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Entering the Green Grotto Caves is a journey into a hidden underground world. Descend into a rocky cavern and discover a huge labyrinthine limestone cave with rock chambers and light holes. The Green Grotto’s subterranean lake, of 118 feet (36 meters) deep, is a beautiful sight.
The caves are on the north coast of Jamaica, close to where explorer Columbus first landed in 1494. The underground system has an interesting history. The indigenous Taíno people once used the spot for shelter, pirates hid in its passageways and the Spanish fled here when the English invaded. In the 20th century, smugglers used the caves to transport armoury to Cuba and in World War II Jamaican rum was kept safe here. Most recently, the lake in the caves was a scene in a James Bond movie.
A 45-minute tour is a must-do and the guides are knowledgeable and entertaining. The walk includes a refreshing drink upon return. You’ll learn that the caves are called Green Grotto because of the algae lining the walls. The system of caves and tunnels is 5,000 foot (1,525 meters) long and 39 foot (12 meters) deep. Despite this, it is not a very claustrophobic experience, with plenty of room to move.
See the underground rock formations and stalactites and stalagmites. Look up at ceiling pockets and down sink holes when you follow the interweaving passageways. Kids will love the bats dangling from the rocks and the small fish darting about the pools. Visit the snack bar and gift shop if you want to browse a bit longer.
Green Grotto Caves is situated off the main coastal road, 2 miles east of Discovery Bay and 2.5 miles west of Runaway Bay. The quickest way to get there is by car, but there is limited parking, so a bus or taxi trip is an alternative. Some island tours also include a visit to the caves. Wear appropriate footwear for walking over rough surfaces. The caves are open daily. Go in on a Sunday to avoid the crowds.
Located in Runaway Bay, this beachfront resort is next to a golf course and within 3 mi (5 km) of Cardiff Hall Beach, Flavours Beach and Runaway Bay Beach. Green Grotto Caves and Salem Beach are also within 6 miles (10 km).
Situated in Runaway Bay, this villa is within 3 miles (5 km) of Green Grotto Caves, Puerto Seco Beach Park and Cardiff Hall Beach. Puerto Seco Beach and Flavours Beach are also within 6 miles (10 km).
Nestled on the beach, this Discovery Bay villa is 1.1 mi (1.7 km) from Puerto Seco Beach Park and 1.4 mi (2.2 km) from Green Grotto Caves. Puerto Seco Beach is 1.2 mi (1.9 km) away.
Nestled on the beach, this Discovery Bay hotel is 1.1 mi (1.7 km) from Puerto Seco Beach Park and 1.4 mi (2.2 km) from Green Grotto Caves. Puerto Seco Beach is 1.2 mi (1.9 km) away.
Situated in Discovery Bay, this holiday home is within 1 mi (2 km) of Puerto Seco Beach Park and Green Grotto Caves. Puerto Seco Beach is 0.8 mi (1.3 km) away.
Situated in Runaway Bay, this holiday home is 2.9 mi (4.6 km) from Cardiff Hall Beach and 3 mi (4.9 km) from Flavours Beach. Green Grotto Caves and Runaway Bay Beach are also within 6 miles (10 km).
Situated near the beach, this guesthouse is within a 15-minute walk of Puerto Seco Beach Park and Green Grotto Caves. Puerto Seco Beach is 0.9 mi (1.5 km) away.
Situated in Runaway Bay, this holiday home is within 3 miles (5 km) of Green Grotto Caves, Cardiff Hall Beach and Flavours Beach. Runaway Bay Beach and Puerto Seco Beach Park are also within 6 miles (10 km).