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Planning a day journey to Culebra takes a little bit of preparation nevertheless it’s undoubtedly do-able from San Juan. You’ll must stand up early in an effort to catch a flight or take the ferry, however you’ll have loads of time to compensate for sleep when you’re laying on the seashore.
Mendacity 20 miles off the east coast of Puerto Rico, Culebra is a lovely, low-key island surrounded by over 20 cays. The island is a haven for seashore lovers, boasting stunning white mangrove forests, sandy seashores, turquoise blue waters and luxurious surroundings.
From round 1901 till 1976 Culebra was occupied by the U.S Navy and the Flamenco Peninsula was used for gunnery and bombing follow. The #1 attraction in Culebra is Flamenco Seaside, the place you may see tanks left there by the navy.
Right now Culebra is extraordinarily widespread for day journeys and snorkeling excursions and is taken into account among the best locations to go to in Puerto Rico. When you’ve got greater than 3 days in Puerto Rico, ensure you add it to your itinerary.
The best way to Get to Culebra from San Juan
The Culebra ferry departs from Ceiba ferry terminal, which is on the east coast of the island close to Fajardo. The easiest way to get there may be to hire a automobile from San Juan – I like to recommend checking costs utilizing Priceline, Rentalcars.com or Uncover Automobiles.
Goal to choose up your automobile the evening earlier than, because you’ll must depart fairly early within the morning on your day journey to Culebra. The primary ferry departs at round 3.30am after which there are ferries all through the morning round 6am, 6.30, 7.30 and 9am. The sooner the higher, because you’ll have extra time on the island. Be sure you test the ferry schedules for up-to-date instances, as they range in accordance with the seasons.
Tickets for the ferry price $2.25 every means, which is a steal! The journey takes round 45 minutes for the passenger ferry and round 1.5 hours for the passenger + cargo ferry, so purpose to take the passenger ferry if you happen to can.
Be sure you buy your tickets on-line right here a few weeks upfront, as they promote out shortly. The web site will say there’s tickets accessible on the field workplace, however choice for these is given to residents and so they are likely to promote out. It will be unlucky if you happen to went all the best way to the ferry terminal solely to seek out the tickets are offered out!
Try my Culebra ferry information for detailed info on reserving tickets, parking and what to anticipate.
There’s parking accessible on the ferry terminal, which prices $11 per day. Be sure you carry money! Rental automobiles aren’t allowed on the cargo ferry, so that you’ll have to depart your automobile in Ceiba and choose it up while you get again.
In case you don’t need to drive to the ferry terminal, there are personal automobile providers that can take you to Ceiba. They’re costly although, so it’s typically cheaper to hire a automobile from San Juan airport or Isla Verde.
The drive from San Juan to Ceiba can take anyplace from 1 hour to 1 hour 45 minutes relying on visitors, time of day and which street you are taking. The toll street is the quickest, however you may’t pay tolls in money so your rental automobile firm gives you the choice to pay a day by day fee for tolls. You’ll be able to refuse the toll possibility, however if you happen to do drive on a toll street, you’ll pay a penalty charge for every toll violation while you return the automobile.
In case you don’t need to pay for tolls, keep away from PR-66 and journey solely on PR-3.
The quickest solution to get to Culebra is by taking a small airplane. It’s potential to fly direct from San Juan to Culebra with Cape Air, or from Ceiba to Culebra with Air Flamenco. Because of the brief runway in Culebra, the planes are small propeller plane, so if you happen to’re frightened concerning the security of small plane, it’s possible you’ll choose to take the ferry. That being stated, there have been no airplane crashes on the Culebra route with both airline.
Count on to pay round $200 round-trip from San Juan, or round $90-$120 round-trip from Ceiba.
In case you’re flying from Ceiba, you’ll must hire a automobile and drive or guide a automobile service from San Juan. The airport is known as José Aponte Hernández Airport and is located near the Ceiba ferry terminal.
If you land in Culebra you’ll arrive at Benjamín Rivera Noriega Airport, the place you’ll discover taxis ready exterior the terminal.
Getting Round Culebra
When you arrive in Culebra you’ll discover taxis ready on the ferry terminal and on the airport that take guests to Flamenco Seaside.
From the ferry to Flamenco Seaside, the taxi prices $20 and seats 4 folks. The taxis will be shared, so my good friend and I had been paired up with two different women and whisked to Flamenco Seaside for $5 per individual. In case you can’t see a taxi ready, name one of many following firms:
In case you plan on spending only a day in Culebra, then it’s best to only get round by taxi. Nevertheless, you can too drive your self round by reserving a golf cart or Jeep rental. The businesses often supply free pickups from the ferry terminal and airport. Try these web sites for leases:
Seashores & Issues to Do in Culebra
OK, so now you’ve made it to Culebra! Most guests head straight to Flamenco Seaside, which is voted among the best seashores on the planet. We spent our whole day right here simply absorbing the solar, ingesting pina coladas and consuming seashore snacks. Nevertheless, there are additionally another nice seashores on the island that you could be need to take a look at.
