jazz, Rhythm and Blues and a little bit of Latin and African affect. Listen to the sample of Rocksteady music.


Bob Marley and the Wailers poster in Kingston
Nice Jamaican Tradition, Heritage and Traditions: Bob Marley and the Wailers poster in Kingston

The combination of Ska and Rocksteady is in style Reggae music. Reggae music took the world by storm, in fact, by the king of Reggae music, Bob Marley. His highly effective songs affect many music fanatics and are nonetheless beloved as much as this date. Listen to Bob Marley’s Reggae music.

On our go to to Jamaica, we didn’t get the prospect to go to Bob Marley’s mausoleum and birthplace in 9 Mile, St. Ann and in Hope Street, Kingston. This can be one other good excuse to return again to Jamaica. Watch this documentary and learn more about Jamaican music.

The Great Jamaican Culture Heritage and Traditions
The Nice Jamaican Tradition, Heritage and Traditions

I hope this helped you to know and appreciated the Jamaican tradition, traditions and heritage. In addition to impressed you to go to and uncover the great thing about Jamaica. 

Particular because of Lodge Mocking Chicken Hill (Shireen & Barbara) for organising our itinerary in Kingston. Altamont Courtroom Lodge for our lodging in Kingston. Nice thanks and good vibes to Amilcar and  Philip of Backayard Journal, Josh Chamberlain of Alpha Boys College, Mitch of Rockers Report Int’l, Life Yard, Olde Jamaica Excursions, Jessa Excursions, Mr Basil Smith and to Jik- Reuben for the superior photographs.


Ryazan Tristram EverythingZany Author Bio

Ryazan Tristram

Journey Author & Photographer

Ryazan has a Bachelor’s Diploma in Tourism and Lodge Administration. She additionally has greater than 10 years of labor expertise gained from working within the resort and journey sectors in Asia and Europe. Her work has been featured and printed on Huffington Put up, Reader’s Digest, Discovery Channel, World Journey Information, MSN, CNBC, GMA, Every day Mail UK, Lonely Planet and lots of extra. She is at the moment residing within the UK as a twin citizen (British – Filipina). Be part of her in travelling across the UK and past with a mission to advertise sustainable tourism and share journey guides, journey ideas, foodies, historical past and tradition.

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