Known as the ‘land of wood and water’, Jamaica’s natural beauty has captivated countless adventurers and celebs over the years.

But many tourists see little of this vibrant nation beyond the walls of their all-inclusive compound and leave without realising what they’ve missed.

Provided you plan carefully, it’s perfectly safe and convenient to spend an extended travel break in Jamaica.

So here are ten tips for surviving and thriving in the planet’s coolest chillout spot.

Palm tress and the beach of Jamaica

1. Embassy

Before leaving home, touch base with your national high commission or consulate in Jamaica — they’ll provide first-hand advice on safety and provide vital assistance if required.

2. Accommodation

There are oodles of excellent accommodation options in Jamaica. But opt for a highly-rated Airbnb apartment in New Kingston for a safe and authentic hideaway in the capital.

3. Mosquito protection

Jamaican mosquitos love fresh blood, so if you arrive unprepared, they’ll literally make a meal of you. Keep these critters at bay with Skin So Soft spray from Avon.

4. Fantasy fish

If you love seafood, you’ll find the freshest red snapper on the planet at Gloria’s restaurants in Port Royal and downtown Kingston. Wash it down with some delicious Red Stripe beer.

5. Online connections

According to comms company Wiman, there are 27,509 free WiFi hotspots in Jamaica. So whether you study with Anglia Ruskin Distance Learning and need to check coursework or simply want to Skype with family to share news, you’re covered.

people playing in the sea of jamaica

6. Eco travel

Want to get back to nature in a blissful eco lodge with no TVs and a private beach frequented by manatees?

Then spend a few days at Zion Country in subtropical Portland parish, close to the John Crow mountains — it’s breathtakingly beautiful.

7. Musical heritage

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for 50 years, you’ve probably heard of Bob Marley. The late, great, reggae icon’s home at 56 Hope Road, Kingston is now a lively and interesting museum where you’ll learn what made this prophetic artist tick.

8. Romantic getaway

If you’re travelling with a partner, earn endless brownie points by booking a weekend away at the romantic Strawberry Fields Together retreat in rural St Mary.

You’ll stay in a pretty pastel beach cottage and enjoy splashing in the surf in either of their two private beach coves.

Beach in Jamaica and towel hanging

9. Wind and grind

Any traveler who wants to wind their waistline to the latest roots reggae music should pre-book tickets to the Rebel Salute music festival held annually in January in St Ann.

There’s no alcohol at this Rasta-inspired event and the food on offer is plant-based. But if you’re a fan of all things organic and herbal, it’s no biggie.

10. Western promise

The beach town of Negril is spread across the border of Westmoreland and Hanover parishes in Jamaica’s remote west and it’s where you’ll find the superb Seven Mile Beach and a distinctive hippie vibe.

That’s our list! Add your own Jamaican attractions in the comments section.