Ahhh.. off the beaten track, a term which conjures up images of Jamaica’s rolling green hills, sweeping valleys, secluded beaches, serpentine rivers and cold majestic waterfalls in my mind. Jamaica means ‘Land of Wood and Water’ and the island certainly doesn’t disappoint– in fact I’m far from finished with discovering and exploring her concealed treasures.
Jamaica’s beauty doesn’t go unnoticed; we receive several million tourists each year but they tend to flock our resort towns of Ocho Rios, Negril and Montego Bay. It’s easy to see why too with the convenience of vacationing at all-inclusive beach resorts. For those with a more adventurous spirit, however, here are seven off the beaten track places in Jamaica which are well worth the trouble of finding. These are the places they forget to print in the Jamaican travel brochures but after this article, they just may end up in one.
1) The community of Cascade (📍Portland)
Cascade is a small district nestled in the hills of Portland, an area which receives some of Jamaica’s highest rainfall but rain never lasts too long in Jamaica. The jungle-like vegetation explodes with every imaginable shade of green and hidden in its midst lies one of, if not Jamaica’s tallest single drop waterfall. Contact the JCDT re obtaining a free guide to the waterfall from the main road (B1), or hike to it from Holywell while admiring the beautiful trees, magnificent views and inhaling fresh Jamaican mountain air.
Read more about Cascade [HERE].
2) Fish Done Falls (📍Portland)
Just beyond the community of Cascade is another gem in a rural district by the name of Silver Hill. Fish Dunn Falls is a grand casade tumbling over a smooth rockface to fill a cold deep pool underneath, invigorating to any weary traveller. You can drive or cycle right up to the waterfall as it’s located next to the main road, however when that main road is in a community as mountainous and underpopulated as Silver Hill, no wonder it doesn’t get many daily visitors.
Get the link to Fish Done Falls [HERE].
3) Breadnut Valley Falls (📍St. Elizabeth)
Maggotty, St. Elizabeth is the home of this beautiful waterfall which cascades into a deep turquoise pool. Pictured above is the main waterfall but there are several smaller ones upstream, along with many shallower pools for non-swimmers. This waterfall and its surrounding environs convinced me that the Garden of Eden very likely could’ve been right here in Jamaica. Also, surprisingly very little hiking is involved to find it.
Find out more about Breadnut Valley Falls [HERE].
4) Lime Tree Farm (📍St. Andrew)
The Lime Tree Farm is a working coffee farm in the Blue Mountains which offers bean-to-cup coffee tours and four lovely cottages for guests. The views from the farm are absolutely delightful and its owners Rodger and Tifony Bolton are a very warm hospitable pair who’ll ensure your daytrip or overnight stay is memorable for the right reasons. The roads to get here though are horrendous but you’ll be glad you made the trip. Experiencing Blue Mountain coffee at the source is an experience I believe every Jamaican or visitor to Jamaica must have at least once in a lifetime.
Learn more [HERE].
5) Kwame Falls (📍St. Mary)
During low rainfall, Kwame Falls dwindles to a trickle but the beauty of this 2-hour hike isn’t one you’ll soon forget. The terrain is gentle and alternates between wooded trails, open grasslands, a black sand beach and tiny rivulets. You’ll also pass colonial remnants such as a waterwheel and the ruins of an old A.M.E. church. There’s a lot of historical significance behind this waterfall too and the entire trip is a delight to the senses.
Find out why [HERE].
6) Blue Mountain Peak (📍Portland)
The first time I visited the Blue Mountain Peak was nearly three years ago yet it’s still my favourite place in Jamaica by far. This peak is the highest in the land clocking 7,402 ft. or 2,256m above sea level. It’s only accessible by foot, requires at least 3 hours of steadily uphill walking and can be a little treacherous on the way back. Blue Mountain Peak is best approached around 2am in the morning with a guide and flashlight in hand so that one can reach in time for sunrise. It’s the best sunrise I’ve ever experienced and the views on the way down in the soft stirring light are just as spectacular. The trail is home to gigantic tree ferns, bromeliads, mosses, lichens, flowers, birds and the giant swallowtail butterfly. Many of these species are not only endemic to Jamaica but can only be found along this trail.
Learn more about the Blue Mountain Peak [HERE].
7) Reggae Falls (📍St. Thomas)
Reggae Falls in Hillside, St. Thomas is an old abandoned hydroelectricity station, the beauty of which has not gone unnoticed. The roads to get here are rough and figuring out where to park can be challenging as well, but you’ll be happy you went after seeing and hearing and feeling the mighty roar of this magnificent waterfall.
Read more [HERE].
There you have it. Seven places in Jamaica which are challenging to find but well worth the visit. Tell me how was your experience if you’ve visited any of the places, and if you haven’t, which would you like to visit most?
If you liked this post, you’ll LOVE my guide to the Blue Mountains. Read that post here.
‘Til next time. ✌🏽