Top 5 Ecotourism Attractions In Jamaica


Jamaica is know around the world for its gorgeous climate, “no problem, mon” attitudes and, of course, the music of Bob Marley. But eco enthusiasts will find that the Caribbean islands offers plenty of outdoor attractions as well. Here are our picks for the Top 5 Ecotourism Attractions in Jamaica:



There’s a reason this natural wonder in Ocho Rios is Jamaica’s #1 tourist attraction. Cascading 600 feet down to the Caribbean Sea, the majestic Dunn’s River Falls’ protruding rock ledges create a series of natural stair steps that make it a relatively easy and exciting climb for visitors of all ages and ability levels. With a guide leading each group up the most navigable path, visitors join hands to help each other clamber up the slippery rocks, go down small rock slides into cool pools, pose for souvenir photos and encourage each other ever closer to the spectacular view from the summit.




Located approximately 30 minutes from Montego Bay, Trelawney’s Martha Brae is the epitome of a lazy river, and River Raft Limited’s bamboo raft excursion offers the perfect way to see its tropical wonders. Start with a cool dip in the pool at Rafters’ Village, then let your captain guide you on a 3-mile tour that includes vivid stories from Jamaica’s rich historic past, stops for swimming and a ridiculously fun rope swing at Tarzan’s Corner. Finish the trip with a cool tropical drink or a bite to eat at Martha’s Rest, a quaint bar/restaurant and souvenir shop.




Are you intrigued by the scuba diving experience, but don’t have the time or money to get certified? Located on Doctor’s Cave Beach in Montego Bay, Chukka’s Sea Trek Adventure allows you to explore the wonderful world under the Caribbean Sea without even getting your hair wet! Guests are fitted with a space-age helmet that sits on their shoulders and allows for underwater breathing; you can wear prescription glasses underneath, and don’t even need to be able to swim. Lowered to the bottom of the sea, guides lead visitors on a tour of dazzling marine life in their natural habitat among the coral reefs, making for an impressive undersea experience everyone in the family can enjoy.




In a country where “no problem, mon” is the unofficial national mantra, Negril is arguably the most laid-back of all Jamaica’s major cities. Seven-Mile Beach is arguably its greatest attraction, with golden sand, calm waters, concessionaires offering everything from jet skiing and parasailing to snorkeling, and vendors hawking everything from souvenirs to hair-braiding services. At night, pay a visit to the legendary Rick’s Café, where you can savor one of the island’s finest sunset views while cooling off with signature tropical drinks such as Planter’s Punch and Tropitinis. Or, if you’re bold, make the traditional leap from their cliff set 40 feet above the crystal blue Caribbean waters.




Chukka Caribbean Adventure’s Original Canopy Tour is a 3-hour trek through the forest canopy via a series of decks and platforms connected by zipline traverses. After safety briefing and demonstrations, guides lead visitors on nine traverses coupled with intermittent nature walks filled with information about Jamaica’s diverse landscape and history. Each traverse is unique, with colorful names such as “Limestone Cliff,” “Threesome Stop” and, the highlight, the “Inter-parish Express,” which is over 1,000 feet. Zooming at speeds of up to 35 mph across springs, the Great River and a 150-year-old dam, there’s no other Jamaican experience quite like it.   –Bret Love; photos provided by Jamaica Tourism Board


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    • Both were cool, but I’d have to say Dunn’s River Falls was my favorite. Until I went to the Dominican Republic, it was the only time I’d ever climbed a waterfall.

  3. Oh that photo of Seven-Mile Beach looks so inviting. Your story of Dunn’s River Falls brought to mind the time my husband and I climbed the falls in a storm all by ourselves. I have no idea how we were allowed to do such a thing, but it was one of the most adventurous things I’ve done on a trip.

    • Whoa, that sounds exciting (if a bit scary)! And, like you, I’m looking at the Seven-Mile Beach photo pretty longingly right now. Funny to say this as a travel writer, but I could use a vacation…

  4. Hello! I loved Dunn’s River Falls but never made it to the Martha Brae River. What a great list of things to do. We were in Negril (off a New Years Cruise in 2011) and I really liked the beach there.

    • Negril is fun, but I actually preferred Ocho Rios overall. It’s a little more upscale and a little less developed (or at least the area I stayed in). Would love to go back and visit Kingston at some point, as it’s generally considered the birthplace of reggae music.

    • I didn’t actually climb Dunn’s River Falls until my third time in Jamaica, but I’d always wanted to do it. My only complaint was that it got very crowded with tour groups at times, so I wished I’d gone alone, early in the morning. Not even sure if that’s possible now…

  5. Keep on tallying them up for things to do when we make it to that part of the world haha. Great tips!

  6. I’ve never really considered Jamaica, but I do love waterfalls, and that scuba diving but not really scuba diving sounds pretty cool!

    • I actually did something like that in Aruba as well (I think it’s called Snuba there), and it was definitely different. Weird walking along the bottom of the ocean at 20 feet with that crazy helmet on your head, but very memorable!

    • It’s interesting, because I didn’t have that much interest in Jamaica’s tourist attractions initially. For me, it was all about the culture, as I love Jamaican music and food. But once I got there, I fell in love with the place, and realized I had a deep affinity for the nature-based spirituality of Rastafarian culture.

    • It is gorgeous, Angela! The beaches tend to get most of the attention, but the Blue Mountain area is also pretty amazing. I spent a great day hanging out at Peter Tosh’s mausoleum, where I hung out with some of his old rasta friends and even got to meet his mom. Lots of different things to do on the island.

  7. My oldest daughter and I did a day trip to Jamaica once (from Cuba) – to climb Dunn’s River Falls. Must be 15 -16 years ago, but we still remember it. Great fun 🙂

    • Isn’t it funny how these travel experiences stay with us long after they’ve ended. I’m sure you’ve had hundreds (if not thousands) of travel experiences since then, yet 15-16 years later a single day trip to Jamaica sticks out. That’s awesome!

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    • It’s cool, but it’s really heavy! Took me a while to figure out how to walk with it on without feeling wobbly, but once I did it was really fun. I still prefer Scuba though, just for the freedom of movement.

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