By the 17th century, sugar plantations flourished on the island under British rule.
With such a rich medley of sights, sounds and flavours, Ocho Rios and Runaway Bay are destinations well-suited to families, couples and outdoor enthusiasts who want to soak up – and soak in – the local charms.
This is a seven-day mountain biking event designed to highlight Jamaica’s vibrant culture, unique geography and great riding trails.
Find shade under towering palms, bamboo and fruit-bearing trees such as almond, ackee and lychee.
Peppered with botanical gardens, there's no shortage of natural attractions in the Garden Parish.
Tropical downpours tend to be short and sporadic, often leaving behind the clearest skies, as well as mosquitoes (so bring repellent).
Storm season peaks in August and September, but storms rarely occur. Ann's rich diversity and proud independence resonates in Jamaica's national motto: Out of Many, One People.
But if you're looking for some zesty local culture, there's plenty of that too.
After all, this is the island's spiritual heart – the birthplace of reggae superstar Bob Marley and patriotic leader Marcus Garvey.
Within seven years, slavery was abolished, plantation estates were deserted, “free villages” flourished and religion grew. Upwards of 90 per cent of the population is Christian, representing all denominations.
Many Rastas (or Rastafari), a spiritual fraternity adhering to the common good of "one love," also attend church.
The woodsy aroma is a small whiff of the paradise to come from the nearby beachfront resorts at Ocho Rios and Runaway Bay. And it offers as much relaxing seclusion or interactive recreation as you want.