One of the oldest protected areas in the Western Hemisphere, this pristine expanse looks much as it did when Christopher ... More
One of the oldest protected areas in the Western Hemisphere, this pristine expanse looks much as it did when Christopher Columbus visited Puerto Rico 500 years ago. Start at the Portal Tropical Forest Center, and then follow a hiking trail to explore the natural splendors of this ecosystem, including an immense array of flora and fauna. If you are lucky, you may get a glimpse of the elusive blue, red and green Puerto Rican Parrot. The new Forest Adventure Tours program offers visitors to El Yunque the opportunity to hike along a trail with a guide.
My husband and I visited Puerto Rico and El Yunque in August of 2007. It was a wonderful experience, and I highly recommend visiting this gorgeous rainforest. It is very convenient to tour; there are clear paths for you to follow. The waterfalls are gorgeous. Don't forget to take in the great views from the look out towers.
Make sure to visit El Yunque on your trip!!
My daughter and I recently toured the El Yunque rain forest. It was one of the most beautiful places I've ever seen. It was filled with flora, trees, plants, and wonderful sounds (especially of the native coqui frog, which is a little more than an inch long but sounds like it's huge! They make the sound of their name--coo-kee, coo-kee!)
We had an excellent tour guide who drove us to the mountains and made stops on the way up to tell us about the medicinal plants and trees and the animals. One of the highlights of the trip was an observation tower. We climbed the 96 steps and had a beautiful view of the rain forest from the top.
(The guide told us that on a clear day, you could see all the way to St. Thomas from the tower!)After about 3 stops, the guide set us off on the 45 minute (about 3 miles) hike to La Nina Waterfall. (He didn't go with us, tho. My daughter and I tried to stay close to other hikers.)
The hike was not for the faint of heart or the weak of knees. The paths were narrow, sometimes slippery, sometimes steep with lots of steps. And because of all the flora, it was kind of dark. The scenery was beautiful but I was too busy trying not to fall! We met a lot of people coming back past us saying they didn't make it to the waterfall! But one lady said if we could make it, it was worth it. And she was right!
It seemed like the water was falling from the sky! And some of the hikers got in the water and swam and played under the fall. (However the bottom of the stream or pond was covered with uneven rocks.And the water was freezing!) I choose to just sit on a rock and wet my feet. (I should mention that I'm 56.) At a prescribed time, we started the return trek to meet the tour bus.
The hike back was no joke! It was 45 minutes or 3 miles too. The paths were not as rocky but they were incredibly steep! And there weren't as many hand rails so we were walking right by very deep and scary valleys! So we really walked carefully.
When we finally made it out, I was tired but I knew that I had just had one of the most memorable experiences of my life. My advice is if you have good knees, and no serious medical problems and some stamina, I say go for it. You won't regret it. (But for older walkers like me, have your Ben-Gay ready
: - )
What could be more perfect than a day in one of the most beautiful places on earth? Sloooooow down, relax, put your cellphone on silent. Take a simple lunch with you & feel what it is like when surrounded by God's creations. The feel of the misty clouds as they pass around you at the top of the mountain. The sound of the coqui (very special little frogs) chirping. If you are lucky you can find wild raspberries along the road. Take deep breaths of cool fresh air and be greatful just being there! Pick up an inexpensive guide book if you need to - but really open yourself up to the peace that abounds there. This is a VERY special place.
Wow this place is so beautiful. Climbing up the stairs into the tower and seeing the rain forest for miles is just a most spectacular experience. Each time you go you see a little more. Climbing underneath a waterfall and taking pictures was great. Walking through the dense foliage was breath taking. The humidity is high and thick so don't forget to bring lots of water. Next time we go we plan to swim in the water falls. We didn't get a chance to last time and I here the experience is great.
the only thing that is needed, on the trails, are a few more directional signs. it rained three times, and it was not light rain!! We got soaked and the higher you travel the cooler it gets, we did a lot of walking up to mt britton, first it was on a narrow, stone, path- can get slippery and at the end of the stone path was a small tar road like trail that took you to mt britton. On the way back down the tar trail, we missed the small rock trail that took us to where we parked our cars!! We walked for about another 1 hr and had to turn back around because nothing looked familiar!! Thank god we found our car!! I don't know how we did it but we did!! this is an incredible forest!! words can not describe and pictures don't do it any justice!!! Even though we got lost , there were 9 of us 4 were kids, i have so much respect for this place and i would return in a heart beat!! bring a pair of good sneakers or comfty boots for all the walking, bring a poncho for the rain, bring a light sweater for the cool temps, and bring some food and water , last but not least try to remember your surroundings just in case if you get lost. Even better go with a guide, this place is no joke!
This was a great place to see when I went to Puerto Rico. I saw lots of wildlife on the long trails. I was amazed at how big the snails were. This is a must see place for anyone that comes to Puerto Rico. Its about a hour-and-a-half drive from San Juan, and its worth it!
El Yunque is beautiful! We were on our honeymoon. It was pouring rain when we went (not suprising cause it is a rainforest) and we still had fun. We hiked down to a waterfall it was a blast. Although I don't recommend hiking in flip flops ouch slippery rocks! Every inch of us was soaking wet ahhhh good times!
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