Ocho Rios boasts a temperate climate all year long, but it’s downright dreamy from December to April during the island’s high season. Mild days, cooler nights, and average daily temperatures around 79 degrees dominate the scene—as do peak room rates and crowded beaches. December sees the first wave of crowds around Christmastime. March is the busiest month of the year with Easter, a spring-break scene that continues into April, and a weeklong Jamaican Carnival earlier in the month. February marks the birthday of Bob Marley with a week of celebrating that’s especially pronounced in Ocho Rios, Marley’s birth and resting place.
Rates drop a bit on the heels of high season, from mid-June to late August, which can be a solid opportunity. It’s summer and it’s warm, with a typical high of 90 degrees, though the northern coast can feel quite a bit cooler thanks to mountain breezes and trade winds. Music fans flock here in June for the annual Ocho Rios Jazz Festival. From late July to early August, locals celebrate Jamaican Independence Day (August 6) with days-long beach parties and music fêtes.
For the lowest prices of the year, come to Ocho Rios from May to mid-June and late August to November during low season. This period coincides with the wet season, when more showers strike and the threat of hurricanes increases (June through November). Ocho Rios enjoys some shelter from the storms, thanks to its northern mountains and surrounding geography. May and October tend to be the rainiest, but showers are often brief, refreshing, and tend to fall at night. Savvy travelers target this season, seeing the chance of poor weather as a small price to pay for an abundance of bargains on hotels, tours, and airfare.