Port of Ocho Rios
Find a Cruise to the Western Caribbean
Set just slightly past the cruise port, the shabby town of Ocho Rios offers plenty of duty-free shopping bargains, open-air eateries and happening bars on its two main drags, Main Street and DaCosta Drive (which run parallel to each other). Although the town is worth checking out, spending an entire day there would be overdoing it. For cruise-ship tourists, primary points of interest and attractions -- like Dunn's River Falls, Mystic Mountain and James Bond Beach -- lie beyond the actual town and are short 5- to 10-minute taxi rides away.
Ocho Rios gets its fair share of precipitation with the most rain falling in October, and average temperatures in Jamaica are in the 80's and 90's. (July and August are the hottest months, while February is the coolest.) Watch out for hurricane season in Caribbean ports from June until November.
Top Ocho Rios Itineraries
MSC Divina7 Night Caribbean CruiseMiami, Ocho Rios, Grand Cayman, Cozumel, Nassau, MiamiNow
Norwegian Epic7 Night Caribbean - Western CruisePort Canaveral , Great Stirrup Cay, Ocho Rios, Grand Cayman, Cozumel, Port CanaveralNow
Eurodam14-day Eastern / Western CaribbeanFort Lauderdale , Grand Turk, St. Croix, Half Moon Cay, Fort Lauderdale , Half Moon Cay, Ocho Rios, Grand Cayman, Key West, Fort LauderdaleNow
Carnival Vista6 Day Western Caribbean CruiseMiami, Ocho Rios, Grand Cayman, Cozumel, MiamiNow
Carnival Freedom7 Day Western Caribbean ItinerGalveston, Ocho Rios, Grand Cayman, Cozumel, GalvestonNow
Where You're Docked
The port has two piers for cruise ships. The Turtle Bay Pier is located next to the town's restaurants and shops, and the James Bond Pier, which is industrial in nature but serves cruise ships, is located farther west.
Good to Know
As with many other ports, and when traveling to foreign places in general, it's always best to proceed with caution. While in port, be aware of your surroundings, leave valuables and nonessentials on the ship, and take measures to keep yourself and your personal belongings safe. While you're shopping, merchants may come off as pushy, but responding with a respectful "no thanks" should do the trick.
Currency & Best Way to Get Money
The currency in Jamaica is the Jamaican dollar, but U.S. dollars are widely accepted. Most shops, restaurants and attractions accept credit cards. ATM's are located at the cruise terminal and in town at Margaritaville, Soni's Plaza and Gem Palace. ATM's are also available at major attractions like Dunn's River Falls and Dolphin Cove. Be prepared to pay a higher service fee than you normally would from home, and make sure the machine is marked dual currency if it's U.S. dollars you want.
Standard English is spoken in Jamaica, but the locals speak an English-based patois with a thick accent.
Authentic Jamaican rum and Tia Maria (a coffee liqueur) make great souvenirs. Just remember that if you're flying home from your cruise, you'll need to put the bottles in your checked luggage.
A Jamaican classic is the Hummingbird, made with coffee liqueur, rum cream liqueur, milk, strawberry syrup and bananas, blended with ice to a smooth, frozen consistency.
More Cruise Itineraries
- Eurodam Cruises to the Western Caribbean
- Carnival Conquest Cruises to the Western Caribbean
- Regal Princess Cruises to the Caribbean
- Carnival Vista Cruises to the Western Caribbean
- Carnival Freedom Cruises to the Western Caribbean
- Carnival Sensation Cruises to the Western Caribbean
- MSC Divina Cruises to the Caribbean