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Old 04-09-2013, 08:57 AM   #1
jjje
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What can you tell me about Falmouth?

What can people tell me about Falmouth, Jamaica? My family and I are taking a Western Caribbean cruise in November and that is one of the stops. Disney doesn't seem to have any information about it on their site and there are no port excursions listed. Anyone been there? Any ideas on what a group of 10 (ages 8-55+) might find to do?
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Old 04-09-2013, 09:03 AM   #2
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We are in your same situation, actually I think we are on your cruise. Are you looking for a beach? We are using jamaicaforaday.com for a beach break to an all inclusive resort. I also read great reviews for realtoursjamaica.com if your looking for more adventure. It's a lot of money, but most people say not to go anywhere in Jamaica without a travel plan, crime and hustling seems high.

I recommend checking out reviews at tripadvisor.com
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Old 04-09-2013, 09:14 AM   #3
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We were there on the Oasis last summer...

I would highly recommend looking at cruisecritic and check out their port postings--LOTS of great info.

Right now, there really isn't anything there--this is a port really sort of built for cruise ships--it's not an "authentic" town really. We decided to use it as a ship day. We got off to look around the little port area (I think even owned by the cruise lines) for a little bit. DD had her hair braided, DS bought a wooden animal carving, we bought a Jamaican patty, etc--no more than 2 hrs off boat, if that.

Almost all of the excursions are quite a distance away--several hours, I believe. And the "town" really is only there to support the cruise ships when in town, so we didn't bother. We weren't disappointed because we went on the cruise for the boat, and not the ports. But definitely check out the port postings on cruisecritic--amazing information!
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Old 04-09-2013, 09:39 AM   #4
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ummm

first thing that comes to mind is that it is the "pit of despair"....

we stopped there on the Oasis a couple of years ago, it was brand new - lots of work going on around the "port town." We did some research for activities but found that everything was a couple of hours away, so we left the port thinking we would explore. We walked less than a block and were swarmed by people who wanted to take us by taxi, braid our hair and just general filth. My husband, who is all about the adventure, about 5 minutes into the "walk" said that was IT! and we went back through customs and into the "port." My 10 year old was terrified, she has very long white blonde hair and the ladies were actually grabbing her and petting her hair. She was holding my hand but that didn't slow anyone down.

I am sure it is much better now - but do the research and arrange something that has great reviews, or stay on the ship or in the port.
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Old 04-09-2013, 09:54 AM   #5
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Jamaica, first off, has a great deal of poverty. Be aware of that. It absolutely shocked me the first time I was there. It is however a beautiful island and most of the people I encountered were wonderful. I would not recommend touring without a guided excursion. Negril 7 Mile Beach is wonderful, there is a Margaritaville. (http://excursionsinjamaica.com/index...207&Itemid=338) You'll still encounter people wanting to braid hair and sell you things. Tourism is essential to supporting families there and even then it's still difficult. Dunn River Falls, I think, is the other tour I've heard good things about.
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Old 04-09-2013, 10:04 AM   #6
Jennifer in MI
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flagfred View Post
first thing that comes to mind is that it is the "pit of despair"....

we stopped there on the Oasis a couple of years ago, it was brand new - lots of work going on around the "port town." We did some research for activities but found that everything was a couple of hours away, so we left the port thinking we would explore. We walked less than a block and were swarmed by people who wanted to take us by taxi, braid our hair and just general filth. My husband, who is all about the adventure, about 5 minutes into the "walk" said that was IT! and we went back through customs and into the "port." My 10 year old was terrified, she has very long white blonde hair and the ladies were actually grabbing her and petting her hair. She was holding my hand but that didn't slow anyone down.

I am sure it is much better now - but do the research and arrange something that has great reviews, or stay on the ship or in the port.
We had this same experience in January. My dd has VERY long blonde hair and people were petting her! She was freaking out! My husband put her on his shoulders and people were reaching up and touching her. I think I lasted about 3 minutes before we turned around and headed back to the ship.

I wish we had done an excursion there because it would have been the only way I would have felt safe.

My husband and son ended up taking a city tour. The merchant was right at the port and it was legit. They liked it.
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Old 04-09-2013, 10:22 AM   #7
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Not sure about the 2 hours to anywhere part of the replies. Montego Bay is about 30-45 minutes away and Ocho Rios about 1+ hours. But there are quite a few things to do between Falmouth and Ocho. I agree, check out cruise critic. Lots of great ideas.
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Old 04-09-2013, 10:31 AM   #8
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The fenced area of the port is basically shops, braiding and a few outdoor carts selling things. It is nice and shiny and new, but nothing special. I did not feel safe venturing outside the fenced area. I would definitley take a ship-sponsored excursion if I wanted to see the island.
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Old 04-09-2013, 11:09 AM   #9
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Wow, I'm so shocked and disappointed by these comments!! We were just there in December and found it to be fascinating. We were not harassed, not the victim of any crime, and found it to be a very authentic town with a lot of history.

