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Bioluminescent Bay picture in Puerto Rico
Todd Van Hoosear / Flickr

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  • Beaches Type
  • 1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
4.9
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    4.5
  • Atmosphere
    5.0

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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."

Though you can visit Mosquito Bay unaccompanied, most suggest you spring for a tour of the area. Mosquito Bay's official site offers tips on the best nights to visit and lunar calendar information, as well as details on eco-friendly tours. Nightly tours operated by the popular Travesias Islenas Yaureibo range from $35 to $55 per person, depending on which type of tour you choose. 

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Hotels Nearby

  • Thing to Do
  • Hotel
Tropical Guest House

Tropical Guest House ...

  • 2.9 Miles Away
  • 2.5-star Hotel Class
W Retreat & Spa, Vieques Island

W Retreat & Spa, Vieques Island ...

  • 3.1 Miles Away
  • 4.5-star Hotel Class
See all hotels in Puerto Rico »

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#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 ... Read more » Todd Van Hoosear / Flickr

#2 El Morro (Fuerte San Felipe del Morro) El Morro juts out of San Juan harbor beckoning to cruise ships just as it used to deter sea attacks. The structure is a hulking six-story fortress built between 1539 ... Read more » dranzi / iStockphoto.com

#3 Flamenco Beach On the island of Culebra — which sits about 20 miles east of Puerto Rico— visitors will find a beach perfect for families, snorkelers and those looking for a remote spot ... Read more » ARENA Creative / Shutterstock

#4 Sun Bay (Vieques) Mosquito Bay is popular in the evenings, but the island of Vieques' daytime beachcombers like the chalky sands and serene vantage point of southwestern Sun Bay. It's also the ... Read more » MsDivinity / Flickr

#5 El Yunque National Rainforest Sometimes referred to as the Caribbean National Forest, the El Yunque National Rainforest, or simply El Yunque, this lush expanse is the only tropical forest in the U.S. National ... Read more » epslight / Getty Images

#6 Castillo de San Cristobal Fort San Cristóbal's 27 acres were built to protect the city of Old San Juan from land attacks. It doesn't receive as many visitors, or as much adoration ... Read more » Terraxplorer / Getty Images

#7 Calle del Cristo Outlet shoppers should come to Old San Juan prepared to let go of a few dollars. The city's Calle del Cristo is a haven of restaurants, art galleries and ... Read more » Erin Shields / USN&WR

#8 Condado Beach If you're staying in San Juan there's a good chance you'll never venture farther than Condado Beach. For many sun-lovers, that's just fine. Condado is framed ... Read more » dennisvdw / Getty Images

#9 Museo de Arte de Ponce Following an extensive renovation, Museo de Arte de Ponce reopened in 2010 boasting a bigger space and a larger art collection. Today, the museum houses more than 4,500 works ... Read more » Daniel Lobo / Flickr

#10 Carolina Beach (Balneario de Carolina) Located near the Isla Verde resort area in greater San Juan, lengthy Carolina Beach is a popular public beach among both visitors and locals. Families especially love its white sand ... Read more » runneralan2004 / Flickr

#11 Parque de las Cavernas del Rio Camuy Most travelers say the same thing about the Parque de las Cavernas del Río Camuy: Loved the caverns, didn't care so much for the tour. Too bad it's ... Read more » Jason Sturner / Flickr

#12 Luquillo Beach (Balneario de Luquillo) 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 ... Read more » arenacreative / Getty Images

Bioluminescent Bay picture in Puerto Rico
El Morro  picture in Puerto Rico
Flamenco Beach picture in Puerto Rico
Sun Bay picture in Puerto Rico
El Yunque picture in Puerto Rico
Castillo de San Cristóbal picture in Puerto Rico
Calle del Cristo picture in Puerto Rico
Condado Beach picture in Puerto Rico
Museo de Arte de Ponce picture in Puerto Rico
Carolina Beach picture in Puerto Rico
Parque de las Cavernas del Rio Camuy picture in Puerto Rico
Luquillo Beach picture in Puerto Rico
Bioluminescent Bay picture in Puerto Rico
El Morro  picture in Puerto Rico
Flamenco Beach picture in Puerto Rico
Sun Bay picture in Puerto Rico
El Yunque picture in Puerto Rico
Castillo de San Cristóbal picture in Puerto Rico
Calle del Cristo picture in Puerto Rico
Condado Beach picture in Puerto Rico
Museo de Arte de Ponce picture in Puerto Rico
Carolina Beach picture in Puerto Rico
Parque de las Cavernas del Rio Camuy picture in Puerto Rico
Luquillo Beach picture in Puerto Rico

Todd Van Hoosear / Flickr

You can walk though the six stories of this famous fortress, including a maze of tunnels, barracks and prison cells. dranzi / iStockphoto.com

Flamenco Beach is often regarded by travelers as the most beautiful beach in Puerto Rico for its clear, shallow waters, soft sands and remote location.  ARENA Creative / Shutterstock

This Vieques beach is the only one of the tiny island with public facilities; the town of Esparanza is just a short walk away. MsDivinity / Flickr

Just 35 miles east of San Juan, El Yunque rainforest is a great picture-taking and hiking opportunity. epslight / Getty Images

The 27 acres of Castillo de San Cristóbal were built to protect Old San Juan from land attacks. Today, the site offers breathtaking views of the sea.  Terraxplorer / Getty Images

Calle del Cristo is lined with pastel-hued buildings, cobblestone streets and many shops, bars and eateries. Erin Shields / USN&WR

If you're staying in San Juan there's a good chance you'll never venture farther than Condado Beach, which frames a string of high-rise hotels. dennisvdw / Getty Images

Daniel Lobo / Flickr

Located near the Isla Verde resort area in San Juan, the Balneario de Carolina is often crowded.  runneralan2004 / Flickr

Jason Sturner / Flickr

Families flock to this shore for its reef-protected calm waves, and you'll see a lot of daytrippers fresh from a jaunt in El Yunque rainforest. arenacreative / Getty Images

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