Vieques. East of San Juan, Puerto Rico, lays a small island call Vieques. If you want to get away and enjoy the Caribbean as it ought to be, this is the place.
You may know Vieques because the US Navy had an artillery base there. In the early nineties the base was given to the National Parks Service and the navy left. As the Park Service has little money for new projects, the land is mostly undeveloped. The beaches have no facilities. Some are quite long and so beautifully natural. When my friend Mary and I were here there were no people on some beaches.
The roads are very treacherous with very large potholes filled with water. The driver can not know how deep the holes are!! A jeep is essential to navigate the Parks.
The quiet towns are just enough to provide small restaurants and supplies. The south side of the island is very quaint. A board walk protects the town of Esperanza from the sea. Along the road are small shops and restaurants. On the weekend instant shops go up with food and souvenirs.
The island has one very unique inhabitant: wild horses! They are in small bands walking the narrow roads and grazing the fields. Drivers need to be very careful on the back roads, as the horses are everywhere.
A must see is the bioluminescent bay. It is one of the best examples of this phenomenon in the world and will absolutely astound. On a new moon night the stars are as bright as the algae in the bay.
There are variety of hotels on the island from very modern upscale resort
like Hix Island House and a W hotel to small modest places, like Hacienda Tamarindo. And the restaurants are also a wide variety from very local Caribbean food to purchase along the road to full service menus.
All in all, Vieques is a great place for a quiet getaway.