Up for a day trip? The adventurous visitor will want to check out this majestic waterfall, known as the Niagara of Jamaica. ... More
Dunn's River Falls
Up for a day trip? The adventurous visitor will want to check out this majestic waterfall, known as the Niagara of Jamaica. Scale the 600-foot limestone rock formation as water cascades past you and splashes into the ocean below. Guides lead groups carefully, with group members linking hands for the steep ascent. Small pools of water and excellent photo opportunities will greet you along the way. Afterwards, relax at the beach restaurant or browse through the artisan market.
My hubby and I arrived in Jamaica in Jan on the Costa Magica. I had made prior arraingements with Courtney Taylor from positive posts I had read from this forum. Courtney happily greeted us at the pier we were a bit early but the helpful port assistants quickly called Courtney arrived in his air conditioned mini van shortly after. Courtney is very proud and knowledgeable about his Island, he had many points of interest to show and stories to tell. The tour consisted of just my hubby and I and that was so nice, especially when we were seeing groups from the ships that have 100 or more people in them....reminded me of a cattle drive!
At any rate our day was perfect with Courtney, we first made a stop at the Botanical Gardens, simply a beautiful place and I recommend you get there early as it starts to fill up with bus loads of people. After that we drove to the East side of the Island and thru Fern Gully that was quite interesting the locals sell there wares all over on the sides of the roads in small huts...mostly wooden sclupture and there are some interesting sites of other statues of Jamaican men with shall I say "very large" genitals! LOL The artists have quite an imiganiation and I comented on this .
Moving on we toured Dunn River Falls and by the time we got there there were many bus loads of tourists which in my opinion took away from the falls, if you are trying to get a nature picture of the falls go early otherwise you will end up with pictures of hundreds of people climbing the falls instead. My hubby and I did not chose to climb the falls as their was a train of people hand in hand from the top of the 600 ft. fall to the bottom with lines of people waiting to climb from below...so we simply walked down to the beach and walked the beach to try and get away from all the people. Dunn River Falls was a bit of a disappointment for the both of us but I suppose it depends on what you are looking to do their, if you think you want to go there for the "nature thing" think again as it simply is an over priced tourist trap filled with people....nature is in second place in my opinion.
We then were taken by Courtney to a local Jerk restraunt and sampled some of the Jerk chicken and Jerk Pork for lunch washed down with the local favorite beer Red Stripe. Yummy!
After lunch we drove thru some higher end homes on the beach that the "richer" folks live in...that was fun to see how they live, we also saw Mick Jagger's Mansion (from afar ofcourse).
We did some other small sight seeing of various other points of interest but I have listed all the major stops for you.
We really enjoyed our tour with Marvellous Courtney Taylor and would highly recommend him. We were able to leave our belongings in his van and we felt very comfortable with his abilities every step of the way.
..Courtney says the real troubles and crime are more over in Kingston than Ocho Rios.
Courtney...if you are reading this Thank You my dear for a wonderful time, if we ever get back to your area we will definately look you up!!!
I am ready to go again I wish I could be on a ship every month LOL! You will like Courtney, he was good to us. One note I am not sure I mentioned courtney will stop at various people that sell "handi-crafts" along side of the roads there are tons of folks whom do this and this is how the local Jamican folks make their money. if you do not wish to make these stops than just tell him and he will gladly honor your request. We did stop at two of these little places and bought a few little goodies from alady whom makes change purses and stuff like that...these places where when we were leaving from the Botinacial Garden if you are going there. Courtney is pretty happy to do whatever you are comfortable with so....HAVE FUN! google 'courtney taylor tours' to find him
This place was beautiful but the tour guides and vendors ruin it. After the climb, EACH guide EXPECTS a tip. They are extremely pushy. Just like everyone has been saying, upon exiting the falls, you are directed through this weaving maize of vendors harassing you. I am a pretty big dude at 6', but I felt very uneasy and even a little scared at the fact that you have 15 locals all in your face demanding money. It was just a few points short of being robbed at knife point, and with the level of aggressive intensity, I would not be surprised if they actually take it to that level.
