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We just visited every Sandals Resort in Jamaica to find out which one was best. At first, we found it hard to decide which one we liked best, but when we visited Sandal’s newest resort it was an easy choice. Overall, Sandals Dunn’s River is the best Sandals Resort. They have the best food, the best bars, two nice pools, and great service.
With that said, you may be looking for a larger resort, something closer to Montego Bay or looking for something with a smaller budget. Below we will go into more detail about which Sandals Resort in Jamaica will be best for you.
Our Picks for Sandals Resorts in Jamaica
- Dan’s Pick: Sandals Dunn’s River
- Newest Sandals Resort: Sandals Dunns River
- Most Affordable: Sandals Ochi & Sandals Negril
- Best for Honeymoons: Sandals Dunn’s River or Sandals Royal Plantation
- Best for Nightlife: Sandals Ochi and Sandals Dunn’s River
- Best Beach: Sandals Royal Plantation
- Best Pools: Sandals Ochi for variety or Sandals South Coast for size
- Best Food: Sandals Dunn’s River
- Closest to Airport: Sandals Royal Caribbean
Need Help Deciding? Talk to a Certified Sandals Advisor
We’ve visited every Sandals Resort and helped 1000s of couples book their vacations and Sandals and Secrets. We would be happy to help you find the best one for you too.
Getting the Best Deal at a Sandals Resort in Jamaica
Sandals always has deals going on. There are last-minute deals, 777 weekly deals, and seasonal discounts.
Our Ranking of Sandals Resorts in Jamaica
1. Sandals Dunn’s River – Ocho Rios, Jamaica
Best for foodies and those seeking ultra-luxurious suites
Sandals Dunn’s River has take Sandals to the next level. The food, bars, rooms and level of service have been taken up a level.
While the Sandal’s Dunn’s River property has been part of Sandals since the 1990s, it has been completely reimagined to “embrace the essence of Jamaica’s natural wonders” and now takes full advantage of its stunning location on the northern coast of the island.
The lush landscaping, jaw-dropping design, and amazing amenities of the all-new Sandals Dunn’s River make it a new contender for best honeymoon resort in Jamaica.
The rooms and suites at Sandals Dunn’s River are incredible and include Jamaica’s first Skypool Suites. These luxurious accommodations, which debuted at Sandals Grenada, offer an elevated infinity edge pool that runs the full length of your balcony and overlooks the beach. You also get a Tranquility Soaking Tub™ for two on your balcony. The only negative is they are always in the shade.
Also here are Sandals’ first-ever Coyaba Sky Rondovals. These private, round villas have access to the river pool plus an oversized private swim-up pool plus a terrace that takes up the entire roof. On the terrace, you’ll find plush seating, a bistro dining set, a telescope, and a Tranquility Soaking Tub for two.
Sandals Dunn’s River features 12 restaurants, many of which are new concepts. These include Edessa, a Greek restaurant; the Asian fusion Banyu; L’Amande, serving Jamaican and French cuisines; and Zuka, which features South and Central American dishes.
2. Sandals Royal Plantation – Ocho Rios, Jamaica
Best for couples looking for a smaller resort feel.
In our opinion, Sandals Royal Plantation is an excellent choice if you are looking for a quiet resort to relax.
There are only 74 ocean-view suites nestled along the beachside at Sandals Royal Plantation. Additionally, every room at the resort includes butler service and since the resort is small, your butler and other staff will always be nearby to serve you a drink, bring you some food, help you schedule an excursion or anything else you may need.
You can laze by the pool before heading off for a round of golf between the beautifully manicured lawns adorned with peacocks showing off their colors. The resort has antique furnishings that pair with innovative creations (such as the only champagne and caviar bar in Jamaica) harmoniously at Sandals Royal Plantation.
There are two different beaches and since they are small, the staff at the beachside bar and cafe is always close making sure you have anything you need to enjoy your time.
If you want a small resort but also want to stay active you can also go next door to Sandal Ochi which has multiple pools, scuba diving, tons of restaurants, and late-night entertainment. The only negative is you may be waiting for a shuttle to get you back and forth.
The only other complaint that some people have is that it takes a 90-minute shuttle ride from the airport to arrive, but the roads have improved greatly in the last few years.
There are many different accommodation options at Sandals Royal Plantation, each tailored to make every individual holiday personal to the couple in question. Each of the room styles qualifies as a Love Nest luxury suite, with the balance of tropical Jamaica and old-school elegance forming the perfect home-away-from-home.
3. Sandals Negril – Negril, Jamaica
Largest beach area
Negril may by our favorite Sandals Resort in Jamaica, but it’s so hard to choose.
What we like about Sandals Negril is the entire resort is spread across the seven-mile beach which means every room is on the beach very close by.
Additionally, there are motorboat activities available that are not available at every resort. You can go water skiing, tubing, and kneeboarding every day.
We loved having breakfast on the beach at Barefood by the Beach Restaurant. It is an a la carte option that very few guests choose to go to for some reason but we went every day.
The best rooms at Sandals Negril are at the Swim-up Crystal Lagoon. They include swim-up suites to a quiet, but good size pool with the beach on the other side of the pool.
The last thing I will mention is that you can always visit Beaches Negril which is a short cab ride away to go down some waterslides and enjoy a few different restaurants. Sandals Negril is barefoot luxury at its finest.
4. Sandals Royal Caribbean – Montego Bay, Jamaica
A great choice for the breathtaking over-the-water bungalows and foodies.
Sandal Royal Caribbean is a great retreat for a couple looking for a little bit of everything. The resort is a little on the small side compared to other Sandals resorts in Jamaica, but there are a lot of great features in a compact area. Additionally, you can take a 5-10 minute shuttle to Sandals Montego Bay.
