HomeBeachbookerJamaica’s Ecological Explorations and Hotels for Earth Day and Beyond‏

Hotels and Attractions in Jamaica Offer Green Lodging and Activities Year-Round

KINGSTON, JAMAICA – April 17, 2014 – Earth Day doesn’t stop at April 22nd. Destination Jamaica encourages travelers to support sustainability for the earth year-round through the island’s numerous hotels and activities.

With interest in agricultural tourism initiatives on the rise, growing 30 percent in the last 20 years according to TravelAgentCentral.com, many of Jamaica’s hotels offer an agricultural angle. From recycling programs and reduction of carbon emissions to farm-to-table menus, Jamaica and its hotel industry are continuously moving in a greener direction.

“We’ve been to Jamaica several times, and it’s their broad array of ecotourism activities that keep us coming back for more,” said Bret Love, editor in chief and co-founder of GreenGlobalTravel.com and GreenTravelReviews.com. “From Dunn’s River Falls, the Blue Mountains, and the Martha Brae River to the world of adventure under the sea, the country’s outdoor activities are just as impressive as its remarkably rich culture.”

Below are Jamaican attractions and hotel properties positively impacting the environment:

Ecological explorations

Nature Sites: Jamaica has multiple nature reserves and UNESCO World Heritage sites to share with its earth-loving visitors, like Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park, the Underwater City of Port Royal and the Seville Heritage Park. Jamaica’s outdoor world is one that is insurmountable in terms of beauty and a place to inspire visitors to preserve the earth’s natural offerings.

Mystic Mountain: At Rainforest Adventures Jamaica, get up-close-and-personal with a lush ecosystem while indulging that inner thrill-seeker by participating in four unique activities: SkyExplorer, a bobsled ride, a canopy zip line and a waterslide ride. In constructing the park, great care was taken by the Rainforest Adventures team to not disturb the fragile ecosystem: the SkyExplorer foundations were installed by helicopter (eliminating any need for roadway equipment transportation) and more than 1,000-metres (3,281-feet) of bobsled track was hand-carried through the rainforest. Rates start at $46 for adults.

Green Grotto Caves: Green Grotto Caves and Attractions is situated on 64 acres of land in Discovery Bay, St. Ann between Ocho Rios and Montego Bay. A tour of the caves includes a journey into the underground to rediscover Jamaican history. The caves are said to have provided shelter for Jamaica’s first inhabitants, the Taino Indians. Within, visitors can view a maze of stalactites and stalagmites and other exquisite formations. Green Grotto Caves became the Caribbean’s first tourism attraction to achieve EarthCheck’s highest accolade of Platinum Certification in 2012 and have been a green attraction ever since. Rates start at $20.

Green Hotels

Hotel Mockingbird Hill: This Green Globe certified hotel has earned twice the American Express/CHA’s award for being the most Environmentally Friendly Small Hotel. Its 10 eco-boutique rooms are decorated using locally made furniture crafted with sustainable woods like bamboo. Hotel Mockingbird Hill has also partnered with the Jamaica Conservation and Development Trust, the organization that manages the national park in the Blue and John Crow Mountains, to help offset the carbon emissions generated by visitors who travel to Jamaica by ensuring that trees get planted in the area and are successfully grown. Rates start at $230 per night during low season.

Great Huts: Great Huts’ environmentally friendly dwellings and activity programs encourage the independent minded traveler to appreciate the natural and cultural environments of greater Port Antonio in safety and comfort. While guests may spend days relaxing, reading, contemplating and dining at Great Huts Resort, the resort also offers a range of hiking tours of varying lengths and challenges in Port Antonio’s Rio Grande Valley and Jamaica’s Blue Mountains to explore and appreciate the surrounding environment. Rates start at $55 per night.

Round Hill Hotel and Villas: This luxury hotel has a twice weekly farm-to-table dinner that uses the products from their garden, along with organically grown foods sourced from local farmers and fishermen. Hotel guests are given a weekly guided tour of the organic gardens and are able to participate in cooking lessons or demonstrations. Rates start at $610 a night. See a sampling of the menu, pictured right.

Sandals Resorts International: Sandals Resorts has been committed for over 10 years to the environment and sustainability. From recycling to conserving, Sandals Resort provides excellent vacation experiences for guests, while working to minimize the environmental and social impacts associated with operations. Its Sandals Earth Guard Program, designed to implement sustainability policies and procedures, audits the sustainability key performance indicators, including waste, water and energy conservation targets. The rates at Sandals Carlyle in Montego Bay start at $155 per person per night.

GoldenEye Hotel & Resort:

This resort located on the Jamaica’s north coast takes pride on being as eco-friendly as possible. To incorporate their guests in their sustainable practices, visitors are given the option to pay US $1000 to plant a tree selected from the offerings from the hotel’s green-house. The money goes directly towards the Oracabessa Foundation which aids in community development through health projects, environmental initiatives, education projects and sports programs. Rates start at $620 per room per night. Some renowned people who have participated in the plant-a-tree initiative are celebrities Harrison Ford, Johnny Depp and Quincy Jones; supermodels Naomi Campbell, Kate Moss and Christy Turlington; chef and decorating icon, Martha Stewart; and singers Harry Belafonte and Fatboy Slim. Rates start at $620 per night.

For more information on where to “Go Green” in Jamaica, please visit: http://www.visitjamaica.com

About Jamaica Tourist Board

The Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB), founded in 1955, is Jamaica’s national tourism agency based in the capital city of Kingston. The JTB was declared the Caribbean’s Leading Tourist Board by the World Travel Awards (WTA) from 2006 to 2013. Also in 2013, Jamaica earned the WTA’s vote for the World’s Leading Cruise Destination, Caribbean’s Leading Destination and Caribbean’s Leading Cruise Destination for the seventh consecutive year. Additionally, the Historic Falmouth Cruise Port was recognized as the World’s Leading Tourism Development Project while Ocho Rios was named the Caribbean’s Leading Cruise Port and Sangster International Airport was voted the Caribbean’s Leading Airport. In Canada, Jamaica was voted the Favourite Honeymoon Destination by Travel Agents.

JTB offices are located in Kingston, Montego Bay, Miami, Toronto and London. Representative offices are located in Berlin, Barcelona, Rome, Amsterdam, Mumbai and Tokyo.

For details on upcoming special events, attractions and accommodations in Jamaica go to the JTB’s Web site at www.visitjamaica.com or call the Jamaica Tourist Board at 1-800-JAMAICA (1-800-526-2422). Follow the JTB on Facebook at www.facebook.com/visitjamaica , on Twitter at www.twitter.com/visitjamaicanow, on Instagram at

www.instagram.com/visitjamaica on Pinterest at www.pinterest.com/myjamaica , or on YouTube at www.youtube.com/myjamaicajtb  . View the JTB blog at www.islandbuzzjamaica.com

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