The Best Things to Do in Luquillo, Puerto Rico

by captaintim on August 27, 2013

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Balneario (6) copyLuquillo is located in the northeastern coast of Puerto Rico, about 40 minutes drive from San Juan.  It is renowned by the locals as having the best beach in Puerto Rico and is a popular summer vacation travel spot for this reason.  If you are visiting Puerto Rico, plan a visit to Luquillo.  There are so many things to do in Luquillo Puerto Rico.  It is perfect for a day trip, in conjunction with a visit to EL Yunque Rainforest, or as a great central location to stay in which to launch your Puerto Rico Vacation.  We call Luquillo home year-round and here are our top recommendations of things to do in Luquillo:

 

The Beaches

Luquillo is renowned for it’s beaches, and rightfully so.  Why pick one when you can pick them all? We use them all! In a 10 minute drive, one can check them all out and choose to suit. There are several great options to choose from, each with their own personality:

Luquillo Beach (Balneario Monserrate):  This is a government-run beach that is certified as a Blue Flag Beach, meaning that it meets environmental standards.  It has lifeguards, restrooms, chair and kayak rentals, showers and other amenities.  There is a $3-5 charge for parking, and there is a golf cart for hire that will bring you from your car direct to the beach.  This beach has very calm waters due to a natural wave break farther out.  It is perfect for small children and those that just want to float and relax in the water.  It is a sandy bottom as well, so it is a great intro beach.

Playa Azul:  Playa Azul is located behind the Brass Cactus Grill, east of the Balneario.  It has a roped-off swimming area and the water has some waves to it.  This beach is popular for bodyboarding, swimming and sunbathing.  There are no lifeguards at this beach nor public amenities, but you can park your car right along the beach and it is a very beautiful spot.  Local artists have done some great mural paintings along the  road that runs parallel to the beach, and it is definitely worth a visit.

Playa La Pared:  La Pared is known for its surfing.  While it doesn’t have th cashe or the awe-inspiring waves of Rincon, it is known for its consistent waves year-round.  Surf lessons and boards for rent are available.  There is a great Malecon (boardwalk) at this beach and several commercial establishments that are some of our favorites:  Boardriders Bar, Guava’s Restaurant and Pasta y Pueblo restaurant.  It is also home to Luquillo Sunrise Inn, a great little Inn on the beach.  It is a great beach to see and be seen.  It is located one block off of the Town Plaza.

La Selva:  La Selva is a long stretch of the beach, now officially known as the Northeast Ecologocal Corridor.  It is known for its pristine natural beauty and goes on for miles and miles.  It can be accessed by walking from La Pared going in the eastern direction or can be accessed by a dirt road off of the Pitahaya exit.  It is the home for nesting sea turtles and you can often see evidence of them.  This beach is extremely remote and should only be used during the daytime.

The Kioskos

With a line of 60 bars and restaurants along Route 3 (just west of the Balneario Luquillo Beach) the kioskos are a perennial favorite for drinks, dinner, a quick lunch or snack. Many years ago, these were little huts all serving Puerto Rican fare.  Over the last 5 years or so, the cuisines and style has expanded to include a large variety of cuisines and dining stlyes.  Something for everyone: #2 La Parilla, #9 Congas, #12 BurgerShack (the owner is one of our artists!), #21 Ay Bonito!, #17 Tattoo Tavern, # 29 Ossobucco, # 31 Vejigante, and the ones at the end #57-60 with the traditional Puerto Rico fritters.  Definitely stop by and walk the strip.  It is the center of nightlife for the eastern end of Puerto Rico, and many nights there is live music.  Please Note:  The majority are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, with the exception of a few.

Extreme Adventures

Luquillo is home to the Carabali Rainforest Park where you can enjoy Horseback Riding, ATV’s ziplines and go-cart racing.

Las Paylas Water Slide

Located in the Sabana area of Luquillo off of Carr. 983 (also the Luquillo entrance road to El Yunque) you will find the natural river waterslide called Las Paylas.  This is a favorite local spot, but relatively unknown in a wider sense.  Puerto Rico Day Trips has done a great job explaining the details of this attraction, along with video and directions.  Click Here to see it.

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