Western Caribbean Cruise: Zip-Lining in Jamaica

by Stephany on June 4, 2012

I wanted to write a separate post on my zip-lining experience in Jamaica. Because it was the best part of my cruise and if I ever make it back to Jamaica, it is the one thing I know I will do again.

When we booked this excursion, I’ll admit I was pretty nervous. I live a small life, I don’t venture too far outside my comfort zone, and the craziest thing I’ve done so far in my life is swimming with domesticated stingrays. Flying through a rain forest? File that under: Things I Never Thought I Would Ever Attempt In My Life.

But when I was scouring the excursions, zip-lining is what pulled my interest the most. The other ones seemed fun, but nothing as exciting and thrilling as zip-lining. And the fact that it was done in a rain forest? Made me even more willing to try this.

I’ve already talked about the amazing Mystic Mountain, which is where we did our bob-sled and air tram adventure. It’s also where we did our zip-lining. After we finished with the bob-sled and looked around in their little shop, we headed straight over to get suited up for our adventure.

DSCN2469 Not my hottest look, for sure. And I really should have ditched my sunglasses.

We followed our tour guides down a series of steep steps to get to where our zip-lining adventure would begin. I loved our tour guides so much. They were adorable, for one, with the best Jamaican accents and really put everyone at ease from the beginning by joking around (one tour guide mentioning it was his first day on the job and he didn’t really know what he was doing) and making sure we all knew what we were going to be doing.

What followed was the most amazing experience of my life.

DSCN2471

We had a group of about 10 people, all of us first-time zip-liners, and we would zip-line from one platform to the next. Each time, one of the tour guides would zip-line down to the next platform first (usually upside down…) and they would catch us as we landed on that platform. The other tour guide would get us locked into the zip-line and wait on the “call” from the other tour guide to let us go. (It seriously sounded like a bird call!)

The first time I went I was second-to-the-last and as I was leaving the platform, the tour guide shouted, “WAIT! COME BACK! COME BACK!” Luckily, I had seen him do that to a few other people in our group so I just let out a quick shout and then enjoyed my first ride! It’s hard to explain how zip-lining feels.

You feel alive. Exhilarated. Slightly scared. Awed. Amazed.

DSCN2473

The lines were short and sweet and the platforms came up quick. The first time I went, the other tour guide, shouted, “SLOW DOWN! SLOW DOWN!” Which freaked me out since I had no idea what he meant by slowing down! How was I supposed slow down? They didn’t cover this in the training! But, of course, he was kidding. Yes, we got a regular bunch of comedians for our tour guides! The zip line would slow down as we got closer to the platform and it was fairly easy to step onto the platform and get unhooked.

All the different zip-lines were fairly short and easy. I felt completely comfortable and god, it was so much fun! I can’t even explain how much fun it is to zip-line. You just have to experience it for yourself!

DSCN2474

photo (6) 

The scariest zip-line was our second-to-last one where we took a 30-foot drop from the top of a platform. Something you should know about me: I hate big drops! It’s the scariest part of a roller coaster for me. Basically, I got hooked up and then just sat, hanging in the air, until my tour guide deemed it okay to drop me. SCARIEST MOMENT OF MY LIFE! I screamed the entire time. A huge, girly, I-probably-woke-every-animal-in-Jamaica scream. And then promptly slid down one of the tour guides, legs splayed. Yep. I’m that girl.

Our last zip-line experience of the day was our longest ride yet and it’s where I managed to finally slip my camera out of the pocket of my jeans and snap some out-of-this-world photos.

DSCN2477Just the top of the rain forest. NBD.

DSCN2478 

DSCN2480

And just like that: our zip-lining experience was over. It was the perfect amount of time, really, although I wouldn’t have cried if we could have had more lines to fly through. ;)

We had such an amazing experience, that we’re almost certain we’ll do a zip-lining excursion when we’re in Cozumel on our next cruise.

After zip-lining, it was time to do some serious shopping. It was only about 9:30 AM by that time so we perused the little shop at Mystic Mountain, where I bought a little sling bag and a keychain (yes, still my thing) before riding the air tram back down to the entrance and getting on the bus to go back to where we got on the bus, which was in a major shopping district.

We spent a lot of time looking through the shops – as well as getting a sample of rum poured into our Coke bottles. Too strong for me but still pretty awesome – before settling on some shirts to take back home.

DSCN2512

And then we headed back to the ship! But not before my mom was asked if she needed any marijuana (no) and then a street vendor tried to sell me some necklaces. He came right up to me, explained what the colors of Jamaica mean, and then put it around my neck. It was pretty easy to get rid of these people so all the warnings people gave to me beforehand were unfounded – at least for me. It was actually a little sad to see how some of these people were trying to make a living and I felt a little bad not buying those necklaces! (I’m such a sucker, I know.)

DSCN2511

We were back on the boat by 1pm and it was such a bittersweet time. I remember saying to my mom, “The next time we leave the ship, it will be for good!” We still had almost two days to spend on the boat, but all the fun experiences were over for this cruise.

DSCN2525

But my recaps aren’t over! I still have to recap my time on the ship so expect the last two of my cruise recap posts coming this week.

Have you ever been zip-lining?

Facebook Twitter Email

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Lisa of Lisa's Yarns June 4, 2012 at 7:28 am

That looks like so much fun! That is definitely something I would do some day if I had the opportunity!

Reply

Melissa June 4, 2012 at 9:04 am

This actually sounds like a lot of fun! Minus the drop- THAT sounds terrifying, lol! My work friends wanted to do this actually as a group outing (we have a zip lining thing somewhere in Montreal and it’s REALLY EFFING HIGH) but I’m kinda scared. Maybe I’ll try and confront my fear of heights… We’ll see. Glad you enjoyed yourself so much though! This definitely sounds like it was an exciting cruise :D

Reply

E June 4, 2012 at 11:51 am

You know how I feel about ziplining. Best. Ever. I really want to go again soon! I’m glad you had such a blast.

Reply

katelin June 4, 2012 at 6:55 pm

i’ve never been zip lining but it just looks so so fun! glad you had such a great time and love all the fun pictures!

Reply

Caroline June 4, 2012 at 7:03 pm

That sounds sooo awesome!! I have always wanted to go ziplining!

Reply

StephTheBookworm June 4, 2012 at 9:46 pm

How long were the lines? Just a couple of minutes each?

You made me really want to try it!! :D

Reply

Stephany June 6, 2012 at 10:05 am

The lines were really short. Probably 30 seconds – 1 minute. The last one was probably around 2-3 minutes. I wish they were longer but it was a great introduction to zip-lining!

Reply

Ashley K. June 4, 2012 at 10:59 pm

Ziplining is HUGE here in Colorado–although it’s through the mountains, not the rain forest.

Reply

Stephany June 6, 2012 at 10:08 am

One of my boss’s zip-lines all the time in the mountains. That sounds like it would be such a fun experience, as well! Beautiful views. :)

Reply

Elizabeth June 4, 2012 at 11:36 pm

That looks like the experience of a lifetime! I ziplined once, but it was nothing like that!

Reply

Lauren Michelle June 6, 2012 at 3:17 pm

Wow, that sounds so thrilling! Of course, I can’t read about zip lining without thinking of that girl who fell and contracted an infection, so I’m really glad that you and your mom and everyone else got through it safely. Those pictures you took while flying down are amazing! I would definitely like to try that sometime.

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: