Introducing Black River
The capital of St Elizabeth and the parish’s largest town occupies an interesting median point in terms of tropical energy. A big city this may be for these parts, but a bustling metropolis it most certainly is not. At the same time it’s no sleepy backwater either – Black River may be off the beaten path, but there’s a buzz here, a colorful, open-air chaos offset by Georgian architecture peeling away in a state of elegant rot and buckets of liquid gold sunlight. The namesake river is a slow-moving slick of moldering tannins patrolled by straight-arrow alligators and boats full of curious tourists. Although most visitors understandably opt to stay in nearby Treasure Beach, a few people do use this town as a base for visiting attractions like YS Falls and the Appleton Rum Estate.
The town’s Georgian buildings attest to its 19th-century prosperity, when Black River exported local logwood from which Prussian blue dye was extracted for textiles. Locals proudly point out the Waterloo Guest House, which in 1893 became the first house in Jamaica to have electricity installed. The racetrack and spa that attracted the wealthy have sadly not survived the passage of time.
Black River destination guides
Black River and YS Falls Sightseeing Cruise from Montego Bay
Take an unforgettable cruise through one of Jamaica’s most beautiful regions on this Black River and YS Falls sightseeing tour from Montego Bay. The longest river in Jamaica, the Black River is a great place to explore remote mangrove swamps and to catch a glimpse of native species like crocodiles living in their natural habitats.
Black River Safari, YS Falls and Appleton Rum Factory Tour from Ocho Rios
Set out from Ocho Rios to explore the pristine south coast of Jamaica on this exhilarating nature tour that includes visits to the Black River and YS Falls. Travel through stunning countryside en route to the Black River, then take a boat cruise with a knowledgeable guide who shares informative commentary about plant and animal life on the river.