Updated: March 20, 2024


Dreaming of a Caribbean escape? Look no further than Culebra Island, a true tropical paradise off the coast of Puerto Rico.

With its postcard-worthy beaches, colorful marine life, and laid-back vibe, this dream destination promises a once-of-a-kind island escape.  However, getting to Culebra Island can be tricky, which is why many travelers opt for a Culebra Island day trip by catamaran from Fajardo.

In this guide, we have carefully curated the best boat tours from Fajardo to suit your preferences, whether you're seeking thrilling snorkeling trips or family-friendly cruises.

Read about the spectacular beaches, as well as the must-see attractions and activities that will enrich your island experience. We also provide you with insider tips and practical information to prepare your incredible Culebra adventure. 

Let’s dive in! Your Caribbean paradise awaits

Compare the Best Tours for a Culebra Island Day Trip by Catamaran from Fajardo, Puerto Rico

Discover the finest Culebra Island Day Trips by Catamaran from Fajardo in our curated selection below. Explore quick links to each tour, along with concise descriptions showcasing their, prices, unique features and inclusions.

Quick Booking Links to 4 Top-Rated Tours

Descriptions of Culebra Island Day Trip by Catamaran

Highlights

Discover the most sought-after Culebra catamaran cruise from Fajardo, offering the perfect mix of fun and snorkeling. Departing from Puerto del Rey ferry terminal, embark on a high-speed catamaran journey to Culebra. Explore the captivating underwater world at Carlos Rosario or Luis Peña underwater nature reserve while swimming or snorkeling, with provided gear for snorkeling enthusiasts.

After a buffet lunch, including tropical cocktails, juices, and local beer, head to relax at the pristine beaches of Flamenco or Culebrita, weather permitting. With a group size of 40 to 60 passengers and an attentive crew, this day trip promises a fun-filled island escape.

Inclusions

  • Lunch
  • Beverages (Sodas, juices, water and local beer)
  • Use of Snorkeling equipment

Tour Details

  • Departs from: Puerto Del Rey Marina, Fajardo 00735, Puerto Rico (Be there 45 minutes prior to departure time for check-in)
  • Starting Time: 09:00 AM
  • Duration: approx. 6 hours
  • Participants: max. 60 travelers

Highlights

Perfect for active travelers and families with kids over 6, this 6-hour catamaran cruise from Fajardo to Culebra Island invites you to uncover the stunning Culebrita Beach. In case of unfavorable weather, the cruise adapts, offering the possibility to explore Icacos island or Vieques' pristine beaches.

Onboard, relish complimentary lunch, alcoholic drinks, and snacks. Delight in the choice to sunbathe on the deck or partake in exhilarating water sport activities like paddleboarding, kayaking, and beach games, ideal for an unforgettable family getaway. Keep in mind that this is not a snorkeling tour and snorkeling gear is not provided.

Inclusions

  • Snacks
  • Alcoholic beverages and soda
  • Beach games, kayak & paddle board, and other games
  • Lunch

Tour Details

  • Departs from: Safe Harbor Puerto Del Rey, 4900 State Rd 3 Km. 51.4, Fajardo, 00738, Puerto Rico
  • Starting Time: 09:30 AM
  • Duration: approx. 6 hours
  • Participants: max. 60 participants

Highlights

Looking for a fun snorkeling adventure? Look no further! Join this top-rated snorkeling trip and discover the mesmerizing underwater world off Culebra Island with one snorkeling stop and about an hour of beach time.

This six-hour excursion departs at 9 AM from Fajardo, but be sure to check in by 8 AM for the adventure. Limited alcoholic beverages and food are included, ensuring a pleasant experience without being a booze cruise. 

Inclusions

  • Alcoholic Beverages
  • Lunch
  • Bottled water
  • Snacks
  • Use of Snorkeling equipment
  • Transportation (if option selected)

Tour Details

  • Departs from: Safe Harbor Puerto Del Rey, 4900 State Rd 3 Km. 51.4, Fajardo, 00738, Puerto Rico
  • Starting Time: 09:00 AM
  • Duration: approx. 6 hours
  • Participants: max. 40 participants
  • Good to know: Kids under 5 and pregnant women cannot participate.

