5 scenic drives in Jamaica

5 scenic drives in Jamaica

Scenic drives in Jamaica are a bonus feature to your planned trip to our beautiful island.

Unconsciously, you're actually discovering Jamaica by car and it can be a truly unique vacation experience.

The largest English-speaking country in the Caribbean, Jamaica boasts every kind of terrain imaginable for an island in the sun.

From beaches (of every color) to cloud forests and misty mountains, jagged cliffs, and lush river valleys - there is
so much more than meets the eye.

Hit the road and prepare to have some of the best experiences the island has to offer.

Here are suggestions for 5 scenic drives to help you discover all that the island has to offer.

Papine to Newcastle

A drive up this winding road from the hot and dusty flats of Kingston - about an hour – takes you to the cool and refreshing Blue and John Crow Mountains, 26,000 hectares of land recently demarcated as a World Heritage Site.

Stop to take a photo or have a cup of coffee along the way, pack a picnic and visit Holywell National Park where you can take a guided hike to a waterfall. Either way, the drive is a great way to spend a day.

Ocho Rios to Port Antonio

Discover the greener, lusher side of the island in the parish of Portland - of which Port Antonio is the capital.

Leaving the hustle and bustle of the busy tourist center of Ocho Rios behind, the drive takes on a more languid feel as it directs you through charmingly simple communities along the coast.

Notable stops along the way include GoldenEye, the former home of James Bond creator Ian Fleming, and Firefly (possibly the most beautiful coastal view on the island) where playwright Noel Coward not only holidayed but wrote some of his most renowned work.

Treasure Beach to Negril

About two hours in length, this road trip traverses the rugged southern coastline of the island enabling passengers to take in the varying sights and sounds of undeveloped Jamaica.

See a crocodile in Black River, grab a fish and festival at Border, stop in Bluefields and pay homage to Peter Tosh or take a swim with a cold Red Stripe at any of the public beaches along the way before arriving – in time to catch a sunset of course - on the 7 miles of beach you came to visit in Negril.

Spanish Town to Ocho Rios (old road or new highway) 

Now that there’s an option, everyone has their favorite.

The new highway, which will get you door to door in just over an hour, is a feat in engineering cutting through the mountains, and serving up spectacular views (because of its elevation) of the two sides of the island.

The old road in comparison takes over two hours and winds its way through the river valleys along the Rio Grande and climbs the precarious (in nickname only) Mount Diablo before beginning a long descent towards the sea.

Ask your driver to stop for boiled corn and soup, jerk chicken and hard dough bread, and various fruit and coconuts on the other side.

Norman Manley International Airport to Kingston … & back again

An arrival at Norman Manley International Airport allows visitors one of the best - and underrated views in Jamaica – of Kingston.

Set near the end of a palisade, the drive in from the airport takes in the scope of the city’s harbor, the seventh largest natural one in the world, as well as a first glimpse of the vast Blue and John Crow Mountain Range that shelter the sprawling city.

Visitors driving towards the airport can add on a drive to Port Royal, once the wickedest city in the west, where pirates and buccaneers spilled out of bars, and royal officers defended the coastline from their posts at the old fort. 

And to find the best scenic views in Jamaica, make sure to book a car with Island Car Rental Jamaica.

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