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Puerto Rico Beaches Guide - Best of 2023

Top Rated Beach Tour to Icacos Cay

Puerto Rico is truly a beach lover’s destination offering hundreds of beaches to choose from and each with its own unique qualities.  We know the island of Puerto Rico very well, we’ve been sharing the beauty of the coastline since 2004.  This beach guide is created with the needs of travelers in mind, we would never send you to a beach or location that our own family would not go to.  

Type of Beaches Included in this Guide

The beaches included on our list represent what Caribbean dreams are made of.  Some of the beaches you may have seen on lists by travel media outlets and some you may have never heard of, seen, or mentioned.  Some of the beaches we list have never been on the “best lists” and we are very proud of putting them in the spotlight.  Some of the beaches on our list are located in uncrowded quiet places, some are near all the action with services many tourists prefer, and some are the location of amazing hotels and resorts.  Some beaches we struggle to share, and we wish they stayed unspoiled and uncrowded, but we’ll share since our goal is for you to share the Puerto Rico we know and love.

Using this Guide & How do we come up with a "Best Beaches in Puerto Rico List"

We do not number the beaches, because those lists are subjective, what some may think is a great beach, may not be perfect for YOU.  Please go through our list, each beach has a link to a more detailed article so you can get a sneak peek before driving there.

The beaches we include are beautiful, and any facilities or services lacking onsite can be easily overlooked.  About me/us:  I am a travel professional, and my family and I love to travel.   We are now living in Puerto Rico, giving us the opportunity to travel around the island constantly to find those hidden treasures along the coast.  As far as our taste in beaches, we prefer those that you see in postcards and Corona commercials, at times we want a beach to ourselves without crowds, and at times we love the vibe of the beaches in the city with the many activities and attractions nearby.  We love to snorkel, do offshore fishing, a few water sports, although we don’t surf, we sure enjoy a good show.

Most of the beaches on this list were included in previous years.  At times we remove some and add new ones to this list, due to changes in municipality management, or when a dreaded hurricane comes, some beaches are drastically changed, we update our list to reflect those changes.

Disclosure:  We are not affiliated with any hotels or businesses on the island, what we write is independent of any advertisements.  We come up with our own list, we are constantly speaking with visitors at beaches, and we also research reviews to see what everyone else is saying to get a more collective list.  The following beaches were chosen because they all met the following guidelines: they’re naturally gorgeous, the beaches are clean with beautiful blue clear waters, great sand, and unique scenery, and the location is considered safe.  If you have to make a drive from your hotel, we think it will be worthwhile.  We keep finding new treasures along the coast, so be sure to come back so we can share them with you.

Flamenco Beach – Culebra, Puerto Rico

The Most Beautiful Beach in Puerto Rico, Consistently Ranked Among the Best in the World

Playa Flamenco - Culebra - Best Beach in Puerto Rico

Flamenco Beach is undoubtedly at the very top of the list of best beaches in Puerto Rico, making it one of the most popular excursions.  The landscape of Flamenco is breathtaking and free of development.  The water… so clear, warm, like stained glass, and just the perfect salinity for a refreshing swim.  The sparkling white sand is light inviting your feet for a walk along the beach to explore the landscape and abandoned Navy tanks.  You should see it first thing in the morning when the night breeze has erased every step from the previous day’s visitors.  Then… the amazing snorkeling experiences you can have at Flamenco, exploring the colorful reef where sea turtles play.

Best Places to Stay near Flamenco Beach:  Club Seabourne ⎮ Aleli Cottages

Map & Getting to Flamenco Beach - Culebra, Puerto Rico

From San Juan

From Fajardo, Rio Grande & East Coast

Top Rated Tours to Flamenco Beach, Culebra, PR

Beach at Cayo Icacos (Icacos Cay) – Fajardo, Puerto Rico

Cayo Icacos / Icacos Cay - Best beaches in Puerto Rico

Icacos Cay, is one of the prettiest cays and is among the top places to visit on the island.   Icacos is part of Cordillera Keys Nature Reserve (Reserva Natural los Cayos de la Cordillera).  A few hours on the beach at Icacos will give you the pleasures of a secluded island surrounded by the Caribbean Sea.  Is likely you’ll be swimming along friendly dolphins that frequently swim around Icacos.  During optimal weather, the water is very clear, tours typically make a stop at a snorkeling spot with colorful schools of fish.  Visitors can choose from a number of fun catamaran tours as well as sailing and private charters.

