Ocho Rios (Spanish for “Eight Rivers”) is a town in the parish of Saint Ann on the north coast of Jamaica. Just outside the city, travelers and residents can visit Columbus Park, where Columbus supposedly first came on land, and see maritime artifacts and Spanish colonial buildings. It was once a fishing village but now caters to tourists. It is a port of call for cruise ships as well as for cargo ships loading sugar, limestone, and in the past, bauxite, suba diving and other water sports are offered in the town’s vicinity.
The port of Ocho Rios is right outside of the main town area and is within easy walking distance to the main shopping areas. The port can accommodate a maximum of three ships and more can anchor up outside and tender in. The north coast highway from the international airport at Montego Bay to Ocho Rios has been improved since 2000 and the journey is now an hour and forty five minutes drive. On 26 August 2011, the Jamaican government announced a $21 million revitalization plan for the resort area. The town has restaurants, nightclubs in Margaritaville and Dolphin Cove, where tourists swim and interact with dolphins.
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