Coco Hill Forest
Richmond Road, Mt. Wilton
Distance From Airport:
24.6 Km (15.29 Miles)
Distance From Bridgetown:
13.2 Km (8.2 Miles)
Located at Richmond Hill, St. Joseph, the forest which is owned, managed and maintained by Mahmood Patel, rises 1,085 feet above sea level at its highest point and 680 feet at its lowest. The area spreads over 53 acres of land, filled with 80 varieties of plant trees - from the Jamaican ackee to cocoa to pineapple - totalling two more than 1,400 trees.
An unspoilt place of serenity and tranquillity, Coco Hill Forest offers the opportunity to completely engross yourself in nature by forest bathing, hiking and even picnicking.
Being in nature has been proven to relax our minds, reduce anxiety and lower pulse rates. The purpose of the Japanese practice of forest bathing is to use nature to calm and rejuvenate yourself - and Coco Hill Forest offers just that! Self-guided tours allow you to peruse through this tropical rainforest at your own pace and choose your own path. As you disconnect from your cell phones, social media and any other distractions, the experience will connect you to nature, stimulating your senses to genuinely immerse you in what is happening in the forest. Feel the light breezes from the East Coast run over your body, see the magnificent and captivating view of the dense forest, listen as the bamboos make cracking noises in the wind and breathe in the fresh forest air, which has been proven to not only have positive effects on our blood cells but also boost our immune systems. Coco Hill Forest gives a complete and holistic natural experience.
The 2-hour forest hikes take you through the tree-lined trails and paths as you learn more about Barbados’ biodiversity and enjoy the sight of the fruit trees, spices, root crops, medicinals and other interesting fauna like mushrooms and the rare macaw palm tree. One of Coco Hill Forest’s goals is to reintroduce some of the crops and vegetation that was once a part of Barbados’ landscape - for example, coffee and mahogany trees - and introduce the intercropping of fruits and herbs. As you hike through the forest, not only will these trees be brought to your attention by the carefully labelled signage but you will experience views of the Atlantic Ocean peeking out behind the greenery at each of the lookout points.
Nestled in the middle of the forest is a gorgeous gazebo, which acts as a perfect picnic stop at the end of your hike. The view from the gazebo gives an extensive look of the ocean and is a fantastic location to spread out your blanket and enjoy the cool, refreshing breeze and truly bask in what nature has to offer. Whether you meditate or just sit in complete silence as the crickets do a duet and the trees perform a dance in the wind, the forest caresses its visitors and allows them quiet time.
The relatively new forest is already one of the best natural locations on the island for rejuvenation and relaxation, reflection and introspection. But Mr Patel is not stopping there. He has grand intentions as he seeks to fulfil his purpose for the area, with many more exciting projects and collaborations to be undertaken to not only further enhance the forest experience but to develop the eco-tourism and wellness tourism sectors in Barbados.