Culebra, Puerto Rico
#6 Best World Beach
TripAdvisor Travelers Choice Awards-2016
Consistently ranked one of the “Best World Beaches,” Flamenco Beach is nestled into a cove on the tiny island of Culebra which sits about 20 miles east of Puerto Rico. Tourist and locals alike find the 1 ½ miles of world-class white sand an exotic tropical paradise. The turquoise clear waters are usually calm with gentle waves and perfect for the whole family and those learning to snorkel. You will see hundreds of species of tropical fish especially out near the reef.
Culebra is not as developed as some of the other Caribbean Islands and certainly a much slower pace of life than San Juan. There are no luxury resorts, elegant restaurants, casinos or night life to speak of. Culebra is a place where serenity meets exotic and blended with that local vibe.
There are several food trucks available in the parking lot during the day. (cash only) If you want to bring your own food and drinks, coolers are allowed on the beach but no glass is permitted and strictly enforced. You can also rent umbrellas and other beach gear from the onsite vendors.
You can rent snorkel equipment at Culebra Divers or Culebra Bike Shop across the street from the ferry dock. You can also get rental equipment at Culebra Snorkeling and Dive Center in the Mercado area in town or KPR Adventure Shop by the airport. Guided snorkeling trips are available at both the dive shop and KPR.
The Beach is free and open dawn till dusk. Camping is allowed at the beach with a permit. You can obtain one at the office near the entrance to the campground. There is no electricity and campfires are not allowed. You are able to BBQ if you bring your own charcoal.
Be sure to bring your own insect repellent.
To reach the island you will need to take a private boat, ferry or small plane. Ferries make several trips a day between Culebra and Fajardo for around $5.00 round trip. The trip is 1.5 hours and the line for tickets can be very long and begins forming at 4:00 AM. Arriving early does not guarantee you will get a ticket, especially on the weekends. We suggest you fly. It is worth the extra expense.
You can catch a small plane from Puerto Rico airports; San Juan Isla Grande (SIG) or San Juan Intl (SJU) to Culebra’s airport, Benjamín Rivera Noriega Airport on ,or Air Flamenco. Be sure to book in advance as the seats sell out quickly.
Getting around the island is fairly easy. You will find plenty of taxis at the ferry dock and airport. At the time of this writing, the cost to get to Flamenco Beach is $3.00 per person each way.
Taxis start picking passengers up around 3:30 for the return to the ferry dock. If you’re feeling adventurous, cars and scooters are also available for rent on the island.