Best Places to Stay near Icacos Cay:  El Conquistador Resort

Map of Cayo Icacos - Fajardo, Puerto Rico

Top Rated Tours to Cayo Icacos

Balneario Escambron – San Juan, Puerto Rico

Balneario El Escambron - Best beaches in San Juan Puerto Rico

Escambron Beach is the best beach for getting away from the busier beaches in the San Juan tourist area, offering the best snorkeling in the capital city.   Escambron offers the most complete beach experience in San Juan, with two unique beaches within the park.  Escambron is a great spot to learn how to go scuba diving and snorkeling.  Take a romantic walk on the beach trail leading to a historic site.  If and when you’ve had enough beach time you can walk across to the Luis Munoz Marin Park and continue down the scenic Paseo Puerta de Tierra with sweeping views of the Atlantic leading to Castillo San Cristobal.   Keep walking and you’ll end up in Old San Juan where you can enjoy UNESCO sites and cultural experiences.

Best Places to Stay Nearby:  Caribe Hilton, Condado Plaza Hilton

Map of Balneario El Escambron - San Juan, Puerto Rico

Top Rated Escambron Beach Tours - San Juan

Cayo Caracoles – La Parguera, Lajas, Puerto Rico

Cayo Caracoles - Best clear water beaches in Puerto Rico - Lajas, Puerto Rico

Caracoles is located on the southwest coast of Puerto Rico, and trust us when we tell you, it just may be one of your best days in Puerto Rico, the itinerary below is one of the best beach and cultural day trips you can experience on the island.  The waters of Caracoles are shallow with warm crystalline emerald-green water.  Being in Caracoles is a very different experience since you’re in the open water away surrounded by a number of mangrove cays.  The best time to go is on a weekday to enjoy a peaceful ambiance, it gets crowded with boats on summer weekends and holiday weeks.  If you’re staying in San Juan, you can do the trip on your own by renting a car, or you can take this tour taking care of all the details.

Fun Beach Day Itinerary:  Spend the day at La Parguera enjoying the Caracoles & Mata La Gata.  Eat lunch and dinner at the fishing village, and at night, get ready for swimming with the stars on the bioluminescent bay.  La Parguera is the only bioluminescent bay in Puerto Rico where you’re allowed to swim.  After swimming, change and dance with locals to live music in the village if you’re here on the weekends.

Best Places to Stay in Lajas & Nearby:   Copamarina Beach ResortLa Jamaca ⎮  Turtle Bay Inn

Map & Getting to Caracoles - Lajas, Puerto Rico

You may rent a small boat to get there, take a water taxi or book a private tour boat that plans a wonderful La Parguera experience typically including the magical bioluminescent bay.

Top Rated Tours to Caracoles & La Parguera Bioluminescent Bay

Mar Chiquita – Manati, Puerto Rico

Mar Chiquita - Beautiful beaches in Puerto Rico

Mar Chiquita is one of the most beloved beaches on the north coast, one of the most photographed beaches for its picturesque shape and landscape.   Although popular, it is a great beach to get away from crowds during weekdays from September to mid-May.  On weekends and holiday weeks, it has a festive ambiance, and there are more food vendors and artisans.   During the summer months when the water is calm, it is a good spot for snorkeling in shallow waters.  During the winter months, the water is more playful and more care should be taken when swimming.

Best Places to Stay near Mar Chiquita:  Hyatt Manati

Map - Mar Chiquita - Manati, Puerto Rico

Top Rated Tours to Mar Chiquita Beach & Nearby Attractions

Luquillo Beach / Balneario La Monserrate – Luquillo, Puerto Rico

Luquillo Beach - Best and most beautiful beaches near San Juan Puerto Rico

Luquillo Beach formally named Balneario La Monserrate is the most popular beach on the east coast, often combined with a day trip to El Yunque Rainforest.  The water is calm, the beach is wide and the sand is firm making it wonderful for a long romantic walk and horseback ride.  The landscape is one of the most attractive on the island with El Yunque as the backdrop.   Like Boqueron, Luquillo is known for the abundance of palm trees, creating that tropical vibe visitors dream of on vacation.  When you’re hungry, just steps from the beach you can enjoy delicious Piña Coladas served right on the pineapple, and try traditional frituras (traditional Puerto Rican fritters).  Just outside of the beach park, you can have a gastronomic cultural experience at the Luquillo Kiosks at non-tourist prices since locals go there daily.

