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New Nonstop Flights To Jamaica Unlock The Hidden Gems Of Ocho Rios 

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Jamaica has long been a favorite Caribbean destination for American travelers.

Now, the country's town of Ocho Rios is finally getting the attention it deserves.  

Ocho Rios is a beautiful town on the northeastern coast of Jamaica with incredible white sand beaches and breathtaking views.  

Beautiful sandy beach in Ocho Rios, Jamaica

2024 is the first time that Americans can fly nonstop from the U.S. to Ocho Rios and the route has been so popular that according to Carib Journal, American Airlines will add new daily nonstop routes to the town from Miami.  

What is currently a once-weekly service will become a daily service from Miami to Ocho Rios on December 5.  

As well as boasting new flight routes, Ocho Rios is also a popular cruise port which means that its popularity is only set to increase.

People Relax On The Fisherman's Beach In Ocho Rios, Jamaica

But as a traveler who prefers hidden gems to popular hot spots, I think Ocho Rios still has loads to offer. It’s packed full of things to see and do that will take you off the beaten path.  

Let’s unlock the best ones:

Paradise For Foodies

Foodies rejoice, because Ocho Rios is paradise for travelers who love to eat.  

Jamaica has a well-deserved reputation for its spicy, hearty soul food dishes. But there are plenty of great options for world cuisine in Ocho Rios too, especially if you’re happy to dig out hidden gems.  

a coconut stand in Jamaica sells coconuts with rum

Ms T’s is the best place to try authentic, Jamaican dishes in my opinion.

This place is never quiet because it’s popular with both locals and tourists-in-the-know alike. If you only try Jamaican food once on your trip, it should be here.  

If you want the comforting familiarity of classic Italian dishes like pizza and pasta then many tourists say Evita’s offers great food and great value. It also has incredible views over Ochos Rios Bay.  

To turn dinner time into an experience, Zionite Organic Farm offers a farm-to-table experience and includes a farm tour as part of your dining reservation.

Eating new foods is one of my favorite parts of any vacation, so this is a really great place to try for something different.  

Breathtakingly Beautiful Attractions  

The first thing you notice about Ocho Rios is just how beautiful it is. Every view is insta-worthy!  

parasailing in ocho rios

The town offers a perfect blend of natural beauty and exhilarating activities that attract adrenaline junkies, but if you’re more interested in kicking back and relaxing, then this is the spot for you too.  

One of the most popular things to do in Ocho Rios is to take a tour of Dunns River Falls.

The view from the top is breathtaking but be warned, you will be bombarded with vendors trying to sell you a tour as soon as you get close.  

Waters flow down Dunn's River Falls a top attraction in Ocho Rios Jamaica in the Caribbean

However, you can enjoy views that are just as pretty, but with lower crowd levels and less hassle, at the Konoko Falls and Park instead. The climb to the top is easier than at Dunns River Falls, and although you’ll find tourists here too, the numbers are much more manageable.   

When you get to the top, you’ll find incredible views that are well worth going out of your way for.  

For something a little out of the ordinary, why not plan a visit to the Sun Valley Plantation hummingbird garden?  

Sun Valley Plantation is a working plantation and botanical farm in Ocho Rios. You’ll see hundreds of hummingbirds (of course) and an incredible array of plant life.

You’ll also see people gathering delicious tropical fruits that you’ll have the chance to taste straight from the plant.  

Aerial view of Ocho Rios, Jamaica in the Caribbean

I love getting little glimpses into the lives of locals when I travel. Seeing how they work and how they really live. And this is a great place to do exactly that while also supporting local communities.  

Get Your Own Guide 

One of the best ways to explore the hidden gems of Ocho Rios and to discover the town’s hidden gems is to hire your own car and driver.  

Public transport can be unreliable in Ocho Rios and booking a tour means traveling with a coach-full of tourists which means you have very little freedom to choose what you want to do. 

Personally, I hate coach tours and feeling hemmed in with a group of tourists I don’t know. So, finding affordable car hire is one of my top priorities whenever I travel to a new destination.

If the budget stretches, then hire a driver and a guide: you’ll be amazed at the positive difference it will make to your experience.  

Amity Tours and Transfers have a great reputation for the quality of the drivers they hire and for going out of their way to make sure you see the best that Ocho Rios has to offer.  

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Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.