One of the coolest features of Sandals Royal Caribbean is it has the only private offshore island in Jamaica which have over-the-water bungalows connected.
You reach the island by taking a quick boat ride from the main part of the resort. You can stay here and enjoy your entire day with Jerk Shack for lunch and an authentic Thai restaurant with amazing service where you can try as many different items from the menu as you would like.
There is also a pool with its own swim-up bar and a few beachy areas including a nude beach for anyone interested in that.
The Indian restaurant at the resort is another highlight as well as the rooms. The majority have a tranquility soaking tub on the balcony or patio with plenty of room for two.
For a little more variety for your trip you can always go next door to Sandals Montego Bay for more restaurants and pools.
5. Sandals Montego Bay – Montego Bay, Jamaica
Best for destination weddings
This is where it all started. Sandals Montego Bay is cleverly designed and completely luxurious, tucked along the beachfront with reefs to be explored. Visit the new Over-the-Water Bar for a cooling drink in the sunshine, or spend some time in your personal Tranquillity Soaking Tub. Round trip transportation is available between the different Sandals Royal Caribbean nearby.
Swim right up to your suite with a Love Nest Butler Suite, where you can spend your perfect getaway with a loved one with everything is taken care of for you. Wall-to-wall glass doors open onto a large patio with a Tranquillity Soaking Tub with vistas over the Caribbean Sea ahead. Any room you find yourself in guarantees a perfect stay.
6. Sandals Ochi – Ocho Rios, Jamaica
Best for golf lovers and active travelers
Sandals Ochi is huge giving you enough options of rooms and things to do so you can create the type of vacation you want.
Personally for me, I would put this higher on the list, but from my visits to Sandals Ochi I hear the opinions of other guest and find it polorizing. Because it is so large, I think it has a negative effect for first timers as they pick a location that is not ideal for them and end up taking the shuttle to the other half of the resort each day.
On one side, you’ll find buzzing beach clubs, bars, several pools, and a dive center while on the hillside there is a huge lively pool at the Great House. For more tranquillity, the Bulter Village has suites with semi-private pools and plenty of privacy. You can have your butler bring you everything you need for a great day by the pool.
The Sandals Golf & Country Club is recognized to be one of Jamaica’s finest, with tumbling fairways creating an 18-hole course over 700 feet above sea level. Private golfing lessons are available should you want to improve your technique.
7. Sandals South Coast – Whitehouse, Jamaica
Best Variety of Suites
Among the Sandals Resorts in Jamaica, Sandals South Coast is the hardest for us to recommend. Not because it isn’t an amazing resort, but because it has the worst drive to get to it. The roads have lots of potholes so there will be a lot of swerving and it caused us to get motion sickness to and from the airport.
Next time we will take Dramamine.
Once you arrive you will notice the resort is really nice with the Caribbean’s longest 17,000-square-foot river pool with its own bar as well as several other large pools. The resort is very spread out with two miles of white-sand beach where it is divided into three “villages”.
The Dutch Village has been recently renovated and has a relaxing pool with a bar and the French Village has a much more lively pool where there is often a volleyball game going on.
One highlight of Sandals South Coast is the variety of rooms. They have the iconic overwater bungalows but also the Rondoval suites (which I prefer). They have private plunge pools, outdoor showers, a shared lazy river/pool, and a butler service.
The Over-water bungalows offer an air of opulence that pairs with a connection to the natural world. Take some time out and recline in the private outdoor Tranquillity Soaking Tub or in an over-water hammock. 24-hour room service ensures you’ll never want for anything thanks to the Butler Elite Service.
What To Expect From A Sandals Resort in Jamaica
Regardless of which Sandals Resort in Jamaica, you choose the all-inclusive package that will include gourmet dining at up to 16 restaurants per resort as well as all meals and snacks, premium liquors, and wines with up to 11 bars at each resort and a stocked bar in every room. You can even visit the other Sandals resorts to dine, guaranteeing you should not get bored with the food.
There’s no shortage of thrills to be had either, with PADI-certified scuba diving, water sports, golf courses, day and night time entertainment, and beach sports to engage in – will you team up or play against your partner? Everything is taken care of for you; there are even personal butler services for most of the top-tier suites. With every resort being adults-only, you can bathe in the romance of tranquillity.
Which Sandals in Jamaica is the newest?
If you want a brand new resort, check out Sandals Dunn River. The other resorts are not new, but you have newly renovated suites at all the resorts except Sandals Royal Plantation to choose from.
Which Sandals Resort in Jamaica has the best beach?
Sandals Negril has a great expansive beach with the best sunset at a Sandals Resort in Jamaica. Sandals Royal Plantation also has a great beach with attentive service.
Which Sandals Resort is the biggest in Jamaica?
Sandals Ochi is the best resort if you want size, but the combination of Sandals Royal Caribbean and Sandals Montego Bay is also very large.
The magic of Jamaica is difficult to put into words. White-sand beaches line the shores of an island shaded by luscious tropical plants, while crystal-clear rivers and plummeting waterfalls navigate the mountainous backdrop. There are seven luxury Sandals resorts awaiting the happy couple on the magnificent island, each with its own specialties to choose from. Of course, the “Stay at One, Play at All Sandals” program means you can explore the other resorts regardless of which one you call home.
While it is hard to say which Sandals resort in Jamaica is best, we can help you decide which is best for you.
He is an expert travel advisor and enthusiast. He has traveled extensively in the USA, Central America, South America, and Europe. He has visited every Sandals Resort and is one of a select few Diamond Elite members of the Sandals Chairman’s Royal Club.
Dan graduated from Johnson & Wales University with an associate degree in Culinary Arts. Later he graduated from the University of Utah with a bachelor’s degree in International Studies with a focus on people and culture.