Fun Beach Day Itinerary:  Explore El Yunque National Rainforest, then head to Luquillo Beach and Luquillo Kiosks.

Best Places to Stay near Luquillo Beach:  Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Golf & Beach ResortHyatt Regency Grand Reserve Puerto Rico

Map - Luquillo Beach - Luquillo, Puerto Rico

Top Rated Tours to Luquillo Beach & El Yunque National Rainforest

Balneario de Boqueron (Boqueron Beach) – Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico

Boqueron Beach - Best beaches in Puerto Rico 2023

Ask any local about the best beaches in Puerto Rico, and undoubtedly they’ll mention Boqueron Beach.  This beach is a family favorite for its calm water where children can play and swim.   During Easter and major holidays, it is the number one beach spot on the island, and Boqueron becomes a very festive place, the rest of the year is nice and relaxed.  The beach is framed by a grove of tall coconut palms  Flamboyan, and Almond trees.  Boqueron Beach is located in the Poblado de Boqueron, a quaint colorful fishing village popular among locals that flock on weekends from all over the island to eat fresh oysters, clams, and traditional fritters.   Don’t leave before sunset, this spot is among the top three places to watch the sunset in Puerto Rico.

Best Places to Stay in Cabo Rojo & Nearby:  Las CasitasCombate Beach ResortTRYP by Wyndham Mayaguez

Map - Balneario de Boqueron - Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico

Gilligan’s Island – Guanica, Puerto Rico

Gilligan's Island Guanica, Puerto Rico - Puerto Rico most beautiful beaches

Gilligan’s Island, is a dreamy piece of paradise, a giant natural pool surrounded by mangrove trees, creating the perfect environment for schools of fish to play and flourish.  Gilligan’s Island is perfect for everyone, romantics seeking a cozy spot and families with children seeking safe shallow water where they can snorkel.

You may take a private ferry/water taxi from a nearby restaurant, nearby Copamarina Beach Resort also offers daily trips to the island to their guests.

Best Place to Stay in Guanica:  Copamarina Beach Resort

Map - Gilligan's Island - Guanica, Puerto Rico

Tortuga Beach – Culebrita, Culebra, Puerto Rico

Playa Tortuga - Culebrita, Puerto Rico

Just when you thought Culebra could not possibly get any better, there’s Culebrita, part of the archipelago of the island.  Playa Tortuga is among the most gorgeous beaches in Puerto Rico, the colors of the water are mesmerizing and so incredibly clear.  There are various snorkeling spots where catamaran charters typically stop.  Once in Culebrita, you can do some hiking to sights such as the lighthouse ruins and the tidal pools.  The best time to go in order to enjoy Culebrita in all its glory is from late August until late Spring on weekdays.  Weekends and holiday weeks during the summer months Tortuga Beach gets uncomfortably crowded with boats and we don’t recommend it if you wish to avoid crowds.

Best Places to Stay near Flamenco Beach:  Club Seabourne ⎮ Aleli Cottages

Map & Getting to Culebrita - Culebra, Puerto Rico

From Culebra:

From Fajardo, Rio Grande & East Coast

Top Rated Culebrita Tours from Fajardo

Playa Crash Boat Beach – Aguadilla, Puerto Rico

Crash Boat Beach - Best beaches on the west coast of Puerto Rico

Don't Miss Snorkeling at Crash Boat Beach

Crash Boat is great for visitors who wish to experience a laid-back authentic Puerto Rican beach offering fun on the water, culture, and music.  Crash Boat Beach is picturesque, with colorful boats adorning the golden sand.  Crash Boat is very interesting in the wintertime, while most surfing beaches are not safe for swimming, there is a calm side for swimming and an active side for surfing, making this beach a favorite for families and surfers.  Bring your snorkel gear, when the water is calm the snorkeling is great around the pier teeming with colorful fish.  Crash Boat is also very popular for scuba divers.  Ohhh… and those sunsets!!

