There are a myriad of local beauty spots and points of interest but seclusion being the hallmark of this area; you will find that many are hidden away from view. Here is a brief guide to some of the most interesting places that are accessible in easy day trips:
Blue Lagoon: Crystal clear turquoise waters await you at the largest of Jamaica’s spring-fed lagoons. Take a refreshing dip or tour the area by boat.
Blue Mountain Coffee Plantation: For the fit and adventurous, try a bicycle tour of the famed Blue Mountain coffee area.
Boston Bay: Just a little further east, find Boston Bay, home of the famous Jamaican jerk pork and one of the finest public beaches on the island.
Firefly: Visit this spectacular hilltop writer’s retreat and you will understand why British playwright Sir Noel Coward was entranced by it. He wrote many of his witty plays while wintering here through the late 1940s to the early 1970s. In fact, he so loved Firefly that he is buried here and willed the property to the Nation of Jamaica.
Folly Point: Drive to the tip of Folly Point, just east of Port Antonio, to see the splendid nineteenth-century lighthouse that guides boats into the harbour.
Goldeneye: It was in this seaside home that British author Ian Flemming wrote his famed James Bond novels. It has recently been developed as an exclusive resort.
Nanny Town: High up in the Blue Mountains is the home of one of Jamaica’s famous Maroon leaders. This fiercely independent group descended from slaves who escaped from Spanish and later British planters and have lived independently in various mountain communities ever since.
Navy Island: The British navy may have given this island its name but it was really made famous by Hollywood star Errol Flynn who bought it after falling in love with Portland when his yacht was stranded in Port Antonio in the 1940s. His widow still runs a cattle ranch nearby.
Nonsuch Caves and Athenry Gardens: Back in the hills on a former coconut plantation, you will find fabulous botanical gardens and a mysterious series of caves, complete with stalactites and stalagmites.
Reach Falls: Bath in incredibly refreshing cascades of mountain water at this beautiful natural site.
Rio Grande River Rafting: In days gone by local farmers rafted their produce down the river to the port. Now you can spend an unforgettable afternoon being rafted down by local guides.
Somerset Falls: Enjoy a day swimming and dining at this beautiful natural waterfall.