Everything You Need to Know Before Visiting the Glistening Water & Luminous Lagoon in Falmouth, Jamaica

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The mystical and magical Luminous Lagoon is a magnificent natural phenomenon that sparkles, glistens, and will take your breath away. Located on the north coast of Jamaica in Falmouth, the incredible lagoon is one of only four bioluminescent bays in the world and a visit is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that will surprise you and leave you in awe.

Whether you’re a first-time visitor to Jamaica or a frequent traveler, Luminous Lagoon is one of Jamaica’s must-visit spots for an evening you won’t forget. To make your experience the best it can be, this guide is bursting with all the information that you could need. Read on to learn our top tips and discover the essential information you need to know to enjoy this stunning and unique experience.

What is Luminous Lagoon?

Luminous Lagoon is a unique bay that is home to over a million dinoflagellates, a type of algae that glows come nightfall. Dinoflagellates live in areas where fresh and saltwater meet, glowing best in warm, shallow waters. The glow produced by these tiny microorganisms lights up the bay making it sparkle in the darkness. The glow lights up the water and reflects the outlines of anything in the water, including fish. Jamaica’s Luminous Lagoon is one of four in the world but is considered to be the largest and best of them all.


What is the history of Luminous Lagoon?

In the 18th century at the height of Jamaica’s sugar trade, the bay home to Luminous Lagoon welcomed ships exporting goods most often to England. The wharf was an important location for the sugar trade but it was only after the decline of the trade that scientists discovered the area’s true importance. They found that the geographical location was the best place in the world to study dinoflagellates and the natural phenomenon of the Luminous Lagoon. Since its discovery, Luminous Lagoon has been reserved as a place for research and tourism.

Where is Luminous Lagoon in Jamaica?

Luminous Lagoon is located on the north coast of Jamaica in the town of Falmouth and stretches along the marshlands of the parish where the freshwater from Martha Brae River and the saltwater of the Caribbean Sea both meet. The bay can be reached within a ten-minute drive from the center of Falmouth town and most of the resorts located in Trelawny such as Royalton White Sands and Royalton Blue Water.

How far is Luminous Lagoon from Ocho Rios?

Luminous Lagoon is located approximately 40 miles from Ocho Rios and the journey takes roughly an hour. The easiest way to travel from Ocho Rios is by tour bus. You can drive a car to the lagoon, however, we do not recommend driving because the luminous lagoon tours start after sunset, which will mean you will be forced to drive back to your resort or Airbnb at night and some areas on the road are poorly lid which can make it difficult to navigate.

Photo Credit: Google Maps

How far is Luminous Lagoon from Montego Bay?

Luminous Lagoon is easily accessible from Montego Bay by taking the A1 Main Highway along the northern coast of Jamaica. From Montego Bay, Luminous Lagoon is 23 miles with a journey time of approximately 40 minutes.

Photo Credit: Google Maps

How far is Luminous Lagoon from Negril?

The distance between Negril and Luminous Lagoon is approximately 70 miles. The journey between the two destinations takes approximately 2 hours.

Photo Credit: Google Maps

How Deep is Luminous Lagoon?

The lagoon is shallow and the bay has a maximum depth of 5 feet with the saltwater sinking below the freshwater that is floating on top. The swimming area of the bay is between 4 and 5 feet deep allowing visitors to move freely and safely. Life jackets are available for all travelers who prefer to wear one.

What are the Weather and Conditions like at Luminous Lagoon?

Located on the north coast of Jamaica, Luminous Lagoon is subject to the country’s tropical weather conditions. As the glow of the lagoon can only be experienced at night, the experience is enjoyed in a cooler atmosphere away from the heat of the day. The island has year-round consistent temperatures that average between approximately 65-75°F at night. The warmer the conditions, the better the experience. The waters can feel chilly upon entering but it is truly warm and shallow making for a quick adjustment to the temperature.

Super Travel Tip – The experience is all about the glow and the glow varies by day and weather conditions. The glow is brightest in warm waters and therefore, the best after a hot, sunny day. It is best to avoid cooler, overcast, and/or rainy days as well as full moons when the glow will be duller.

What Can I Expect From Luminous Lagoon?

Luminous Lagoon tour boat can hold up to 32 passengers per tour, which takes visitors to the magnificent bay and allows you to both admire the glow from the boat and swim in the waters (your choice). The boat departs from the Marina with tours taking approximately 45 minutes to an hour including journey and swim time.

Back at the marina, you can purchase delicious Jamaican food and an exquisite menu of cocktails, the perfect place to reflect on the incredible experience.

What is the Price of Luminous Lagoon?