The climb is fairly dangerous. There is no protective helmets or gear in place, and nothing to hold onto except the person you are following. There are spots where the rocks are slick and you might lose your footing. You can't alway see where you put your feet, so sometimes you end up in sink holes.
Overall, it was beautiful, but I think I would have saved my money had I to do it all over again.
Do NOT trust your tour guide or even the person booking the trip. Our booking agent was O'Carterria (Carter for short) at the Grand Palladium with Sunwing tours. Do not trust your tour guides, ours were Tiffany and Marlon and Leroy. They are all more interested in helping the natives rip off tourists. We bought the DVD of our group at the falls and it wasnt even our group or any of the groups that we saw that day. Booking agent said that tour would be relaxed and not rushed. LIAR was he. Bus was an hour late. We were rushed and did not get to enjoy the park at Dunns river. We were quoted a price of $120 per person (three of us.) Then charged $130 per person plus tax. Others in our group were charged $225 per person for the same trip. We were told that it would take about 7 hours to complete. It took 11 hours most of which we were sitting around waiting for the zip line adventure at another park. Oh, and the 5 hour round trip bus ride was a surprise as well. We were actually doing something a total of 2 and a half hours out of the entire 11 hours it took to complete the trip. We almost didnt get back to hotel in time to eat ( all-inclusive package.) We have traveled all over the world and Jamaica is by FAR the worst trip ever. We should have gone to Ambergris Caye again. The island is off the coast of Belize and locals dont harrass and mug the tourists. Its a MUCH better value and just as beautiful.
I had so much fun climbing the falls. It is the most beautiful place that I have ever been to.I was there in 2006 and the guides that we had made my experience so much fun because I was afraid to climb. They were very kind, polite,with a good sense of humor. They held my hand and kept me laughing so much that I forgot I was afraid. I did get the video, it was not blank and I still have it. True the locals at the shops were very pushy, but once I firmly told them NO, I walked away and they left me alone. I would go back right now if I could!
This place is a joke. The locals are beggars and everyone has a hand out asking for money. They try to trick you at every stop. I saw a Jamaican person flat out rob an elderly lady. The falls are very beautiful but all the locals around the falls (including the tour guides that take you up the falls) will rob you.
They also make videos of your trip up the falls. DO NOT BUY THE VIDEO. There is no video on the disc.
I just visited Jamaica and have never been so nerveous in a country in my life. I would not recommend this for anyone.
I was at the fall 2 days ago and have to write this post because if I read it prior hand I would of not gone to the fall. I understand it's all personal experience so I like to share mine. I had an amazing time at Dunn's, it's one of the most beautiful fall/river I've been to and would HIGHLY recommend it.
True there are local at the end but they won't pushy at all, just say NO firmly and keep walking and all is fine. Anyone who's having issue with that don't have people skills. It's an amazing place and hope all visit.
The Island is pretty and the tour guides were very helpful. Watch your wallets and your personal items. The locals that hang aroung the tourist places try to trick you. It is very hard to to enjoy yourself and feel comfortable. The people here can not drive. They like to pass you on either side of the road. Every muscle in my body was sore from feeling tense.
for those who are saying it's not a good place or whatever and how they are only hustlers there that's a lie and how everything is expensive you don't know what your talking about because first of all when you work it out it's the same as U.S dollars so not because you didn't have a good time doesn't mean you have to discourage others....and everyone that i know that has visited there said they loved it and can't wait to go back
We really enjoyed our visit there however two drawbacks, when we finished the climb we gave our guides a reasonable tip and they never said thank you and just kept looking at us for more. We were very disappointed with that. Also the craft vendors are there and they are very pushy, an idea might be to go back out through the entrance, we didn't and just kept walking and saying no. but in my opinion I don't think they should be in there at this tourist attraction. I was nervous about some areas, as it it a challenging climb, but I had many hands to help me and it was lots of fun. You will get soaking wet so come prepared for that, and you will have fun fun fun!
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