You know the delicious sense of eating a bite of dessert that’s both hot and cold?…Depending on where you sit on the pool, you’ll enjoy bathwater, but when the waves are strong enough to bring a lot of water at once, you’ll feel the water cooling off, then quickly getting warmer again….invigorating your senses. Punta Sardina is a spectacular scenic location, just a short drive from the center town of Isabela, a town on the west coast of Puerto Rico. This point features a natural shallow pool for families with babies and toddlers, a grown-up beach for adults, and an unending spectacular wave-crashing performance that steals the show every day of the year.
The rocky outcrop blocks the strongest waves as they crash against the rocks, and spill over to the other side of the outcrop. This cooling water reclines into pools and magical little waterfalls. If you enjoy photography, be prepared to take some sensational pictures.
This movement creates one of the most pleasing natural pools around the island, known as Playa Poza Sardineras, part of Playa Sardinera.
Poza Sardineras is one of the spots that make Isabela stand out in Puerto Rico. Local families in the know, with small children, head to this beach for a relaxing fun beach experience with traditional Puerto Rican picadera (fritters) across the beach. This shallow pool is just perfect with crystal clear water. You can place your chair right at the edge of the water, watch schools of tiny fish play, get the perfect tan, and take in the entrancing scene to put every care in your mind away. Depending on the tide and strength of the Atlantic, the pool may be smaller or bigger. The following photo was taken when the pool was very small, shallow, and calm. If you’re lucky enough to get here on a weekday, you just may have the little beach all to yourself. Even on a busy holiday weekend or summer day, this beach does not feel crowded, since there are plenty of beaches nearby in Isabela to enjoy. The beach is wide with plenty of room for sunbathers.
There’s a passage at the beach used by fishermen, so at times be prepared to make a way for their small colorful boats. Children love jumping off the ledge of the passage, just try it out before your kids do. It can suddenly get deep depending on the tide and season.
Next to Poza Sardinera is Playa Sardinera. Right at the west point during winter months, surfers like to ride the waves. The open waters right next to Poza Sardinera can get rough where it’s open to the waters, keep an eye on your children at all times, there are no lifeguards on this beach.
Facilities, Food & Beach SafetyPoza Sardinera, Isabela, Puerto Rico
Facilities & Food at Poza Sardineras
- Food – When you get hungry, just head over to the kiosks for some traditional fried food such as pastelillos / empanadillas (fried dough stuffed with locally caught seafood, beef, pizza, or chicken, alcapurrias (smashed yucca or plantain stuffed with beef), and more.
- There are no lifeguards at Poza Sardinera.
- There are no bathroom facilities at the beach, but across the street, there are various restaurants and kiosks with restrooms.
- Parking – free off-street parking and a few on the sand by the road.
If you are tempted to walk on the rock outcrop, it must be done with extreme care and children should never be allowed to walk there, especially unattended. Summer is the safest time to stand on the rocks, from fall through late spring, the waves are higher and stronger and lives have been lost. Never, ever stand on the edge. Stay back as much as possible if you insist on standing there. The rocky platform may look innocent, but it can be slippery, and a strong wave can surprise you, pull you in the open water, cause a fall on the sharp rocks, and cause serious harm/death.
The best place to enjoy the show is from the beach. There are no lifeguards on this beach, you swim at your own risk.