Pandemic Travel:Puerto Rico: Part 2: Culebra Day 1
Welcome back, how are you? Today we will pickup where we left off last time, our first full day after arriving and we're on our way to Ceiba, to catch the ferry to the island of Culebra. But first, a little back story on this whole situation.
About a week before our trip was about to begin, Puerto Rico announced another strict lockdown to further reduce Covid spread. I got a call from Puerto Rico, and turned out it was the AirBnB host for our place on Culebra. She first wanted to be sure we bought tickets to and from the island, as others have been stuck there by not being able to get a seat on the boat day of. I told her we did. She then told me, she wasn't sure if the ferry would be allowing non-locals onto the ferry to Culebra. Yikes. That throws a wrench into our plans, as we'd be missing out on a great location to visit, but also we now have to adjust our plans and find a new place to stay. The morning after we arrived we called the ferry and asked if we were allowed on and they confirmed we were. Amazing! Now, let's pickup where we left off, on a jungle road through the mountains.
We'd been driving these mountain roads for some time and we wanted to be sure to have enough time to make the ferry and solve any issues if any arise, so we headed for Ceiba. After about a 45 minute drive, we're approaching the terminal for the ferry. We found a parking lot, packed up what we needed and left the extra in the car, and grabbed the shuttle to the terminal.
Once there, we got our tickets scanned and were shuffled into a socially distanced waiting area for the ferry to be ready. After waiting here for a bit, we got the notice to board.
Once on the boat, we had our hands sprayed with sanitizer and made sure our masks were on. We then shuffled around, with mainly outside seating only and also certain seats marked off for social distancing.
I of course chose to go to the top of the boat for the journey to get the best views of the Puerto Rico as well as Vieques on our way. Once we got a good view of Vieques I could notice it was raining only one part of the island. Very cool!
After a little bit longer, Puerto Rico was getting smaller and smaller behind us.
After about 40 minutes or so, we were pretty much there, soon to be pulling into the bay at Culebra.
And once we pulled into the bay and the ferry port, we were greeted by this welcoming man:
After we docked, we lined up to disembark and head to our AirBnB.
We got off the boat into what felt like the downtown area, a couple shops and people trying to rent you a car immediately. We decided we'd walk, as it's a pretty small island, but that will change soon enough. We begin walking up the street towards our place, and getting our first glimpses of Culebra.
After maybe a 20 minute walk, we reached our place of the night, got our keys and set up shop in this pink little bungalow on the water.
After we got settled, we started trying to plan everything out, and as we discussed, it looked more like having a golf cart would make sense to get around efficiently. Turns out there's 2 main rental companies, Jerry and Carlos. We didn't really want to pay for one, but it made sense, plus, how much can a golf cart be for 24 hours, right?
$60? For 24 hours? Really? Jerry and Carlos? Well, then. That's pretty steep, especially for a golf cart with no lock box. We tried to negotiate with Carlos, and he offered us a Jeep for 80$. More than we wanted to spend, but the best option given out circumstances, and looking back, a great decision that really allowed us to enjoy the island that we wouldn't have been able to without it, even with a golf cart.
After we did that, we took a drive around the island, and Carlos told us a "secret" spot to go for sunset with the best view. So we headed there a bit before dusk, and after some wrong turns and driving up some crazy steep roads, we made it there, almost, the final driveway was all loose stone and we were peeling out, so we just parked and walked it. And wow, what a view.
We spent some time just watching the sunset, I tried to fly my drone but we were too close to the airport, so I couldn't take off, total bummer. Soon after, another Jeep pulls up, an older man gets out with a bottle of wine in hand. Enter, Covid Bill. He didn't actually have the virus, but soon after we met and started chatting, he pretended to sneeze near us, and said his daughter who is a doctor would kill him for that joke. We ended up watching the sunset and having some great chats about life, politics religion and more. Couldn't think of a better way to spend an evening. Here's a few more sunset photos.
After that, we said goodbye to our new friend Covid Bill, and headed to the other side of the island for some star gazing.
We get to this beach, and we're a little nervous, mostly me, because there is a curfew and we're pushing the time a little bit at this point. We get out onto the beach and, oh man, what a view.
Just stars as far as you can see!
We don't want to stay too long anyway, because we have an early morning the next day, so I take a few more shots and then we begin to pack up and head back.
After a short ride, we're back at our bungalow. I take a walk out back to the water and what a view! I decided to grab my camera and grab a few shots before getting ready for bed.
After snapping a few shots, listening to the waves flow back and forth, I decided to take one little walk under the red street lamps of Culebra before going to bed.
Well, that's it for this installment! Next we'll cover our full day in Culebra, starting with sunrise on the beach, to snorkeling and other adventures before catching our ferry back to mainland Puerto Rico. I hope you enjoyed this installment of this beautiful island so far, and if you have, be sure to catch the next installment, because it gets even more incredible!
In the meantime, feel free to see more of my work at www.SeanGold.com or instagram.com/SeanGoldPhotos.
[//]:# (!pinmapple 18.310452 lat -65.303832 long Pandemic Travel:Puerto Rico: Part 2: Culebra Day 1 d3scr)