Puerto Rico  > Puerto Rico Beaches  > Best Beaches in Puerto Rico

Best Beaches guide includes photos, visiting tips, full maps, and the best hotels on the beach. 

Puerto Rico Beaches

If you crave beaches and don’t want to waste any precious vacation time, our insider’s guide is for you.  We include 28 great beaches divided by region, so no matter where you vacation in Puerto Rico, you’ll have great beaches to explore.  Please relax and take a few extra minutes to read this guide before booking a hotel. 

We know the island of Puerto Rico very well.  This island is truly a beach lover’s destination offering hundreds of beaches to choose from and each with its own unique qualities.  We found that a typical “top ten beaches list” makes travelers somewhat anxious…that list is too restrictive and somewhat subjective, leaving out many wonderful beaches you would otherwise miss depending on where you decide to vacation in Puerto Rico.

We have created a more practical best beaches guide, so no matter which destination you choose, you’re guaranteed to have a list of amazing beaches to enjoy with your family or friends.  We keep this list updated and may change depending on various factors.

Best Beaches in Puerto Rico 2020 / 2021

The beaches included on our list represent what Caribbean dreams are made of.  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 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 beaches we struggle sharing, 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.  Thanks in advance for trusting us with the planning of your vacation.  We welcome your feedback and comments.

+ Using This Guide

Instead of creating a numbered list, we have divided them into best beaches of each region in order to make your planning easier. There are plenty of amazing beaches in each region sure to dazzle you.  We think you’ll want to return to Puerto Rico to explore more.

Things to Consider:  We often get asked…”Which are the best beaches in Puerto Rico?” What some may think is a great beach, may not be perfect for YOU.  The beaches we include are so amazing naturally, that any facilities or services lacking onsite can be easily overlooked.  We have further divided beaches into specific categories in order to help you plan the right beach vacation for YOU. About me:  I am a travel professional, my family and I love to travel.   We are now living in Puerto Rico, giving us the opportunity to travel and 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, at times we love the vibe of the beaches in the city with the many activities and attractions nearby.  We love to snorkel, offshore fishing, a few water sports, although we don’t surf, we sure enjoy a good show.

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 do some research for reviews to see what everyone else is saying in order 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 beautiful blue clear waters, great sand, great scenery and postcard worthy the location is considered safe If you have to make a drive from your hotel, we think it will be worth while. We keep finding new treasures along the coast, so be sure to come back so we can share them with you.

Best of the Best - The Top 5 of 2020

Beaches of Puerto Rico

Flamenco Beach

Best Beaches in Puerto Rico

Best beach for landscape, scenery, water clarity and quality, and color and texture, cleanliness, facilities, family friendliness, access, lifeguard services, camping facilities, food, safety, never crowded even on the high season…simply perfect.   + Flamenco Beach in Culebra

Beach at Icacos Cay – Fajardo, PR

Cayo Icacos - Best beaches in Puerto Rico - East

+ Highlights of Icacos Cay - Fajardo

Best beach for clarity of the water, seclusion, snorkeling, one of the top day trips in Puerto Rico. 

+ Icacos Cay aka Icacos Island – Puerto Rico

Bahia de la Chiva aka “Blue Beach”

Best Beaches in Vieques

+ Highlights - La Chiva Beach - Vieques

Best beach for:  everything… snorkeling, relaxation, swimming in crystal clear water, seeing every shade of blue imaginable, falling in love with the Caribbean and each other all over again.  Playa La Chiva aka Blue Beach is simply amazing and just about anyone that visits Vieques puts La Chiva at the top of their list…

+ La Chiva Beach / Blue Beach in Vieques

Isla Verde Beach – Carolina, PR

Isla Verde Beach - Best beaches in Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Isla Verde Beach

Best beach for: hotels on the beach, beachfront dining, water sports, budget-friendly apartment rentals on the beach, city life, nearby points of interest in San Juan, clean sand.  Isla Verde is just a short 5-10 minute drive from the airport.

+ Isla Verde Puerto Rico Beach

Crashboat Beach – Aguadilla

Crash Boat Beach - Aguadilla, Puerto Rico

+ Crash Boat Beach - Aguadilla

Best Beach for a true local beach experience, people watching, surfing, and snorkeling.  Crash Boat Beach is really picturesque, with colorful boats adorning the golden sand, you’ll see fishermen coming in the late afternoon with the catch of the day.  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 fish.  Crash Boat is also very popular for scuba divers.

