Known for its gorgeous Caribbean beaches and breathtaking forests & parks, Puerto Rico is a sight to behold. This U.S. territory offers a little bit of everything to create the perfect vacation, especially if you want to spend as much time outdoors as possible. Whether you’ve booked your flight or are just dreaming of visiting (for now), we’ve gathered some of our favorite outdoor things to do in Puerto Rico.
1. Soak in the (Bioluminescent) Light at Mosquito Bay
While there are plenty of beaches to explore during the day, Mosquito Bay offers a nighttime biological show that can’t be beaten. Located on the small island Vieques off of Puerto Rico, this beach features a variety of microorganisms that illuminate the water to create a stunning spectacle. Look into guided kayak tours to get up close to the wonder.
2. Visit Wild Horses on the Beach
If you prefer staying on the shore, Vieques offers more beaches to explore, many of which are the home of approximately 2,000 wild horses. The offspring of domesticated horses that were turned loose, these animals are incredibly friendly, making them a tourist favorite. As with any wild animals, be sure to keep an eye out for them as you’re driving – this will help prevent accidents while making sure you don’t miss out on seeing these gorgeous horses during your visit!
3. Hike the Gozalandia Waterfalls
Back on the main island, there are several nature excursions you can dive into, including spending the day exploring the Gozalandia Waterfall, west of San Sebastian. These double waterfalls have become more accessible over the years, with convenient parking and roughened stairs to help you easily take in the view, but know that you should still be in somewhat good physical shape to safely make it to the bottom. Once you get down to the base there is a large pool that is deep and clear, a perfect way to cool off after a long hike.
4. Stay Overnight in El Yunque Park
If you’re looking for a more challenging hike, El Yunque Park offers 13 trails, many of which are too much to do in one day. Park officials allow for overnight camping for a fee, allowing you to get up close to Puerto Rican nature for an extended experience. You can also book official tours through local guides and hotels to really make the most of the park.
5. Spend the Day Snorkeling
Culebra is a small island off the south shore of Puerto Rico that offers some of the best water views in the area. Look into day trip tours that take you to the island and included local guides that can help you make the most of your snorkel, scuba diving, or windsurfing experience. Some even include tours on the island itself so you can see this hidden gem for yourself, including their beautiful architecture in Culebra Pueblo. We recommend Flamenco Beach for the turquoise water and Punta Melones beach for the sunsets.