Map - Crash Boat Beach - Aguadilla, Puerto Rico

Tamarindo Grande Beach – Culebra, Puerto Rico

Best snorkeling with turtles beaches in Puerto Rico - Culebra - Tamarindo Grande

Sea turtles love Tamarindo Grande Beach and so will you…

You can almost always find sea turtles swimming and playing over glass beds at the bottom of Tamarindo Grande.  This beach is the best place in Culebra to safely swim and watch sea turtles.  Tamarindo Grande is a photographer’s dream… with views of Cayo Luis Peña and golden sand adorned by smooth beach cobbles… naturally landscaped as nature intended.  This beach is a turtle nesting site, so please walk with care along the beach and do not disturb any nests you may find.  If you’re lucky to visit and swim with them, please do not touch themPlaya Tamarindo Grande is not far from Flamenco Beach, so be sure to include it on your itinerary if you head to Culebra for a day trip.

Best Places to Stay near Flamenco Beach:  Club Seabourne ⎮ Aleli Cottages

Map - Playa Tamarindo Grande - Culebra, Puerto Rico

Top Rated Tours to Tamarindo Grande Beach - Culebra

Isla Verde Beach –  Carolina, Puerto Rico

Isla Verde Beach - Best Beaches in Puerto Rico

What is known as Isla Verde Beach is actually three beaches, each with its own vibe.  Isla Verde Beach is about a 7-minute drive from SJU airport and 15 minutes from the capital city of San Juan.  Stay right on the beach at one of the beachfront resorts, walk to a variety of restaurants, casinos, lounges, and dance the night away at nearby clubs.  Isla Verde is a fun beach with a variety of watersports, families with children can learn to surf, go jetskiing and visit nearby beaches.  The water is safer for swimming than the popular Condado Beach yet still close enough to Old San Juan so visitors can enjoy the historic wonders and cultural excitement of Old San Juan.

Best Places to Stay on Isla Verde Beach:  Royal Sonesta ⎮  Fairmont El San Juan  ⎮ Courtyard by Marriott Isla Verde Beach Resort

Map of Isla Verde Beach - Carolina, Puerto Rico

Fun Experiences in Isla Verde Beach & Nearby

Bahia de la Chiva – Vieques, Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico Best Snorkeling Beaches - La Chiva - Vieques Island

If you’re only visiting Vieques for a day, we recommend you head to La Chiva, your eyes will wander through endless contrasting shades of blue, unlike any other beach on the island of Vieques and all of Puerto Rico.  Bahia de La Chiva is one of the best snorkeling beaches in Puerto Rico and all of Vieques, you can explore a colorful world with diverse sea life and healthy coral, and best of all it can be enjoyed by all skill levels including children since the water is calm.  La Chiva is very long, giving romantics and serenity seekers their very own spot.  As you drive up, you’ll see numbered spots, is fun to stop at all of them and find your favorite.  If you manage to leave La Chiva, just keep driving to find your special beach cove along the wildlife reserve, Playa La Plata and Playa Caracas are also very beautiful.  There’s plenty of sand and space to claim for the day so you can experience the feeling of having your own piece of paradise.

Map - Bahia de La Chiva - Vieques, Puerto Rico

Top Rated Vieques Tours & Transfer from San Juan

Jobos Beach – Rincon, Puerto Rico

Jobos Beach - Isabela Puerto Rico - Best beaches 2023

Jobos is synonymous with the words summer, surfing, and good times with friends.  Jobos is among the top beaches for surfing all year round and a great spot to learn.  The water is clear, with deep turquoise and emerald tones and a small protected area for those that just want to refresh in the water, watch surfers, and take in the scene.  Visitors that wish to immerse themselves in the beach culture of locals will enjoy spending a day at this beach.  Puerto Ricans bring food, radios, and lots of laughter, so be ready to enjoy a lively family-friendly scene on weekends and summertime.  During the week the scene is more mellow and relaxed.

Best Places to Stay near Jobos Beach:  Royal IsabelaVilla Montaña

Map - Playa Jobos - Isabela, Puerto Rico

Top Rated Surfing Lessons in Puerto Rico

Poza del Obispo – Arecibo, Puerto Rico

Pozo del Obispo - Puerto Rico's best and most beautiful beaches

Poza del Obispo… one of the prettiest beaches on the north coast features a mesmerizing wave show that never stops.  A coral wall forms a protected pool with shallow water.  As you sit on the water, your eyes will gaze at the non-stop clashing of the waves hitting the rocks, some reaching a few stories high.  When you can manage to get out of the water, you can take a walk on the beach or visit the Arecibo lighthouse next door.  FOR YOUR SAFETY DO NOT stand on the rocks that divide the beach from the ocean or climb the cliff too close to the edge, people have fallen and lost their lives.

