30 Best Things To Do In Vieques, Puerto Rico (2024)

Vieques is a small island off the east coast of Puerto Rico’s main island.

There are many things to do in Vieques, such as visiting its bioluminescent bay.

I’ve lived in Puerto Rico for 14 years, and Vieques is one of my favorite places to visit during the summer.

In this article, I will cover the 30 best things to do in Vieques:


1. Bioluminescent Bay tour

Vieques is home to Mosquito Bay, which is a bioluminescent bay.

image of two people kayaking with bioluminescence around them
Kayaking through the glowing waters of Mosquito Bay is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

I recommend taking a night kayak tour in Vieques. 

This is a magical experience, and truly a once in a lifetime activity.

Below is a video of the glowing bio bay in Vieques:

Learn more by reading our article about Puerto Rico’s bioluminescent bays.


2. Relax at Sun Bay Beach

Sun Bay Beach is the best option if you’re looking for a beach with complete amenities.

This beach offers showers, tables, and lifeguards.

image of Sun Bay beach
Sun Bay is accessible from town and has everything you need for the perfect beach day.

Located in the south of Vieques, it’s famous for its beautiful crystal waters, soft golden sand, and accessible facilities.

Check out Sun Bay Beach in the following video:

Learn more in our article 17 Best Beaches In Vieques.


3. Visit Culebra

Visiting Culebra is a fun day trip if you stay in Vieques for more than a few days. 

Because Vieques is close to Culebra, you can take a short trip to paradise island and return to your rental room by the end of the day.

image of flamenco beach
Flamenco Beach entrance in Culebra, Puerto Rico.

Culebra is home to the award-winning beach — Flamenco Beach

Below is a video of what a trip to Culebra looks like on a ferry:

Learn more about Culebra by reading our article Culebra, Puerto Rico – All You Need To Know


4. Crab Island Rum Distillery

Crab Island Rum Distillery is a famous distillery located in Vieques. 

This is the first handcrafted distillery on Vieques, producing rum with coffee and orange infusions.

image of Crab Island Rum Distillery
Crab Island Rum is the first distillery on Vieques.

You can also take tours at the distillery, sample the rum, and purchase it.

Learn more in our article 13 Best Tours and Excursions In Vieques.


5. Go scuba diving

Vieques has excellent diving conditions all year. 

Visibility is incredible, down to 100 feet at some dive sites.

Transport yourself to an underwater world to explore with turtles, dolphins, manatees, and spotted eagle rays as you discover colorful gardens of hard and soft coral and sea plants.

Below is a video of what to expect when diving in Vieques:

If you are curious about other dive sites across Puerto Rico, check out our article 30 Best Dive Sites In Puerto Rico, where Vieques made the list a few times.


6. Snorkel with the sea turtles

Mosquito Pier and Punta Arenas are fabulous places to go snorkeling with sea turtles.

image of a girl snorkeling with a sea turtle
Sea turtles regularly make an appearance at Mosquito Pier and Punta Arenas.

I hope you’ve brought your snorkeling gear because you’ll want to be snorkeling for hours!

Some companies let you rent equipment and even take you on a snorkeling tour to enjoy the complete experience.

Below is a video of someone snorkeling with turtles at Mosquito Pier:

To read more about snorkeling in Puerto Rico, read our article 25 Best Snorkel Spots In Puerto Rico.


7. Go horseback riding

On Vieques, you can find both horses and beautiful landscapes.

That is why horseback riding is one of the most popular experiences in Vieques. 

image of a group of people riding horses in Vieques
Horseback riding is the ideal way to see the island’s secluded beaches.

You must not pass up the opportunity to visit Playa Negra, where the cliffs, black sand, and crashing waves enhance your horseback riding experience.

Below is a video of what it’s like to go horseback riding in Vieques:


8. Hike to Playa Negra

Playa Negra (Black Sand Beach) is a unique beach with black sand in Vieques.

It offers a breathtaking landscape and is considered one of the most beautiful beaches in Vieques.

image of the Black Sand Beach
Black Sand Beach has magnetic black sand from volcanic activity.

You’ll need to take a small 10-20 minute hike to reach this beach, but it is worth every minute.

Check out Playa Negra in the following video:


9. Beach hop

Why stick to one beach when you can visit them all?

image of a beach in Vieques
From Sun Bay to Playa Chiva, Vieques has a beach for everyone.

Vieques has beaches perfect for any mood, from social to solitary.

This activity is perfect for anyone staying in Vieques for a few days and has a rented Jeep. You can stay at each beach for 30 minutes and then off to the next adventure.

You can separate the beach experience by going to all the social and easy-to-access beaches one day and the solitary hiking beaches another day.


10. Eat delicious local food

Delicious cuisine is found everywhere in Vieques. 

After exploring the beautiful beaches and horseback riding, you can find multiple restaurants to grab a bite and relax. 

image of Vieques' local food
Explore the local cuisine in Vieques.

From restaurants in town to food trucks around the island, there’s a variety to offer wherever you go. 


11. Visit Playa La Chiva

Playa La Chiva is recognized worldwide among the best beaches in the Caribbean.

