MONTEGO BAY, Jamaica -- Calling all wanna-be Tarzans and Janes: Canopy tours arrive in Jamaica this winter.

Translated, canopy tours enable participants to swing through the treetops over parts of Jamaica's rugged terrain.

Chukka Adventure Tours, which offers adventure vacations in Jamaica, will debut its canopy program later this fall.

The tours use a harness system of pulleys on horizontal traverse cables, that enables participants -- supervised by experienced guides -- to swing up to 50 yards between platforms high in the trees.

Chukka Adventure Tours formed an alliance with the original canopy tour operator, which created the concept and introduced the tour in Costa Rica several years ago.

Chukka Blue Adventure Tours, the western division of Chukka Adventure Tours, will introduce its canopy tours this fall at Montpelier Plantation in the hills behind Montego Bay, the site of the tour group's jungle river-tubing tour and a stop on its Jeep safari adventure.

Visitors to Jamaica this winter can strap on a safety harness and swing through the treetops high above Montego Bay or Ocho Rios, thanks to new canopy tours offered by Chukka Adventure Tours. The canopy tour will be able to handle up to 100 participants per day, although plans are in place to increase this number as demand grows, according to a company spokesman.

For visitors to the Ocho Rios area, canopy tours will be available this winter at the Cranbrook Flower Forest in St. Ann, high above the Laughlands Great River and its gorge.

Chukka Cove Adventure Tours, the other division of Chukka Adventure Tours, has been headquartered at Laughlands since 1985.

Canopy tour prices will be priced between $65 and $75 per person, according to John Byles, managing director of Chukka Blue. The tours initially will be sold at hotel tour desks and on cruise ships calling in Jamaica.

Other programs offered by Chukka Blue include two-hour ATV safari rides on the grounds of the Rose Hall Great House near Montego Bay.

An additional 10 vehicles will join its ATV fleet this fall; the tour route follows trails 700 feet above sea level and visits the community of Mount Zion.

Byles said both the ATV tour and the new canopy tour "fill another niche and give our customers a choice of experiences that range from riding horses to rubber tubing down a jungle river and walking on the sea floor to explore a coral reef."

Chukka Cove's offerings are equally adventurous. One is a mountain-bike trek from the hills above St. Ann's down to the sea; another is a journey on a country bus to Nine Mile, the mountain village where Bob Marley was born and is buried.

Marc Melville, Chukka Cove's director, said both tour operators "adapt our tours to what our customers tell us they want."

"We maintain high standards -- especially in safety -- and our aim with each new tour is to offer our clients a unique experience," he said.

For more information, contact Chukka Blue Adventure Tours at and Chukka Cove Adventure Tours at

To contact reporter Gay Nagle Myers, send e-mail to [email protected].

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