This Secret Island Is Home To Some Of The Caribbean's Prettiest Beaches With No Crowds

If you're planning a vacation to Puerto Rico, chances are that San Juan, the island's capital, is on your radar. The city has several gorgeous beaches, including Condado Beach. However, due to safety reasons, this is one popular tourist spot in the Caribbean you want to avoid swimming in. Per Tripadvisor, other beaches in the area, including Balneario El Escambrón, are known to get crowded. If you want to escape the throngs of tourists in San Juan, head to Culebra. The island is only a short distance away from San Juan.


Formerly used by the U.S. Navy, Culebra is an underrated Caribbean destination famed for having some of the best beaches in Puerto Rico. This includes Flamenco Beach (pictured), known for its beauty and onsite amenities. There's also Playa Tamarindo, which is a sought-after snorkeling site. However, if you prefer a beach that is not as frequented by tourists, Culebra's Zoni Beach is a must-visit. Think white sand, breathtaking views, and nothing else.

Various reviewers on Tripadvisor say that Zoni Beach has few visitors and hailed its secluded ambiance. However, they also note that you should bring your own food and necessities. There are no facilities available, including bathrooms. With all that said, Culebra has other beaches and activities that are waiting to be explored and experienced.


What is there do in Culebra, Puerto Rico?

Culebra is a tropical paradise with serene waters. Beach-hopping is a must. However, you should not leave the island without participating in aquatic activities. Snorkel With Locals offers snorkeling tours in Melones Beach and Playa Tamarindo, allowing visitors to discover Culebra's thriving ecosystem. At the time of this publication, the snorkel tour in Melones is only an hour and 30 minutes and costs $75. On the other hand, the tour in Tamarindo is three hours and costs $145. This excursion allows you to swim with sea turtles (as seen in the TikTok above) and is, thus, longer and pricier. Note that no experience is needed.


Additionally, Snorkel With Locals has a kayak snorkeling tour in Melones Beach. As its name suggests, this excursion combines both activities. The two-hour tour is $105 at the time of this publication. If you do not want to participate in a tour but still want to snorkel at Culebra's breathtaking beaches, there are shops like Culebra Divers, where you can rent gear for reasonable prices. Other recommended snorkeling spots in Culebra include Flamenco Beach, Zoni Beach, and Carlos Rosario Beach.

Lastly, those interested in Culebra's unique history can visit Museo Histórico de Culebra "El Polvorín." The museum is free but only open Friday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Getting to Culebra, Puerto Rico

Due to its proximity to San Juan, Culebra is an easy weekend getaway in Puerto Rico. Visitors can fly from Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (SJU) to Culebra's Benjamin Rivera Noriega Airport (CPX). The flight is less than 40 minutes but can be costly. For example, at the time of this publication, you can find flights from SJU to CPX for a little more than $200. Alternatively, you can take an hour-long ferry to Culebra from Ceiba, which is also located on the main island.


Ceiba is about an hour from San Juan, and a one-way ferry ticket to Culebra is less than $5. When you arrive in Culebra, you have different transportation options. You can take taxis around Culebra or rent a car or golf cart. Jerry's Jeep Rental is one provider that offers the latter two options.

As for where to stay in Culebra, Club Seabourne is highly rated on Tripadvisor and offers larger villas and rooms for visitors. Highlights include a daily complimentary breakfast and a pool surrounded by greenery. You can make a reservation for Club Seabourne online. Rates go for more than $200 a night. Additionally, there are several rentals available in Culebra on Airbnb. One guest favorite is a three-bedroom secluded villa. At the time of this publication, prices start at $450 a night.