It’s almost time for the start of the new school year, but we can still squeeze in one more quick trip, right? This Travel Tuesday, we explore some of the most popular and breathtaking natural waterfalls in Jamaica.
Dunn’s River Falls – Ocho Rios, St Ann. No vacation in the Ocho Rios area would be complete without a visit to the world famous Dunn’s River Falls, which is basically Jamaica’s national attraction. If you’re the adventurous type, make the climb to the top of the falls in a human chain, led by experienced ‘Falls Guides’. Stop at the ‘massage parlour’ and let the water soothe your stresses away. Dunn’s River Falls is a unique attraction: it has been described as a ‘living phenomenon’ as it continuously regenerates itself. The falls are fed by spring water rich with calcium carbonate, which deposits travertine. Dunn’s River Falls is one of the very few travertine waterfalls in the world that empties directly into the sea.
Blue Hole Waterfalls – White River, St Ann. This hidden gem features a 20-foot cascading waterfall, which plunges into a deep, hazy blue pool. Activities include cliff jumping, swinging from a ‘Tarzan rope’, river tubing and rafting.
YS Falls – Middle Quarters, St Elizabeth. Visitors to YS Falls in St Elizabeth have a number of choices: you can either kick back in the natural pool or take a hike up the 120-foot, seven-tier waterfall. You can also enjoy exciting canopy and river tube rides.
Reach Falls – Manchioneal, Portland. Located half a mile east of Manchioneal, Reach Falls is one of the most spectacular natural waterfalls in Jamaica, fed by a river flowing out of the John Crow Mountains. Enjoy the crystal clear water and exotic scenery, which features hanging vines, stands of bamboo and other plants. Reach Falls has 23 species of ferns and is home to a variety of birds, including the black and yellow-billed parrots.
Somerset Falls – Portland. Located between Hope Bay and Port Antonio, Somerset Falls is a one time sugar plantation that has been transformed into a 97-acre property with a garden, ponds and, of course, a spectacular hidden waterfall. Take a trek along the concrete path leading to the back of the property. There, a guide will take you on a rowboat through a narrow tributary, encircled by limestone caverns, to the falls, where you can take a dip in the 20-foot deep natural pool.
Mayfield Falls – Negril, Westmoreland. Situated on a five-acre property, Mayfield Falls is an ideal spot for camping, hiking and picnicking. It features two waterfalls, 21 natural pools, 52 varieties of ferns, several species of exotic tropical plants, birds, butterflies and indigenous wildlife. Other activities include cliff jumping and cave diving.