One thing we panicked a bit about on our cruise was neglecting to research "what to do" when we got to the various ports. The night before we docked at Ocho Rios, Jamaica, we visited the desk on the ship where you could book tours. Wouldn't you know, everything that looked good to us was already booked and not available to us. But fear not, we've travelled just enough to know that the odds were still in our favor... we could get off the boat and try to book a tour with another tour group or hop in a cab and just go to the tourist destination on our own. We chose the latter in Ocho Rios.
We hired a cab for $30.00 for the day and Richie was our driver. We went to Dunn's River Falls. Richie was smart to bring us there first; we beat the crowds and did not have to wait in line to climb the falls. We climbed the falls for about 1 1/2 hours and then Richie picked us up and took us to a restaurant where we had traditional Caribbean Jerk Chicken. I loved it! Richie had the waitress call him when we were done with lunch and then Richie drove us around town and in the hills. I did not bring my camera on our outing for fear it would get wet and be ruined, so the photos in this post are photos I took from the boat.
It was a really good day especially considering we did not book anything ahead of time. I loved seeing Zach engaging with the cab driver asking questions about the culture, education, languages, and jobs in Jamaica. Richie told us jobs are scarce and you have to "know someone". I think Richie's dad ran the cab company he worked for. When on the phone, Richie spoke "broken English" and he told us about that. It reminded me of how my Hawaiian college roommate spoke "Pidgin" to her Hawaiian friends at school. The price of gas in Jamaica... $9.00 per gallon. They drive on the left hand side of the road there. Up in the hills, Richie pointed out Mick Jagger's home way up high in the hills. We also learned "Ocho Rios" translates to "Eight Rivers". Ocho Rios must be Spanish. We also did a bit of souvineer shopping just before getting back on the ship.
We chilled out at the pool after our day in Ocho Rios. This is the pool at at the back of the ship. It had a nice quite atmosphere which I liked better than "the party pool" in the middle of the ship.