James Bond and Jamaica – A Match Made in The Tropics
Welcome to the sun-soaked world of James Bond and his undeniable connection to the beautiful island of Jamaica. This tropical paradise has been a recurring backdrop for the iconic secret agent, both on the pages of Ian Fleming’s novels and on the silver screen.
Jamaica’s allure can be traced back to the very roots of the Bond franchise, as Fleming penned his thrilling adventures from the comfort of his waterfront villa, Goldeneye. Today, this storied location continues to captivate die-hard Bond fans and casual travelers alike, offering stunning beaches, luxurious resorts, and the promise of unforgettable adventures.
From the moment Sean Connery first appeared on screen as 007 in 1962’s Dr. No, Jamaica has been an integral part of Bond’s legacy. The island’s breathtaking landscapes have set the scene for pivotal moments, such as Honey Ryder’s iconic emergence from the waves, and memorable film locations like San Monique in Live and Let Die.
Even as the franchise evolved, Jamaica remained a constant, featuring prominently in Bond 25, No Time to Die (2021)as Bond’s chosen place of retirement.
As you explore Jamaica’s pristine shores, intriguing caves, and cascading waterfalls, it’s easy to see why this island has captured the hearts of filmmakers and audiences alike. Whether you’re a lifelong Bond aficionado or simply seeking a taste of cinematic history, Jamaica offers a unique blend of adventure and relaxation that you won’t want to miss.
So grab your sunglasses, a chilled martini (shaken, not stirred), and dive into our guide to the top James Bond filming locations in Jamaica, where reggae legend Bob Marley even shares a surprising connection to the world of 007.
GoldenEye: A Must Visit for all Bond Fans
Nestled in the picturesque town of Oracabessa on Jamaica’s north shore lies GoldenEye, the former winter retreat of Ian Fleming and the birthplace of the James Bond novels.
Simple yet elegant, this single-story home is enveloped by lush banana and sea grape trees, creating a serene atmosphere perfect for dreaming up thrilling adventures.
Guests can follow in Fleming’s footsteps by snorkeling with loved ones at the private beach or taking a stroll through the sunken garden that overlooks the sparkling Caribbean Sea.
GoldenEye has long been a haven for Bond aficionados, as it played host to the stars of Dr. No during filming and even caught the eye of reggae legend Bob Marley.
Today, the Fleming Villa within the GoldenEye resort invites visitors to step back in time as they explore the memorabilia-filled living room or admire photos of Ursula Andress in her iconic role.
For those seeking a truly immersive experience, the resort offers beach huts and lakeside cottages that evoke the enchanting beauty of the films. Dine in the very gazebo where Fleming penned his novels, or unwind in one of the luxurious salt and freshwater infinity pools.
At GoldenEye, you can live out your own Bond-inspired adventure, surrounded by the captivating landscapes that sparked the imagination of a legend. Check out the website here for staying at the resort.
James Bond Beach
Adjacent to the legendary GoldenEye estate lies the alluring James Bond Beach. This hidden gem, with its golden sands and the striking St. Mary’s Mountains as a backdrop, offers a serene retreat for both Bond enthusiasts and beach lovers.
Although Ian Fleming enjoyed his own private seashore, he often visited this picturesque spot during his time in Jamaica. And for a small entrance fee, you can bask in the sun or take a refreshing dip in the crystal-clear waters of Oracabessa Bay.
As you unwind, savor the melodic tunes drifting from the nearby Moonraker Jamaican Restaurant, which occasionally hosts jazz, blues, soca, and reggae concerts in its open-air, two-story venue.
James Bond Beach is not only a haven for relaxation but also offers exciting water sports and on-site amenities such as changing rooms and showers. This scenic location has even served as a concert venue for international stars like Rihanna, Ziggy Marley, and Lauryn Hill.
