5 Reasons to Visit Ocho Rios, Jamaica

Ocho Rios, Jamaica is where world-class luxury and tradition collide. Ocho Rios is known for its breathtaking beaches, beautiful views, and a wide selection of shopping options great for high-class brands to charming souvenirs and special mementos.

It is one of the most popular places to visit when in Jamaica, with friendly locals and visitors from around the world enjoying traditional favorites from food to events. Whether you are looking for a winter vacation getaway or summer hot spot, Ocho Rios offers plenty of reasons to visit.

Here are just five of the reasons why you should visit Ocho Rios:

Traditional Tastes of Fine Dining

Locals take pride in their Jamaican cuisine, and visitors have plenty to say about it. You can enjoy several restaurants, and food stands featuring authentic Jamaican dishes.

A favorite for locals and visitors is the Cardiff Hall Restaurant at Runaway Bay. Guests can enjoy international and local dishes featuring locally-grown produce, fresh seafood, and signature dishes sure to please your taste buds.

Want to enjoy some spicy jerky in a low-key setting? The Bizot Bar and Restaurant is the place for you with a unique bar and lighting setting that allows guests to enjoy the great outdoors while watching food preparation.

You can also enjoy delicious burgers, fresh salads, and other Jamaican specialties from the 16 dining choices and 11 bars at Sandals Ochi, our all-inclusive resort in Ochos Rios.

Casual and Exquisite Shopping

Did someone say shopping? Shopping options throughout the area not only help to boost the economy of the island, but visitors say it is one of the best areas to shop till you drop.

Find everything you need from clothing, shoes, spices, and more. If you want something sparkly, check out the stone and jewelry collection at Colors. Here, you will find a selection of precious stones, crystals, Swiss watches and other quality jewelry. They even have fine quality Cuban cigars such as Juliana and Cohiba.

The Island Village Shopping Center has an array of shopping options including the Island Leisure souvenir shop featuring stylish print T-shirts. Need to make a quick run for last minute items? Stop at the Herba Kadabra supermarket. If you love high fashion shades, check out Shade Shack where they have a huge selection of name brand sunglasses including Gucci, Chanel, and Adidas. You can purchase them at 30 percent off the U.S. price.

Adventure and Action Activities

You can get to know historical land areas through nature walks, but these are more than your typical nature hikes. The Flower Forest and River Head Adventure Trail are a popular attraction with 40 acres of garden landscape within 130 acres of tropical forest.

Enjoy tropical birds, plants, and a river. It is a great place to for outdoor gatherings such as picnics and weddings. For something more rustic in adventure consider the Green Grotto Caves. These beautiful rock formations have been in existence since the 18th century with an intricate history. It features interconnected passageways, stalagmites, and a wishing well if you are feeling lucky.

Sandals Ochi is also connected with luxury adventure tours that range between exhilarating and relaxing.

Unique Culture Tours

To take in the sights and learn what Ocho Rios has to offer, consider taking a tour. Many touring companies are providing unique touring options.

Learn about the flavors of Jamaica, take a safari through the Rainforest, or learn about local culture through Island Routes tours.

Beach and Water Activities

One of the main attractions people look forward to when visiting Ocho Rios is getting out on the water. There are so many things to do and see that it's easy to see why many spend their days by the water.

Want some water adventure? Swim with the dolphins at the Dolphin Cove and while there, enjoy shark shows, kayaking, mini-boat rides, unlimited scuba diving, and snorkeling with stingrays.

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About K. Williams, T. Thompson & W. van der Hoop.

A collaboration between seasoned travel writers, boasting over 30 years of collective experience in Caribbean travel.