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Home > Interests & Activities > Beaches > Family Beaches
Family fun in Puerto Rico begins at the beach; and while we have a beach to suit just about any type of tourist, many of our best ones cater especially to families.
What makes a beach ideal for you and your loved ones? Start with full facilities, including lifeguards, restrooms, changing areas and public parking. Next, add postcard-perfect stretches of powdery sand and a tropical backdrop of coconut palms or rolling hills. Finish off with a warm caress of Caribbean sunshine, and you have the perfect recipe for a family beach.
We call our full-service public beaches balnearios. When you bring the family to Puerto Rico, look for these ones in particular.
Located just minutes from Old San Juan on Avenida Muñoz Rivera in the neighborhood of Puerta de Tierra, El Escambrón is a favorite for locals and tourists alike. This large beach faces the Atlantic Ocean and offers views of the El Morro fort in the distance.
El Escambrón Restaurant
When you’re feeling hungry, head to El Escambrón Beach Club for authentic Puerto Rican food like mofongo.
A Blue Flag Beach
El Escambrón is one of seven beaches in Puerto Rico to be listed on the eco-conscious Blue Flag Programme.
Ruins from an Old City
Walk east along this beach and you’ll come to the remains of a small fortification that once helped guard San Juan during the colonial era.
Located on Vieques Island less than five minutes from the quaint town of Esperanza, Sun Bay (the locals call it Sombé) is a gorgeous, deep crescent of sand facing a tiny key in the middle of the Caribbean Sea. Coconut palms line the beachfront, and you’ll often find gentle horses grazing in the meadows leading up to the beach.
Don’t Miss Navío and Media Luna
Follow the road past Sun Bay beach and you’ll soon come to two secluded gems: Navío Beach and Media Luna Beach. Navío has a special secret; a hidden cave that can be reached at low tide.
Because of its facilities and easy access, Sun Bay is easily the island’s most popular beach. If you want a more secluded environment, there are many other beaches on Vieques Island to explore.
The Puerto Ferro Man
Located near Sun Bay is one of Vieques’ more unusual attractions: the grave of the Puerto Ferro Man. This is the site of a 4,000-year-old burial site.
Balneario de Carolina
A beautiful beach just east of San Juan along Route 187 in the neighboring city of Carolina, this balneario has lovely views of Isla Verde, red-roofed picnic pavilions, and plenty of sand to play in; Carolina Beach is actually a string of three long beaches.
Bathe & Fly!
Along with Isla Verde Beach, Balneario de Carolina is the closest beach to San Juan International Airport … so you can bathe in the morning and fly in the afternoon without needing to return to your hotel.
A Blue Flag Beach
Balneario de Carolina is one of seven beaches in Puerto Rico to be recognized by the Blue Flag Programme, a designation awarded for clean, well-maintained water quality and environmentally friendly practices.
For a true slice of local life, continue east from San Juan along Route 187 to Piñones, where you’ll find miles of golden beaches and a string of delicious beachfront eateries and kiosks.
Balneario La Monserrate
Better known as Luquillo Beach, Balneario La Monserrate is one of the most popular beaches in all of Puerto Rico. Partly this is because of the size of the beach; partly it’s the lovely setting, with palm trees and the rain forest serving as the background; and partly it’s the calm, crystal-clear waters.
No trip to Luquillo Beach would be complete without visiting the nearby Luquillo Kiosks, a cluster of more than 60 roadside eateries serving everything from gourmet burgers to Puerto Rican snacks.
A Bit of History
Notice how the palm trees at Luquillo Beach line up in neat rows? This area used to be a plantation.
Camping is a popular pastime at Luquillo Beach. You must have a permit to camp, and the cost is $10 per night.
It’s not technically a balneario, but Flamenco Beach might just be the most beautiful beach in Puerto Rico, and one of the top beaches in the world. With lifeguard towers, numerous kiosks selling food, clothing and beach accessories, and easy access from the town of Dewey, it’s the crown jewel of Culebra Island.
The Flamenco Tanks
Two of Flamenco’s most unusual and interesting features are its two tropically painted tanks—vivid reminders of the naval occupation of Culebra Island.
In the parking lot of Flamenco Beach you’ll notice a narrow trail behind a gate. Follow the trail to lovely, secluded Carlos Rosario Beach, one of the best snorkeling spots on the island.
Flamenco has one of the best campgrounds in Puerto Rico, with ample camping space, shower facilities and the beach just steps away. In fact, many visitors spend months camped by its shores.
Balneario de Boquerón
A perennial favorite with Puerto Rican families, you’ll find this mile-long stretch of beach in Cabo Rojo buzzing on summer weekends. The beach is easily accessible off Route 101, and its loyal fans love its smooth-as-glass water and excellent facilities, which include lifeguards, picnic tables, gazebos, handicap facilities, restrooms and a playground for the kids.
The tide tends to bring in a healthy number of shells at Boquerón Beach, and kids can enjoy trolling for unspoiled gems in the sand.
Not far from the sand, you’ll usually find kiosks and roadside stalls selling clams, oysters and other seafood snacks. These are a Cabo Rojo tradition worth sampling while you’re here.
A Blue Flag Beach
Like a few other balnearios on this list, Boquerón is one of seven beaches in Puerto Rico to be listed on the eco-conscious Blue Flag Programme. This means a clean, well-maintained environment that the whole family can enjoy.
Balneario Seven Seas
Named for its enchanting shades of blue waters, Seven Seas Beach is considered Fajardo’s best. Located at the northeast tip of the island, it offers gazebos, lifeguards, security guards, wheelchair access and camping (with permits, which can be purchased for a nominal fee).
Las Cabezas de San Juan
Seven Seas Beach is located next to the Cabezas de San Juan Nature Reserve, which offers tours including a visit to a mangrove forest and lighthouse.
The Fajardo Biobay
Spend the day at Seven Seas, and then enjoy a nighttime kayak ride in the nearby Fajardo Biobay for a chance to experience the glow-in-the-dark natural wonder of one of only six bioluminescent bays in the world.
The calm waters and coral reef just off shore make for fun snorkeling with excellent visibility.