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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    157

    Default Some questions about excursions at CSS

    I am going to ask a stupid question about Dunn's River Falls. Can you go and just walk around and observe the beautiful falls, or do you have to climb the falls?

    For the shopiing excursion, do the vendors really bother you? We would like to take the shopping excursion, but don't want to be haggled.

    How is Margaritivlle? Is it mostly a drinking place? My husband doesn't drink and doesn't enjoy hanging out where everyone is loud and drinking. Is Margaritivlle a wild and crazy place?

    Has anyone done the Bob Marley tour? How was it? We would like to get around and see a little bit of Ocho Rios. Any suggestions?

    Thanks. We leave in 4 weeks. Can't wait.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    1,748

    Default

    Yes, we did the Bob Marly Nine Mile tour last March. You can arrange it through the Couples Tour Desk. There are two offered by Chukka. We did the Zion Bus Tour. The other one is a jeep tour. I would recommend the bus tour over the jeep one. There is a driver and a guide on the bus. The guide plays Bob Marley music and talks about Bob's life, music and history. Very informative and interesting. The van takes you from the resort to the Chukka office. You wait 20-30 minutes and then board the bus. We rode for about an hour and then stopped at Bumper’s Lounge…a little roadside place for a snack (beef wraps). Then it was about an hour more on a narrow winding mountain road to Nine Mile. There is a tour guide there that gives a nice tour that was also very informative. There is a gift shop too (of course). We were there for about an hour. On the way back, we stopped at the same place for lunch...jerk chicken and pork, rice, festivas and lemonade. It cost 80-90 $ each. It was fun, but probably only worth it for hard core Bob Marley fans (which my wife is).

    From the Chukka Web Site:

    Our authentic Jamaican Country Bus, the “Zion Bus Line”, will take you on a unique tour from Island Village in Ocho Rios, via Claremont to the birth and final resting place of the King of Reggae, Bob Marley. This pilgrimage has been specifically designed for Reggae enthusiasts and hardcore Bob Marley fans, who would like to visit the “Graceland” of Reggae.

    The bus ride is a scenic tour of rural St. Ann. Rock to the rhythm of Bob’s greatest hits as your “dreadlocked” driver negotiates the narrow winding country roads to the mountain village of Nine Miles. Level the vibes with an IRIE Rum Punch and listen carefully as your “ductor” (conductor & guide) tells tales of the life and times of young Bob and how he grew up in the hills of St. Ann.

    On the return trip via Higgin Town and St. Ann’s Bay, stop at the local Jerk Centre for an authentic Jamaican lunch treat of Jerk Pork & Chicken, Rice & Peas, Festival and “Belly Wash” Lemonade.

    If you are a baby boomer who was hip to the 60’s & 70’s music of Bob Marley, Peter Tosh and Jimmy Cliff or if you are now a fan of Shaggy, Beenie Man and the Dance Hall phenomenon, this is a Reggae experience you can’t miss.
    [
    CN 2006, CSS 2009, CN 2009, CN 2010, CTI 2010, CN 2011, CSS 2012, CN 2012, CN 2013, CSA 2014, CN 2014, CSA 2015, CN 2015

  3. #3

    Default

    Yes, you can go to the falls and enjoy the scenery without walking up through them. There are stairs along the edge and you can get a good vantage point of all us crazy people in the water!

    Wish I could tell you about the shopping and Margaritaville trips, but we never made it on either. We are drinkers, but from my impressions, Margaritaville is a party-trip, and more than what we were looking for. Also, I can say that we managed all the shopping we needed to do at the resort gift shop and MBJ airport while we were waiting for our flight home.

    There are some other threads on the MB regarding hiring a private driver to get a more personal introduction to Ocho Rios, which you should be able to find by doing a quick search to see if that's what you're looking for. I have 10 more Mondays to wait, which feels like forever as it's seriously snowing now in upstate NY!

    Btw, make sure you get over to the Mineral Pool and Charlie's Smoothie Bar - great N/A selections! Whatever you decide, I am sure you'll have a great time.

  4. #4

    Default

    When we went to Dunn's there were people who didn't climb the falls.There are stairs that follow the climbers up so if someone didn't want to climb they could take the stairs and watch their partner.As for the vendors they are kind of pushy but someone had posted how to get out without having to go through all the vendors.this was a few years ago so am not sure how it is now.I was nervous about doing the falls but it was a lot of fun.

  5. #5

    Default

    We did Nine Mile this year. We hired a private driver and it was only $100 for the two of us for the whole day. We wanted to be able to go where we wanted to go, stop when we wanted to stop...

    We are HUGE Bob Marley fans, but found the trip very disappointing. We don't regret going, but we never will again. It is extremely commercialized. You enter through a gift shop. Then you're seated in the bar while you wait for your guide. We weren't pressured, but did feel like we were expected to buy a drink. Part way through the tour there's a little performance where you're expected to tip. Nearby there is a stand with a guy selling drinks, and you feel rather pressured to buy a couple AND one for your guide (which never gets opened, BTW.) In the mausoleum you're urged to buy a candle. At the end of the tour you're "reminded" to tip your guide before being escorted back out through another gift shop. Of course, you don't HAVE to fork over any money, but the pressure takes away from the experience. Personally, I don't think Bob would be too happy.

    We found the drive to and from to be absolutely amazing. You are truly off the beaten path, and that made the trip well worth the time and money.

    Bruce and Kelli
    Fort Worth, TX
    CN 2006, 2008
    CTI 2009, 2010, 2011
    CSA 2014!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    2,350

    Default

    The shopping excursion from the resort is like a strip mall so the vendors do not bother you and there is no bargaining unless you are buying jewelry. The shopping available at the end of Dunn's River Falls is a craft market and they are very pushy there.

    I personally don't think Margaritaville is worth the time away from the resort. The drinks are overpriced and they don't even play Buffet music. I wouldn't waste your time there.
    Juliann & Jeff
    Jamaica Soon Come

  7. #7

    Default

    Thanks for the ideas, I will pass them on! Keep them coming!

  8. #8

    Default

    I agree with what the others have said, so won't repeat.

    As far as Margaritaville goes, it's an overpriced, over-hyped bar. The primary thing there is to drink, and they are expensive, and it is a loud party place. If you could go, stay 1/2 hour and leave, I would say go just to say you were there, but, you're stuck until the bus returns unless you pay for a cab, so, from your note, I would recommend you pass.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    157

    Default

    Thanks for all the great ideas. If we hired a private driver, where in Ocho Rios should we ask to go? We don't want any adventure tours. We get enough of that at home. Just would love to see some of the island.

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