Dunns River Falls
Favorite thing: My sweet husband did the walk or climb up the Dunns River Falls. I on the other hand chose to watch and take photos. It was a beautiful area to explore. At the foot of the falls was the ocean. The ocean was warm next to the water coming out of the falls.
Fondest memory: Our camera died here and was not able to be resuscitated. The water apparently shorted out the camera.
- National/State Park
- Hiking and Walking
Excellent tour guide in Ocho Rios !
Favorite thing: Recently went to Ocho Rios as part of a cruise and booked Marva Shaw from www.knowjamaica.com to take us on a tour in the short time available to us.
She was absolutely excellent, answered my questions quickly by e-mail beforehand, wonderful on the day, took us to places that were out of the way from tourists as well as the usual such as Dunn's River Falls etc.
Highly recommended !
Favorite thing: If you’re looking for internet access you might try Computer Whizz, which is very centrally located across the road from the craft market (on the first floor above a shop in a small complex). The access here was rather slow, but we were assured by the apologetic guy running it that it was usually much better. The charge was US$2 for 30 minutes or US$3 for an hour, which is very reasonable compared with the Island Village option mentioned by the Rough Guide (a whopping US$4 for 15 minutes!)
Ocho Rios: the town
Favorite thing: As I said in my intro, the town of Ocho Rios doesn’t have any obvious sights of its own to draw you here, nor would it be described as especially attractive, but it’s still worth a few hours of your time. Like many Jamaican towns, Ochi (as locals call the town) has a clock tower in the centre, and this acts as an unofficial border between the more tourist-oriented district at the western end and the more down-to-earth eastern end. In the former you’ll find several shopping complexes with duty free shops targeting the hundreds of cruise ship passengers that descend on the town almost daily, a large craft market, supermarket (an economical place to buy your hot pepper sauce and coffee souvenirs), post office and banks.
Head to the east however if you want to spend some time wandering around a typical Jamaican town. Despite what you may have heard, you shouldn’t experience too much hassle here, other than from taxi drivers who seem to find it hard to believe anyone might prefer to walk rather than get in their car – although the Rough Guide warns that James Avenue is a bit seedy (we only walked a short way along but from what I saw it’s more scruffy than scary!)
This is a good place to grab some more unusual photos. The various signs caught my eye – Jamaicans love bright colours and use them to good effect to promote their shops, bars etc. There’s also a produce market in this eastern part of town – much more authentic in atmosphere than the touristy craft market and also good for a few photos. However, when I asked the guy pressing sugar cane if I might take his picture he agreed, only to get angry when I then didn’t buy any of his juice – which hadn’t been part of the deal!
By the way, if you can check the cruise ship schedules to identify a day when there are no ships in port you’ll find the town a lot quieter. The downside though is that some of the businesses don’t even bother opening as we found on our first visit to the town, a Sunday morning. Elise at the Blue House checked the schedules for us, and I imagine receptionists at the bigger hotels would do the same. It’s also worth doing before a visit to the major attractions like Dunn’s River Falls or Dolphin Cove as it can make a marked difference to how crowded these are.
Fondest memory: I've enthused elsewhere about the lovely B&B we stayed in, the Blue House. One reason I loved it was for the early mornings I spent on the terrace, with a mug of Darryl's strong coffee to wake me up and the hummingbirds flitting among the blossoms :) I tried almost every morning to photograph them, with only limited success, but I enjoyed trying! Between these fits of enthusiasm with the camera I was content to sit and watch, sipping my coffee and chatting with Michael, another early rising guest.
The birds I saw most often were the doctor birds, Jamaica's national bird - I've written more about these beautiful creatures on my Jamaica page. There were others too - mango hummingbirds and some I never identified nor captured on camera. And the hummingbirds were by no means the only pretty species, as I saw several brightly coloured finches and what I later learned were banana quits.
Meet the People!
Favorite thing: If possible, get someone to drive you up to the mountain to meet real people, see the way they live, enjoy Jamaica as seen through their eyes! The people are warm, friendly, easy to talk to. The mountain scenery and views are beautiful! We went up to a little village named "Bamboo." We also went through Browns Town to Murrey Mount-even a bit higher up then Bamboo. Again, beautiful scenery, views, people!
