LUQUILLO BEACH Website:
We headed to Luquillo for the day after checking out of our hotel at El Conquistador and headed toward Isla Verde.
WE HAVE ARRIVED...LUQUILLO BEACH!!
We pulled up to the entrance...then soon discovered that there was an parking fee to get in. $4 plus tax. The parking lot was huge, but didn't see very many cars parked there. It looked like it was going to be a good day in the sense that it probably wasn't going to be crowded.
The rain had stopped and everything was wet. But that's ok.
We grabbed our beach bags, grabbed our cooler of pop, Sakari had her morhping bag, and off we went toward the beach (which is a little ways from the parking lot). If you are handicap or have mobility issues, there is a road that heads closer. I'm not sure if you can park there or if it's for employees only, but you would be able to do a drop-off there I would think.
There was a lot of trees there with pine needles. I found this interesting. I'm not used to seeing pine needles in places like this. I'm not sure what this building was. It was all open and nothing inside of it. Maybe they hold parties there or something. It was nicely landscaped.
FINALLY! The beach. The beach loaded with pine needles if you are up close to the tree area. So, this picture (below) gives you a perspective of how close the tree line is to the water (in case you would rather sit under the trees for shade). We made it out to the water finally. It was still cloudy, but the sun was peeking out.
THIS...immediately happened of course.
Over in the distance, you could see the rain pouring down. I always think it's so cool to see the rain clouds, with the trail of rain reaching down to the ground, from a distance. I spot these a lot on cruises and I just find them so fascinating.
We picked our "spot" and dropped our things. Hubby was still debating if he wanted to get in the water.
I went up to take a picture to send to Kendra making her think that the weather was perfect. Which, it actually was at that point. With a little bit of clouds and the rain in the distance, it felt pretty good since it was pretty hot out. The only problem is that when it's cloudy like this, the pictures sometimes don't turn out the best.
There was still a downpour to the left of us. Hey, as long as it was staying over there, I was good with it. This ice cream guy went up and down the beach all day. He didn't bother anyone and just rang his bell. Like I said, it was HOT out. I can't believe that having the ice cream in a cooler thing like that actually keeps it from melting in this weather. I mean it should be ok for a little while, but I wouldn't think it would last long.
I always love taking my little tilt-shift pictures, but did notice this time around that when it's kinda gloomy out, they don't turn out as good and are a little dark. I wish I would have turned the camera the other way and caught the "clear" part of the ice cream mans wheel track down the beach with everything else blurry.
I think I spot a mermaid out there...
"Mommy, come quick"...she spotted a crab.
Almost caught a double picture over/under. I don't even remember trying to do this here (since there were waves and you need the water to be somewhat still) and it was the only one like this. Maybe it was just a fluke. You can tell that I must have had it on the underwater setting since it had a really weird cast to the picture above.
It was beautiful out and sunny which = very HOT. The hubby didn't last long on the beach.
I went up to text Kendra (we talk back and forth all day long, both at home or on vacation lol). Then I come back down to the water to THIS...."Um, what are you doing???" "Are you going tinkle?"
He had been sitting there like that for awhile. I sat down beside him and ask if I was going to feel extremely warm water. He said "No, look at my skin". He said if you stay real still, with the water going back and forth, before long, the sand would pile up on your skin. He was loaded with it. I warned him about the crabs and he decided it was not fun anymore.
Still gloomy over yonder...
But where we were at, it was extremely nice and sunny.
Sakari was having a little bit of fun with her crab.
She met a little friend that she would hang out with the rest of the time that we were there (this one spoke English and I believe they were from Massachusetts the dad said).
They would proceed to take Mr Crabby Patty up and down the beach to "show" people and it became a game of "how many people will scream at the sight". There were a group of girls that had arrived minutes before this occurrence of Mr Crabby. One refused to go in the water because she was afraid of fish (reminded me of Kendra's finance) and the other two adventured in. I could tell by the way they were all acting that this might have been their first experience at a beach. I over heard one yell to the girl on the beach "How are you going to come to Puerto Rico on vacation and not even get in the water at the beach?" I just knew they were prime candidates for a Mr Crabby experience. hee hee. I told Sakari "those girls would love to see Mr Crabby. Go show them." And I waited....then it came, a loud shriek and the motion of a tidal wave of water leading up to the beach due to movement of some very fast legs! HAHAHA it was funny. Then they laughed and the girl that refused to get in the water had some fun with it. I'm glad we were able to give her the opportunity to pay her friends back from making fun of her for not going in the water. It was entertaining to say the least.