Fun Beach Day Itinerary:  Make it a wonderful day trip by visiting Cueva del Indio while in Arecibo.

Best Places to Stay near Pozo del Obispo:  Hyatt Manati

Map - Pozo del Obispo - Arecibo, Puerto Rico

Playa Sardinera – Hatillo, Puerto Rico

Best Beaches in Puerto Rico - Playa Sardinera in Hatillo

Our guide was the first to feature this beautiful beach and we are so happy to share it.  This is not a touristy beach, the crowd here is local, and it remains nice and quiet.  We are confident it will begin to see more visitors after happy beachgoers like you spread the word.  Playa Sardinera is like a bigger version of Pozo de Teodoro in Isabela, composed of one big natural pool and off to the right (looking east), a very long and narrow natural pool protected by a natural wall where pelicans love to play… perfect for those that want to feel more seclusion and have toddlers since the water is very shallow and clear.

Best Places to Stay near Playa Sardinera:  Royal Isabela ⎮  Hyatt Manati

Map - Playa Sardinera - Hatillo, Puerto Rico

Playa Sucia / La Playuela – Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico

La Playuela / Playa Sucia - Puerto Rico Most Beautiful Beaches

What a day awaits at La Playuela… located in the most scenic location on the island.  Cabo Rojo has many beaches, but if you’re traveling around the island and only have a day for a beach day trip, head to La Playuela, best known as Playa Sucia.  Bring a good pair of sneakers and your good camera, you’ll be enjoying some of the most scenic in this location.   From your beach chair, you can enjoy views of limestone cliffs and the elegant Los Morrillos Lighthouse.  Just a few steps from the beach, you can take a hike along the cliffs which will feel as if you’re standing at the planet’s edge.  Playa Sucia is inside a wildlife nature reserve with salt flats (informally referred to as pink beach), an informative welcome center, a bird sanctuary, a walking trail along the nature reserve, and an observation tower.

Best Places to Stay in Cabo Rojo & Nearby:  Las CasitasCombate Beach ResortTRYP by Wyndham Mayaguez

Map - La Playuela (Playa Sucia) - Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico

Survival Beach – Aguadilla, Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico's Most  Beautiful Beaches - Tabletop and Survival - Aguadilla

We added Survival Beach because the scenery is spectacular, there’s no other beach in Puerto Rico that resembles its landscape.   This beach is NOT for swimming, and it requires a hike to get there that’s a bit challenging for the average person but totally worth the effort.  You get three gorgeous beaches on your way there, your hike begins at Surfer’s Beach, you’ll first arrive at Tabletop after the main hike and finally arrive at Survival where you’ll take the best vacation photos.

Map - Survival & Tabletop - Aguadilla, Puerto Rico

Steps Beach / Tres Palmas Marine Reserve – Rincon, Puerto Rico

Steps Beach - One of the best beaches on the west coast of Puerto Rico

Best beach for a romantic walk and hidden spots to relax, watch and listen to the surf.  Challenging surfing during winter months, great snorkeling from late spring till early fall, and best during the summer months.

Steps Beach, part of the Tres Palmas Marine Reserve boasts a healthy coral reef with abundant sea life including sea turtles, and a healthy elkhorn garden.  The vibe is relaxed, there’s a food truck at the beach, easy access to the beach, and parking.

Top Rated Places to Stay in Rincon:  Tres Sirenas BeachQue ChevereCasa Isleña

Map - Steps Beach (Playa Tres Palmas) - Rincon, Puerto Rico

Top Rated Snorkeling & Scuba Diving Tours in Rincon

Playa Negra / Black Sand Beach – Vieques, Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico black sand beaches - Vieques

Playa Negra is the most unique beach in Vieques with a rugged landscape.  Although the surf doesn’t allow for swimming safely,  sitting, walking, and admiring the sparking black sand against the vast blue of the sea is well worth the trip.   You’ll have to take an easy hike through a dry river bed, it can get muddy after it rains.  Once you get here, you’ll want to stay a while in contemplation of the beauty around you… most likely you’ll have the whole beach to yourself.  Bring a few bottles of water and a sandwich from the bakery in town so you can stay longer and have a picnic on the sand.  Enjoy and please don’t leave any trash behind.

