Parque de las Cavernas del Rio Camuy
- Type: Hiking, Recreation
- Time to Spend: Half Day to Full Day
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Most travelers say the same thing about the Parque de las Cavernas del Río Camuy: Loved the caverns, hated the tour. Too bad it's impossible to do a self-guided visit of this 268-acre park of underground caves.
When you arrive at the park you'll take a tram ride down to a 180-foot high cave filled with a variety of light-shy wildlife, including crabs, tarantulas and bats. There are also plenty of stalactites and stalagmites and one of the largest subterranean rivers. The walk through the more than 200 caverns is generally manageable, but it can be difficult in some parts. It could also be muddy and wet.
Patience is key to enjoying the park. A TripAdvisor user notes, "You pay for parking on the way in -- before you find out how long the lines are inside. Then you pay $12 for each person's ticket at a window. The tickets are numbered, and we soon realized it was going to be more than 2 hours until they called our numbers. .. While you wait, you're supposed to watch a movie -- but the movie was broken without explanation."
There are a couple of tricks to making the most of your tour. One: There are often cave closures on rainy days, so check the forecast before planning your itinerary. Two: Tours are offered in English and Spanish, but the demand for an English tour-guide is greater and normally involves a longer wait. If you understand Spanish, then opt for that language tour instead.
Located about 70 miles southwest of San Juan around the Arecibo area, the Parque de las Cavernas del Río Camuy is open Wednesdays through Sundays. The Puerto Rico Tourism Company endorses several adventure tour companies that sponsor trips from the resort areas to the park, including Adventuras Tierra Adentro and Expediciones Palenque. Visit the tourist board's site for more options.