The rain was moving on out toward the water and still staying to the side of us.
The hubby was taking pictures of the beach and posting it for all to see back home. Of course I had to send one back to Kendra as well.
I tried my best to get a picture of the birds flying around. I guess I forgot to change my settings.
Now remember we were sitting on the beach (no chairs) and I plopped down at one point and crossed my legs. Immediately I felt a pain in my foot. Mr Crabby had pinched my toe.
It was so hot out and you really couldn't stay on the beach for long before getting back in the water. I think the hubby swam more this time that he has on previous vacations.
When I got out once to go get something to drink, someone had wrote this on the beach (censored for the forum with my name stamp of course).
A few selfies to prove we were there and not randomly stealing pics off the internet from our office back home in front of the computer.
I guess the water was a little deep here??? What are you doing Sakari?
It was fun time for her...
So it was getting later in the day and I knew we had to drive to Isla Verde to get checked in. We decided to pack up and head out of here. It ended up being a good day and the rain stayed away from us.
The beach was pretty, but I'm not sure if I would consider this the "prettiest" beach ever. If it's the prettiest beach in PR, then hmmm. I guess I should look no more for one to top it. Honestly, it kinda reminded me of our last stop here in PR and we went to Pamela's (Numero Uno) for the day (from the cruise ship). It was nice, don't get me wrong, but I guess I just had something else pictured in my mind. Would I return? No, probably not. Been there, done that and time to move on next time around.
It was a VERY big beach and plenty of room to spread out. The water was very clear and the waves were pretty gentle. You could rent jet skis there and we even seen someone riding one just like the hubby's but it just wasn't as loud. (He has a 300hp supercharged one with an exhaust and he has had it up to 80mph at our local beach..which scares the crap out of me). We have never seen another like his. But these guys were having a good old time with it.
Walking out, we did see they had a place to purchase food and drinks. I did see ice cream (of course) and pizza as well. They did charge $1.00 to use the baño's. I calculated I saved about $10 that day. LOL
We headed out to the car at 2:20pm.
They seem to keep this place really clean and in tip-top shape. However, I did see this when we were walking out.
It was a long hot walk back and I was now wishing that I was back in the water. I looks like there's someone here that also do the bio bay tours.
We made it back to the car and would spend about 1/2 hour there, trying to get our clothes as dry as possible before getting in the car and leaving. You have to remember, we are no longer at the hotel, we have no towels!
Then out we went...
***This beach is known as a "Blue Flag" beach. So what does this mean?
The Blue Flag Beach program a voluntary eco-label awarded to over 2800 beaches in 41 countries across Europe, South Africa, Morocco, Tunisia, New Zealand, Brazil, Canada and the Caribbean. The Blue Flag Program is owned and run by the independent non-profit organization Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE).
The award of a Blue Flag beach is based on compliance with 29 criteria covering the aspects of Environmental Education & Information, Water Quality, Environmental Management and Safety and Services. Some criteria are imperative while some are guidelines. All Blue Flags are only awarded for one season at a time. If some of the imperative criteria are not fulfilled during the season or the conditions change, the Blue Flag will be withdrawn.
Puerto Rico usually has 6-9 Blue Flags for beaches.
For 2016, only 4 beaches are Blue Flag Certified: Punta Salinas in Toa Baja, Seven Seas in Fajardo, Sun Bay or Sombe in Vieques and Balneario Monserrate in Luquillo .***
I thought Luquillo beach was very pretty. I is supposed to be the prettiest beach in Puerto Rico. I'm honestly not sure about that. It would not be "my" definition of "the prettiest beach", but it was pretty.
We managed to have a good time here despite the sprinkles in the beginning...the sun was shinning after that and it stayed away off in the distance.
We didn't purchase any food or drinks while here, so I can not comment on pricing.
Would I recommend this beach? Yes, it's definitely a beach that I would recommend for a day.