Vieques is a beautiful island located 7 miles northeast of mainland Puerto Rico, known as a quiet and uncrowded destination, featuring incredible natural beauty and breathtaking scenery. It is famous for being the home to brightest bioluminescent bay in the world (declared by the Guinness World Record in 2006), Mosquito Bay, as well as beach coves and the largest natural wildlife refuge in The Caribbean, 60% of Vieques is covered by it.

Horses roam free in this island, where there are no traffic lights but colorful and colonial towns. Its beaches features a wide array of different color sands, from white to gold and even black, that in contrast with its crystal clear water, create a stunning background hard to beat.


Vieques Island

History

Vieques was first inhabited by indigenous people known as the “Tainos”. When the Spanish claimed Puerto Rico in 1490, they eventually colonized Vieques. The natives revealed against the colonization what lead to a decrease in the natives population due to the war. It later became part of the US Territories when Spain lost the Spanish-American war.

The US used Vieques as an outpost for the navy, and finally left in 2003 after years of protests. Then the island became a National Wildlife Refuge.

You can reach the island by taking a ferry from Ceiba (an hour drive from San Juan) or by flying from San Juan International Airport, Isla Grande Airport or Ceiba Airport.

There are many things to do in Vieques, from snorkeling and scuba diving to horseback riding surfing and kayaking, or just go for a hike in this natural beauty, but these are our favorites:


Things to do in Vieques

Beach hopping

All the beaches in Vieques are public, and the majority quiet and empty. There are many options to choose from, with clear and calm waters (like Media Luna), some with good snorkeling spots (like la Chiva and Caracas), some where you can see the horses roaming free (Sun Bay Beach) and even beaches with black sand! (like Playa Negra).


See the bioluminescence in Mosquito Bay

As we mentioned about, Mosquito Bay is known as the brightest bioluminescent bay in the world. It is filled with millions of dinoflagellates (or bioluminescent organisms), about 1,000,000 to 2,100,000 per gallon. They are plankton-like, and the bay has one of the highest concentration of them in the world. The absences of pollution also helps enhance this spectacular phenomenon.


Snorkeling

With such clear waters, snorkeling in Vieques is quite an enjoyable experience. Some of the fauna of the island includes turtles and rays!


Horseback tour

Horses roam free all over Vieques, and it is a great experience to explore the beach on the back of one!


Hiking

Vieques offer a few hiking trails through the jungle, the sugar mill ruins and the beaches.


Visit Fortín Conde de Mirasol

This small fort is located on a hill, providing amazing views of the island and everything on sight. This fort was never finished, as it was the last fort built by the Spanish. Nowdays is a museum that you can visit.


The Ceiba Tree

This little park features a marvelous Ceiba Tree of 300 -400 years old. There are a lot of legends surrounding it, and there is a peaceful vibe in the park. You will see a couple horses gazing around it