While snorkeling Vieques, visitors can swim among parrot fish, angel fish, rays, docile nurse sharks and even sea turtles. Located just six miles east of Puerto Rico, the island of Vieques sits in the Caribbean Sea, making it a great holiday destination. Surrounded by coral and limestone rock formations, Vieques snorkeling spots offer many species of sea life. While the island experiences its best weather during the winter season, the prime time to visit is from mid-April to June, just after the busy winter season, but before the rainy summer. Known for spectacular, secluded beaches which boast clear water, Vieques offers several great snorkeling spots.
Best Snorkeling in Vieques, Puerto Rico
Blue Beach/Playa Chiva
When snorkeling Vieques, Playa Chiva is a must-visit destination. There are many different entrances to the beach, but the best spots are the #7 and #15 marked entrances. This beach is large, but shallow, making it a great place for families or novices to begin snorkeling. However, the best snorkeling is at the end of the road where you can gain access to a small island named La Chiva. This island is surrounded by schools of fish and is home to a long reef that stretches along the beach.
Green Beach/Punta Arenas
Located along the western tip of Vieques, Punta Arenas offers a wide array of sea life. Though the trip to the beach is long and the road is in rough shape, you can begin to snorkel right off the sandy beach. This site offers a variety of fish, stingrays and even turtles, but it is important to be aware of the current at all times.
Mosquito Pier & Playa Rompeolas
Mosquito Pier offers opportunities for snorkelers of all expertise levels. If conditions are right, a small beach on the left side of the pier will offer flat, clear water with hordes of starfish, nestled in sea grass, just feet from shore. Those snorkeling Vieques with more advanced skill, can venture to the end of the pier where steps lead down into the water. Among the pilings and rocks, there are star fish, schools of fish and occasionally even sea turtles. Be sure to stay along the left side of the Pier, where the waters are protected from the strong surf. Mosquito Pier is also a popular spot for scuba diving in Vieques due to a high density of sea life.
Where is Vieques island
Vieques is accessible by plane or ferry from the main island of Puerto Rico. International visitors will fly into San Juan International Airport (SJU), and from there can either take a 25 minute flight to Vieques, or ride in a taxi to another local airport that offers shorter, cheaper flights to the island, such as the Isla Grande Airport (SIG) or Ceiba (RVR). A ferry from Fajardo to Vieques can also be taken for those looking to enjoy a scenic boat ride.
While not considered to be world-class, snorkeling Vieques is certainly enjoyable and worth checking out while in the area. Those visiting Vieques snorkeling spots will enjoy an average water temperature around +28 C, as well as crystal clear water and un-spoiled beaches. There are several snorkeling tours offered around the island, but you can always bring your own gear and hit the water right away!