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Beaches in Ocho Rios

Puerto Seco Beach

For a more authentic Jamaican beach experience, Puerto Seco Beach fills with locals, reggae bands, and food vendors selling Jamaican favorites like jerk chicken. The beach is near Columbus Park, if you want to add a little history to your beach experience, but the real draw is the atmosphere. This is one of the few beaches that really bring the island's smells, tastes, and sounds to life.

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Mallards Beach

Located near the center of town, Mallards Beach provides a good spot to set up camp and welcome all of the city's beachgoers. The beach is constantly crowded with newcomers coming off of cruise ships or with hotel guests who spew out of the properties that line the beach. If you want to join a big crowd for a beach party, then Mallards Beach should be your first choice.

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Jun 11, 2014
Mallards beach in Ocho Rios is the main beach located at the end of the Pier. You can walk to the Beach easily just exit the gated are and turn left. There is a small entrance fee of about $2 us. The beach is ok for swimming and there a few small vendors selling souvenirs and drinks at the beach.

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James Bond Beach

James Bond Beach, so named because of its near proximity to Ian Fleming's Ocho Rios home, provides beachgoers with a relatively less crowded alternative to those nearer to town. Make sure to inquire ahead of time to see if you can catch one of the many reggae concerts hosted here throughout the year.

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Turtle Beach

If Mallards Beach is filled with tourists and new cruise arrivals, then Turtle Beach offers you just the opposite. A large crowd of locals crowd Turtle Beach every day, and though it is much smaller, the white sands always seem to provide plenty of space for you to stretch out and enjoy the tropical weather.

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Dolphin Cove

Dolphin Cove is definitely not your ordinary beach retreat. The attraction does have plenty of sand and water, but the real draw for visitors is the opportunity to swim with the dolphins. Make advanced reservations, and you will find yourself face-to-face with the ocean's friendliest creatures.

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May 26, 2011
Great place to spend the day. you can watch the dolphins, go for a swim. walk through the nature park. lots of fun for everyone...

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If your going to Ocho Rios and want to try something new and adventurous. ask a local guide to take you to the Blue Hole waterfalls.This is an adventurous hike in the jungle to a huge waterfall that you can jump off. just be sure to get a guide that will stay with you the whole day as there are sometimes locals there that ask for money for being there. no big deal, a few dollars usually goes a long way.

Oct 19, 2012

Ocho Rios Jamaica offers a lot of adventure when taking a cruise.lush jungles and rainforest surround the cruise port of Ocho Rios. There are 2 local beaches at the cruise port along with some great shopping within walking distance to the cruise terminal.

May 02, 2012

In Ocho Rios jamaica you will find 2 local beaches right outside the cruse ship terminal. one of the Beaches is at the Jimmy Buffets Margarita Ville Restaurant which is located in the Island Village complex within walking distance to the ship. The other is a local beach right across the terminal. There is a few dollar entrance fee to use either of the beaches.If you are a little more adventurous you can take a tour to one of the other many beaches that are further away or visit some of the stunning resort beaches. Always remember to keep in mind that the cruise visits to Ocho Rios are usually shorter than 8 hours so you dot want to be late getting back to the ship.

May 02, 2012

Today i was in Ocho rios. We decided to stay onboard as we heard that there was nothing to do off the ship. When we met others that got back on board after there excursions, they said they had an amazing time and got see so much nature and beauty out in the jungle. We regretted not taking a tour in Jamaica. My advise. ig you are going to Jamaica. take a tour and have fun. dont waste your vacation

Jan 25, 2012

Although Ocho Rios does have a lot of nice beaches they are not all that accessible. if you want to just lay out on the beach. there is a public beach right off the ship. You will likely have to pay a few dollars to go there. If you want to get a little beach time in with some adventure and fun, try Dolphin cove.

Oct 11, 2010

i went to the margarittaville beach and they make you pay $3 dollars to lay on the bech. there is also another beach on the otherside of the village that makes you pay also. its not alot but comon! if you are getting offin Jamaica, take a tour !

Aug 21, 2010

There is a best in Island Village which is next to Margaritaville but it is very small and they charge you for almost everything. Not bad if your looking to just walk around and have a few drinks.

Jun 13, 2010
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Info on Ocho Rios

Situated on Jamaica's northeast coast, the resort areas of Port Antonio, Runaway Bay, and Ocho Rios helped to launch large-scale tourism in Jamaica. Known for its abundant rainfall, verdant landscapes, rolling hills, and jagged estuaries, this region was once the preferred hangout for Noël Coward, Errol Flynn, and a host of British and American literati. Ian Fleming, creator of the James Bond spy thrillers, lived at Goldeneye near Ocho Rios.

Some 31km (19 miles) west lies its chief rival, the resort of Runaway Bay -- more secluded than Ocho Rios, and without the vendors or cruise ship arrivals. There's no real town here; it's mainly just a beachfront strip of hotels.

Just 8km (5 miles) to the west of Runaway Beach is Discovery Bay, whose name refers to the belief that Columbus first landed here in 1494.

A 2-hour drive east from Montego Bay, Ocho Rios was once a small banana and fishing port, but tourism long ago became its leading industry. Now Jamaica's cruise ship capital, the bay is dominated by an ore terminal and hotels with sandy beaches fringed by palm trees. The place is fine for a lazy beach vacation, but it's definitely not for anyone seeking a remote hideaway.

Ocho Rios is far lusher than Montego Bay, and many of its resort hotels boast private sandy beaches. On the other hand, golfing and nightlife are better in Montego Bay; if you want hedonism, head for Negril.

