Manchester is one of Jamaica’s south central parishes. It’s often said that the north coast in Jamaica is for the tourists, while the south coast is for the locals. Of course, no parish is out of bounds for tourists, but it’s just that tourists seldom visit our quiet south coast when it’s more exciting up north. Manchester was formed in 1814 and is named for the Governor of Jamaica at that time. Manchester is primarily mountainous. Over 90% of Manchester’s surface is limestone which gives it an abundance of cockpits, sinkholes, caves and underground passages. That’s why most of the parish’s rivers run underground but form delightful swimming holes during the wet season. The longest and deepest caves in Jamaica are found in Manchester, namely the Gourie Cave near Christiana and the Smokey Hole Cave in Cross Keys. Manchester has large bauxite deposits, the raw material for aluminium production. Important crops in the parish are coffee, potatoes and citrus. Ortanique, a cross between the orange and tangerine, was developed here in Manchester, Jamaica.
Manchester was my home for two years, so I’m quite fond of the parish. I’m grateful for its doctors, nurses, allied HCWs and the patients which shaped my early career. I miss the clinics of south Manchester and its generous residents who made sure I was never short of ground provisions, spices and fruits. Mandeville, the capital of Manchester, is located at 2,000 feet above sea level. Temperatures fall to as low as 12.7 °C (55 °F) in December and January, which is very cool for a tropical island. The parish experiences hailstorms and gets misty after heavy rainfall, even in the peak of summer. There aren’t a lot of things to do in Manchester, but there are a few destinations. Here are 16 photos which celebrate the beauty of Manchester.
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16 Photos of Manchester, the Cool Breeze Parish
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‘Til next time.