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Ocho Rios Shore Excursion Reviews

Ocho Rios (Photo:Atomazul/Shutterstock)

Popular Things to Do in Ocho Rios

Ocho Rios, a port town with less than 10,000 residents located on Jamaica's northern coast, is one of the island's hot spots for cruise tourism. Here, cruisers can choose any number of island-centric excursions. There are, of course, lots of gorgeous soft-sand beaches, though if you want a spot of your own to enjoy, you might want to book a beach shore excursion though the cruise line. Cruise visitors will also want to check out some of Ocho Rios' stunning waterfalls like Dunn's River Falls. Shopping is a popular sport in Ocho Rios, where duty-free deals are aplenty and interesting souvenirs can be found at the craft market (haggling is expected). Don't forget to pick up some of Jamaica's famous coffee.

Ocho Rios is hot and steamy most of the year and it rains frequently year-round, but especially during the late summer and fall months -- the latter end of hurricane season. English is the official language in Jamaica, but it is usually spoken with a very thick accent and lots of colloquialisms that can be a bit difficult to follow. Jamaica uses its own dollar, but U.S. dollars are widely accepted as well.


Find Things to Do in Ocho Rios

26 Excursions Found (Displaying Results 1 - 25)

#1 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Dunn's River Falls

287 Reviews
Dunn's River Falls offer 600 feet of climbing pleasure for thousands of visitors and locals every year. It is arguably Jamaica's most popular and famous attraction.
#2 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Beach

97 Reviews
Enjoy a day filled of sand, pools, and local food such as jerk chicken, while on a private beach break excursion in Ocho Rios.
#3 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Bobsled Tour

79 Reviews
You don't need to be an Olympian to have fun speeding through the jungle in this roller coaster-style Jamaican bobsled course.
#4 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

River Tubing

74 Reviews
A mix of currents carry you downstream as you sit back and admire the natural surroundings of the river valley before feeling the rush of the splashing rapids. The course takes you over a variety of class 2 river rapids, each followed by a calm section to chill out and lounge in your tube.
#5 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Irie Blue Hole

54 Reviews
This 20 foot cascading waterfall is definitely a hidden gem in the hills of Ocho Rios. The blue hazy waters are deep enough for the exhilarating cliff jumps & dives, and children enjoy the Tarzan Rope Swing.
#6 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

River Rafting

51 Reviews
Discover the best-kept secret in Ocho Rios as you take an exhilarating journey through pools and gentle rapids down the scenic river.
#7 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Ziplining

49 Reviews
Journey across Ocho Rios’ lush, tropical rainforest on a zipline that sends you whizzing across a cable strung between a series of tree-to-tree platforms.
#8 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Island Tour

30 Reviews
Choose to embark on a island excursion tour while in port at Ocho-Rios. This informative tour will touch upon the city's rich history as well as take you to the island's must see attractions.
#9 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Chairlift

29 Reviews
Soar through the trees and jungle vines while on a chairlift excursion through Ocho Rios. This is an adventure that you cannot miss out on.
#10 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Horseback Riding

24 Reviews
Saddle those horses and ride along a beautiful stretch of beaches and terrain as you enjoy a beautiful view of Ocho Rios' rolling mountains.
#11 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Catamaran Tour

21 Reviews
Set sail on a catamaran cruise around the famous Negril beach and Ocho Rios' scenic coastline.
#12 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Dolphin Swim

20 Reviews
Interact and swim with dolphins in an enclosed sea environment. Children and adults alike will enjoy the company of their new dolphin friends in Ocho Rios.
#13 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Jamaica for a Day

16 Reviews
You're in store for a fantastic get-away when you visit the Ocho Rios port on a Jamaica for a Day excursion. With beautiful views and delicious food, you may not want to leave!
#14 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Culinary Tour