I would highly, highly recommend taking a heritage walking tour - http://falmouthheritagewalks.com/. And be sure to stop at Club Nazz & Restaurant for amazing jerk chicken!!
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Old 04-09-2013, 11:11 AM   #10
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These are my own reviews from our recent trip... http://members.virtualtourist.com/m/8295b/19def7/
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Old 04-09-2013, 11:32 AM   #11
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We (DH, DW, DD 12 and DS 10) have stayed at a resort in Falmouth on two seperate occassions. We enjoyed being on that part of the island for it's tranquility. We have walked around town a few times and never experienced any issues. Don't be afraid to say "No thank you" to anyone offering to help you.

One of our favourite things to do in that area is a rafting tour on the Martha Brae river. You see those rafts on just about every tourism ad for Jamaica. You can also go tubing nearby. The Glistening Waters Lumious Lagoon is right in Falmouth, but that is probably not worth doing during the daytime...can't see those glow in the dark organisms when the sun is up.

You can find some great Jamaican food at little shacks along the road and a cold Red Stripe is always a good thing.

Have fun!!
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Old 04-09-2013, 01:13 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovemangoes View Post
We (DH, DW, DD 12 and DS 10) have stayed at a resort in Falmouth on two seperate occassions. We enjoyed being on that part of the island for it's tranquility. We have walked around town a few times and never experienced any issues. Don't be afraid to say "No thank you" to anyone offering to help you.

One of our favourite things to do in that area is a rafting tour on the Martha Brae river. You see those rafts on just about every tourism ad for Jamaica. You can also go tubing nearby. The Glistening Waters Lumious Lagoon is right in Falmouth, but that is probably not worth doing during the daytime...can't see those glow in the dark organisms when the sun is up.

You can find some great Jamaican food at little shacks along the road and a cold Red Stripe is always a good thing.

Have fun!!
Definitely! Have to have a cold Red Stripe to go with the jerk chicken!
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Old 04-09-2013, 01:14 PM   #13
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It sounds like planning is the key here. I'll be checking out the recommended links. Thanks for all the opinions and information.
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Old 04-09-2013, 01:27 PM   #14
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We were just at Falmouth on the Oasis (see our review on a current thread).

First of all, go to cruisecritic.com as there is a lot of information on Falmouth. We have honeymooned at Jamaica and we have some experience. Jamaica is one of those places that you can hate but if you know what to do you can get positive experiences. You really shouldn't go out on your own into unkown parts of the country. You should expect that people will try to sell you things and as long as you respectfully say no, they won't hassle you. If you give a "harsher" no, that could lead to uncomfortable situations.

As far as the port of Falmouth goes, it is a rather nice port area for walking and shopping. If you leave that area to walk around and shop, expect people to try to sell you things, but as mentioned, be respectful and it really is no problem.

When we went, we elected NOT to go to Dunn's river falls which is a prime attraction. Read the reviews for that - watch the Utube clips and decide for yourself.

We did want to do the Chukka horseback and swim where the horses take you deep into the water (utube that as well), but we were unable to go because our 10 yo was not old enough and the minimum.

We considered doing the Chukka beach break because we heard it was a nice beach, not far away, and had a Jerk Chicken lunch. The cruise ship price was $50 per person - however we knew of people who just got off the ship, got a cab driver (inside port area) and asked him to take them to a beach that had Jerk Chicken, and it was much cheaper. The driver can become your guide and wait for you. Also, there is restaurant inside the port area near Margaritaville that is clean and sells Jamaican food including Jerk.

Bottom line is that while it is not Cozumel, St. Thomas, St. Martin etc. With some research and expectations, a good time can be had.
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Old 04-09-2013, 03:15 PM   #15
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We were there in November on RCL. We did an excursion thru them that took you to a plantation and then to climb Dunn's River Falls. It was a very nice day. The vendors were very aggressive and our guide warned us ahead of time not to the the wood carvers your name and not to accept gifts or they will follow you to the tour bus and accuse you of taking it and not paying for it or ordering a carving and not buying it. If you know what to look for ahead of time, not a problem.
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