Gunboat Beach

Gunboat Beach, although not a place to swim, has many different amenities that cater to the mainly local crowd who turn out on the weekends. Visitors can enjoy live music and entertainment, numerous food stands, and adequate changing rooms and restrooms. In addition, lots of security is always around for your safety and for additional information.

Located in the vicinity of Kingston, 3.7 miles west-southwest of Harbour View, Gunboat Beach is on the East coast of Jamaica. You might want to drop by even if you aren't staying nearby. This beach isn't just another pleasant afternoon distraction, it's one of the rare "quiet" beaches in Jamaica. While Gunboat Beach may be a little more difficult to reach, it allows you to relax without being bothered by the noise of the crowds.

How to Access The Beach
The area is found right next to the Norman Manley International Airport along the Norman Manley Hwy.

Amenities and Ambiance

Once a thriving atmosphere, this beach has declined rapidly with pollution and neglect and swimming in the waters is no longer recommended.

There is also a great restaurant right on-site if you're interested; many find it the perfect, convenient solution for lunch. Jamaica offers plenty of great places to eat, but don't think that tables, chairs, and waiters are prerequisites for a great meal. Some visitors, in fact, find it more convenient and relaxing to eat on near the beach than in another restaurant. Ask your hotel about picnic lunches, as some hotels offer to pack snacks for their guests' day trips. Otherwise, street vendors and casual walk-up eateries will have take-out dishes you can bring to the beach.

Even if you plan to dine elsewhere, the snack bar on-site could come in handy. Sometimes, visitors will be able to buy some food from one of the mobile vendors who set up shop at the beach.

One of the most useful amenities are the picnic facilities.

This beach has public restrooms——something you'll appreciate if you spend more than a couple of hours here. Extremely popular with the locals on weekends, Gunboat Beach draws a mainly local crowd with fine facilities and live music. Hanging out along the shore is a great way to meet the residents in this area.

Visitors that are hoping to take advantage of the conveniences available here are in luck; Gunboat Beach is located in an area that is not often visited by crowds. As such, pay little attention the time you visit, as there's a minimal chance you be required to navigate around other beach-goers who will also want access to the comforts that are available.

What's Nearby


You'll find this beach on Jamaica's East coast. It is close to Bank of Jamaica Money Museum, which is not very far away, so visitors have the option to walk or to take a cab, and it is one of a number of attractions in the area.

Historical attractions like St. Peter's Church provide a great compliment to the natural beauty of Gunboat Beach, and they give vacationers the chance to learn more about Jamaica.

If your taste for travel keeps you looking for new activity and attraction options, the beach is located near the attractions in the following table.

Activities and Attractions Near Gunboat Beach
Attraction Type Distance Direction Island
Bank of Jamaica Money Museum Museum 2.4 mi. NW Jamaica
National Gallery of Jamaica Art Museum 2.6 mi. NW Jamaica
Studio174 Art Gallery 2.7 mi. NW Jamaica
Harbour View Stadium Sporting Event Venue 3.8 mi. ENE Jamaica
Trench Town Culture Yard Museum Museum 3.9 mi. NW Jamaica
St. Peter's Church Historical Site 4.2 mi. NNW Jamaica
Jamaica National Stadium Sporting Event Venue 4.5 mi. N Jamaica
National Indoor Arena Sporting Event Venue 4.6 mi. N Jamaica
Fort Charles Museum 4.7 mi. W Jamaica
Theater Place Dinner Show and Theater 4.7 mi. N Jamaica
Port Royal Historical Site 4.7 mi. W Jamaica
Frame Centre Gallery Art Gallery 5.1 mi. NNW Jamaica

Cities and Towns

Those visiting Gunboat Beach who are seeking a little additional excitement might think about heading to Kingston, since it's not far away and is an especially active area of Jamaica. From the beach, Kingston is a car ride off, about five and a half miles (nine kilometers) away.


The popularity of this spot on any given day can vary, it depends on several things: the season, the weather, even how full the nearby hotels are. This beach is not near many large hotels, but you may meet guests from some of the area's smaller options.

Since this beach is located in a fairly popular tourist destination, it usually isn't much of a challenge to find a hotel nearby that suits your needs. If you are hoping to book a place that's near the ocean, the following table lists the accommodation options closest to Gunboat Beach.

Accommodations near Gunboat Beach
Hotel Distance Direction Type
Forres Park 4.2 mi. NNW Hotel
Grand Port Royal Hotel 4.6 mi. W Hotel
Mona Visitor's Lodge 4.8 mi. NNE Hotel
Altamont Court Hotel 4.8 mi. N Hotel
Courtleigh Hotel and Suites 4.8 mi. N Hotel
Courtleigh Hotel and Suites 4.9 mi. N Hotel
Courtyard by Marriott 4.9 mi. N Hotel
The Spanish Court Hotel 5.1 mi. N Hotel
Jamaica Pegasus 5.2 mi. NW Resort
Knutsford Court Hotel 5.2 mi. N Hotel


When you're starving for a midday meal, the area around this beach has plenty to offer, and you don't have to go far from the shore. One of the nearest restaurants is Swiss Stores Cafe. This restaurant has a menu featuring International food. They are also known for their coffee and sandwiches. You'll have the option of walking or taking a cab as it's just a short distance away.

The following table provides a list of dining options located near this beach.

Restaurants near Gunboat Beach
Restaurant Name Phone Cuisine Style Distance Direction
Swiss Stores Cafe (876) 922-8050 International Informal 2.6 mi. NW
F&B DownTown (876) 922-1109 Asian, Italian, Jamaican Informal 2.6 mi. NW
M10 Bar and Grill (876) 930-2112 Eclectic Informal 3.4 mi. N
Forres Park Restaurant (876) 927-8275 Jamaican Informal 4.2 mi. NNW
Island Grill Kingston (876) 754-3794 Jamaican Very Casual 4.3 mi. N
KFC Half Way -- American Very Casual 4.4 mi. N
Red Jack (876) 967-8494 Caribbean Informal 4.6 mi. W
Quartemaine (876) 967-8494 Caribbean Fine Dining 4.6 mi. W
Oasis on the Oxford (876) 908-3960 Jamaican Informal 4.7 mi. N
Gloria's (876) 967-8066 Caribbean Informal 4.8 mi. W
Earl's Juice Garden (876) 754-2425 Vegetarian Very Casual 4.8 mi. N
Mingles Bar and Lounge Restaurant (876) 929-9000 American, Jamaican Very Casual 4.9 mi. N

Other Beaches

Gunboat Beach is just one of many beaches you can visit in Jamaica.

Another location you might enjoy is Maiden Cay Beach, situated a quick car or cab ride away. If you're on the lookout for more active and social, you might like Lime Cay. You'll find it three and a half miles to the west-southwest.

Another location you may want to try is Brooks Pen Beach, which is located two miles away.

There are countless experiences to enjoy in Jamaica, so visiting Gunboat Beach is just one way you can enjoy a sunny afternoon.


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