While the majority of Jamaica’s visitors experience the island’s natural beauty through our white sand beaches, Jamaica offers a wide variety of natural and ecofriendly attractions. As the trends in travel have inclined more towards enriching experiences, increasingly visitors are seeking out the attractions in Jamaica that take them off the beaten path. Visitors are interested in life-changing vacations that benefit the environment and the communities in which they take place.
Our Green Globe certified resorts and attractions, farm to table dinners and sustainable hotel practices all contribute to Jamaica’s ecofriendly tourism offerings
. As such, the Jamaica Tourist Board, through its marketing efforts, continues to highlight these offerings, to establish Jamaica as a destination offering more than just beaches.
As the land of “wood and water” Jamaica boasts expansive mountain ranges, over 100 rivers and some of the world’s most impressive karst topography. The Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park consists of over 200,000 acres of tropical forest distributed over four parishes, and containing 800 species of endemic plants. This UNESCO World Heritage Site serves as home to not only a significant portion of the island’s biodiversity, but also plays a part in the history of Jamaica’s Maroon communities. The most famous feature however is undoubtedly the Blue Mountain coffee produced from the region, one the world’s most expensive and sought after coffees. Hiking the Blue Mountain trail is an experience like no other and is one of the best opportunities to get a glimpse of Jamaica’s beauty at the island’s highest peak.
Travel further west and discover the location of some of the Caribbean’s best spelunking in the Cockpit Country. The Cockpit Country has the highest diversity of plants and animals anywhere in Jamaica and is a goldmine for birdwatchers, plant lovers and scientists alike. Like the Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park, the Cockpit Country is still home to one of the most important Maroon communities in the island. Tours like those offered by Cockpit Country Adventures give visitors an insider’s look at the karst landscape, underground caves and rich bi-products of the area.
Sites like the Blue Mountain range and the Cockpit Country are located inland, further away from the buzz of resort towns and cruise ports. With a rental car, map of Jamaica and an adventurous spirit, visitors can navigate the island and discover off-the-beaten places and unique experiences. In addition, the new North/South leg of highway 2000 bridges the gap between resort areas, and provides a scenic and shortened route that connects the treasures of the resort areas of Kingston and Port Antonio to the Ocho Rios, Montego Bay and Negril resort areas.
The natural attractions mentioned here are just two of the diverse offerings marketed by the Jamaica Tourist Board as we invite today’s traveler to discover the Home of All Right.