+ Crash Boat Beach – Aguadilla, Puerto Rico

Best Beaches in San Juan & Metro Area

Puerto Rico

The beaches of San Juan and Isla Verde, Carolina are some of the most visited on the island by tourists.  Part of the reason is marketing, some of the best beach resorts are located in the Condado tourist district and the district of Isla Verde in Carolina. While the beaches of San Juan and the Metro area are not the best in Puerto Rico, it is the most popular tourist destination on the island for many great reasons.  Those wishing for a quick weekend getaway love San Juan and Isla Verde for the convenient close location to the airport and excellent hotel choices.  A beach vacation in San Juan offers a well-rounded vacation experience with something for everyone.  City lovers will enjoy the vibrant nightlife, lively entertainment, excellent dining choices, and the best shopping malls in the Caribbean.  From San Juan, you can easily explore world class attractions such as El Yunque Rainforest, Las Cabezas de San Juan Nature Reserve, the Camuy River Cave Park, and more.

Balneario El Escambron – San Juan

Escambron Beach - Best beaches in Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Escambron Beach

Best beach for getting away from the busier beaches in the San Juan tourist area, clarity of the water, surfing during winter months, snorkeling during summer months, facilities, quality of water, many shaded areas under palm trees, accessibility, on-site restaurants, within walking distance of Old San Juan and Condado, two beaches on the beach park, historic attraction onsite.  

+ Balneario El Escambron, San Juan, Puerto Rico

Condado Beach – Condado, San Juan

Condado Beach - Best beaches in Puerto Rico - San Juan

+ Highlights of Condado Beach

Best beach for city life, luxurious beachfront resort choices, and sexy-ness.

Condado is sexy, chic, and clean.  Condado is an excellent location, within walking distance to many restaurants, shopping, casinos, the Condado Lagoon, and easy access to attractions in Old San Juan.  Please know the water at Condado Beach is not always safe for swimming due to strong currents (depending on the weather conditions).  For those that love lounging, listening to the sound of the waves, and look for a central location for nightlife, restaurants, and a little shopping, Condado Beach is a good choice. 

+ Condado Beach, San Juan, Puerto Rico

La Posita – Loiza, Puerto Rico

La Posita - Best beaches in Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of La Posita Beach

Best beach for: quiet and uncrowded on weekdays, just 30 minutes from San Juan and minutes from Isla Verde, clear water, views of waves crashing against the coral wall, surfing during winter months, food across the street and nearby, shallow water for small children, fun watching airplanes, off-street parking.

+ La Posita Beach, Loiza, Puerto Rico

Best Beaches on the East Coast of Puerto Rico

The east coast is known for the resort / hotel communities, the topography along the coast is made up of cliffs, reefs, mangroves and a few beaches good for bathing.  The best about staying on the east coast is having easy access to Puerto Rico’s offshore cays, islets and sleepy islands of Vieques & Culebra by ferry, private charter or water taxi.  Following are the best beaches on the east.

Luquillo Beach – Luquillo, PR

Luquillo Beach - Best beaches in Puerto Rico - East Coast

+ Highlights of Luquillo Beach

Best beach for landscape and views, its calm clear water, facilities, food, authentic island feel.

Balneario La Monserrate best known as “Luquillo Beach” in English & “Playa Luquillo” in Spanish… is the best Balneario (bathing beach managed by the government).  The water is calm, from the beach you can admire views of El Yunque Rainforest, along the shore, thousands of tall palm trees dancing to the breeze.  There are food kiosks steps from the beach and nearby a long strip of restaurants where you can try traditional Puerto Rican food at great prices.

+ Luquillo Beach, Luquillo, Puerto Rico

Punta Tuna Beach – Maunabo, PR

Puerto Rico Beaches - Punta Tuna Beach - Maunabo, PR

+ Highlights of Punta Tuna Beach - Maunabo

Best beach for solitudelong walk on the beach, bringing a lounge chair, and simply admiring the water and scenic views of the mountains and lighthouse perched on the cliff.  Not a beach for swimming, but the scenery is worth a trip on the east coast.

