The 10 Best Waterfalls in Jamaica

You’ve probably heard of Dunn’s River Falls but did you know that there are many more waterfalls in Jamaica? The island is mountainous with lots of rivers — the perfect recipe for waterfalls! 

Jamaican waterfalls have a lot in common with each other: cascading falls pouring into tranquil natural pools, surrounded by lush rainforest. Even so, each one is remarkably unique and worth a visit.

Looking to explore the waterfalls this island has to offer? Read on to find out what the 10 best waterfalls in Jamaica are.

Dunn’s River Falls 

Location: Ocho Rios, St. Ann

Just outside of Ocho Rios lies Jamaica’s most popular natural attraction: Dunn’s River Falls. This impressive waterfall is a must-see (and must-climb!) for visitors to the island. 

The falls reach a peak of 180 feet, which you can reach by climbing step-like rocks through the rushing water. This climb is quite rigorous and must be done with a guide, usually as part of a human chain. When you reach the top, you can zipline back down to the base! 

You can also do an easier dry climb on a staircase adjacent to the waterfall, though you won’t be able to get all the way to the summit. Whichever route you take, there will be lagoons and natural pools dotted along the way for you to rest in.

Dunn’s River Falls is one of the few waterfalls in the world that empty directly into the sea. There’s a gorgeous white sand beach at the base, perfect for recharging after a climb.

YS Falls

Location: Black River, St. Elizabeth

The seven waterfalls that make up YS Falls are considered to be some of the most beautiful in Jamaica. You can see them for yourself near the town of Black River, an hour and a half from Negril.

These waterfalls feed into shallow yet refreshing pools. The few deep pools have rope swings for a bit of adrenaline-chasing. 

Where you can really get your adrenaline fix, however, is the zipline course. Here, you can get a bird’s-eye view of the waterfalls. To relax before or after exploring the falls, you can spend some time at the on-site tropical garden, or at one of the picnic tables dotted around the location.

Reach Falls 

Location: John Crow Mountains, Portland

Reach Falls is located about an hour from Port Antonio, in the John Crow Mountains. Despite being on the eastern (less touristy) side of the island, it’s one of the most popular waterfalls in Jamaica!

Image Credit: Morten Idriss Nygaar…, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The waterfalls here stand about 25 feet high, against the backdrop of the nature sanctuary they’re found within. Flora and fauna are abundant here; you’re likely to see tons of unique wildlife, including tropical birds and even wild pigs!

You’ll find spacious natural pools here, including one that’s heart-shaped. There’s also a picnic area, making this a great place to relax and have lunch.

Ocho Rios Blue Hole 

Location: Ocho Rios, St. Ann

The Ocho Rios Blue Hole, or simply Blue Hole, is one of the most visually stunning waterfalls in Jamaica. Unsurprisingly, it’s one of the most popular attractions on the island!

This location has natural pools filled with water that is an almost surreal shade of bright aquamarine. The water is fairly deep and you can dive into it or jump off of a rope swing!

In addition to the 20-foot-high waterfall, you’ll find other smaller waterfalls around Blue Hole, feeding into the pools.

Mayfield Falls 

Location: Pennycooke, Westmoreland

A little over an hour’s drive from both Negril and Montego Bay, you’ll find Mayfield Falls. Despite being a popular tourist attraction, these falls retain an unspoiled charm.

Image Credit: DanBruell via Flickr cc 2.0

Mayfield Falls consists of 21 small waterfalls, or cascades, of varying size and intensity. The tallest and most popular one, known as “The Washing Machine”, is 10 feet tall. There are plenty of natural pools, some of which are like natural jacuzzis, that are fed by these cascades.

Another standout feature of Mayfield Falls is the underwater caves here, some of which are big enough to swim through! 

Konoko Falls 

Location: Ocho Rios, St. Ann

Among the likes of Dunn’s River Falls and Blue Hole, the Konoko Falls tend to fade a bit into the background when it comes to waterfalls in Ocho Rios. This is a plus since it’s hardly ever crowded despite being just as beautiful!

Konoko Falls is small but can be a bit difficult to climb, as the terrain is very slippery. Typically, a guide will aid you in making your way up through the falls. Your efforts will be rewarded with a swim in the refreshing natural pool at the top.

This waterfall is part of Konoko Falls and Park, where there’s plenty to do all day. There’s a zoo, a museum, and a botanical garden. Guided tours are offered, where you can learn about the wildlife in the area, as well as a bit of Jamaican history.

Kwame Falls 

Location: Robin’s Bay, St. Mary

Tucked away in the jungles of quiet St. Mary, you can find Kwame Falls in its untouched glory. Also known as the Kwaaman Waterfall, it is one of the largest waterfalls in Jamaica, standing about 100 feet high. 

If you’d like to visit this waterfall, you need to be up for some hiking! A hike will take you about an hour and a half, though the scenery you’ll encounter on the way will be magical.

The pools here are deep, though there is a wading area for non-swimmers, too. You’ll also find a unique and gorgeous black sand beach at the base of Kwame Falls.

Somerset Falls 

Location: Port Antonio, Portland

If you’re looking for a waterfall that’s a bit off the beaten path, take a trip to Somerset Falls near Port Antonio. It’s surrounded by lush jungle but you don’t have to hike far to get to it.

The waterfall flows out into a gorge and forms a turquoise pool that’s amazing for swimming. All around, you’ll see brightly colored flowers and birds. You can trek through the surrounding rainforest yourself or hire a local guide who’ll show you around.

From Somerset Falls, you can also take a gondola ride down the river to visit nearby waterfalls, such as the beautiful Hidden Falls.

Nonsuch Falls 

Location: Drapers, Portland

If you’re looking for a challenge, try a trek up Nonsuch Falls. This waterfall near Port Antonio is thought to be the tallest in Jamaica, with a 290-foot drop! 

The trail passes through farmland, lush forests, and dry river beds. It’s a long hike that can be quite intense depending on your fitness level. It’s definitely worth it, though! 

Nonsuch Falls is a true hidden gem among waterfalls in Jamaica. Nature is in its purest form around here and most tours teach you about the flora and fauna in the area. You can also swim in the tranquil pools at the base.

Reggae Falls 

Location: Hillside, St. Thomas

For a unique waterfall in Jamaica, take a trip down to St. Thomas to see Reggae Falls. This waterfall is a man-made one. In the 1920s, a dam was constructed on the Johnson River to supply water to residents of nearby communities and, voilà, a waterfall was born!

Despite being man-made, the waterfall and the warm pool beneath it are wonderfully incorporated into the surrounding greenery. 

It’s a bit tucked away and the trail to the dam is not that clearly marked. This means you won’t have to worry about crowds but you should probably ask locals for help if you’re not sure where to go!

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