Yet another early morning for Susie (sadly I’m beginning to see a pattern here), and this time it’s Traci’s turn. When I emerge, most everyone is awake. We eat breakfast, and start packing with hopes that we’ll be able to leave Playa Santa by 10. The plan is to head to Balneario de Boqueròn, one of the premier beaches in PR, just so we can say we’ve seen it. From there we’re driving to Maricao where there is a hospital with a plaque dedicated to my great grandfather. And then we continue on to Luquillo, where our next condo is for the remainder of the trip.
When Susie wakes from her nap, we load everything into the Van and we’re off. Again, on our way to Boqueròn, we get lost. We kept driving passed this little side street we were supposed to turn on. Once found the turn, we make it to Boqueròn Beach with little more trouble. The beach isn’t as amazing as it looked in the books, but it’s still pretty. There is ample space for picnicking, and the water is very calm and peaceful. Very tranquil. There are Mango trees all around, but unfortunately their fruit is weeks away from being ready (we did try). After an hour on the beach, we get back in the van and begin heading to Maricao. We stop for lunch a what was a bar & grille outside of Cabo Rojo. It was a hole in the wall, with some of the best food. Now back in the car we go to find Maricao.
Maricao is a small coffee town in the mountains of PR. Our family used to have a coffee farm up there, and as I mentioned before, my grandfather was a doctor at the local hospital. In addition, he served as Mayor of the town for a while. After an hour of windy curvy roads up and down the sides of the mountains, we stop for a break at the Parador La Hacienda Juanita, a fancy hotel in the mountains. They have an amazing view, and the hotel is very quiet, but it’s not much of a luxury resort. The rooms are small and simple, and there isn’t much to do here.
We hop back in the van and are in Maricao shortly. We are able to find the hospital, and the plaque is still there. We take photos with it, and then hop back in the car. We had intended to find the old farm, but Jose didn’t know how to give us directions to it, and we’re not even sure it hasn’t been abandoned.
Not much after leaving town we stop at a tower. From this tower, on a good day, you can see 2 of the coasts of the island. It’s not the best of days, so we can’t see well, but you can make out some of the coast line. We only take a few minutes here before we hop back in the car and get going again.
The ride down the mountain only takes 30 minutes this time, and we’re soon on the highway towards San Juan. We stop at one point for gas, and when we get off we hear music and notice these huge speakers on the street corner. As you listen closely, the music is actually a promotion for Senator Barack Obama. See, they were here campaigning cause they were preparing for the upcoming primary this weekend. So a small rally was occurring on the side of the road.
Anyways, we make it to Luquillo, and our hotel in Playa Azul, sometime after 9. We’re all a little cranky and tired, but glad to be there. Tomorrow we’ll explore the beach, but for tonight let’s just go to bed.