+ Playa Punta Tuna in Maunabo

Tours to Luquillo Beach

Best Beaches on the North Coast of Puerto Rico

The beaches on the north coast are quite unique, the landscape is very different than the Caribbean side.  Landscape is dramatic with cliffs along the coastline framing beach coves and creating natural wading pools and protected from the strong Atlantic surf.  The best time for swimming on these beaches safely is from late spring to early fall when the surf is calmer.  Many of the beaches along the north coast are popular for surfers during winter months.  If you are visiting during the winter and you don’t necessarily need to get in the water to swim and you’re content watching the ocean waves, listening to the ocean, beach combing and taking long walks on the beach, the beaches along the north are well worth the drive.  Visiting the following beaches are wonderful day trips to take to enhance your resort experience and get you to see a little of the island.  Following are we consider the best beaches.

You will not find the popular Mar Chiquita in Manati and Puerto Nuevo because we found them to be dirty and poorly maintained.  We will visit again to check on any possible improvements.

Beach at Dorado Beach Ritz Carlton

Dorado Beach @ Dorado Beach, A Ritz Carlton Reserve

+ Highlights of Dorado Beach - Dorado

In Dorado, you’ll find the most beautiful and pristine, beaches on the north coast. Our favorite beach is for the enjoyment of guests at one of the top luxury resorts in Puerto Rico, Dorado Beach, a Ritz Carlton Reserve.   From this location, you’ll have easy access to Old San Juan attractions, world-class natural attractions, and more beaches along the north.

+ Dorado Beach, A Ritz Carlton Reserve

Pozo de las Mujeres – Manati

Poza las Mujeres - Manati - Best beaches in Puerto Rico (North)

+ Highlights of Pozo de las Mujeres

Best beach for: clear turquoise water, snorkeling during summer months, views of waves crashing, nice and quiet during weekdays.

Pozo de las Mujeres is really pretty.  The best water conditions are from late spring until early fall, water is the most beautiful and calm during the summer months. You can visit both Playa Cueva de las Golondrinas and Pozo de las Mujeres in one morning.

+ Poza de Las Mujeres – Manati, Puerto Rico

Mar Chiquita – Manati, Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico's Best Beaches - Mar Chiquita - Manati

+ Highlights of Mar Chiquita Beach

Best beach for scenery, relaxed local island vibe, unique landscape, easy access.

Mar Chiquita is one of the most beloved beaches on the north coast by locals yet it remains nice and uncrowded during weekdays from September – mid-May.  During the summer months when the water is calm, it is a good spot for snorkeling in shallow waters.

+ Mar Chiqutita Beach – Manati, Puerto Rico

Playa Cueva Las Golondrinas, Manati

Playa Cueva Las Golondrinas Beach, Manati, Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Playa Cueva Las Golondrinas

Best beach for intimate setting, uniqueness, unspoiled beauty.

This beach is a hidden gem in the town of Manati.  The beach is framed by lush trees providing shade, and on the west side, a beautiful cave keeps the strong waves from coming in, creating a nice area for bathing on crystal clear water.  To get there, you must take a 10-minute hike, you may have it all to yourself on weekdays.  The water is prettiest from late spring to late summer when it is calmer.  During winter months, the water may be too rough for swimming, but still worth visiting to enjoy the romantic scene, sunshine, and relaxation.

+ Cueva Las Golondrinas Beach – Manati, Puerto Rico

Best Beaches on the West Coast of Puerto Rico

Playa Escalera aka Steps Beach – Rincon

Best Beaches - West Coast - Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Steps Beach - Rincon

Best beach for surfing (winter months), great snorkeling (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.  

+ Steps Beach / Tres Palmas, Rincon, Puerto Rico

Sandy Beach – Rincon, PR

Beaches in Puerto Rico - Sandy Beach

+Highlights of Sandy Beach - Rincon

Best beach for: surfing, learning how to surf, one of the best beach bars/restaurants in Puerto Rico.

Beachgoers can walk up to Tamboo Bar & Seaside Grill in Puerto Rico, winner of “Best Caribbean Beach Bar in the Caribbean 2018” and named one of the best beach bars in the world by Travel & Leisure.  There are more dining options within walking distance. There are plenty of affordable accommodations including small inns and vacation rentals on the beach and a block away. 