Best Places to Stay in Vieques:  El BlokFinca VictoriaTop Rated Vacation Rentals

Map - Playa Negra - Vieques, Puerto Rico

Playa El Combate – Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico

Playa Combate - One of the most beautiful beaches in Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico

Combate Beach is a favorite among locals for its family-friendly water and food nearby with fresh fish served daily.   Combate Beach is part of Boqueron State Forest, the landscape is very natural on the southern side, and the shore is wonderful for a long walk.  The atmosphere is quiet during weekdays and lively during weekends.   During the summer months, Combate Beach gets quite busy with beachgoers and boats.  Combate Beach is a nice stop after visiting Los Morrillos Lighthouse or you may opt to visit the village of Boqueron to dine and sightseeing.

Best Places to Stay in Cabo Rojo & Nearby:  Las CasitasCombate Beach ResortTRYP by Wyndham Mayaguez

Map - Playa Combate - Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico

Playa Los Bohios – Maunabo, Puerto Rico

Playa Los Bohios - Best black sand beaches in Puerto Rico - Maunabo

Playa Los Bohios is a dream for those that love to spend quality time with their loved ones, disconnect and connect with nature.  Visitors attracted to this beach come for the black sand… but there’s so much more.  Leaning palm trees will tempt you to take out your phone for that Instragrammable photo, but instead of capturing the perfect pose, we invite you to capture the essence of this place.  Walk to the west side of Playa Los Bohios, there’s no development, the landscape is rugged and you’ll see the mouth of Rio Maunabo (River) flow into the sea.

Best Places to Stay Near Playa Los Bohios:  Amazing 3 Bedroom Condo at Solarea Beach ResortMariposa Beach HouseBV103 – Amazing Oceanfront Condo Steps from Beach ⎮ 

Map - Playa Los Bohios - Maunabo, Puerto Rico

Tours to Los Bohios Beach & Nearby

Domes Beach – Rincon, Puerto Rico

Playa Domes - Puerto Rico best surfing beaches

Whether you surf or love to watch, Domes Beach is a great beach to visit in Rincon.  Bring your board and ride the waves or bring your lounge chair to enjoy the show.  Beach access is easy and there’s plenty of parking.  Domes Beach is a great point of interest, after soaking in the sun, head next door to Rincon Lighthouse Park for great views, whale watching during winter months, and food.  If you love sunsets, be sure to stay awhile, is worth the wait every day of the year.  While at Domes, you can quickly visit Spanish Wall by taking a short hike along a dirt trail north of Domes.

Top Rated Places to Stay in Rincon:  Tres Sirenas BeachQue ChevereCasa Isleña

Map - Playa Domes - Rincon, Puerto Rico

La Posita de Piñones – Loiza, Puerto Rico

La Posita de Piñones - One of the most beautiful beaches near San Juan Puerto Rico

At Posita de Piñones, just 20 minutes from San Juan and 7 minutes from Isla Verde, you can enjoy a completely different vibe than the city beaches.  The water at Posita de Piñones is very clear and there’s a long coral wall creating a natural shallow pool perfect for floating, relaxing, and for small children to play and swim.  The best time to go to avoid crowds is mornings during the week.   During the weekends, local families head to La Posita de Piñones for fun under the sun.  Nearby there are more beaches, and a fun way to explore them is by going on an ATV tour.

The best Places to Stay Nearby are in Isla VerdeRoyal Sonesta Courtyard by Marriott Isla Verde

Map - La Posita de Piñones - Loiza, Puerto Rico

Fun Beach Tours near Posita de Piñones

Balneario Seven Seas – Fajardo, Puerto Rico

Seven Seas Beach in Fajardo.  One of the best beaches on the east coast of Puerto Rico

Seven Seas is the most family-friendly beach in Fajardo, a protected cove with calm water.  Seven Seas offers decent snorkeling and it is a good place for children to learn.  Enjoy shaded spots on the sand under palm trees with views of the lighthouse nestled at the top of Las Cabezas de San Juan Nature Reserve.

Fun Beach Day Itinerary:  For a fun beach exploration day, Seven Seas is the starting point for a hike to more secluded beaches such as Playa La Escondida and Playa Colora.  After a day under the sun, head over to Las Croabas for a bioluminescent bay tour under the stars.

