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Chartering in the Spanish Virgin Islands and Eastern Puerto Rico

If you have sailed the USVIs and BVIs, need a new challenge, and/or miss quiet, unspoiled anchorages then the Spanish Virgin Islands are for you.  The SVIs are a group of islands and cays just east of the main island of Puerto Rico. Vieques and Culebra are the largest, and there are also Culebrita, Palominos, Icacos, Lobos, Isla Ramos, and countless other cays and smaller islands.

Vieques boasts fine-sand beaches, a sizable system of coral reefs, and Puerto Mosquito, one of the world’s last bioluminescent bays. Culebra has Playa Flamenco, one of the Caribbean’s most spectacular beaches, where you can spot as many as 85 kinds of birds that nest around the island.

Even though the SVIs lie only 15 to 20 miles south of St. Thomas and British Virgin Islands, they are far less crowded, mainly due to the lack of marinas and other marine services.  They also lack the commercialism of the U.S. Virgin Islands and the crowds of charter boats that compete for moorings in the British Virgin Islands. Think of the SVIs as “the BVIs 35 years ago”—during the week, you’re likely to have the anchorage all to yourself.

There are daily flights directly from all major U.S. cities/airports to Puerto Rico or you can Sail down from St. Thomas to Puerto Rico and the SVIs.  Here is a sample seven or eight day itinerary out of Fajardo, along with some useful links to help you get started:

Day One
From Fajardo, set sail to Cayo Icacos and spend your first afternoon snorkeling in crystal clear waters. Sail over to Palominos Island to spend the night and have dinner onboard.

Day Two
Spend the morning swimming in Palominitos then sail over to Bahia Sardinas in Culebra. Take your dinghy over to Mamacitas or The Dinghy Dock and have dinner by the water’s edge.

Day Three
Sail over to Rosario beach, grab a mooring then swim and enjoy the pristine reefs that line up the beach. After lunch sail over to Dakity to spend the night on an atoll-like bay.

Day Four
Explore Dakity’s outer reef then sail over to Culebrita to enjoy one of the best beaches in the world! Spend the night at Las Pelas, one of the favorite bays amongst local boaters.

Day Five
Sail over to Isabel Segunda on Vieques. Explore the town and have dinner on one of the many local restaurants. Enjoy spectacular views of Puerto Rico’s mountains at sunset.

Day Six
Sail over to Punta Arenas, pick up a mooring and enjoy yet another quiet, unspoiled beach all for you…

Day Seven
Sail from Punta Arenas through Medio Mundo back to Marina Puerto del Rey on a screaming reach. Once at the marina you can rent a car and explore El Yunque Rain Forest or drive to Old San Juan to enjoy Puerto Rico’s nightlife.

Crewed Sailing Charters

Marinas in Fajardo:

Additional Resources:

www.enchanted-isle.com

Capt. Tony Miró is a life-long sailor, photographer and web developer who currently lives in Puerto Rico with his family.  He sails aboard his Hunter 376 ¡Nada Mas! And maintains a web site called www.sailboatspecs.com

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