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Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

Barrington, Rhode...
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Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

For the longest time my wife and I had our sites on seven days in Vieques, a couple of days in Old Juan, and an overnight in El Yunque rainforest. We moved our vacation to early November so we can time the new moon for Bioluminescence Bay in Vieques. So the first four days are the best conditions. Now I would like to head west to see the caverns, Ricon and the drive the western and southern coastal road! Having a hard time fiquring out a game plan. Are we trying to do too much?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

NYC
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1. Re: Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

I do not think it is too much

when you go to Camuy, make sure you are up early enough to get there early. the park closes to new visitors when the limit has been reached

San Juan, Puerto...
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2. Re: Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

11 days is plenty of time to do all that.

Fly into Vieques from SJ, stay 5 days there, fly to Ceiba, rent car, stay in El Yunque area for 2 days, then SJ the remainder of the time. OSJ should be done over 2days, then take day trips to the west. Or stay west if you like (Rincon, Aguadilla, Arecibo). If you did not get plane tickets yet, you could fly back home from Aguadilla.

Caguas, Puerto Rico
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3. Re: Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

I agree with nytoparis about 5 days/4 night in Vieques. But just if you are a true beach lover. Otherwise you could get bored by day 4. This should be done on your first portion when you arrive to Puerto Rico.

About staying 2 days in El Yunque area will depend on your preferences. I would just drive to El Yunque on my way back from Vieques, or go there as a day trip when staying in San Juan. If your focus is just to visit El Yunque, then you would not need to stay nearby because it is just a 35-45 min drive from San Juan. This way you minimize changing hotels and all the packing unpacking.

Now if you can not get a return flight out of Aguadilla, to simplify driving and hotel changing, after your return from Vieques drive west towards Rincon or Cabo Rojo for your second stay. For this area 3 days should be fine. You can visit Ponce, Rincon, Aguadilla, Arecibo in just day trips. As mentioned on another post, stop at the Arecibo caves on your drive to/from your next stay.

Then on the last portion stay in San Juan for about 3-4 days. I would cut back one day from Vieques. Old San Juan can take One full day, El Yunque another full day, third day for Condado/beach/OSJ time, and the fourth day is departure time.

Barrington, Rhode...
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4. Re: Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

Thanks for valuable information. This is what I came up with so far. I'm open for any input.

Nov 2 SJU to Vieques. Nov 2,3,4,5 in Vieques.

Nov 5 fly to Cieba rent a car stay in El Yunque.

Nov 7leave El Yunqe and drive to Ricon

Ricon area 7,8,9,10. Drive to Old San Juan 10.

Old San Juan 10, 11, leave late 12.

Worcester...
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5. Re: Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

I think your itinerary will work well! Ours has changed from year to year, but when we include Vieques it goes something like this: Fly directly to VQS, 6 -7 nights there, fly to Ceiba or Isla Grande a pick up rental car, 1-2 nights in Condado, (with a trip to El Junque at some point, either on the way from Ceiba to San Juan or a day trip), drive out west and stay in Aguadilla for 5-6 nights, fly out of Aguadilla or drive back to SJU. I think you will have a great time, and not be too rushed or spread thin. As a first timer, I think you have spread out the time well to be able to see the variety Puerto Rico has to offer! Enjoy!

Caguas, Puerto Rico
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6. Re: Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

I think that staying for two days in El Yunque area is a lot. This is fairly a nice day trip, when staying in San Juan, plus you can minimize your hotel changing strategy (less packing unpacking).

So I would use the extra day in San Juan, trust me you'll need it. You will be basically driving late from Rincon on the 10th (you won't want to miss the sunset, and a nice "coco loco" at Villa Cofresi), so this put's you at night for dinner in OSJ, that will leave about 1.5 days for OSJ. Which is doable, but really with an extra day you will be able to sink in to another era.

Barrington, Rhode...
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7. Re: Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

Thanks everyone! Sorry it took me so long to get back. Your great advice is very much appreciated. Since I posted last I have done allot of research and unfortunately we have lost a day. So I have been struggling a bit, but your advice has helped a great deal.

I'm looking a what to sacrifice, and I can't get away from getting out seeing Puerto Rico and staying in Ricon area. So now I'm looking at..

Nov 2-6 San Juan and Fly to Vieques. New moon is there next day for Bio Bay. Stay at Hector's by the Sea. Chill and visit beaches, and some snorkeling.

Nov 6- 9 fly into Ceiba drive to Ricon. Rent a car. Enjoy drive and stop at places. Maybe stay at a location before arriving at Ricon. At Ricon area stay at Lemontree Cottages. Chill in Ricon area watch surfing.

Nov 9-11. Drive to San Juan visit Camuy on the way. Stay in Old San Juan. Visit sites and go home.

Looks like I might sacrifice rain forest and try to enjoy local area traveling out west.

Could use advice on where to sto or stay on way.

Thank you again

Worcester...
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8. Re: Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

I would recommend stopping at the Rain Forest from Ceiba to Rincon, verses skipping it. If you want to stay over somewhere, the Dorado area would be a go resting point. Not factoring in traffic, the rain forest to Rincon is about three hours. In my opinion, I wouldn't even bother staying a night somewhere. I would go to the rainforest and leave by 3 or so (so you are on the other side of San Juan by 4) and head to Rincon, stopping for dinner somewhere on the way. You could also make a day trip from San Juan on the 10th to see the rain forest. But I would try to fit it in either way.

Otherwise I think your itinerary will work. Just checking the days of the Caves...the park is not open seven days a week.

Edited: 03 August 2013, 18:43
Barrington, Rhode...
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9. Re: Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

thank you Amailia. Leave by 3 so we miss traffic driving around San Juan?

Worcester...
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10. Re: Need help with Puerto Rico 11 day Itinerary in November.

Yes. The traffic heading west, once you go through San Jan towards Rincon, will be like leaving Boston trying to get to the Cape on a Friday at 5. I would leave the bottom of the rain forest by 3 at the latest, so you are on the other side of San Juan before 4. When I say the bottom of the rain forest....I like to remind people that the turn off from the high-way to the rain forest, all the way up to the top point one car drive their car, can easily be a half hour. Depending on driving comfort on the rain forest road, traffic, rain, and how high up you go, I would just take note how long(time wise) you drive up, and then give yourself that when heading down. But for time, from the 'bottom' of the rain forest to the other side of San Juan should be less than an hour(assuming no traffic), and than slightly over two hours to Rincon. Arecibo would an easy place to have dinner, from there, you are about and hour, give or take, from Rincon

Edited: 03 August 2013, 23:09