Jamaica: Heartbeat of the World offers travelers unique and immersive Carnival 2020 events. The 2020 Carnival season in Jamaica officially kicked with several major bands premiering the sexiest costumes and premium events. The party is just beginning with a line-up of events every week leading up to the grand finale- Road March on Carnival Sunday, April 19th. 

Every year, Carnival is held in the month of April in the city of Kingston with events held in Ocho Rios and Port Antonio.  If you want to experience Carnival in Jamaica then the best time to come is during the week of April 10-20, 2020. The week leading up to Carnival Sunday will see events or as they are referred to in Jamaica- fetes, happening every day of Carnival week. In addition, from late February to April, there will be events every weekend leading up to the big finale.Carnival is a large costume and road festival with big trucks playing music while revelers in their fancy costumes dance along the parade route. Each band competes for the best costumes and music. It's one of the best times to come to Jamaica if you want to experience the fanfare and excitement. Carnival although not indigenous to Jamaica, has become an integral part of Jamaican culture and one of those events that has the island pumped with excitement! Nobody parties better than a Jamaican! Come vibe with us and see what we're talking about.

Carnival in Jamaica

This year, 2020, is predicted to be the largest carnival event ever. In  2019 promoters estimated around 51,000 visitors to the island participated in carnival events. This means that carnival is a commercially viable season that is good for the local economy. So when you're having fun, you're also supporting the local industries in the island!

Visitors will have the opportunity to experience Carnival in the capital city Kingston, Ocho Rios and Port Antonio as events span some of the island's hottest spots. The bands this year are Bacchanal Jamaica, One World Rebellion, Xaymaca International and Xodus Carnival as they light up the Island with a line-up of unforgettable events. “Carnival season is one of the most exciting and culturally immersive times to visit Jamaica,”said Donovan White,Jamaica’s Director of Tourism. “Travelers come to the Island for this one-of-a-kind experience and are immediately drawn to all that it has to offer. The activities for this season have increased and we are eager to host new revelers for all of the upcoming celebrations.”

Xodus Carnival 2020. Photo credit: Skkanme

While many Carnival events are taking place in Kingston, there are plenty of festivities happening across the island including the annual Ocho Rios Carnival on Easter Monday April 13, 2020. The day starts as early as 10 AM with the carnival village at the Ocean Village Plaza on Main Street, where visitors can enjoy a food court, a mini kid’s village and booths with Carnival merchandise. The road march, ending at Turtle River Park, will see five bands: Maroons, Tainos, Arawaks, Soca Junkies and Red Ants. See Ocho Rios Carnival events below.

Ocho Rios Carnival

Here's a list of events to plan for this Carnival season. Carnival Week 2020 highlights include:

Friday, April 10th.

  • Downtown Kgn Carnival- Ash  Jouvert

Saturday, April 11th

  • Frenchmen Rise Up Breakfast Party
  • Downtown Kgn Carnival- Dancehall Soca Street Jam
  • Rock the Boat

Sunday, April 12th

  • Frenchmen Weekend
  • Caesar's Army: BR Jamaica
  • Downtown Kgn Carnival- Soca Brunch

Monday, April 13th

  • Ocho Rios Carnival Road March and After-party 
  • Downtown Kgn Carnival: Road March Parade and after-party 
  • Dusk

Tuesday, April 14th

  • Soca By Di Tree
  • Ocho Rios Carnival: Roadblock (Kingston)
  • Tuesday on the Rocks (TOTR)
  • Moonshine 

Wednesday, April 15th

  • Bacchanal Premium
  • I Love Soca Jamaica
  • Carnival on the Cay
  • Xclusive Boat Cruise

Thursday, April 16th

  • Xodus Tailgate
  • Silent Morning
  • Afloat Cruise 
  • Big Phat Cooler
  • Frenchmen: Blocko
  • Tribe Ignite 

Friday, April 17th

  • Bacchanal Jamaica–Bacchanal J’Ouvert
  • Fete Republic: Night Carnival
  • Black 2 Blue Breakfast party 
  • Medz breakfast party 
  • Hookie Jamaica
  • Sunkissed
  • Soca Brainwash 
  • Scorch Duck Work

Saturday April 18th

  • Caesar’s Army AMBUSH JA, Kingston 
  • Ceasar's Army Ambush 2019  @Sleek photo
  • Vybe Jamaica–Coolers & Cocktails
  • Xodus Fete Gala
  • Frenchmen: Bazodee
  • Sunrise Breakfast Party 
  • Suits Jamaica
  • PM Fete 
  • Baywatch Jamaica
  • The Network Jam

Sunday, April 19th 

  • ROAD MARCH–Parade of the Bands, Kingston

Road March

  • Xaymaca International 
  • Bacchanal Jamaica
  • Xodus Carnival 
  • French Quarter 
  • Big Wall House Party 

Monday, April 20th

  • Xaymaca Beach Fete 
  • Xodus Mawning After 

Download the Carnival Calendar here:

Carnival 2020 events calendar

Carnival Travel Tips:

  • Ladies should wear either flats, sandals or sneakers because the route can take hours to get to the end and you'll be on your feet all this time.. if you wear stilettos or heels, walk with a flats. Of course everyone wants bomb photos! However, comfort is the name of the game. It's advised you also carry a light hand-held purse/backpack or fanny pack with your essentials items.

  • Do not wear your expensive jewelry or leave them at home completely! Try not to be too flashy with whatever you decide to wear.

  • If you are traveling with a large group, you should purchase a local phone or SIM card. This way, you will have a way to communicate with your travel partners. You can obtain a local phone or SIM card at the airport when you enter the island.

  • Drink plenty of water while you are dancing on the road- stay hydrated. If you consume alcohol, have a designated driver. Eat before you drink and ensure you drink enough water to stay hydrated.  

  • Walk with sunscreen if you have sensitive skin.

  • Remember to let loose and have fun, let the carnival spirit and the sound of the drums and music become one with you!

For more information and to plan the ultimate Carnival in Jamaica experience, please visit: http://carnivalinjamaica.com/.AboutJamaicaTouristBoard

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