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Ocho Rios

(3.6/5 based on 30,000+ reviews for top 30 attractions)
Things to do: nature, water activities, theme parks
Ocho Rios is a town in the parish of Saint Ann on the north coast of Jamaica. Just outside the city, travelers and residents can visit Columbus Park, where Columbus supposedly first came on land, and see maritime artifacts and Spanish colonial buildings.It was once a fishing village but now caters to tourists. It is a port of call for cruise ships as well as for cargo ships loading sugar, limestone, and in the past, bauxite. Scuba diving and other water sports are offered in the town's vicinity.The name "Ocho Rios" is a misnomer because there are not eight rivers in the area. It is most likely a British corruption of the original Spanish name "Las Chorreras", a name given to the village because of the nearby Dunn's River Falls.The north coast highway from the international airport at Montego Bay to Ocho Rios has been improved since 2000 and the journey is now an hour and forty five minutes drive. On 26 August 2011, the Jamaican government announced a $21 million revitalization plan for the resort area.The town has restaurants, nightclubs in Margaritaville and Dolphin Cove, where tourists swim and interact with dolphins.It is perhaps most notable for its use in Dr. No, the very first James Bond film, which was released in 1962. It was the home of Miss Taro, played by Zena Marshall, who was an adversary of Bond and in alliance with the main villain Dr. Julius No . It also appears as the primary location for the horror sequel Piranha II: The Spawning, many of the scenes being photographed at the Mallards Beach-Hyatt, now the Sunset Jamaica Grande.
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