Ocho Rios

The consistent arrival of cruise ships in the modern port of Ocho Rios sets the stage for what has become one of the best Jamaican cruise destinations. Reynold’s Pier continues to grow holding larger cruise vessels and complimenting the nearby Ocho Rios Pier. An upgraded promenade with retail shops, a new artisan village, entertainment, and part of the draw to this iconic island destination.  Jamaica has a deep-rooted history that is brilliantly alive in this port.

Most visits to the Caribbean include the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea and beaches and resorts offer great options.  The Bamboo Beach Club is an all-inclusive daytime beach experience.  There are a number of excellent beach clubs and resorts in Ocho Rios and almost as many water activities to choose from.  If you’ve never hiked up a waterfall, this is your chance.  Dunn’s River Falls is 180 feet high, 600 feet long and it is breathtaking.  Hiking up the falls on the natural limestone staircase in the cool, clear freshwater is an experience you won’t soon forget.  Dunn’s River Falls is synonymous with Ocho Rios and remains the most popular natural tour experience on the island.

If swimming with dolphins is on your bucket list, you’re in luck.  At Dolphin Cove, visitors can get in the water with playful dolphins and gentle stingrays. More wildlife encounters await at the Jungle Trail Walk. With a nature trail, restaurant, and a chance to be up close and personal with dolphins, this family-friendly attraction will be a winner with visitors of all ages.

Nature lovers will not want to miss the other two major attractions in Ocho Rios. Those with a more adventurous spirit will enjoy cave exploring in the Green Grotto Caves. This stunning natural attraction is a largely unexplored labyrinth of underground caves. The caverns are filled with pristine green waters and hold an important part of Jamaica’s history. Guided tours wind their way through the caverns and include the opportunity to spend time by the inner lake at the carved-out lounge set up. More fun-loving explorers will be thrilled with a trip to Mystic Mountains. This rainforest has a ton of activities stretched over its 100 plus acres. Hiking through the rainforest, swimming in the infinity pool, a bobsledding ride – inspired by the famed Jamaican Olympic bobsled team – and an opportunity to see the forest from above on a lift. There is so much to explore that cruise guests will have to plan a return visit.

It’s clear to see why Jamaica has become the popular tourist destination it is.  Whether cruise guests are spending their days exploring natural beauty, lounging in turquoise blue waters, or searching for the perfect uniquely artisan gift, Ocho Rios will be a destination cruise visitors will long remember.

Image Credit: Douglas Pearson/robertharding/Getty Images

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