Nestled on the north coast of the island, Flamenco Seaside is voted one of many world’s greatest seashores and is legendary for its painted tank.
Right here you’ll discover an expansive stretch of white sand with turquoise blue water, backed by lush greenery. In case you stroll west alongside the seashore you’ll come throughout the tank – a rusty relic left over by the U.S navy. The tank is rotting within the ocean, however it’s recurrently painted in shiny graffiti and is among the hottest picture spots in Puerto Rico.
If you arrive on the seashore you’ll come throughout a parking lot and an facilities space with meals kiosks, bathrooms and showers. There are additionally umbrellas and chairs accessible for rent, costing $20 for an umbrella and $10 per chair.
Tamarindo and Carlos Rosario
Tamarindo Seaside and Carlos Rosario Seaside are a part of the Luis Peña Nature Reserve and are house to all kinds of underwater life, together with remoras, bluetail fishes, stingrays, angelfish and manta rays. They’re each glorious locations to pop your snorkel on and see what you’ll find.
Tamarindo attracts fewer vacationers than Flamenco Seaside, so it feels quieter and much more secluded. There aren’t any amenities at this seashore, so that you’ll must ensure you carry your personal meals, drinks and seashore chairs.
If you wish to spot sea turtles, head to Melones Seaside, which is positioned on the west of the island overlooking the Luis Peña Pure Reserve. The seashore is rocky however is great for snorkeling and attracts loads of turtles resulting from its abundance of seagrass.
Snorkeling and Scuba Diving
The island’s coral reefs, seagrass beds and mangrove forests are teeming with wildlife, making it the proper place for snorkeling or diving. If you wish to hire snorkeling gear, study to dive or take a guided tour, take a look at a few of these tour firms:
Museo Histórico de Culebra
Culebra is actually all about laying on the sand, however if you would like a break from the seashore, take a look at the Museo Histórico de Culebra, which traces the historical past of the island. Housed in a former Naval munition warehouse, the museum offers details about the island’s ecosystem, in addition to the navy’s presence in Culebra.
The place to Eat in Culebra
If you arrive in Culebra will probably be breakfast time! Try the next locations:
Blac Flamingo Espresso – This lovable espresso store has a shiny pink exterior and cute out of doors seating – it’s the proper place to seize breakfast earlier than you head to the seashore. On the menu you’ll discover coffees, french toast, avocado toast, bagels, sandwiches and smoothies.
Culebra Espresso – Situated close to the ferry terminal on the principle strip, Culebra Espresso is open early at 7am and serves issues like breakfast wraps, sandwiches, bagels and avocado toast. There’s additionally a present store hooked up, the place you should purchase seashore towels, sarongs and clothes.
For lunch and dinner, these are another good choices:
Restaurant Caracoles – Located near the ferry terminal by the water, Restaurant Caracoles focuses on seafood, providing issues like mahi-mahi, octopus, shrimp, grouper and snapper. You can even order quite a lot of steaks, together with churrasco, T-bone and filet mignon.
Dinghy Dock – Immediately recognizable by its shiny blue facade and blue inside, this indoor/out of doors restaurant serves recent seafood and Puerto Rican delicacies with stunning views of the water. On the menu you’ll discover loads of recent fish, together with quite a lot of day by day specials.
Zaco’s Tacos – In case you fancy a fast chew earlier than you head to the ferry, attempt Zaco’s Tacos, a colourful, quirky restaurant serving nachos, tacos and refreshing margaritas!
Is A Day Journey to Culebra Price It?
Whereas Flamenco Seaside is gorgeous, there’s actually not that a lot occurring on the island. It’s very quiet, and the selection of lodging and eating places is restricted. So I’d say in the future in Culebra is ample. In case you love snorkeling and diving, and also you need to discover extra of the island’s seashores, then possibly you’d need to rent a automobile and keep one evening on Culebra to be able to have a full two days there.
Lodging on Culebra consists of small guesthouses and residences, so don’t count on luxurious resorts or chain motels if you happen to do plan to remain in a single day.
I’ll be sincere, my Culebra day journey was fairly exhausting. My good friend and I needed to stand up in the course of the evening to drive to Ceiba and we didn’t get again to San Juan till about 9pm. When you’ve got the money and also you don’t thoughts small planes, then I’d take into account flying there over taking the ferry.
Nevertheless, the ferry is far, less expensive and if you happen to can snag the ferry instances you need, then the journey shouldn’t be too dangerous. Simply ensure you attempt to sit on deck so that you don’t get too sea sick.
A Remaining Phrase…
In order that completes your day journey to Culebra, one in every of Puerto Rico’s most well-known islands! Your day will contain an early begin and a late end, nevertheless it’s completely potential to see Culebra in in the future. Be sure you take out some money earlier than you get to the island, as you’ll want it for issues like parking on the ferry terminal, taxis on Culebra and snacks on the seashore. In case you do neglect, there’s an ATM proper by the ferry terminal, so ensure you carry a debit card.