+ Sandy Beach in Rincon, Puerto Rico

Domes Beach, Rincon

Domes Beach - Rincon, Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Domes Beach - Rincon, PR

Domes is one of our favorite beaches for watching surfers, watching the sunset, lounging and taking a quick dip in the water.  Access is really convenient, there’s plenty of parking and nearby beachside restaurants. From Domes, you can walk to Punta Higuero Lighthouse and Spanish Wall Beach

Playa Peña Blanca – Aguadilla

Playa Peña Beach - Aguadilla, Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Peña Blanca - Aguadilla

Best beach for: snorkeling with sea turtles, beauty and unique landscape.

If you’re vacationing on the west coast of Puerto Rico during summer months, be sure to bring your snorkel gear to Playa Peña Blanca.  It is a little difficult to find, parking is limited along a narrow street, so get here during the week early morning or super early on the weekend during summer months.   Please note that there’s is no beach during winter months and the water is too rough to safely swim.

Jobos Beach – Isabela, Puerto Rico

Jobos Beach - Best Surfing Beaches in Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Jobos Beach - Isabela

Best beach for: surfing year-round, experiencing authentic casual island vibe, beachfront casual dining.

Jobos is the most popular beach in Isabela, among the top beaches for surfing all year round.  This is not your typical touristy beach, this is a beach loved by locals and residents of nearby towns who come here to have a good time.  During the surfing season, you’ll find a good mix of surfers coming from the states happily mingling with friendly locals.  This is a great beach to surf, get a tan, do a little snorkeling, and make new friends.

+ Jobos Beach – Isabela, Puerto Rico

Pozo Teodoro – Isabela, Puerto Rico

Pozo de Teodoro Beach - Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Pozo Teodoro - Isabela

Best beach for watching the waves crash, relaxing on the water, solitude (weekdays), long walks on the beach.

The beach is very wide, sand is soft and golden.  Playa Pozo Teodoro changes in size daily, at times the pool is deep and at times very shallow.  If the pool is very low, no worries, there are plenty more in Isabela.  

+ Playa Pozo Teodoro – Isabela, Puerto Rico

La Playuela aka Playa Sucia – Cabo Rojo

La Playuela / Playa Sucia - Best beaches on the west coast of Puerto Rico

+ La Playuela / Playa Sucia - Cabo Rojo

Best beach for: its scenic views, nearby eco-attractions, and eco-activities right near the beach.

A visit here is an all-day adventure with nearby attractions and natural activities that include Los Morrillos lighthouse, hiking trails, salt flats, bird sanctuary, offshore fishing, and an observation tower.

+ La Playuela Beach / Playa Sucia, Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico

Gilligan’s Island / Cayo Aurora – Guanica

Gilligan's Island - Best Puerto Rico Beaches

+Highlights of Gilligan's Island - Guanica

Best beach for its crystal clear water, calm water for swimming, floating and snorkeling with children.

Like a giant natural pool with the clearest water on the entire west and southern coast of Puerto Rico.  Lovely place to take the whole family, where even toddlers can play safely on the water and learn to snorkel.  You may kayak to the mangrove island or take a ferry over from a private restaurant.  Stay at the Copamarina Beach Resort, they offer daily trips at the guest’s convenience. 

+ Gilligan’s Island, Guanica, Puerto Rico

Best Beaches in Culebra, Puerto Rico

We’ll start off with the best beaches in Culebra, one of the islands of Puerto Rico.  Most lists for best beaches in Puerto Rico, place Flamenco Beach at the top, it truly is deserving of the number one spot.  To get there, you can book on a catamaran cruise, the easiest and carefree way of seeing Culebra, you may also take a short flight or ferry ride to Culebra.

Flamenco Beach

Flamenco Beach - Best Beaches in Puerto Rico

+ Highlights - Flamenco Beach - Culebra, PR

Best beach for landscape, scenery, water clarity and quality, and color and texture, cleanliness, facilities, family friendliness, access, lifeguard services, camping facilities, food, safety, never crowded even on the high season…simply perfect.  

+ Flamenco Beach in Culebra  ⏐  + Catamaran Cruise Tour to Flamenco

Playa Tamarindo Grande

Tamarindo Grande - Best beach in Culebra, Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Playa Tamarindo - Culebra, PR

Best beach for snorkeling with sea turtles, snorkeling with children, kayaking adventure, easy road access, gorgeous natural landscape.  

