When I cruise, I like to get an authentic slice of local culture. For example, we went on a local culinary tour in Falmouth in July 2019. However, some folks also cruise for relaxation and the comfort of something familiar. If that is you, the Falmouth cruise pier is a great way to spend the day. It is clean, safe, and presents a ton of options for dining and shopping. There is even a local crafts market and a taste of the local cuisine.
What is there to do inside the pier area?
I have provided a video above to give you a sense of the cruise pier. You can also access it here. Royal Caribbean owns the pier in Falmouth. Working in cooperation with the local authorities, they have gone to great lengths to keep it clean, safe, and attractive.
There are two ways you might approach time at the pier in Falmouth. If you are spending the whole day there, you may run out of things to do. There is the widest variety of shopping I have seen in any protected pier area. There are also quite a few places to eat. Some of these are U.S. fast food chains. The most interesting shopping was at a local craft market. Several of the indoor stores also had local goods. The Jamaican coffee and cream rum are excellent.
You can also spend your day at the Margaritaville in Falmouth. This is completely inside the pier area, and it does not pretend to be local nor authentic. They do, however, have a lovely pool. They also have plenty of shady places to sit while someone brings you something cold to drink. There are worse ways to spend your day.
On the other hand, you might elect to linger in the Falmouth cruise pier before or after your shore excursion in Jamaica. There are lots of great options for a shorter period of time. In addition to everything I mentioned above, I encourage everyone to try two things. First, find a stand selling the local coffee. It is excellent both hot and iced. Also, find a beef patty. This is essentially an empanada or meat pie with local spices, and it was excellent.
Leaving the Falmouth cruise pier area
There are lots of excellent reasons to leave the Falmouth cruise pier area. If you have booked a shore excursion, have a great day. We loved our culinary tour. However, if you are not a seasoned traveler I would not just walk out of the pier area on your own. You will be immediately accosted by folks offering to take you on a tour. They will not quit asking until you hire them or one of their compatriots.
Our group of 10 did this, and it was perfectly safe. It also showed us a very real slice of local life, and we were able to give a nice cash tip to the 2 gentlemen who showed us around and kept us safe. In retrospect, I would have preferred to wait for our tour. However, I am still glad I got to experience this slice of local life. I was also glad to go back into the pier area for some shopping and a beer.