Laughing Waters Beach: Where Honey Ryder walks out of the sea
Imagine yourself on the captivating beach where James Bond and Honey Ryder first crossed paths in Dr. No. Located just a 10-minute drive from the center of Ocho Rios and near the famed Dunn’s River Falls, Laughing Waters Beach (also known as Crab Key Beach) is the stunning setting where this iconic encounter took place.
Ian Fleming himself suggested this location to the movie producers, and Honey Ryder’s unforgettable introduction scene—emerging from the ocean singing “Underneath the Mango Tree”—helped catapult the film to stardom.
Remarkably, Laughing Waters Beach has remained virtually unchanged since the 1960s, thanks to its protection by the Jamaican government. The Urban Development Corporation now oversees the property, granting visitors the opportunity to step into the world of 007 by obtaining permission to visit or renting the beach and on-site villas for weddings and other special events.
Relive the magic of one of cinema’s most memorable moments at Laughing Waters Beach, where the timeless beauty of Jamaica’s coastline and the enduring allure of the Bond franchise converge to create an experience you’ll never forget.
Dunn’s River Falls: Bond’s Thrilling Hideout
Journey into the world of James Bond as you explore Dunn’s River Falls, the captivating site where Bond, Honey Ryder, and Quarrel sought refuge in Dr. No. After being pursued by dogs and Dr. Julius No‘s henchmen, the trio navigated through streams and a small jungle before cooling off in the majestic terraced waterfalls.
Here, Honey playfully teased 007, while Quarrel kept a vigilant eye on their surroundings, spotting the ominous tracks of the mythical Dragon.
While Laughing Waters Beach has remained relatively unchanged over the decades, Dunn’s River Falls has evolved into one of Jamaica’s most popular attractions. These breathtaking, 55-meter-high cascades stretch across 600 meters before flowing directly into the Caribbean Sea.
Just 3 kilometers from Ocho Rios, the falls offer visitors the exhilarating opportunity to climb to the top, especially during quieter periods when there are no cruise ships docked in port.
Dunn’s River Falls holds a rich history, as it was the site of the 1657 battle between the English and the Spanish Expeditionary Force of Cuba, who fought for control of the island. Known as “Las Chorreras” or “Falls” in English, this enchanting location now invites you to immerse yourself in the spirit of adventure that Bond himself experienced on the big screen.
Kingston, Jamaica: The Heart of Bond’s Adventures
Step into the vibrant city of Kingston, Jamaica, where the opening scenes of Dr. No set the stage for Bond’s thrilling escapades. It’s here that the infamous “Three Blind Mice” weave their way through Harbour Street, downtown, before assassinating John Strangway and spiriting him away after a bridge game at the Queens Club.
Today, the Queens Club is known as the Liguanea Club, located at 80 Knutsford Boulevard. This private sports club and hotel is not only the home of the Jamaican Squash Association but also a key part of James Bond’s cinematic history.
While Strangway’s cottage once stood on Kinsale Street, nestled in the foothills of the breathtaking Blue Mountains, it has unfortunately been lost to time. However, this corner of Kingston remains an essential location for Bond aficionados who wish to trace the roots of 007’s Jamaican adventures.
As you explore the bustling streets of Kingston, you’ll be treading the same ground as the legendary secret agent, immersing yourself in the vibrant atmosphere that contributed to the enduring allure of the Bond franchise.
Jamaica Swamp Safari Village: Bond’s Daring Escape in ‘Live and Let Die’
Immerse yourself in the thrilling world of Roger Moore‘s Bond debut as you visit the Jamaica Swamp Safari Village, the unforgettable setting for one of Live and Let Die‘s most iconic scenes.
Although portrayed as a Louisiana crocodile farm in the film, this sequence was actually shot at a popular crocodile farm in Falmouth, Jamaica.
Founded in 1970 by American, Ross Kananga, Jamaica Swamp Safari is a working wildlife sanctuary housing 80 crocodiles, boa constrictors, wild boars, and various other animals.
