Photo Credit: Photo by Rock Staar on Unsplash.
Island Vibes: Jamaica's 10 Most Beautiful Waterfalls
Jamaica, Jamaica! The land of reggae, jerk everything, and an all around vibe. While most travelers head to the popular Dunn’s River Falls, the island is home to several other amazing waterfalls, too.
If you are planning a post-pandemic getaway, or you’re posted up on the island working remotely, here are 10 of Jamaica’s most stunning falls.
Hidden in the mountains of Pennycook, Mayfield Falls are made up of four small waterfalls and a larger one, containing underwater caves and over 21 natural swimming pools. This nature lover’s paradise is a great place for travelers to relax and retreat away from the hustle and bustle of the busier commercialized and party areas.
Located on Jamaica’s southwestern coast, YS Falls are a gorgeous series of cascading falls. They are lined with lush foliage, flowering trees, and picnic areas for visitors to relax and enjoy the tropical scenery. In addition, tourists can view the falls from atop as they zip line 40-feet above.
The Reach Falls are located on the eastern end of Jamaica, nearly an hour’s drive from Port Antonio. Tucked amid beautiful natural rain forests, visitors can enjoy the breathtaking views of the river, bamboo plants, hanging vines, and many other unique plant species. Behind one of the falls lies a hidden cave that you can step into and climb out of just above the cascade.
Undoubtedly Jamaica’s most popular waterfall and one of its most beautiful, Dunn’s River Falls is a major tourist attraction for visitors to the island hoping to climb the falls or simply relax in its flowing waters. A favorite activity of visitors (pre-pandemic) has been to grasp hands with other visitors to form a huge human chain while climbing. Locals say Dunn’s River Falls have become a bit more commercialized than before, with larger crowds and more vendors setting up on the grounds. However, it is still worth a visit.
Reggae Falls lies in Saint Thomas Parish at an abandoned hydroelectric facility. In the 1920s a dam was built to provide the local community with water, and its structure remains today. Visitors will have to endure a bumpy ride to reach them, but it’s well worth it to enjoy the amazing views and fresh mangoes growing on trees around the falls.
Konoko Falls are located in the hills, five minutes from central Ocho Rios They are surrounded by botanical gardens, and there is a museum on the property, as well as a small zoo filled with local wildlife— including different species of birds and reptiles.
Port Antonio’s Somerset Falls is a hidden gem tucked away in a ravine with several water slides. It is not yet overly popular among tourists, with mainly locals visiting its crystal clear waters. The falls are relatively quiet and a great place to either play or unwind.
Belize isn’t the only country with a Blue Hole. In fact, Jamaica has two of them, one located in Thatch Hill and one located in Cascade, known as the Cool Blue Hole.
Cool Blue Hole is a series of natural limestone sinkholes not far from Ocho Rios. It is a majestic and secluded place, with bright blue water surrounded by a tropical rain forest full of colorful wild flowers. Visitors can relax and enjoy the scenery, dive, or swing into the cool waters via the hanging rope swings.
Kwame Falls, also known as Kwaamen Falls, is a towering waterfall located in Saint Mary. The hidden fall involves a substantial hike, which may not be ideal for those unaccustomed to hiking. However, the journey will give you the opportunity to feast your eyes on lush hills and greenery, as well as a scenic black sand beach. Once you arrive, relax in the fall’s fresh, inviting waters.
Located in Saint Ann Parish, Turtle River Falls are nestled amongst 14 acres of fragrant tropical gardens. There are multiple waterfalls that comprise it, along with a koi pond and an aviary of parrots and other bird species. Visitors may enjoy feeding the birds, who are friendly enough to eat right out of your hands.