Best Places to Stay near Seven Seas Beach:  El Conquistador Resort

Map - Balneario Seven Seas - Fajardo, Puerto Rico

Playita del Condado – San Juan, Puerto Rico

La Playita del Condado - One of the best beaches in San Juan Puerto Rico

La Playita del Condado is the smallest beach in San Juan tucked in the corner of Dos Hermanos Bridge, facing the historic Fortin San Geronimo.   For visitors and cruisers that have little time to spend at the beach, this may be the best option in San Juan due to its convenient location, services, tours available, and nearby attractions in Old San Juan through the scenic bike route.  Playita del Condado is the most family-friendly beach with calm waters safe for swimming and doing a little snorkeling.  From the beach, you can enjoy views of the modern city and one of the fortifications sitting on the sea.  There are lounge and umbrella rentals by the Condado Plaza Hilton, restaurants, as well as drink stands offering delicious Piña Coladas.  From La Playita. you can enjoy wonderful activities right at this beach and next door at Laguna del Condado (Condado Lagoon).

Best Places to Stay near La Playita del Condado:  Condado Plaza HiltonCondado Ocean ClubCondado Vanderbilt

Map - Playita del Condado - San Juan, Puerto Rico

Playa Zoni (Soni) – Culebra, Puerto Rico

Zoni Beach - Most beautiful beaches in Culebra Puerto Rico

While Flamenco gets most of the attention in Culebra, Zoni Beach is just as stunning when it comes to landscape… in its own way.  Across the clear as-glass water, is the cay of Cayo Norte and the island of Culebrita.  The sand is white, dotted with shells and coral stones, a dream for beachcombers.  From late spring until the end of the summer the water is at its best for swimming, the best spot is at the south end of Zoni.  During the winter the water has a stronger surf, becoming a great beach for lounging and simply enjoying the peace of Culebra.

Map - Playa Zoni - Culebra, Puerto Rico

Playa La Plata – Vieques, Puerto Rico

Playa La Plata - Puerto Rico Beautiful & Romantic Beaches

With so many beaches inside the Natural Wildlife Refuge of Vieques, very few get to Playa La Plata, a perfect small beach cove perfect for love birds.  If you’re a honeymooner, this is your beach, the times we’ve been there, we only find about two couples just enjoying the scenery and each other’s company.   The name La Plata (Silver) is perfect, the sand is so white, it sparkles as the sun rays shine on it… as if there was glitter sprinkled throughout.  The water… stunning, perfect for a swim… another mesmerizing beach in Vieques… water as clear as tinted glass in turquoise shades… just paradise.

Best Places to Stay in Vieques:  El BlokFinca VictoriaTop Rated Vacation Rentals

Map - La Plata Beach - Vieques, Puerto Rico

Playa Pelicano – Caja de Muertos, Ponce, Puerto Rico

Playa Pelicano - Gorgeous beach in caja de Muertos - Ponce Puerto Rico

Playa Pelicano… those lucky enough to get there will agree is truly a special place… located on the uninhabited island of Caja de Muertos, just off the coast of the city of Ponce.  There’s no development disrupting the natural landscape… and that’s part of the experience.  Colorful pebbles adorn the edge of the white sand, the hill at the edge of the beach is a nesting site for pelicans and the sand is ohhhh, so soft.  The colors of the water, are mesmerizing… we’ve only seen colors these magical in Vieques and Culebra.

Best Places to Stay in Ponce, Puerto Rico:  Hilton Ponce Golf & Casino Resort ⎮  ALOFT Ponce

Map - Playa Pelicano - Caja de Muertos - Ponce, Puerto Rico

Punta Soldado – Culebra, Puerto Rico

Punta Soldado - Best beaches in Culebra Island, Puerto Rico

Punta Soldado is located at the southern tip of Culebra and is one of the most fun beaches to get to on a jeep.  On the way down to Punta Soldado enjoy views of Ensenada Dakiti, and once you get to the beach, get ready for some of the best snorkeling spots in Culebra.  All beaches in Culebra have their own vibe and Punta Soldado is certainly unique… the sand is rocky and lots of bleached dead white coral wash ashore, the flora feels more like dessert, and after taking in the views and landscape, you can explore the magic underneath the water’s surface at the south end.

Map - Punta Soldado Beach - Culebra, Puerto Rico

A Little Piece of Heaven we Love in Puerto Rico

Gorgeous Beach in Puerto Rico

How are the roads to the beaches around the island of Puerto Rico?