11 Reviews
Learn about the many uses of coconut and banana, which are staples in every Jamaican home. After helping to prepare a traditional local meal, you'll be seated to enjoy your authentic Jamaican lunch.
#15 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Cave Tour

9 Reviews
Take a tour of Ocho Rios finest limestone caves, featuring numerous rock formations.
#16 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Cobaya Gardens

9 Reviews
Enjoy a water garden with streams, waterfalls running through to the grounds, and unique cultural attractions at Ocho Rios’ Cobaya River Gardens.
#17 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

ATV Adventure

8 Reviews
Take your trip off road with an ATV tour around Ocho Rios.
#18 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Kayaking

7 Reviews
Explore Ocho Rio's coastline while kayaking through the island's most popular waterways viewing its unique landscapes and wildlife along the way.
#19 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Jeep Tour

5 Reviews
Navigate on an exciting journey around Ocho Rios and be sure you stop by the Dunn's River Falls for some unforgettable scenery!
#20 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Shark Encounter

5 Reviews
Take advantage of the rare opportunity to interact with a shark and enjoy the refreshing cool waters of Dunn’s River Falls!
#21 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Craft Market

2 Reviews
At the Ocho Rios Craft Market, visitors will find lots of handmade souvenirs, artwork and more. For shoppers willing to bargain, good deals can be negotiated.
#22 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Dune Buggy

2 Reviews
#23 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Mini Boat Tour

2 Reviews
A mini boat tour will present lovely villas and Ocho Rios’ beautiful scenery, which cannot be seen from shore.
#24 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Pottery Art Gallery

2 Reviews
Stop in at the pottery art gallery in Ocho Rios to learn and watch how traditional Jamaican pottery is made.
#25 of 26 Ocho Rios Shore Excursions

Turtle Falls and Gardens

2 Reviews

Food and Drink in Ocho Rios

Jamaican food tends to be on the spicy side, especially such iconic dishes as jerk chicken and beef patties. Seafood figures heavily into the diet but at local joints you will also find curried goat, oxtail and the national dish called ackee and saltfish -- a local fruit with a texture like avocado, sauteed with onions, hot peppers and salted codfish.

Rum, Blue Mountain coffee and coffee-flavored Tia Maria liqueur are all island-produced beverages with worldwide reputations for top quality. The Hummingbird is a Jamaican classic cocktail made with coffee liqueur, rum cream liqueur, milk, strawberry syrup and bananas and then blended with ice to a smooth, frozen consistency.

Ocho Rios Jerk Centre: With its lively atmosphere, the Jerk Centre is the epitome of fun, local dining. This open-air eatery is a great place to enjoy authentic island flavors; menu items include jerk chicken and pork, barbequed ribs and fresh fish. (14 DaCosta Drive; open daily, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.; 876-974-2549)

Juici-Beef Patties: This shop, between Main Street and DaCosta Drive, sells Jamaica's most signature finger food, spicy empanada-like patties. It's a pan-Jamaican franchise and you will hear locals debating its attributes over the Tastee franchise. It's a great place for a quick snack with a cold Red Stripe beer. (1 Newlin Street; open Monday to Saturday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.; 876-974-5444)

The Ruins at the Falls: Featuring two restaurants and a diner, The Ruins is a dining destination all centered on a 40-foot-tall limestone waterfall, surrounded by tropical gardens. Lunch is served buffet style. Asian fare dominates the dinner menu but Jamaican-style cuisine is available, too. (17 DaCosta Drive, 876-974-8888)

Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville: For something more familiar, head to Margaritaville at the Island Village shopping center. (876-675-8800)

Evita's: Set in an 1860's Victorian house on a hill overlooking Ocho Rios and the ocean, Evita's is a Northern Italian restaurant. (Owner Eva Myers hails from Venice.) It's considered a prime celebrity magnet and is only a 10-minute walk from the cruise port. (Eden Bower Road; open daily from 11 a.m.; 876-974-2333)

