Luquillo Beach (Balneario de Luquillo)

#12 in Best Things To Do in Puerto Rico
Luquillo Beach (Balneario de Luquillo) picture
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Key Info

N/A

Details

Beaches Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
3.3scorecard
  • 3.5Value
  • 4.0Facilities
  • 3.0Atmosphere

The resort beaches along Condado or Isla Verde are beautiful, but if you tire of the same old scenery, take a 30-minute drive east along Route 3 to Luquillo Beach. Families flock to this shore for its reef-protected calm waves, and you'll also see a lot of day trippers fresh from a jaunt in the nearby El Yunque National Rainforest.

Recent vacationers agree that Luquillo isn't crowded, but there are differing reports on its cleanliness. Following an April 2010 trip to the beach, one TripAdvisor user wrote: "It was the most disgusting site ever. You literally could not walk to the beach without stepping on some piece of garbage." But another TripAdvisor user that visited around the same time is full of praise: "The beach was gorgeous, the water clean, the view spectacular and real easy to get to."

There's a small fee to park at Luquillo, plus a $1 fee to use the bathrooms (which includes access to the changing rooms and showers).

  • Just before you reach Luquillo you'll see a strip of kiosks selling freshly caught fish and all sorts of snacks. Stop and order an alcapurria (plantain fritter) stuffed with just about any kind of seafood you can imagine." -- Concierge.com
  • The trick to enjoying Luquillo Beach in the summer is to go on a weekday morning; in the winter months the beach is practically deserted." -- Uptake.com
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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 sky and waters emit a blue glow from the half-plant, half-animal microorganisms that live there. More than 700,000 bioluminescent dinoflagellates live in each gallon of bay water, and recent travelers have been amazed by just how much visibility these tiny creatures provide.

But avoid visiting the bay during a full moon; the microorganisms aren't as visible then. Also aim for a quiet approach: "I would definitely go in a group with kayaks-not a motorized boat," one TripAdvisor reviewer said. "It is very peaceful and beautiful to be on the water at night but the sparkling water is a real treat."

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