Playa La Esperanza, Manatí

Away from the maddening crowds

Summer heat means get to the beach. Unfortunately thousands of other people have the same plan in mind. You have 2 options- enjoy the crowd as part of the fun or channel the Bear Grylls in you and strike out to find a whole new beach for yourself (and just a few other people probably). If the second option is more of your mission, fear not, this Island has plenty of off-the-beaten path beaches that can only be described as magical. Here we’ll give you two options to wet your feet and put a smile on your summer. 

Playa Escondida – Corredor del Este Nature Reserve, Fajardo (East)

Getting to this beach is part of the adventure. You’ll start at an already amazing beach called Seven Seas on the northeastern point of Fajardo, a beautiful crescent of a beach in its own right with a paid parking lot. But fear not it can only get better.

Start walking West on the beach until you come to a small path that snakes into the brush. This will be your yellow brick road to Playa Escondida. Start your walk through the mangrove forest and you’ll soon discover why a small wheeled cart with a cooler, water and lightweight beach chairs will be your most precious possession. Follow this otherworldly path for about 35-40 minutes (there will be a fork, keep left) and suddenly you will emerge on your own private nirvana of cooling-off bliss.

Playa Escondida beach offers shallow, protected water you can float on or even put your chair in for a leisurely soak. Walk further West along the beach and the beauty keeps coming. Inland El Yunque rainforest towers and just offshore a protecting reef just waits to be explored with a mask and snorkel. Plan on spending a couple of hours here to make sure you get the full benefits of your beach therapy session. Water is a must for this excursion.

Playa Escondida, Fajardo

Playa Esperanza – Manatí (North)

Esperanza means hope, as in we hope you get to this beach or beaches because they are just plain beautiful. This option is more car friendly because you can literally park within a stone’s throw of the sand. To start punch in Hacienda La Esperanza, Manatí on your favorite guiding map and head west making sure you do everything the magical know-it-all little voice on your phone tells you. It’s a very scenic route that includes a long road lined with ceiba trees that leads to Hacienda La Esperanza, a marvelously restored sugar cane plantation and nature study organization that offers a whole host of eco-tourism activities for all ages. More than worthy of a visit.

But, to the beach we must go so continue on Calle La Esperanza until you hit the beach. Although these beaches are on the north coast with direct exposure to the Atlantic’s large waves, a series of petrified sand dunes not only provide protection but also create delightful little pools to lounge in. (Most large waves occur in winter, in summer the only waves that will affect the North coast are produced by tropical storms). There are a series of three different beaches you can choose from once you reach the coast, each with their own slice of paradise awaiting you. As with other hidden beaches, bring your stuff and take your stuff back with you and if you find stuff other people forgot about, pick it up too. 

We hope you enjoy your beach adventure and check back soon, we might unveil other hidden gems. 

Natural, protected pools – Playa Esperanza

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