Toscanini's: This venue also brings authentic Italian cuisine to the Caribbean. Toscanini's has a great reputation and a convenient, historic location in the Harmony Hall Art Gallery. It's priced in the mid to high range but service is attentive and the atmosphere is charming -- especially for couples. (Tower Isle; open Tuesday to Sunday, 12:30 to 2:30 p.m.; 876-975-4785)

Beaches in Ocho Rios

Best Beach for a Half-Day Visit: Mahogany Beach, 10 minutes east of port, is a great place for a beach day. Parasailing, kayaking, water skiing and diving are just a few of the water sports offerings available, and with nearby shopping, beachside massages and a bar and grill, you're all set until your ship is ready to sail again.

Best Beach for the Dedicated Beach Bum: James Bond Beach, 20 to 30 minutes to the east in Oracabessa, occasionally features live reggae performances and has a couple of quiet coves in which to hide.

Best Beach for Active Types: Turtle Beach and the beach at Island Village are closest to port and will undoubtedly have the most people. But, action abounds there, with a host of water sports activities and places to eat and drink just a stone's throw away.

Don't Miss in Ocho Rios

Dunn's River Falls: The top attraction in Ocho Rios is the mighty Dunn's River Falls, where you can climb from the beach up the flowing, 600-foot waterfalls. Locals say that this is where "heaven spills into the sea," and on a first visit to Ocho Rios, giving the falls a climb is something that shouldn't be missed. If you're going to climb the falls, it's a good idea to bring water shoes or rent shoes onsite to keep from slipping on the tricky limestone rocks. 

Mystic Mountain: This is a rainforest adventure park that's great for kids and adults alike and is home to some unique outdoor activities. The adventure begins with a ride on the Sky Explorer, a chairlift that soars 700 feet over the lush landscape below. Once at the top, travelers can opt to try the park's signature bobsled ride, the zipline canopy tour or a twisty slide that ends up in the mountaintop swimming pool. Have lunch and take in the view from lookout tower before making your way back down the mountain on the chairlift. 

Nine Mile: Reggae roots run deep in Jamaica, its birthplace. Music-lovers shouldn't pass up the opportunity to tour the town of Nine Mile, the birthplace of Bob Marley. Situated in the mountains of St. Ann Parish, Nine Mile takes about 75 minutes to reach from Ocho Rios; tours can be purchased that include transportation. You'll visit Marley's family home and mausoleum. 

Fern Gully: Take a drive through the lush rainforest of Fern Gully. This dense and often dark jungle of tropical foliage is set inland, where the winding road used to be a flowing river. It is said there are more than 200 different species of ferns in the area. The drive is about 3 miles long and a tour of Fern Gully is often included in excursions that highlight the best of Ocho Rios. 

Shaw Park Gardens: For nature-lovers, a self-guided botanical garden tour is ideal. Shaw Park Gardens features 25 acres of tropical plants, flowers and trees, situated on a hill overlooking the Caribbean. Coyaba River Garden features a water garden with streams and waterfalls running throughout the grounds, as well as cultural attractions. And, Turtle River Park, a free public park close to port, is a good option for those trying to keep time spent ashore to a minimum. 

Harmony Hall: Located about 10 miles outside Ocho Rios, it is a restored great house where arts, crafts and collectibles are now sold. You might also stumble onto a gallery showing of a local artist. 

Prospect Plantation is one of the island's oldest 18th-century estates. Tour the lush grounds in an open-air jitney while experiencing gorgeous views over the White River; explore the property's agricultural crops, including cassava, bananas, sugarcane and coffee; feed the ostriches; view native Jamaican butterflies in the aviary; or saddle up for a leisurely horseback ride. 

Golf: Nonguests are welcome to play golf at Breezes' golf club in Runaway Bay and Sandals Golf & Country Club. Both are PGA-quality championship courses and are some of the most interesting in the Caribbean, with fairways and greens laid out amid the rolling hills and picturesque backdrop.

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