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Falmouth Tour I

6C historic fallmouthIf you like history, culture and scenic beauty, then a visit to the Good Hope Great House is a must. Built in the 1700s and entirely restored, it’s one of the most sought after Great Houses of the 18th century, featuring amazing views of the nearby Queen of Spain Valley and Cockpit Mountains. Visit the pottery house to see the work of the resident potter and then the trading house - the only store of its kind in the Caribbean - where you can purchase authentic art, carvings, books and souvenirs.


The Beauty of rafting on the Martha Brae River

The Martha Brae river fills up on water from a tiny town called Windsor in the Cockpit Country rainforest. During Jamaica’s 18th- and 19th-century plantation golden era the river was used as a vital artery, connecting Trelawny’s sugar estates to the port town of Falmouth. Sugar and other crops were sent from the plantations to the harbor for shipment to Europe via bamboo rafts, which are still made to the same design today.

Martha BraeThe river starts in a town of the same name, and the story of how that name came to be is like a snowflake: there are many versions, but none are exactly the same. While the details differ depending on who you ask, the core of the story remains consistent. Most storytellers agree that there was once a Taino witch named Martha Brae. The Taino people were one of the Caribbean’s indigenous populations.

At the entrance to the attraction, your captain will greet you and show you to your raft, a 3o-foot-long construction made of bamboo poles. For those wondering about the safety of cruising down a river on a raft made of bamboo, the structure weighs nearly 700 pounds and you’ll notice it’s to be shockingly stable as soon as you lay foot upon it.

Once you’re all settled on your raft—each one has comfortable cushion seating—you’ll embark on an easy-going, slow-paced three-mile ride that will last just over an hour. A raft captain steering his bamboo boat down Jamaica’s Martha Brae River.

During your trek you’ll pass by loads of bamboo trees on both sides of the river—bamboo is Jamaica’s fastest growing tropical plant—but these aren’t the ones that built your raft. No, those are off-limits. Instead, raft captains build their boats with bamboo collected from 10 miles up in the mountains.

Keep your eyes peeled the whole way down the river to spot trees growing bananas, almonds, tropical fruit, Royal Poinsettias and African Tulips. If you have any questions about the plants or wildlife as you go, just ask your captain—many of them have been leading groups down the river for decades and know every inch of it. Once you’re back on dry land you can take a walk through Martha’s Herb Garden and learn about the healing properties of these same local plants.

The Martha Brae River rides have grown in popularity in recent years—aided in part by some of the legends that have famously enjoyed its magical journey: athletes including boxer Lennox Lewis, NBA star Patrick Ewing, and eight-time gold medalist sprinter and Trelawny native, Usain Bolt.


And not far from falmouth:

Glistening Waters at the Luminous Lagoon          

Admission : US $20.00
6C Luminous Lagoon in JamaicaThe Luminous Lagoon stretches along the marshlands of Trelawny from the small community of Rock to the town of Falmouth. In the 18th century when sugar was king, Falmouth was one of Jamaica's most pivotal ports. Located at the pivotal point where the Martha Brae River meets the Caribbean Sea, the lagoon housed a wharf where large vessels from England unloaded goods onto smaller ships to be delivered inland up the river. Once inland, these boats would reload with sugar, rum and other Jamaican exports and carry them back to the harbour. Years after the decline of the sugar trade, scientists discovered the lagoon's geographical location was important for another reason. It was the single best place to observe and study microorganisms called dinoflagellates, which thrive in the layers where salt and fresh water combine and glow the brightest in shallow, warm water.


Famous For:

Being home to millions of dinoflagellates. At night, the lagoon sparkles and glistens when disturbed, as these microscopic organisms produce an eerie glow, reflecting the outlines of fish and other objects in the water. The Luminous Lagoon is said to be the largest and most brilliant of four in the world, a fact that continually attracts and awes visitors and scientists from around the world.


Don't Miss:

The natural phenomena for yourself. Departing every night from the Glistening Waters Marina, crowded tour boats take visitors on a ride around the lagoon. The highlight of the 45-minute tour? The part where you get to jump out and swim - your body surrounded by the luminous green glow. And when you're back on land, recount the magic with your friends over some fine Jamaican fare and a cocktail at the Glistening Waters Restaurant.