By Livia Formisani
Who hasn’t dreamt of visiting the Blue Lagoon, the unforgettable location of the eponymous 1980 movie of the same name, starring Brooke Shields? For decades, its dreamy turquoise waters have occupied a prominent place in the imagination, and deservedly so. There, surrounded by thick vegetation, fresh spring water flowing from the nearby mountains meets the Caribbean Sea in a 180-feet-deep natural swimming pool.
The lagoon is only one of the many highlights of Eastern Jamaica, considered the least explored part of the country. Far from the touristy Montego Bay and Negril, the region is home to a vast array of beautiful beaches, the Blue Mountains of coffee fame with their national park, numerous waterfalls, and the cities of Port Antonio and Boston Bay, among others. The region’s untouched natural beauty has made it the perfect backdrop for hundreds of movies, including Tom Cruise’s “Cocktail,” Robin William’s “Club Paradise,” and Disney’s “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.”
Taking the Plunge
Easily accessible from Moon Palace Jamaica, the Blue Lagoon is Jamaica’s largest lagoon, known for its wide range of blue shades which change depending on the time of the day. Visitors can choose to bathe in the lagoon, snorkel, or take a raft tour. Due to its natural mix of spring and seawater, the lagoon features different water temperatures, ranging from cold to warm, forming part of its charm.
Beach, Surf & Raft
Frenchman’s Cove Beach
Likely Eastern Jamaica’s most famous beach, this small, secluded bay has hosted celebrities of the likes of Queen Elizabeth, The Beatles, and Marlon Brando. The sea’s turquoise and blue, enclosed in the green cove, contrast with the color of the sand for an amazing composition. On the left side of the cove, a river flows into the Caribbean Sea, forming a beautiful green pool for visitors to enjoy: you can choose between bathing in fresh- or seawater.
Popular with locals, Winnifred Beach is the epitome of tropical beach, with its white sand, aquamarine water, and lush vegetation. Surrounded by stalls selling local food, a trip to it makes for the perfect Jamaican day.
Boston Bay Beach
Catch a few curls in Jamaica’s most popular surfing location, providing left- and right-breaking waves. It is just next to Boston Bay, the birthplace of the famous Jamaican jerk cuisine – another regional highlight available at Moon Palace Jamaica.
Rio Grande Rafting
In for a little adventure? Try rafting downstream from the Blue Mountains on Jamaica’s Rio Grande, all the way to the sea. Organized tours leave regularly from Port Antonio.
Off the Beaten Track
Morant Point Lighthouse
Visit the oldest lighthouse in Jamaica, built in 1841 on the easternmost tip of the island, and enjoy beautiful views over the Caribbean Sea, nearby plantations, and the Blue Mountains. Just next to the lighthouse, Holland Bay is a somewhat remote destination for experienced surfers.
Kwame (or Kwaamen) Falls
The trip to these scenic waterfalls requires a trek through the tropical jungle. The reward at the end, though, is worth it: an emerald green natural pool formed by the glowing fan waterfall. Located between Ocho Rios and Port Antonio, the falls are about an hour’s drive from Moon Palace Jamaica.
Relax at Moon Palace Jamaica After a Long day of Discovery
Nothing better than a delicious dinner and drinks by the pool at Moon Palace Jamaica after a long day of activities. The all-inclusive resort is the perfect base to explore the Blue Lagoon and Eastern Jamaica with all its natural wonders. Adventure by day, pampering by night: Moon Palace Jamaica is the starting point of a wonderful holiday.