Highlights

This 6.5-hour Culebra Boat Trip unfolds aboard a state-of-the-art Newton power boat, ensuring both comfort and safety throughout your journey. Delight in a sumptuous buffet lunch, sip on refreshing tropical drinks, and stay refreshed with unlimited water, all included in your package.

The highlight of this excursion is the opportunity to explore Culebra's hidden gems – its pristine reefs and secluded islands. Dive into the underwater wonderland with complimentary snorkeling gear. Discover enchanting spots like Luis Peña, Carlos Rosario, Melones, and Punta Soldado, which are off the beaten track and promise unforgettable memories.

Inclusions

  • Boat trip
  • Captain
  • Buffet lunch (cold cut meats, assorted cheeses, gourmet tuna, chicken, bean, and pasta salads)
  • Fresh seasonal fruit and vegetable trays
  • Unlimited water, soda, and fruit juices
  • Tropical rum beverages (served during and after lunch)
  • Snorkelling gear
  • Floats

Tour Details

  • Departs from: Sail Getaways office, located at the dock at Villa Marina
  • Starting Time: 8:30 AM
  • Duration: approx. 6.5 hours
  • Good to know: Children under 6 years, pregnant women, people with back problems or mobility impairments are not suitable for this excursion.

Where is Culebra Island?

Culebra Island, also known as Isla de Culebra in Spanish, is located about 27 km (17 miles) east of the Puerto Rican mainlandThe picture-perfect island, often nicknamed "Snake Island", is geographically part of the Spanish Virgin Islands.

Culebra Island Day Trip in Catamaran in Puerto Rico

Why is Culebra Island famous?

Culebra Island's natural beauty, biodiversity, and serene ambiance have earned it a reputation as a hidden paradise in the Caribbean. One of the primary reasons for its fame is the fact that the island boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in the worldwith Flamenco Beach taking the spotlight for its crystal-clear waters and soft, white sand.

The island's waters are teeming with marine life and spectacular coral reefs, attracting snorkelers and scuba divers eager to discover the magical underwater world. Contrary to other Caribbean islands, Culebra Island stands out with its tranquil and relaxed atmosphere, making it an ideal retreat for those seeking relaxation. 

Due to its allure, Culebra Island is one of the most popular day trip destinations from mainland Puerto Rico. Whether you want to unwind at one of the Caribbean's most unspoiled spots or embark on a thrilling underwater adventure to swim with sea turtles and other undersea creatures, Culebra Island offers something special for every visitor.

How to get to Culebra Island, Puerto Rico?

Culebra Island is located close to the city of Fajardo, which is situated on the eastern side of Puerto Rico. Fajardo, about 20 miles (32 kilometers) away, is the nearest city to Culebra Island and serves as one of the main departure points for boats and ferries traveling there.

To get to Culebra Island, Puerto Rico, you have the following options:

  • By Guided Tour: Guided Boat and Catamaran Tours are the most convenient way to reach Culebra Island. These day trips usually depart from Puerto Del Rey Marina in Fajardo. The tours typically have well-planned itineraries, and the advantage of taking you to some hidden bays and secluded spots. This way you can get the most out of your island escape.
  • By Ferry: Another option is to take a ferry from Fajardo to Culebra Island. The ferry service operates regularly between Fajardo and CulebraRound-trip ferry tickets are $4.50 per person. The passenger ferry ride lasts around 45 minutes, the cargo ferry ride lasts about 90 minutes. 
  • By Plane: It is also possible to travel by a small plane to Culebra. While this is a pricier option, the duration is only 10 minutes. There are small regional airlines that offer flights from San Juan's Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport to the Benjamin Rivera Noriega Airport in Culebra.

What to Expect from a Culebra Island Day Trip by Catamaran from Fajardo?

Culebra Island Day Trip in Catamaran in Puerto Rico 2

Embarking on a day trip to Culebra Island promises an exciting and memorable experience. Here's what you can look forward to during the tour:

Departure & Location: The boat tour starts in the morning, around 9 or 9:30 AM from Puerto Del Rey Marina in Fajardo, and lasts approximately 6 hours. Note that pickup and drop-off from Fajardo are usually not included, so arrange your own transportation accordingly. Be sure to arrive 45 to 60 minutes before departure, as many tour operators require this.

