The Institute of Jamaica is the nation’s small-scale equivalent of the British Museum or Smithsonian, housed in three separate buildings – the National Museum, the Jamaica Music Museum and the Natural History Museum. The institute hosts permanent and visiting exhibitions.
The National Museum holds an eclectic array of exhibits, from Taíno carvings and colonial samplers, to a model Air Jamaica plane and a particularly fine bust of the famed nurse Mary Seacole.
The small but informative Music Museum traces the history and development of Jamaica’s music, from traditional instruments to drum machines and keyboards used by artists like Sly & Robbie and Augustus Pablo.
The Natural History Museum's small collection of preserved specimens on display is of perhaps least interest to casual visitors, but it does most of its important work in community outreach and environmental education.