The Blue Hole, Ocho Rios, Jamaica is worth uncovering.
I have long wanted to visit the Blue Hole having heard about it previously from a British immigrant who now calls Jamaica home. She relayed it as the place to go, off the beaten track and rivals the more commercial Dunns River Falls, also in Ocho Rios. Having been to many waterfalls in Jamaica, I knew the Island can more than deliver on spectacular water features, and yet, I was still full of excitement.
Our journey there took us through the old town of Ocho Rios and the village of Content. The main road, though windy and best suited for a four wheel drive, is in good condition.
All dressed in swimwear, the right amount of sun block on, camera in hand, and tummies full of Jamaican patties and a box drink, a group of four of us arrived at the Blue Hole and was immediately greeted by a serene atmosphere, exotic flowers and a 20ft cascading waterfall.
The main fall itself is divided into two areas: one at the top for the more skilled swimmer, and one just below for the rest of us. There is a swing rope which stretches across the width of the falls. I dug deep inside to find the Jane in me to do acrobatics across the falls and impress whichever Tarzan was around. Alas, she never showed.
For the adventurous and thrill seekers, however, the swing rope looked like fun. There are also many ledges around the edges of the waterfall from which you can dive, but be sure to ask the guides first. The banks of the waterfall has a thick mud that gets between your toes, but as you walk along the banks just keep dipping your feet in the water to wash them off. The waterfall flows into a quiet meandering river, which is pleasing to look at and relaxing to hear, as it softly sings of good times. Along its banks we could see local people and kids playing, talking and just generally living the ‘No Problem’ mantra of Jamaica.
The guides are very welcoming, well trained, and skilled swimmers . They all live locally and have been coming to the falls since they were kids, so to them this is their backyard and we found that quite comforting. They can answer any questions you may have and have a real natural flare for making you relax and release the stresses of modern living. The guides will also take you on hikes further up the falls if you ask, from which you will feel as if you are Robinson Crusoe as this is truly a breathtakingly beautiful place.
The main source of the fall’s water comes from a spring in a small village called Moneague. Situated way up in the cool hills of St. Ann, Moneague is renowned for its lakes and deep thick fog that rolls over and blankets the mountains. Once the water leaves the Blue Hole, it perfectly flows into and joins the White River.
My visit to Blue Hole was at the height of summer, and it was the best place to be as the trees provided shade, the breeze was cool, and the water cold and well worth it. If you find the right spot in the falls to sit, as the water tumbles over the rocks, it will give you the best head and neck massage.
So what of the water itself? The name in all its simplicity gives it justice .The water is the most perfect turquoise blue that I have ever seen. It is almost mesmerizing. It was as if this was nature’s paint swatch for the color blue. At the deepest sections of the falls the water color is a rich intense deep blue and as it flows towards the river banks it becomes an icy blue with hints of emerald green. In all this is truly a hidden gem and one of Jamaica’s secrets to uncover.
– Admission fee applies
– We recommend a waterproof camera
– We also recommend water shoes