Typical Itinerary: Your Culebra tour begins with a high-speed catamaran ride from Fajardo, taking about an hour to reach the island. While some tours include snorkeling stops to explore coral reefs and marine life, others focus on beach visits and swimming. Popular beach stops include Flamenco Beach on Culebra's main island or smaller destinations like Culebrita or Cayo Luis Pena. The captain may decide the beach stop based on weather conditions. Deli lunch is usually included and served at midday.

Gear & Equipment: If your tour includes snorkeling, you'll be provided with high-quality snorkel equipment and a brief instruction. However, remember to confirm with the operator in advance, as not all trips offer snorkeling stops.

Suitability: Keep in mind that most tours do not dock at a pier, so knowing how to swim is crucial to reach the shore. For the same reason, the cruises are not wheelchair accessible. Pregnant travelers, children aged 4 years or younger, individuals with back problems or recent surgeries, and those with heart problems or other serious medical conditions are not recommended to participate.

What are the Best Beaches In Culebra?

Culebra is renowned for its stunning beaches, offering a variety of options from white sandy shores to coral beaches and more. 

Here are our 4 top beaches you shouldn’t miss on Culebra Island:

1. Flamenco Beach

Culebra Island Day Trip Cruise Flamenco Beach Puerto Rico

Undoubtedly Culebra's gem, Flamenco Beach is surrounded by lush hills and boasts white, soft sand along with crystal-clear turquoise waters. It's not just one of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean but on the entire planet. The horseshoe-shaped beach provides a lifeguard and almost waveless water, making it an ideal choice for families with kids.

You'll find facilitieseateries, and rentals available for your convenience. If you're up for some adventure after sunbathing, snorkeling, or drinking piña coladas, take a hike to the two old M4 Sherman navy tanks - a unique backdrop for exceptional photos!

2. Culebrita Island

Culebra Island Day Trip in Catamaran in Puerto Rico

For a more secluded and unspoiled experience, head to Culebrita Island. Since the small island is uninhabited, the only way to reach it is by boat or guided tour, ensuring a wonderful sense of seclusion. Enjoy swimming in the gorgeous blue waters and explore the ruins of an old lighthouse.

3. Tamarindo Beach

Culebra Island Day Trip by Catamaran Puerto Rico

This beach is known for its calm waters, making it the perfect spot for snorkeling and kayaking. On top of that, you can enjoy fantastic views of the Cayo Luis Peña. The sand has a unique texture, mixed with pebbles and coral pieces. While there are no facilities on Tamarindo Beach, the natural beauty and marine life with sea turtles and manta rays makes it a must-visit spot.

Remember to come prepared with your snorkeling gear and food for a delightful day of exploration and relaxation!

4. Zoni Beach

Culebra Island Day Trip by Catamaran Puerto Rico Zoni Beach

Situated on the eastern side of Culebra Island, Zoni Beach offers a serene and less crowded alternative to Flamenco and Tamarindo Beach. The sandy shore has some rocky parts, which is why water shoes are advantageous here. Keep in mind that there are no facilities on Zoni Beach, so be sure to bring water, snacks, and your snorkel gear for an enjoyable visit!

What Else to Do and See on Culebra Island?

Culebra Island awaits with a plethora of exhilirating activities and attractions for visitors to enjoy. Below are some of the top things to do and see on Culebra Island:

1. Snorkeling & Scuba Diving

Diving in Puerto Rico

Explore the magical underwater world of Culebra with its calm, crystal-clear waters and abundant marine life. The island is a top spot for snorkeling and scuba diving, with popular snorkeling spots like the warm waters of the Luis Pena Marine Reserve, Flamenco Beach, and Tamarindo Beach. Discover seagrass beds frequented by green turtles, stingrays, and admire impressive coral formations, colorful reefs, and schools of tropical fish.

2. Visit the Culebra National Wildlife Refuge

Culebra National Wildlife Refuge

This wildlife refuge is home to a diverse ecosystem, offering visitors wonderful opportunities to connect with nature. It comprises beaches, lagoons, forests, coral reefs, mangroves, and more. From hiking to wildlife encounters, it's the perfect place to immerse yourself in the island's natural beauty.

3. Explore the Museum of History

Learn about the history of this beautiful island by visiting Culebra's Historical Museum "El Polvorín." See historical exhibits and photos documenting the development of the island, from the Taíno, the indigenous people of the Caribbean, to the more recent military occupation by the U.S. Navy. Admission is free, but donations are welcome.

