The eastern region is made up of 17 truly heterogeneous municipalities. Two of them, Vieques and Culebra, are completely separate islands! The interior towns of Gurabo, Juncos, Las Piedras, and San Lorenzo share agricultural origins, but each is truly unique. For many, Canóvanas means shopping. Caguas, the largest and liveliest inland city, is emerging as a major visitors’ destination. El Yunque National Forest towers above a string of fascinating beach towns that line the coast, from Maunabo in the southeast, through Yabucoa, Humacao, Ceiba, Fajardo (the place to sail & snorkel), Luquillo, Río Grande, and ending in Loíza in the northeast.
El Yunque is a finalist for the New Seven Wonders of Nature. Vote for El Yunque at www.new7wonders.com/yunque
Puerto Rico Tourism Company Ochoa Bldg., 550 Tanca St., Old San Juan: 787-721-2400 exts. 3901, 3902, 3904 & 3905
LMM International Airport Tourism Office: 787-791-1014
Serving: Canóvanas, Caguas, Ceiba, Fajardo, Gurabo, Humacao, Juncos, Las Piedras, Loíza, Luquillo, Maunabo, Naguabo, Río Grande, San Lorenzo & Yabucoa.
Vieques Information Center:
Culebra Information Center:
Caguas Botanical & Cultural Garden, 787-653-8223. Between Caguas & Aguas Buenas. 10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m. Thu.-Sun. This is a showplace of tropical plants and artwork. It has a small lake, stream, and a replica of a typical farm.
Culebra Wildlife Nature Refuge, 787-742-0115. Culebra. Open daily, dawn to dusk. Visitors are only permitted at Cayo Luis Peña and Culebrita. Spectacular diving and snorkeling; a paradise for bird-watchers, nature lovers, and photographers. Accessible by water taxi and private boat.
La Cordillera Nature Reserve, 787-860-5628. Fajardo. Includes the cays of Icacos, Diablo, Lobos, and La Barranquilla, as well as the islands of Palomino, Palominito, and others. All offer fun day-trip opportunities. Tour operators depart from Fajardo’s different marinas
Laguna Grande Bioluminescent Bay, Fajardo. Daily trips. Best seen on a moonless night; the water’s micro-organisms create natural bioluminescence when disturbed. Different ecotour operators offer kayak trips
Las Cabezas de San Juan Nature Reserve, 787-722-5882. Fajardo. Tours by appointment only Wed.- Sun. The gorgeous Fajardo lighthouse crowns this nature reserve. The area’s ecotour is one of the island’s best nature experiences.
Mosquito Bay Nature Reserve, 787-741-8683. Vieques. An unforgettable nighttime experience awaits visitors who can witness microscopic dinoflagellates sparkling like diamonds with their characteristic natural bioluminescence
Piñones Forest, 787-791-7750. Loíza. 7:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. Tue.- Sun. Its six-mile boardwalk is perfect for walking or biking through a mangrove forest while enjoying the local flora and fauna.