Vieques

East of San Juan, Puerto Rico lies a small island called Vieques. If you want to get away, and enjoy the Caribbean as it ought to be enjoyed, Vieques is the place for you.  You may have heard of Vieques because the US Navy had an artillery base there.  In the early nineties the base was given to the National Parks Service, and the Navy left.  Since the Parks Service has little money for new projects, the land is mostly undeveloped.  The beaches, many of which are quite long and beautifully natural, have
 no facilities.  When my friend Mary and I were here there were no people on some beaches! 

 The south side of the island is very quaint. A board walk protects the town of Esperanza from the sea.  Along the road are small shops and restaurants.  On the weekends instant shops spring up with food and souvenirs.  But the roads on Vieques are treacherous, with large potholes filled with water. The driver cannot guess how deep the holes are!  A jeep is essential for you to navigate the Parks.

The island has some unique inhabitants—wild horses!  They live in small bands, walking the narrow roads and grazing the fields. Drivers need to be very careful on the back roads, since horses are everywhere.

A must see is the bioluminescent bay.  It is one of the best examples of this astounding phenomenon in the world.  On a new moon night the stars are as bright as the algae in the bay.

 

 

There are variety of hotels on Vieques, ranging from modern, upscale resorts like Hix Island House and Martineau (soon to become a W Hotel) to small modest places, like Hacienda Tamarindo.  The restaurants also run the gamut from local Caribbean food you can purchase along the road to full service menus.

All in all, Vieques is a great quiet getaway!

 

 

Harriet H. Ahouse | Independent Travel Consultant
Vista Travel, Inc.
10 Rogers Street
Cambridge, Massachusetts 02142
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