4. Go Kayaking

Kayaking in Culebra Island in Puerto Rico

Another top activity on Culebra Island is kayaking. Paddle through the mangroves of Ensenada Honda or explore the coastline of Culebra’s Luis Peña Reserve for a more intimate encounter with the island's natural beauty. You can either opt for a Kayak tour like the ones from the popular operator Aquafari Culebra or rent a kayak on-site.

5. Hiking

Culebra's diverse terrain offers numerous hiking trails, including those leading to the Culebra National Wildlife Refuge mentioned above. Trek through the lush landscape, keep an eye out for various bird species, and enjoy glimpses of local flora and fauna.

6. Relax and Unwind

Culebra Island in Puerto Rico

Embrace the laid-back island vibe of Culebra. Enjoy leisurely walks along the beaches, savor local cuisine at the island's restaurants, and take in the unique Caribbean atmosphere to unwind away from all the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

When is the Best Time for a Culebra Island Day Trip?

Culebra Island can be visited all-year around, however the ideal time to plan a day trip to Culebra Island by catamaran from Fajardo is during the period from late November to March. This time of the year offers the best weather conditions, with dry and mild temperatures. 

For a less crowded experience and the chance to see sea turtles, consider planning your trip between mid-April and June. 

7 Insider Tips for your Culebra Island Day Trip 

Enhance your Culebra Island day trip by catamaran from Fajardo with these helpful insider tips:

  1. Swimming Skills: Knowing how to swim is essential, since beach arrivals might involve swimming to shore. For the same reason, pack lightly and bring a waterproof case for your phone, cash, and important documentation.
  2. Avoid the Weekends: If you prefer a more peaceful and less crowded experience, we recommend planning your visit to Culebra Island during the week. As Culebra is a popular weekend destination for both locals and travelers, weekdays offer a better chance to savor the island's tranquility and beauty without the hustle and bustle.
  3. Pack Essentials: Don't forget your beach towel, bathing suit, hat, underwater camera, and reef-safe sunscreen. It's also a good idea to bring some toilet paper, as not all restrooms on the island may provide it.
  4. Bring Cash: It's best to carry some cash for tipping, purchasing souvenirs, or covering expenses during your stay on Culebra Island. Not all establishments on the island accept cards, and there's only one ATM available.
  5. Be flexible: Keep in mind that a visit to a specific island mentioned in the tour description may vary, as this is weather-dependent. The captain will find the best alternatives if the sea is too rough to go to Culebra Island. Stay open to exploring other fantastic destinations in the surroundings!
  6. Expect Power Outages: For those staying longer on Culebra Island, be prepared for the possibility of power outages. But don't worry, most places continue operating as usual even during these interruptions.
  7. Respect the Environment: Be mindful of Culebra island's environment and wildlife. Dispose of trash responsibly, respect local customs, and have an enjoyable trip!

FAQ - Culebra Island Day Trip by Catamaran from Fajardo

How big is Culebra Island?

Culebra Island is approximately 28.5 square kilometers (11 square miles) in size.

Where to stay on Culebra Island?

Although there are no resorts or big hotels, the sleepy island offers a range of places to stay on Culebra Island.The most popular options are to book a private rental or stay in one of the guesthouses or small hotels on the island, like El Navegante de Culebra in the center of Culebra. Another option is to go camping in one of the island's campgrounds.

Can you do a Day Trip to Culebra Island?

Yes, you can do a day trip to Culebra. Boat tours depart from both Fajardo and San Juan, making it convenient for travelers to explore this tropical paradise in a single day.

How long is the Catamaran Ride from Fajardo to Culebra?

The catamaran ride from Fajardo to Culebra takes about 55 minutes.

Can you do a Day Trip from San Juan to Culebra?

Yes, you can embark on a day trip from San Juan to Culebra. Discover a recommended guided tour here: Full-Day Culebra and Flamenco Beach Snorkel Tour from San Juan

Which is the best Catamaran to Culebra Island?

We have handpicked the 4 best Catamaran cruises to Culebra Island from Fajardo, based on extensive research and authentic reviews from participants who have experienced this tour firsthand. Find them in the section: "Compare the Best Tours for a Culebra Island Day Trip by Catamaran from Fajardo?"

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