There is no admission cost for Luminous Lagoon but a tour must be booked for the boat to the glistening bay. Tours from the Waters Marina are:

    • $25USD adults (aged 13 and over)
    • $12.50USD children (aged 12 and under)

The price is for the full 45-minute to 1-hour tour inclusive of the boat transportation between the marina and lagoon as well as free time at the lagoon. This price does not include any transportation to or from the marina from your hotel. For a more all-inclusive experience, you will need to book your tour with a reputable tour company.

Please note, the price range when booked through a tour company will differ depending on the following factors –

The cost is usually cheaper the closer your resort/hotel/port of call is to the attraction

      • Type of transportation selected (private transfer or shared coach).

The price of a shared tour is cheaper than a private transfer but transfer times may take longer.

When booking with a tour company, ensure that you enquire about what is included in the price to ensure there are no hidden additional costs. Shared transfers will be cheaper as you will be traveling with a larger group, generally on a coach, and the transfer may include several pick-ups. Meanwhile, private transfers include a dedicated tour bus and tour guide for your party alone. Private transfers mean you will be collected from your pick-up point and travel directly to the attraction location. Please factor in additional costs for a private transfer.

Super Travel Tip – For the best experience, we recommend booking your Luminous Lagoon trip with Jamaica Super Tours. The price quoted is inclusive of round-trip, and the Luminous Lagoon experience.

What is Included in the Luminous Lagoon Tour?

The Luminous Lagoon tour includes the following:

      • Boat transportation between the Marina and Luminous Lagoon
      • Swim time at Luminous Lagoon
      • History of the Luminous Lagoon

How Long is the Luminous Lagoon Tour?

The tour includes boat transportation between the Waters Marina and Luminous Lagoon plus free swim time in the Lagoon. The duration of the tour lasts about 45 minutes to 1 hour. This does not include hotel pick-ups and the journey time to Luminous Lagoon. Please consider transfer times as an addition when planning your tour.

What are the Visiting Hours for Luminous Lagoon?

Luminous Lagoon is accessible daily and best visited by nightfall. Boats from the Waters Marina sail daily starting at sunset. Your departure time will vary by time of arrival and how busy the marina is on the day you visit.

How do I get to the Departure Point for Luminous Lagoon?

Booking with a tour company includes transportation from your hotel or port of call direct to the attraction and will be your best option if you are visiting from outside Falmouth. Alternatively, you can self-drive to the Luminous Lagoon or take a taxi from the center of Falmouth.

What Should I Bring to Luminous Lagoon?

Bringing the following items with you will enhance your experience:

      • Swimsuit
      • An option of warmer clothing due to cooler evening temperatures
      • Camera (waterproof or waterproof casing is advised)
      • Cash or credit for souvenirs and restaurant

What Important Information Do I Need to Know for Luminous Lagoon?

Please consider the following information when visiting Luminous Lagoon:

      • Experiences are subject to weather conditions. Boats will sail if it is safe to do so but your experience will depend on the weather conditions during the day and any rainfall experienced. Tour company policies vary.
      • Children must be accompanied by an adult
      • The marina offers souvenirs to purchase and a restaurant. Cash and card payments are accepted
      • Gratuities are not included in the tour price
      • Tours are offered in English

Super Travel Tip – Of course, you’ll want to take photos of this natural phenomenon but please note, photos are best captured with a high-resolution camera without the use of flash.

Are There Any Restrictions at Luminous Lagoon?

The tour is not recommended for individuals who have limited mobility, heart or back problems, and other serious medical conditions. The tour does not have wheelchair accessibility and is also not recommended for individuals who have received recent treatment or surgery for mobility. The tour is also not recommended for pregnant travelers and children aged three and under.

How do I Book Luminous Lagoon?

Jamaica Super Tours offers an incredible Luminous Lagoon tour with no hidden fees. Book with Jamaica Super Tours for a tour inclusive of exclusive transportation for your party and the Luminous Lagoon tour experience with boat transportation to and from the lagoon. All tours booked with Jamaica Super Tours have the best price guaranteed and no booking fee to save you money on the experience. Your booking is flexible as Jamaica Super Tours offers easy, no-risk cancellation should your plan change.


Luminous Lagoon is one of Jamaica’s most beautiful and unique attractions, one you don’t want to miss if you are visiting Jamaica. Groups of up to 30 can enjoy the experience together allowing your whole party to enjoy this natural phenomenon together. Make sure to bookmark this post so you have all the information, tips, and tricks to make your Jamaican evening adventure one remember! If you have visited Luminous Lagoon, let us know in the comments. We want to hear from you!

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