By Admin | Last Updated August 26, 2019
Black River is a small town of 4,261 residents in south western Jamaica. Capital of the St. Elizabeth Parish, the town is named after the river of the same name, which meets the Black River Way, close to the city. Kingston, the capital of Jamaica, is 154 kilometers from the city. It takes about 2 hours and 30 minutes by road.
Black River is one of the oldest European towns of the country. It used to be a very prosperous city in the 19th century; in fact, Jamaica’s most prosperous, at the peak of the sugar trade. African slaves were brought to the port here to work in the sugar mills. To this day, there is a small port at the river’s mouth. Lumber mills also poured money into the economy. There used to be many warehouses that stored lumber and sugar. Some of them have now been turned into restaurants.
Most tourists visiting Black River stay at the nearby Treasure Beach, where there are several resorts, restaurants, bars, and cafes. There are 2 more beaches – Luana Beach, and the Crane Beach. The city is also a good starting point to visit many attractions in the region like the Appleton Rum and the YS Falls.
|Black River||Small town in south western Jamaica, once an important port and Jamaica’s most prosperous city.|
|Location||St Elizabeth Parish|
|Designed By||Leyden brothers from England, 3 men who owned a lot of real estate in the area.|
|A Port Town||Port at the mouth of the river goes back a long time when timber, sugar, rum, and cattle skin was traded from here.|
|Slavery||Many slaves were brought from Africa and Caribbean Islands to the Black River port to work in the sugar and lumber mills.|
The town gets its name from the river that flows close and meets the sea. The river runs for 33.2 miles or 53.4 kilometers and has 4 tributaries. One of Jamaica’s longest rivers, the name refers to the color of its water, which is caused by layers of thick decomposing vegetation. It’s an interesting river full of natural beauty and activities.
There are boat tours on the river to see crocodiles and birds. There are so many crocodiles here that sightings are guaranteed. Most boats are able to reach just a few miles upstream because a low bridge obstructs the way. But some of them can sail below the bridge for further exploration. Before going on a crocodile safari, check whether your boat can pass through the bridge.
The mangroves around the river are home to more than 100 bird species, many frogs, fishes, and crabs.
Once an extremely rich town, Black River has many impressive houses and mansions. The architectural styles are varied from British Colonial, Jamaican Vernacular, Jamaican Georgian, and Georgian. What you will find mostly are however Victorian and Georgian buildings, reflecting the different times in city’s history. The town’s historic district is a Protected National Heritage District since 1999.
You will also see some wooden buildings, to the north and western sides of the city. They have big balconies, fretwork, and sash windows.
Some important structures in Black River –
Many famous people have come from Black River, like Norman Washington Manley, Sir Donald Sangster and George William Gordon.