This beach is perfect for long walks and snorkeling over the beautiful clear water and is packed with fantastic scenery. 

image of Playa La Chiva
Park at spots #8-#10 for the best snorkeling at La Chiva.

This beach is part of the Vieques National Wildlife Refuge and has amenities like pavilions, trash bins, and restrooms. 

Below is a video showing Playa La Chiva in Vieques:


12. Stroll across Mosquito Pier

Mosquito Pier is a mile-long pier built in 1941 by the US Navy.

image of Mosquito Pier
Mosquito Pier is a great place for snorkeling at watching the sunset.

It’s perfect for taking a relaxing stroll, overlooking the beach, taking stunning pictures, or simply hanging out and enjoying the sunset.

Check out Mosquito Pier in the following video:


13. Tour the National Wildlife Refuge

The Vieques National Wildlife Refuge is home to a number of beaches, a bay, mangroves, and hiking trails.

The Wildlife Refuge covers 60% of the total land in Vieques.

image of National Wildlife Refuge
The Vieques National Wildlife Refuge has amazing beaches that you could potentially have all to yourself.

There are several activities you can do, such as bird watching, kayaking, paddle boarding, horseback riding, and beach hopping.


14. Check out El Fortín De Conde Mirasol

This tiny fort, the last one the Spaniards constructed in North America, is positioned on a hill with a stunning view of Isabel Segunda. 

A museum of art and history is located there, along with exhibits on the sugarcane industry, historical documents, and artifacts from the Caribbean.

image of Fortín De Conde Mirasol
Fortín De Conde Mirasol is located on the northern coast of Vieques.

A significant exhibition is also available about the struggle of the people of Vieques against the US Navy, which ruled the island for many years. 

This area’s interior has been closed down, but you are still able to visit the grounds and take in an amazing view.

Below is a video showing Fortín De Conde Mirasol:


15. Puerto Ferro Lighthouse

Hiking to the Puerto Ferro Lighthouse ruins is one of the top things to do in Vieques.

Abandoned after the earthquake in 1925, it’s perfect for enjoying a beautiful landscape.

image of Ferro Lighthouse
Puerto Ferro Lighthouse ruins are one of the many abandoned areas in Vieques you are able to explore.

This is the one for hikers who love a good view and explore rich artifact history.

Check out Puerto Ferro Lighthouse in the following video:


16. Explore the Sugar Mill Ruins

Before the US Military took over, sugar cane was a significant industry on Vieques. 

Although the industry has long since disappeared, you can find remains scattered across the island, where history lovers can explore them to learn more about them.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Brayan Rodriguez (@bratista)

Photo Credit: @bratista

It’s best to visit the sugar mill ruins with the Vieques Historical Trust tour for easier access.

Below is a video of someone exploring the Sugar Mill Ruins:


17. Check out Sea Glass Beach

Sea Glass Beach is a small beach near the town of Isabel II.

image of Sea Glass Beach
Sea Glass Beach is ideal for collectors and beachcombers.

This beach is a favorite among collectors and crafters since the beach is full of beautiful crystals.

You can park at Isabel II town center and walk to the beach to get there.

This beach is best for admiring the Isabel II harbor, collecting treasures, and even seeing mainland Puerto Rico. Not so much of a great place to swim or chill. 

Below is a video showing Sea Glass Beach:


18. Private sailing charter

Chartering a sailboat is an intimate way to explore the islands and experience all the Vieques offer.

You’ll have the opportunity to stop at secluded beaches, swim in hidden coves, and snorkel in some of the most beautiful Caribbean reefs.

image of a Private Sailing Charter in Vieques
Chartering a boat is the best way to see Vieques and it’s more secluded areas.

You can even hop to Culebra for the day and then return to Vieques at the end of the day.


19. Visit Cayo de Tierra

Many cays surround Vieques that the Vieques Wildlife Refuge protects. 

Cayo de Tierra is a famous cay for visiting and is excellent for swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving.

image of Cayo de Tierra
Make sure to remember to drink water and wear stable shoes or sneakers for your hike.

If the tides are low, you can even hike over to the land.


20. Enjoy the sunset 

You can never go wrong with watching a beautiful sunset. 

image of a sunset in El Malecón
If you want to have access to restaurants and entertainment after, watch the sunset from El Malecón.

Experiencing it in Vieques on vacation is even better. A popular spot to enjoy the sunset is El Malecón.

Mosquito Pier is also a fabulous place to watch the sunset. 

If you want to enjoy it at the beach, Esperanza Beach is a charming place to take your beach chair and your favorite drink and relax as the sun goes down.

Below is an aerial video of Vieques during sunset hours:


21. Check out Isabel Segunda

image of Isabel Segunda
Isabel Segunda is where you can access grocery stores and souvenir shops.

Isabel II is the town center you’ll arrive at when you hop off the ferry.

This big town center has shops, restaurants, bakeries, and even art galleries for you to check out!

You must visit the souvenir shops to take home with you and even check out the local snacks to enjoy on your way back to the mainland.


