Ziplining was one activity that we hadn’t tried so we thought we would give it a go.
We paid for the tour ourselves and have not been compensated in any way for this review. If you want the main points, skip to the bottom. Otherwise, read on.
We didn’t want an experience that would scare the daylights out of Darrian, our 11-year-old, or me for that matter, so we decided to wait til he was older to try the zipline at H’Evans Scent in Freehill. That one I will do during my “Release Your Fears Retreat”. Mystic Mountain’s zipline in Ocho Rios has only four stations and costs quite a bit. Chukka at Cranbrook Flower Forest has 9 zipline stations, is the closest one to Mais Oui Villa, is reasonably priced, and did not require a long time commitment, so they won.
Chukka Caribbean partnered with Cranbrook Flower Forest a few years ago to create a signature adventure tour – ziplining through the Laughlands River Gorge.The head of the Laughlands River is on the property. Due to the unpredictability of the river, the river tour has been discontinued but there is a trail alongside the river where one can walk. About 25 acres of the 130-acre property has been developed into gardens. The rest is in its natural, undeveloped state.
We did a 2pm tour on a Monday in March 2017. The 3 of us were the only participants, which was just perfect as we had no crowds to deal with.
We started off at the home base, Chukka Cove, where we paid for our tickets and got fitted with safety gear. We drove about 20 minutes up into the hills to get to the starting point for the zipline.
Like me, you are probably wondering about safety, especially when you are allowing your only child to go whizzing past treetops in the name of fun.
We were fitted with harnesses, helmets, and gloves before we even got to the zipline adventure site. We were given a safety briefing including how to brake. We didn’t need to brake for ourselves as they braked for us and caught us at the end of each station.
Of course, I had to ask how often they checked the lines. Turns out that is done daily before the first tour and a more detailed version is done on Fridays.
The guides were great. There were four with us including one who was a photographer. Typically, two went ahead to receive us and two were senders to make sure we were connected properly. We felt safe the entire time.
This was a great course for us as first time zipliners. There is quite a bit of foliage on the trees which disguises the actual height of the lines, which for me was particularly helpful. Also, the drops were not particularly dramatic so it was more fun than scary.
That said, my poor knees were like noodles by the time when I approached the first station.
There were 9 stations. Number 9 was my favorite – not because the adventure was over but because it was actually the most fun.
After about an hour and a half, our tour ended in Cranbrook Flower Forest with a walk along the Laughland River. The gazebo with the palm lined entryway and the expansive lawn are still there; however, the garden is not like the days of old. It has seen better days when the patriarch, Mr. Linton, was at the helm.The focus appears to be on the adventure tours through Chukka Cove as opposed to maintaining the gardens.
Have a touch of acrophobia, fear of heights? Ziplining could well be considered a fun and less expensive option for therapy (LOL). Go with a group of friends to cheer you on. If you are traveling solo, the guides will be your cheering squad.
(Clearly, if you have a diagnosis of acrophobia, you need to follow your therapist’s advice and not mine.)
None of the guides could remember anyone who got cold feet badly enough that they didn’t complete the tour. The words, “Your tour is non-refundable” are very powerful.
That said, I did question my sanity as I approached the first station. And yes, my legs were wobbly for quite a while; but with each station, I felt less and less afraid. So much so that I would actually do it again and even try a more challenging course!
Have you done ziplining with Chukka at Cranbrook Flower Forest in Jamaica? How was your experience? Let us know. Leave a comment below.
Think and dream Jamaica!
Til next time,
Sherry, Darrell, and Darrian
Considering a visit to Jamaica? Contact us today for more information about, Mais Oui Tennis & Spa Villa, our boutique 8-BR ocean view Jamaica villa rental experience in beautiful Discovery Bay, Jamaica. Perfect for multi-generational families and groups, retreats, and intimate destination weddings and vow renewals.
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Sherry & Darrell, owners of Mais Oui Tenis & Spa Villa in Discovery Bay, Jamaica, consider themselves unofficial ambassadors for Jamaica. They look forward to using their insider knowledge to help guests create priceless vacation memories. Feel free to say hi!