Las Cabezas de San Juan Nature Preserve is located on Farjado, the most northeastern point of Puerto Rico. Named a natural reserve for more than 20 years, Las Cabezas de San Juan is 316 acres of protected land. It features forests, coconut trees, a mangrove swamp and a coral reef. One of the most famous attractions in the Preserve is its lighthouse, which is situated upon craggy cliffs and has been operational since 1882. Only 2 miles of the park has been blazed with trails, leaving most of it off-limits to visitors. In order to visit the park, you must schedule a tour, which includes an optional kayaking trip.
Facts For Visitors
All visitors must schedule a tour in advance before visiting the Preserve. The cost is $8 for adults and $5 for children and senior citizens. Three tours are offered each day, Wednesday through Sunday. The Preserve is not open on Monday and Tuesday. Each tour lasts 2 hours but only the 2 p.m. tour is in English. For reservations call (787)722-5882 ext 240, (787) 722-5834, (787) 860-2562 or (787) 860-2560.
It is recommended you arrive 30 minutes before the tour so you can get past security and have some time to enjoy the visitor center. Your tour guide will point out the different ecosystems of the park and you may get to see some wildlife such as iguanas and crabs. Part of the tour includes a tour of the mangrove forest. It is recommended visitors bring water since temperatures get quite high in the forest. You will also have some time to explore some of the Preserve's rocky beaches on the tour.
Built by the Spanish in 1882, the lighthouse of Cabezas de San Juan is part of the tour. This neo-classical building is now managed by the Conservation Trust of Puerto Rico. It also houses the Preserve's Nature Center.
David Harris is a writer living in Portland, Ore. He currently is the editor-in-chief of the online magazine Spectrum Culture. He holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from Sarah Lawrence College.