On the east coast, there are various points of interest for tourists with plenty of attractions and fun things to do. You can choose to stay at luxurious communities or comfortable budget friendly small inns.
With a car rental, and a sense of adventure, you’ll have plenty of attractions and interesting places to visit the whole family will enjoy.
Top Attractions & Places to Visit on the East Coast of Puerto Rico
El Yunque National Rainforest
We’ll start our must visit list with El Yunque National Rainforest, one of the finalists of Seven World Wonders, the only rainforest under the USA flag. Hike through lush verdant hiking trails leading to romantic waterfalls and scenic overlooks. El Yunque is reason enough to visit Puerto Rico…to have an extraordinary experience where you’ll leave completely enamored with this island. Most tours will give you a tour that takes a few hours, to really experience it, you could easily spend days exploring the hiking trails with endless hidden natural treasures.
Las Cabezas de San Juan Nature Reserve & Laguna Grande Bioluminescent Bay
Las Cabezas de San Juan is a wonderful place to observe a number of ecosystems including the magical experience of a bioluminescent bay. The nature reserve is comprised of 434 acres preserved by the Conservation Trust of Puerto Rico. The reserve is made up of mangroves, the bioluminescent bay of Laguna Grande, the historic lighthouse Faro De Las Cabezas De San Juan, a dry forest, and Playa Lirios, a beautiful rocky beach lined by a reef. At the top of the lighthouse you’ll enjoy magnificent views of the north eastern tip of Puerto Rico. Reserve at thematic tour in advance by calling the Conservation Trust at 787-722-5834 / weekends 787-860-2560.
Laguna Grande is the second brightest bioluminescent bay in Puerto Rico second to Mosquito Bay, the brightest in the world. There are various tour companies offering kayaking tours of Laguna Grande bioluminescent bay.
La Cordillera Nature Reserve
One of the treasures of the east coast is La Cordillera Nature Reserve, a group of islands, islets and cays that capture tropical dreams. You may have seen the dreamy white sand cay of Palominito island on Pirates of the Caribbean. If you love snorkeling, you’ll feel as if you’re in a gigantic natural fish tank with an abundance of colorful tropical fish. There are various charters that will take you on a great adventure. Many charters offer trips from San Juan, many include transportation to and from your hotel, just ask at the concierge desk. For visitors staying on the east coast, most charters leave from Fajardo, just a few minutes from popular resort communities.
Balneario Monserrate / “Playa Luquillo / Luquillo Beach”
Luquillo’s primary attraction and one of the best “balnearios” (public beaches) of Puerto Rico, situated on Porta Antillas (the east coast region). Balneario Monserrate has been for years a rival to Balneario of Boqueron in Cabo Rojo. Luquillo beach is loved by families for it’s facilities but be prepared to face crowds in the summers, weekends and holidays. Hundreds of palm trees, mountains of El Yunque serves as dreamy background. The beach is a crescent shape with calm waters perfect for swimming. Most visitors plan going to the El Yunque all morning and come to Luquillo beach in the afternoon.
Punta Tuna Beach, Nature Reserve & Lighthouse
An elegant lighthouse offering scenic vistas, a small museum and a quiet beach to hold hands with your loved one for a long walk, picnic and sunbathe without crowds. More about Punta Tuna Lighthouse, Nature & Beach.
Interesting Towns / Points of Interest on the East Coast of Puerto Rico
Just a short 15 minute drive from San Juan, the area of Pinones offers visitors an authentic island vibe where you can enjoy nature and good food in charming simplicity. The beaches along Piñones area are typically empty during the week, during weekends you’ll be sharing the beach with friendly local families enjoying the simple island life. Rent a bike and ride the wooden boardwalk along the Atlantic Ocean, and be sure to explore the mangrove forest. We love Las Positas de Piñones Beach, a long line of natural pools with crystal clear shallow beaches perfect for families with children. Across the street you can indulge with Puerto Rican fritters at non-tourist prices.
Vieques & Culebra – Puerto Rico’s Virgin Islands
The alluring, romantic and unique islands of Vieques & Culebra are just a short ferry ride from Fajardo. Pack your swimsuit and sunblock, get a taxi to the ferry terminal and get ready to get a taste of the Caribbean of the past. Be warned, you’ll leave Vieques and Culebra craving more. These little island are constantly placed on coveted “best beaches” lists, the beauty in Vieques and Culebra is mesmerizing.
Flamenco Beach is ranked as one of the best beaches in the world, why leave Puerto Rico when you have the opportunity to experience what makes this beach so special.
Vieques has amazing white sand beaches with crystal clear waters. The beaches on the nature reserve are the prettiest ones. We recommend you rent a scooter and go beach hopping for the day.
We know you may be tempted to stay within your resort community. We encourage you to rent a car for at least a day, and allow Puerto Rico to enchant you with it’s treasures.
Map of Top Attractions & Places to Visit on the East Coast of Puerto Rico (Porta Antillas)
More about the East Coast of Puerto Rico
Attractions in other regions of Puerto Rico
- West coast (Porta del Sol) Puerto Rico attractions
- North coast (Porta Atlantico) Puerto Rico attractions
- Top Ten Attractions in Puerto Rico
Keep Exploring Puerto Rico
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- Puerto Rico Destinations Guide
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- Puerto Rico Beaches
- Vieques Puerto Rico
- San Juan Puerto Rico
- Puerto Rico Facts