You’ll have to trek a ways out from Runaway Bay to take in the architecture of Jamaica but the trip is more than worth it. To the south of Runaway Bay, and just west of the main city of Kingston is Spanish Town, which was the old Spanish capital and later the British capital from 1655 until 1872. Many of the old government buildings have been restored and they offer a glimpse into the island’s colonial past.

     While taking in Spanish Town be sure to stop to see the Iron Bridge, which is one of the few bridges of its kind left anyway in the Americas. The foundations of this structure date to 1675 while the current bridgework was built in 1801.

     Throughout the island, and even near Runaway Bay are the Jamaican “Great Houses,” which are the stately mansions built by British sugar plantation owners through the 18th and early 19th century. One of the most impressive houses is the Greenwood Great House, built in 1760 it is known today for its famous collection of antique musical instruments.

     The small port town of Lucea, which means “Lucy,” is located on the Western half of the island. It is worth visiting as the area is largely unspoiled by tourists and offers some old British buildings and the remains of Fort Charlotte. The 18 th century fort, named after Charlotte, consort of King George III of England, was built of rectangular cut stone has several openings toward the sea.