50miles/80km north-west of Kingston.
A major port of call for cruise ships, Ocho Rios offers the island's best shopping, a variety of nightlife and fairly good though often crowded beaches.
Its setting - on the edge of the jungle in a sheltered bay with a mountainous backdrop - is lovely, making it the ideal place on the north-eastern coast to spend some time
You can wander around town and spend time at the beach and visit enormously popular Dunn's River Falls.

Though Ocho Rios is surrounded by natural beauty - waterfalls, tropical gardens and jungled mountains - the town itself, with 5,800 residents, is little more than a hodgepodge of modern strip malls and shopping centers catering to tourists.
The markets are lively fun but be prepared to deal with aggressive vendors and lots of noise. Along the waterfront and within walking distance are high-rise resorts where you can swim, catch the sun and partake in your favorite water sport.
The only historic site of interest is Ocho Rios Fort near Reynolds Pier. The 17th-century structure has been renovated and contains two original cannons.

Sightseeing elsewhere
One of the most popular attractions in Jamaica is Dunn's River Falls. You can climb the natural steps to the top of the 600ft/180m tiered waterfall or just gaze at the falls from a viewing platform.
The falls can be slippery so wear a swimsuit and tennis shoes or swim socks. The safest way to climb is with a guide who will take you by the hand and lead you up the tiered falls and into some small caves.
There's a nice beach for swimming and sunning where the river empties into the Caribbean. The jungle setting is gorgeous but the area is highly commercialized. At the top of the falls is a village full of crafts shops, T-shirt stands and hair-braiding kiosks.
About 20miles/32km east of the port is Firefly, the late Noel Coward's retreat above the fishing village of Port Maria. At 1,000ft/300m above the coast, the estate offers a stunning view of Port Maria Bay and the town, with its old port and Anglican church.
Firefly was renovated in 1990s to evoke the heyday of the great playwright, who is buried in a corner of his garden precisely where he enjoyed his evening brandy.

Great Houses
If you're interested in Jamaica's historical and cultural heritage, you can't do better than visit the plantations and great houses. All are at elevations giving great vistas of the surrounding countryside.
Guides and workers share knowledge about wild and cultivated plants and usually offer samples of freshly picked fruit. Best of these working plantations is Brimmer Hall Estate, an elegant 18th-century home 18miles/29km south-west of Ocho Rios.
A tractor-drawn jitney tour of the 700-acre/280-hectare property covers the cultivation and harvesting of coconuts, bananas, coffee, sugarcane, cocoa and pimento.

Expect to be hustled and hassled by vendors selling everything from straw baskets to fresh pineapple

Water Sports
Snorkeling & Scuba Diving: Ocho Rios is not known for great diving but there are several nearby coral reefs.

Jamaica has more than 500 species of ferns, and many of them can be seen in Fern Gully, an old creek bed south of Ocho Rios that you can drive through.
Another way to explore the rivers and rain forests of Jamaica is to raft the beautiful White River on a sleek 30ft/9m bamboo raft-for-two. Be sure to wear a hat or rent an umbrella at the put-in point. Even though the river is mostly overhung with trees and ferns, the sun will appear, and it can be harsh.

Every local ethnic group has contributed to Jamaica's justly famous food. There's jerk, of course, a method of seasoning meat with pimento and pepper developed by the African Maroons; curry from the Indians; pita bread (called Syrian bread locally) and chickpeas from the Lebanese; and Chinese food galore.
Salted codfish, mackerel and herring are a legacy of slavery days. Salt fish and ackee, the island's traditional dish, combines salted cod with ackee fruit (which tastes like slightly sweetened scrambled eggs), served with boiled green banana, johnnycakes (flour dumplings) and bammies (cassava cakes).
With local meals, expect side dishes of rice and peas (red kidney beans cooked with coconut milk and white rice), yams, dasheen, sweet potato and boiled flour or cornmeal dumplings. And do try harddough bread - the local version of sourdough - and Jamaican hush puppies.
Top local fast foods include patties (spiced meat in a flaky crust) and any of the colorful fruits sold by the street vendors. Beer drinkers will want to sample the local brew, Red Stripe. If you prefer liqueurs, try locally produced Tia Maria.
Local food is a bargain but the more upscale international and Continental restaurants are pricey.
Several restaurants close to the cruise-ship piers serve local food.

Shopping Hours: Mon-Sat 9am-5pm or 6pm. Some close for lunch. Many close at 2pm on Thursdays. Most open Sundays if a ship is in port. Prices are marked in either Jamaican or U.S. dollars. Always establish the currency up front.
Ocho Rios is awash with shopping centers. Some contain only duty-free shops. Others house a variety of stores not necessarily geared to tourists.
Shoppers in search of duty-free bargains on French perfume, crystal, watches, cameras and electronic equipment should scout the centers along Main Street and DaCosta Drive.
Biggest of these are Taj Mahal Shopping Centre almost directly across from the terminal, Ocean Village Shopping Centre in the center of Ocho Rios, Pineapple Place just east of town and Coconut Grove Shopping Centre.
Shopping for island-made products requires determination, shrewdness and a good eye.
Most of the straw work, wood carvings and leather goods are of good quality but you'll notice a sameness in the merchandise.
You'll meet many aggressive vendors along the way. This can be very intimidating if you're not familiar with Jamaica. If you aren't interested, a firm "No thank you" should suffice. Keep walking. If you do see something you like, expect to bargain. It is a time-honored tradition, always conducted with humor and mutual respect. Never pay a vendor the first asking price.
Outside Ocho Rios are several studios where you can visit with the artists as well as view their paintings, sculpture, carvings and ceramic work.



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