Fondest memory: The children were always warm and friendly and so polite! It was such fun to be around them! The water was so clear, warm and relaxing! No words to describe how green and lush everything looked-pictures just don't do it justice!
RELAX WHEN YOU GET THERE!
Favorite thing: I am an uptight person that is always concerned about safety!
Don't stay at any other place than an inclusive hotel/resort of less than 3 stars. If you abide by that little rule, have a fun time and leave the stress at home!
The people there are the nicest people in the world! Its what you make of it from touchdown to takeoff! Just learn to say no thanks & don't feel bad or scared.
In the resorts you are perfectly safe! Off the resorts ,travel in a group and you are perfectly safe. Drink water, eat there food, and love there Jerk & fruits and you are perfectly safe. Bring suntan lotion and aloe vera as its easy to burn there for fair skinned people. Weather is shorts, shorts, shorts, or no shirt no shoes no problem. Bring comfortable walking sandels, and water sox as you will get charged for them if you do any adventuring. Bring one pair of kaky pants men and women something equivalent to that ladys. Bring underwater camera's, and bring and extra travel bag for stuff you buy when your there to take home, leave your cell phones home, internet is available at the resorts, use the front desk lady to help you out, or guy/ as they will tell you things about where to go, visit dunns river falls and if you have small kids leave them at the resort as it is a hard hike probably 13 and up, have a boat pick you up to go scuba diving & Dunns River Falls & shopping at the top & cruising drinking rum punch and listening to raggae music on a 2 hour cruse = priceless! have a great trip!
Fondest memory: "The good people we met, the good people we lost, along the way!"
EVERYTHING!!! I loved it all and took every moment to remember where I was when I was there! Leave work at home, let your hair down and be true to yourself "Love Life, you only get one of them", oh and PS, When your dead you have time to sleep so get up early enjoy the ocean sounds and evening sunsets, and in the middle remember where your at, Jamaica mon!
Resorts in Jamaica are Just for Tourists
Favorite thing: Okay driving from the airport to our hotel in Ocho Rios I felt so bad. You drive through roads that pass by people's homes which consist of literally a cinderblock house with a tin roof maybe the size of someone's shed in the US. It literally is third world and I felt like stupid rich American coming in to reap the benefits of Jamaican resources while the resorts don't give a hoot about the Jamaican people. The proceeds that the resorts make are suppose to go into helping the people but you would never know it looking at the conditions they live in. I have been to other 3rd world countries like Vietnam and Cambodia, but Jamaica was by far the worse. Therefore I wouldn't recommend doing many activities at night outside your resort because there is a lot of crime because of the poverty of the nation.
Favorite thing: Jamaica has to be lived. It's hard to describe the atmosphere you can find on a Jamaican beach, expecially if you go to a free beach, but there is something...special that makes them unique.
Fondest memory: On a free beach you are not protected as on a private beach, so you can feel a little thrilled and worried...You stay here, hearing the reggae music and looking to someone who are dancing alone smoking a joint. So you can smell a strange...sweetish...odor...in the air...
- Adventure Travel
So many places to see!
Favorite thing: Ocho Rios is an important port of call for the holiday cruisers and every day many tourist invade the streets and go to make an excursion to the near Dunn's River Falls. You too go to visit this beautiful place, and go along Fern Gully, raft on the White River, walk along the botanical gardens like Cobaya River Garden or Shaw Park Gardens and...then go to sunbathe on the beach and swim into the Caribbean Sea. Can it be enough to convince you to visit Jamaica?
Fondest memory: I spended only one week on holiday in Jamaica. Too few days for to go to so many places. I can tell you just where I've been. A short time, but enough for to fall in love with Jamaica!
Favorite thing: Nothing like sunsets in the tropics--especially after a sufficient quantity of strangely colored drinks have been drunk.
- Spa and Resort
Or--You Can Watch
Favorite thing: You can always opt out and watch everybody else climb.
The youngsters love it. I, on the other hand, would rather watch.
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