+ Playa Tamarindo, Culebra

Playa Soni / Zoni Beach

Zoni Beach - One of the most beautiful beaches in Culebra, Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Zoni Beach - Culebra Island, PR

Best beach for scenery, clarity of the water, seclusion, color tones, easy access, romance, relaxation, eco-travelers, long walks on the beach, beachcombing.

+ Zoni Beach in Culebra

Punta Soldado Beach

Punta Soldado Beach - Best beaches in Culebra Island, Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Punta Soldado Beach - Culebra

Best beach for snorkeling, scuba diving, enjoying solitude, hike with views, beachcombing.  

+ Punta Soldado, Culebra, PR

We’ll add Melones Beach for its easy access, excellent snorkeling, and best sunsets.

Best Beaches on the South Coast of Puerto Rico

Playa Pelicano / Pelican Beach – Caja de Muertos Island, Ponce

Puerto Rico

Playa Pelicano is located in Caja de Muertos, an island on the southern coast of Puerto Rico, part of the municipality of Ponce.  The allure of Pelican Beach is the feeling of being away on a secluded island, there are no hotels or food kiosks and that’s part of the magic, being on a beach untouched by development.  The water is perfect, warm, with shades of blue and green that change constantly with the rays of the sun.  Sand is soft and white.  Book a ferry ride from Ponce, you may purchase food, drinks and rent chairs and umbrellas for your comfort.  If you can pull yourself away from the beach, you for a hike to the lighthouse, there’s a great reward at the top.  + Caja de Muertos Island, Puerto Rico  ⎮ + Tours

Best Beaches in Vieques, Puerto Rico

We’ll move south to the sister island of Vieques, the best example of the Caribbean of the past.  You can spend a full week beach-hopping postcard-perfect bays with crystal clear water perfectly tinted into pretty jeweled tones of blue, green, and the clearest diamonds.  Snorkeling is fantastic for the entire family, with colorful reefs full of life just laps from the shore.  Take long walks beaches landscaped by nature alone, real Caribbean rugged beauty.  Those that know Vieques certainly have a favorite beach or two, but if you were to go, you would understand the difficult task of choosing just a few.  Just like Culebra, you must take a ferry ride from Fajardo or a 20-minute flight to Vieques from San Juan Airport, Isla Grande Airport, or a 10-minute flight from Ceiba Airport.

Bahia de la Chiva aka “Blue Beach”

Best Beaches in Vieques

+ Highlights of Playa La Chiva "Blue Beach"

Best beach for:  everything… snorkeling, relaxation, swimming in crystal clear water, seeing every shade of blue imaginable, falling in love with the Caribbean and each other all over again.  Playa La Chiva aka Blue Beach is simply amazing and just about anyone that visits Vieques puts La Chiva at the top of their list…

+ Blue Beach in Vieques

Playa Caracas aka “Red Beach”

Caracas Beach - Best beaches in Vieques Island, Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Playa Caracas aka "Red Beach"

Best beach for a perfect unique landscape, hidden caves, gorgeous shades of the blue, most accessible beach inside the natural refuge, picnic facilities (gazebos), white soft sand…perfect enough to be a filming location of Victoria’s Secret Swim 2014, need we say more?  

+ Playa Caracas – Vieques

Playa Negra aka Black Sand Beach

Black Sand Beach - Best beaches in Vieques, Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Playa Negra - Vieques, PR

Best beach for:  hiking for a romantic beach adventure… You don’t have to travel all the way to Hawaii to see black sand, Playa Negrita in Vieques features that gorgeous metallic black sand that sparkles with the sun.  You have to take a 20-minute hike to get there through a lush jungle, over a dry river bed, the beach, and romantic solitude is worth the hike.

+ Playa Negra / Black Sand Beach, Vieques, PR

Playa Navio, Vieques

Caracas Beach - Best beaches in Vieques, Puerto Rico

+ Highlights of Navio Beach - Vieques, Puerto Rico

Best beach for: seeing amazing tones of blue against bright light ivory sand.  Navio is best for its playful waves, so bring your boogie board.  One can find hidden caves framing the cove and hike up the trail to admire the views.  Navio does not get much attention on the media, but it is one of those beaches that once you get there for the first time…one word typically blurts out…wow.  

+ Navio Beach, Vieques, Puerto Rico

Map - Best Beaches in Puerto Rico

Explore more Beaches in Puerto Rico

Best Snorkeling Beaches in Puerto Rico

Best Snorkeling Beaches in Puerto Rico - Beach Guide

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