Three distinctive aspects of the local culture are its food, music and language.

Jamaican food is a colorful mix of everything grown and reared in the country which includes chicken, fish, rice, beans and all types of fruit and vegetables.  While seafood is popular, Jamaicans themselves tend to eat more of a variety of foods.  If they are fishermen on the coast then seafoods such as fresh fish, conch and sometimes lobster can become a staple of diet but also included is chicken, goat, and oxtail.  Typical Jamaican vegetables such as callalloo, cho cho and yam will represent a large part of the plate, the latter, yam, as well as rice are referred to as "food".  Jamaican specialties a tourist should try should be stewed chicken, fish, beef and oxtail, curry goat, ackee and saltfish (the national dish of Jamaica) as well as curried chicken, steamed or Escovetch Fish.

 The music you will hear most of in Jamaica will be traditional "roots" Reggae and Dancehall.  Reggae was born from the rhythms of Ska, Rocksteady and Mento before it but is more political in nature, reflecting the times of dissent and uprising in the late 60's and early 70's.  Artists such as Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Jimmy Cliff and Toots Hibbert are some that most of the world would recognize.

Jamaicans speak a colorful patois of English.  The patois derives from both the English and Spanish languages. Most visitors will be familiar with the term "irie", meaning love or peace.  Visitors will often hear Jamaicans say to each other "Likkle More", meaning "see you later".  All Jamaicans speak "proper" English in addition to patois and can easily make themselves understood to the English speaking visitor.

Jamaicans in general are a loving, kind and hospitable culture eager to help visitors find their way and willing to talk about their day to day lives with those that are interested.  They are a proud culture that even in hardship value life and liberty in the highest priority.  The pace in Jamaica is relaxed, "soon come" is another term the visitor will hear frequently.