First of all I have to say this tour is not at all overrated if you love the beauty of Jamaica. It may be slightly overrated if you want to see herds (or whatever they call a lot of crocodiles) frolicking in the water. I saw 3 or 4 in my hour long tour and that was satisfactory for me because I was completely taken by the excursion itself. My mom once told me “The journey IS the destination” and I enjoy anything for what it is, even if it’s not what I thought it would be. This ride was actually like a journey through a rainforest…so fresh!
The Black River crocodile tour was on my list of things to accomplish in my 5 days on the south coast. I knew where the river was but had no idea where to catch a boat so I drove into the town and pulled in where I saw a bunch of fishermen and asked. One man pointed to a small fishing boat with two tourists already inside and said I should go ask if I can join that boat, so I did! The couple in the boat didn’t mind at all that I hitched a ride with them. The funniest part of jumping in their boat was that they are also Canadian – from Manitoba. We’re practically neighbors back home. That was cool.
Watch the video of my complete tour and then read the rest of the story below it.
So you saw that big boat we were racing in the video – those are the actual “tour” boats run by a big company. I was more than happy not to patronize them and give my money to the man driving our small boat. It was a much more intimate tour and we were able to get way closer to the crocodiles because our boat was smaller. When I jumped in his boat I didn’t even ask what he charged for the tour – I just had faith that it was a reasonable price and that the money would go into his pocket. In the end I gave him $2000 jmd and he didn’t question it. The ride and the fun was well worth it to me.
A few things I learned on the tour
The crocodiles like the heat of the sun and the day I went was pretty overcast so we may have seen many more if it was a hotter day.
The crocodiles will not jump in our boats and eat our arms off. They’re quite content to hang out near the waters edge and chill while we gawk at them. Supposedly there is only ONE story of a woman who was killed by a crocodile in Black River. She was washing her clothes at the water’s edge and unfortunately a hungry beast got her. I believe them when they say the crocs aren’t viscous because on our tour we actually saw a guy snorkeling in the water!!! I couldn’t believe it but apparently he was spear fishing.
Black River is gorgeous. I could have stayed on that boat forever and rode the 44 miles of river. Being on the smooth waters with the wind in my face and the fabulous backdrop of the hills and mountains in the distance was amazing.
Would I recommend this tour to people going to Black River? Sure! Why not! Some ladies I talked to who did the tour the day before never saw any crocodiles so there’s no guarantee. But as I said the ride was beautiful and I highly recommend taking one of these small fishing boats rather than the big tour with all those other people. Its just a more intimate way to enjoy Jamaica.