– Things To Do In Luquillo, Puerto Rico –
Beach and Water Activities
Luquillo is home to a beautiful coastal strip of five magnificent beaches: Balneario Monserrate (the famous Blue Flag beach), Luquillo Public Beach, Playa Azul, La Pared and La Fortuna. In addition to the breathtaking ocean views, the beaches provide opportunities for all types of water fun.
You can find a beach-side park here at the Monserrate beach with picnic shelters and clean bathrooms for families and friends to enjoy time together. There is plenty of shade from the majestic palm trees that line the Playa Azul and Monserrate beaches.
If you’re in the mood for surfing, La Pared beach is the beach for you – surfers flock to La Pared to catch the large waves. Want to try surfing for the first time? You can take lessons from a NSSIA certified surf instructor right in Luquillo.
If snorkeling is your thing, there is a reef between Playa Azul and Monserrate beach that provides opportunity to see colorful fish, corals, and even sting rays. Alternatively, you could take a short trip to the ferry docks in Fajardo to catch a boat to the off-shore islands of Vieques and Culebra, where snorkeling is world class.
Swimming is best in the sheltered bay of the Luquillo Public and Monserrate beaches.
At the base of the Luquillo beach, you will find sea kayak, boogie board, and Jet Ski rentals. You can also rent beach chairs, snorkel gear, paddle boards, so there is something for every taste.
Other Luquillo activities include flyboarding, kite boarding, deep sea fishing, shore fishing, and even horseback riding on the beach – there is something in Luquillo for everyone.
El Yunque Rain Forest
The only tropical rainforest in the U.S. National Forest System, El Yunque is a 28,500 acre national treasure of incredibly diverse ecosystems, flora and fauna.
There are over 70 species of orchids, more than 225 species trees (more than all other national forests combined), and hundreds of lizard, frogs, birds, and other amazing rain forest inhabitants that make El Younque National Forest their home.
El Yunque is also home to one of the rarest birds in world, the Puerto Rican Parrot – a nearly extinct bird species found only in Puerto Rico – currently there are less than 100 known adults of the Puerto Rican Parrot in the wild.
The USDA Forest Service (USDAFS) provides opportunity for you to explore this unique rain forest environment through long and short hiking trails. Along the trails, you will find water falls, rivers, and incredible flora and fauna but be ready to get wet, it is a rain forest after all!
The USDAFS also maintains picnic areas and restrooms at different spots in the park, see trail map below for their locations.
The “El Portal” visitor center, at the base of the park, provides valuable information about the rain forest and its ecosystems. From here, you can join a tour guide to show you around the park.
In addition, there is a gift shop and a café, if you are ready for a rest from the hiking and climbing. You can even reserve a spot here for a special event, like a wedding, birthday, or business conference.
Interested in experiencing El Yunque in a unique way? You can schedule a horseback tour through the rainforest.
Luquillo Pueblo (Town)
Like all Puerto Rican towns, Luquillo is blessed with a vibrant community life. There are festivals, celebrations and community parties going on nearly every weekend. They range from The Leatherback Turtle (Tinglar) Festival to St. Patrick’s Day Parade to local holiday celebrations.
If you stroll down to the Town Plaza you will find music and dancing, stilt-walkers, and a jovial atmosphere on most weekends.
Luquillo is unique in that it is one of few communities on the island that is considered a “walking town”. This means that it safe and everything is within walking distance. Although Puerto Rico is a “driving island”, one can enjoy a nice vacation in Luquillo without a rental car. Groceries, pharmacies, restaurants, beaches, are all within walking distance to the pueblo.
Don’t miss the beautiful church in the Town Square, San José Iglesia Catolica. See its lovely colonial façade and go inside to admire the real treasure, its stunning wooden sculptures. They feature intricately carved symbols of all cultures of Puerto Rican people incorporated with nature, such as palm trees, fruit, and parrots.
Bars and Nightlife
“Noche de Jazz” – Jazz Night – with the famous Charlie Sepúlveda once a month at Terruño Kiosko #20!
Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa – 4 bars and lounges, live music and dancing, casino on-site
The Brass Cactus Bar and Grill – many mainlanders’ favorite, with a “Cheers-like” atmosphere
El Flamboyan – local open-air bar, pool tables, serves bar food
Luquillo Kioskos – several bar and grills at the kiosks, great for pub hopping
The Rum House – located in Palmer on the way up to El Yunque Rainforest, open-air pub/eatery