22. Socialize at Punta Arenas Beach

Punta Arenas is a social beach favored among the Vieques locals.

It’s a popular stop for boats and catamarans to stop at when coming from the mainland.

image of Punta Arenas Beach
Four-wheel drive is required to visit Punta Arenas Beach.

This beach is an excellent spot for seeing turtles and snorkeling. 

Getting there in the morning is recommended to avoid the sandflies that usually appear in the afternoon.

Below is a video demonstrating Punta Arenas Beach:


23. Drive around the island

Driving around Vieques is the best way to see the island and explore its offers.

You can rent a jeep or scooter for the day.

This allows you to go at your own pace and explore without worrying about the taxi van schedules. 

You can easily stop at any beach or viewpoint that catches your eye. It’s also worth noting that since Vieques is bigger than Culebra, there’s much more land to explore.

Below is a video of riding around Vieques on a motorbike:


24. Go bike riding 

If you’re active, biking around Vieques is one of the best ways to get around.

Although Vieques is bigger than Culebra, it’s still relatively small, so it’s easy to bike from one beach to another.

image of group of horse
Groups of horses run free around the island of Vieques.

Plus, because there are so many horses roaming around, you’ll be able to quickly stop and admire them as you adventure through the island.

It’s a great way to get around without worrying about renting a car or taking a taxi van.

Below is a video of biking around Vieques:


25. Fish with the locals

You’ll be overjoyed to learn that Vieques is a fantastic place to go fishing.

One of the best things about fishing in Vieques is that, in contrast to other popular destinations, there is usually less competition for available fishing spots. 

image of 2 guys fishing in Vieques
Fishing on Vieques can have less competition than other areas due to its remote location.

Fish like bonefish and tarpon thrive in the reefs and shallow waters. Even marlins can be found in the open ocean.

Below is a video of a fishing experience in Vieques:


26. Hop on a jet ski

Jet-skiing in Vieques is a fantastic experience.

With crystal clear waters and breathtaking views, it’s a great way to enjoy a nice beach day. 

You can ride along the coastline and get an up-close view of the cliffs. There are plenty of jet skiing tours for you to sign up for in Vieques. 

It’s an experience you should try at least once.

Check out the jet ski experience in Vieques in the following video:


27. Check out the museums & art galleries

Visiting the small museums & art galleries in Vieques is a great way to take a break from the sun. 

Traveling becomes more meaningful when you take the time to learn about the history and culture of your destination.

image of Punta Mulas Lighthouse
Punta Mulas Lighthouse located in Isabel Segunda.

Punta Mulas is a small museum that covers the island, and marine history found when visiting the Puerto Ferro lighthouse.

Oro Gallery is an art gallery that ​​ provides a gallery for local artists to showcase their work.


28. Stand-up paddle boarding 

The beautiful crystal clear waters of Vieques makes it a perfect activity for trying out stand-up paddle boarding.

While paddling, standing up gives you an excellent view of marine life. 

image of a girl paddle boarding in Vieques
Stand-up paddle boarding in Vieques gives you the chance to workout and take in the sights.

Even though stand-up paddling needs some balance, you can be up and paddling quickly.


29. Stargaze 

You’ve enjoyed the beach, hiked all day, and probably did horseback riding. Now it’s time to relax and gaze up into the night sky during the moonless period. 

You’ll discover another reason to adore this enchanted Caribbean island. The beauty of the sparkling starry sky will let your imagination soar.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by VICTOR RAMOS • Photographer (@vramos.s)

Photo Credit: @vramos.s


30. Treat yourself to fine dining

Along with having the world’s best bioluminescent bay and other breathtaking beaches, Vieques is also home to a number of eateries with varied and delectable cuisines.

There are a handful of fine-dining restaurants for you to enjoy. 

image of El Quenepo
El Quenepo is located right on the main street in Esperanza.

On the seafront of Esperanza town is the elegant restaurant El Quenepo, which offers sophisticated food and lovely decor.

You can also visit Coquí Fire Café, a restaurant that combines Creole and Mexican flavors in its food.

You can find this restaurant close to the ferry dock in Isabel II.


FAQ section

Is there anything to do in Vieques?

There is plenty to do in Vieques! Visit the bioluminescent bay at night for a once in a lifetime experience or rent a car and go beach hopping.

What to do in Vieques for a day?

Visit the bio bay. You can also ride horseback, visit the beach, hike the mountains and trails and even visit the historical museum.


Final thoughts

Vieques has lots to do and is a must-visit destination in Puerto Rico.

My two favorite things to do in Vieques are the bioluminescent bay and Playa Negra (Black Sand Beach). 

Check out our article about how to get to Vieques to learn about the different travel options. 

30 Best Things To Do In Vieques, Puerto Rico (2024)
Article by

Miguel Concepcion

Writer at PuertoRico.com. I’ve lived in Puerto Rico for 14 years and have experienced every inch of this stunning island. Growing up in Puerto Rico has helped me truly learn about the rich culture and extensive history this island has to offer. I share my local knowledge in all of the articles that I write.

About the author

Find the best things to do
by interest