The fearless Ross Kananga not only performed the daring stunt of Bond running across the backs of snapping crocodiles but also inspired the film’s main villain, Dr. Kananga, who was played by Yaphet Kotto.
Located just an hour from Montego Bay, Swamp Safari occupies two acres of the Trelawny mangrove and serves as a sanctuary for displaced crocodiles.
Bond fans can still see the “Trespassers Will Be Eaten” sign from the film at the entrance, as well as the small concrete mound where Bond found himself surrounded by crocodiles. Now connected by a bridge, visitors can join a guide to explore the area.
Kananga House, which Bond famously set on fire, was rebuilt and named in memory of the late stuntman. Open to visitors, it shows a video clip of the iconic scene inside. Offering tours and up-close encounters with crocodiles, reptiles, and indigenous birds, the Jamaica Swamp Safari Village invites you to walk in the footsteps of 007 and relive the excitement of Live and Let Die.
Half Moon Resort: Bond’s Romantic Rendezvous in ‘Live and Let Die’
Step into the world of romance and intrigue at the Half Moon Resort in Montego Bay, where Roger Moore’s Bond meets Gloria Hendry‘s Rosie Carver in the classic film Live and Let Die.
Nestled on a crescent-shaped beach, this luxury resort was the backdrop for their passionate encounter on the fictitious voodoo island of San Monique. This place is classic James Bond meets Jamaica.
Cottage No. 10 served as Bond’s hotel room, where he battled a venomous snake, comforted Rosie Carver, and savored a delightful breakfast on the veranda the following morning.
Today, you can experience the allure of this iconic location by renting the Bond villa or choosing from other exquisite accommodations along the two-mile beach.
Just a 15-minute drive from Montego Bay’s Sangster International Airport, the Half Moon Resort invites you to relive the glamour and excitement of Live and Let Die in a breathtaking setting fit for a secret agent.
San San Bay: Bond’s Retirement Haven in ‘No Time to Die’
In the 2021 James Bond film No Time To Die, Jamaica takes center stage once more, this time as his retirement home. The legendary spy, played by Daniel Craig, resides in a secluded cabin on the shores of the pristine San San Bay, a location that perfectly captures the essence of a secret agent’s hideaway.
While Bond’s tranquil retirement is soon interrupted by an urgent mission, the stunning beauty of his chosen sanctuary remains unforgettable. Though the cabin used for filming was purpose-built and later dismantled, fans can still appreciate the striking scenery of Coco Walk, the private beach where it once stood.
To catch a glimpse of this enchanting location, hop on a boat and cruise along the turquoise waters, just as the film’s production team did. And if you’re keen to follow in Daniel Craig’s footsteps, book a stay at Geejam’s Cocosan Villa, a luxurious six-bedroom haven where the actor rested between takes.
James Bond and Jamaica – Made for Each Other
If London is the epicenter of all things MI6, Jamaica is James Bond’s home from home.
The allure of Jamaica has captivated the heart Ian Fleming and its from here the character James Bond was born. The island’s breathtaking beauty, warm tropical climate, and rich cultural history have served as the perfect backdrop for several iconic Bond films, leaving an indelible mark on the franchise.
From Ian Fleming’s GoldenEye Villa to the Laughing Water’s Beach where the world met Honey Ryder to the enchanting San San Bay featured in No Time To Die, Jamaica’s shores have played a vital role in shaping the 007 legacy.
Whether you’re a die-hard Bond enthusiast or simply a lover of cinematic history, a trip to Jamaica promises a wealth of unforgettable experiences. As you delve deeper into the world of James Bond and Jamaica, you’ll discover that the connection between the two runs far deeper than the silver screen.
So, pack your bags and get ready to embark on an extraordinary journey through the land that has inspired some of the most iconic moments in Bond history. One thing is certain: Jamaica’s undeniable charm and enchanting allure will leave you both shaken and stirred.