Reggae Falls, located in Hillside, St. Thomas is one of Jamaica’s hidden treasures. While it is not a natural waterfall, you’ll have so much fun there you won’t even remember. Many moons ago there was a dam in this area, the dam has since been relocated, but the dam wall remained and of course the river continued to run its course – hence Reggae Falls.
Although it wasn’t that easy to find, we enjoyed the journey there. We stopped along the roadway to take photos (because how can we take a road trip without capturing Jamaica’s beauty?).
A lot of people, don’t really see the real beauty of St. Thomas because it’s either a drive thru (to go to another parish) or you’re travelling there for something specific (like, Wickie Wackie Music Festival). St. Thomas is one of those unassuming parishes, it’s “tourist” attractions aren’t many but it’s a beautiful parish (from it’s untamed beaches, to its lush countryside).
It may take you a little while to find this treasure, and you’ll have to go on a bit of a hike to the river; unless you’re driving a pickup or Sport Utility Vehicle, which will be able to drive up the gravel-laden river bed. Although we were driving a pickup we chose to hike so we could talk a bit more to out “guide” about the area. He also identified interesting plants as we traversed to the river.
When we get to the river, we find it’s shallow enough to walk through. You can even set up chairs and sit in the river (as we saw some people doing), heck, you can even have a barbecue out there. It’s so beautiful and serene (and while the locals do follow you down to the river on the hike, they don’t ask for much – we may have seen an exchange of weed (marijuana) and alcohol as payment…but we digress).
Some dogs followed us down to the river, and this is no problem at all because WE LOVE DOGS! There was a puppy among them and we though we’d have to help her across, but she was born by the river (literally), so she soon jumped in after us.
Because the waterfall isn’t a natural one, the dam wall may cause the water pressure by the “falls” to be a little heavier than other natural attractions. Also be careful where you walk, some parts of the river are pretty deep, while the rest is covered in gravel and stone. Also, you may not want to walk barefooted (the stones will hurt). Some type of footwear is necessary.
We can’t lie, the name of the falls alone made us want to take a trip to see them – after all Jamaica is the home of Reggae music. Just like Reggae music, these falls are one of a king – they are like no other; while you enjoy the river, you can also take in breathtaking views.
We even saw someone catching Janga (crayfish, shrimp basically). No need to be afraid, the Janga really only “swim” where the river is pretty deep and quite a way below the surface. He had to dive for them.
We had a great time at Reggae Falls, and you will too Be sure to check it out !
On our way back, we stopped for more photos of course.
And we even got to see a bit of the “city lights” from St. Thomas.
It was prettier in person.
Things to note:
- Wear comfortable shoes
- Carry shoes to wear in the river (rubber soled would be best, or if you have a pair Crocs you’ll be fine)
- Be prepared for a little hike if your vehicle can’t drive through the river bed
- Be prepared to ask for directions
- Take a camera, you’ll want to take a photo or 100
- Walk with some change (JMD$100 bills) you may need to tip the “hike guide”
- There is no admission fee (but,refer to previous point)