Roads in Puerto Rico are much like the states on the mainland of the United States.  To explore the beaches in Puerto Rico a regular car is enough, with the exception of some beaches in more remote areas such as Wilderness in Rincon, when it rains you’ll need a 4×4.  Many of the beaches have many natural VIP parking spots where you can park right at a dreamy entry point, driving around the coastline of Puerto Rico is a lot of fun, with free parking on all beaches except Balnearios (managed beach parks by the government) which charge a minimal parking fee, typically under $5 per car, be sure to have cash.   Be sure to pack light so you don’t have to carry much to the beach from the car.

Puerto Rico Beach Roads

The road to La Playuela aka Playa Sucia, (photo below) is a bumpy dirt road, it will be muddy when it rains but most locals get to it without any problems.

Puerto Rico Beaches Travel Guide

In Vieques and Culebra jeep rentals are very popular and the recommended vehicle to explore the beaches.

Can you swim in Puerto Rico beaches?

Yes, there are plenty of beaches in Puerto Rico where you can safely swim.  The best beaches for swimming are the following divided by town/ island.

Culebra

San Juan / Metro Area

East Coast

West Coast

North Coast

Vieques

Should I book a tour or explore the beaches on my own?

To make the most of your time in Puerto Rico, we recommend you mix it up by booking a few fun catamaran tours to offshore islands and keys to experience the most pristine beaches and that you rent a car to explore the rest of the beaches you wish to see on your own.

When is the best time of the year to enjoy the beaches of Puerto Rico?

Be aware that not all beaches can be enjoyed all year, we’ve seen “Best beaches in Puerto Rico” articles by “trusted guides” including beaches that literally disappear for months, wasting precious visitors’ time.  Some are only accessible during the summer months, some are only great during the winter months.  We live in Puerto Rico, and we have been to every beach through all the seasons of the year in order to give our readers the most accurate visitor’s guide with great beaches travelers can enjoy any month of the year.

Which side of Puerto Rico has the best beaches?

To answer this question, we would have to speak to you in order to find out what activities you like to do at the beach, and whether you’re a tourist who prefers to have amenities right on the beach or a traveler who prefers to experience a more local and authentic island vibe.

Overall, if you were to ask a local this question, they would undoubtedly say, the west coast on the main island of Puerto Rico and the offshore islands of Vieques, and Culebra has the best beaches.

If you close your eyes and dream of the lost untouched Caribbean free of crowds and completely natural and untouched by commercial development, you’ll adore Culebra and Vieques.

If you don’t necessarily like to get in the water and prefer quiet, romantic walks, watching the surf, and relaxing to the sights and sounds… the north and northwest side of Puerto Rico has the best beaches.

If you love the city life, watersports and don’t wish to rent a car, you’ll love the beaches of San Juan.

How long would I need to vacation in Puerto Rico to see the best beaches?

The average tourist can book a few tours to explore the most popular beaches, some opt to rent a car for a few days.  The traveler that prefers to explore the coastline and get to know the island better, rents a car and spends at least a week beach hopping.  Vieques and Culebra, offshore islands of Puerto Rico are beach destinations on their own and one week on each island is needed to fully enjoy the best beaches around the coastline.

Which beaches in Puerto Rico are closed?

The beaches of Puerto Rico are always open and open to the public.

What is the number one beach in Puerto Rico?

The Number One Beach in Puerto Rico… The Best of the Best:  Undoubtedly, Flamenco Beach is the most beautiful beach under the Puerto Rican flag, consistently ranked among the best in the world.

What is the most beautiful beach in San Juan Puerto Rico?

The most beautiful beach in San Juan is Balneario El Escambron, a park that offers two beaches where you can find the best snorkeling in San Juan and the best-rated snorkeling tours.  The views are outstanding, visitors can walk to a historic site right on the beach park, find cozy and find intimate romantic spots.

Visiting Beaches after Covid & Beach Culture

Puerto Rico may be a small island, but there’s no shortage of beaches to explore, with so many of them, you won’t find crowds so you’ll have plenty of space on the sand and water to enjoy the warmth of the island and joys of a tropical vacation.

If you’re wondering about the beach culture after covid-19, locals are very good at staying within their group, so the vibe is relaxed yet feels secure for those that carefully follow social distancing.  All the beaches are open.