Carolina Beach (Balneario de Carolina)

#11 in Best Things To Do in Puerto Rico
Carolina Beach (Balneario de Carolina) picture
runneralan2004/Flickr

Key Info

Rt 187

Price & Hours

Free
Tues-Sun 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

Details

Beaches, Free Type
Half Day to Full Day Time to Spend
3.8

scorecard

  • 5.0Value
  • 3.5Facilities
  • 3.5Atmosphere

Located near the Isla Verde resort district in the metro area, lengthy Carolina Beach is a popular public beach among both visitors and locals. Families especially love its white sand, warm water, the on-duty lifeguard and on-site paramedics. What they're not so thrilled with are the crowds. The beach tends to get busy during the weekends, but you can avoid some beachgoers by visiting during the week.

There are plenty of vendors nearby selling food and renting water sports equipment. The beach has a volleyball court and a playground for children. It also has a team dedicated to helping wheelchair users, though this service is available Monday through Friday only and must be requested in advance. Another minor drawback is that Carolina Beach's proximity to the airport means you may hear a bit of loud noise from airplanes overhead. 

The beach is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. You can visit for free, but there's a small parking fee.

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Type
Time to Spend
#1 Bioluminescent Mosquito Bay (Vieques)

This south Vieques beach might not sound like much, but it's one of travelers' favorite experiences in Puerto Rico. During the day, Bioluminescent Mosquito Bay is your stereotypical Caribbean hideout but at night, the waters emit a blue glow from the organisms, called dinoflagellates, that live there. More than 600,000 bioluminescent dinoflagellates live in each gallon of bay water, and recent travelers have been amazed by just how much visibility these tiny creatures provide.

Avoid visiting the bay during a full moon; the microorganisms aren't as visible then. Also aim for a quiet approach. Recent travelers recommended going out in a kayak to get the full effect of the glow and to prevent disturbing the dinoflagellates.

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Todd Van Hoosear/Flickr
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