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El Yunque National Forrest Tours

Looking for a soul-refreshing escape or a thrilling adventure? If you are, then this Puerto Rico rainforest should be on top of your to-do list. There is no shortage of enchanting things to do in El Yunque National Forest for every type of traveler.

This beautiful rainforest is the perfect destination for individuals who want to escape into the complete wilderness. During your tour of El Yunque National Forest, Puerto Rico, you can swim in the natural pools, hike one of the many trails, and discover the Caribbean’s magnificent wildlife.

Let’s explore the famous El Yunque National Rainforest.

El Yunque National Forest Things to Do

El Yunque National Forest is every nature lover’s dream destination. Known as the “white lands” by the indigenous Taíno community, this natural treasure is the only tropical rainforest on US territory.

El Yunque is home to a diverse ecosystem, thanks to ample rainfall and fertile soils. Here’s a quick look at a few of the things to discover and exciting things to do in El Yunque National Forest.

Hiking in El Yunque National Forest

a group of people on a hike in El Yunque wearing safety helmets and posing for the picture

This tropical rainforest is every hiker’s delight due to its natural pools and the stunning El Yunque National Forest trails. Embarking on a hike in the Puerto Rican rainforest allows you to get up close to the best El Yunque National Forest places to visit.

La Coca Trail El Yunque

The La Coca Trail is among the most hiked routes. However, it’s also one of the most challenging El Yunque National Forest trails. La Coca is a 3.6-mile hike that features treacherous segments, stream crossings, and steep slopes.

This trail can be particularly challenging during Puerto Rico’s rainy season when the ground is muddy, and the streams are harder to cross. You’re guaranteed to see an abundance of natural beauty along the way and encounter many natural pools to cool off in. But only hikers with moderate to advanced hiking experience should attempt this route.

Make sure to carry plenty of water, a dry bag for your electronics, a map of the area, and some protein-rich snacks for the journey. It’s also very important that you stick to the trail at all times, as it’s easy to get lost in the dense Puerto Rico forest.

Angelito Trail El Yunque

El Angelito trail is perfect for hikers looking for more fun on their El Yunque hike. This short 0.7-mile trail ends with a rope swing and a dive into the lagoon. What better way to celebrate completing your hike?

This trail is perfect for inexperienced hikers and families who want to enjoy the great outdoors without too much strain. However, the El Angelito trailhead can be hard to find. Keep an eye out on the right side of Road 988 for the start of the trail.

To make the most of this experience, pick a warm day outside of Puerto Rico’s rainy season. This area is prone to flash floods, so make sure to check the weather ahead of time and contact park officials if you are unsure.

Make sure to pack your bathing suit, sunblock, plenty of water, and snacks.

Other Popular El Yunque National Forest Trails

Los Picachos El Yunque Trail – A short 0.4-mile hike that offers a panoramic view of the east coast from the Elfin Woodland Cloud Forest. While this hike is relatively short, you will have to make your way up steep stone stairs which can be challenging.

Mount Britton – Embark on this trail to explore some historical landmarks in El Yunque National Forest. This challenging hike takes around 45 minutes one way to complete, and it includes a steep ascension through Sierra Palm Forest and the Cloud Forest.

Caimitillo Trail – This route is among the most accessible hikes in this natural rainforest. The Caimitillo Trail is only a 1.1-mile hike along a path surrounded by beautiful Sierra palms, giant ferns, and the Caimitillo Verde trees. This trail has minimal elevation and is mostly shaded all the way.

El Toro Wilderness Trail – As the name suggests, the El Toro trail at El Yunque is one of the most challenging hikes in the rainforest. Experienced hikers are sure to love the serenity of the remote wilderness when hiking El Toro.

However, it’s important to note that there is minimal cellphone reception on this route, and you will need to carry plenty of water, sunscreen, and snacks for the 4.9-mile journey. This steep trail ends at the highest point in El Yunque National Forest.

Discover the Diverse Eco System of El Yunque National Park

a close up of a flower

What animals are in the El Yunque National Forest? This tropical paradise is home to many unique wildlife and plant species. The rainforest has more than 240 plant species that thrive thanks to the climate and fertile soils.

Like most rainforests, El Yunque is home to a diverse population of birds, amphibians, and reptiles. As you explore, you can expect to come across the Puerto Rican Parrot, woodpeckers, Green Mango hummingbirds, and eagles, as well as many frogs and a few iguanas.

The forest also boasts a variety of beautiful plants and flowers, such as the Frangipani flower. This diverse ecosystem is responsible for the pure air and scenery in the forest.

Enjoy the Beautiful Scenery

El Yunque is the perfect destination for couples and individuals who what to escape into the beautiful wild. If you’re looking for picture-perfect places to visit in El Yunque National Forest, make sure to head over to the Yokahú Observation Tower. Here, you’ll be treated to an incredible vista of the lush green mountains and the blue ocean.

As you venture through El Yunque, you’ll come across many natural pools, streams, and waterfalls, all surrounded by lush tropical foliage. While you might have to hike to witness the best of El Yunque, the scenery is well worth the walk.

Remember to carry your camera to capture great El Yunque National Forest photos that’ll make your friends jealous.

Water Sports – El Yunque Activities

people sliding down a El Yunque's natural water slide and rope swinging into the natural pool

Grab your gear and head over to El Yunque National Forest for a refreshing dip in natural pools. You can enjoy a day of diving in the lagoon and taking stunning pictures under the rainforest’s waterfalls.

Most of the hiking trails at El Yunque lead to (or pass) natural pools. These pools are the perfect spots to cool off. Popular swimming holes are at the La Minas Waterfalls, the Juan Diego Falls, Angelito trail, and the La Coca trail.

If you’re craving more, head over to Las Paylas, which is just a stone’s throw from El Yunque National Forest. Here, you’ll find one of Puerto Rico’s highlights, the natural waterslide. This spot is on private property, so you will need to pay a small entrance fee. But don’t expect to have the whole place to yourself. This is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike.

To truly experience the best of Puerto Rico’s highlights, both in and out of the water, book a spot on this combo tour of El Yunque and the Bioluminescent Bay.

How to Get to El Yunque

a street in old san juan Puerto Rico

To get to El Yunque, you’ll need to arrange private transportation from San Juan. The drive takes around 45 minutes, and the route is easy with the help of GPS or Google Maps.

Simply take the PR-66 and then the PR-3 from San Juan. You’ll then take the PR-191 from the center of Rio Grande to the entrance of the forest.

If you want to take the scenic journey, head down Route 186 from Carretera 3 towards Las Piedras. This route is longer, and you will encounter tricky road conditions along the way. However, there are many beautiful viewpoints and trailheads along this route, which is perfect for making the most of your vacation while visiting Puerto Rico.

Frequently Asked Questions About El Yunque National Forest

Here are a few quick answers to questions you may have before visiting El Yunque.

What Does El Yunque Mean in English?

The name El Yunque in Spanish translates to “The Anvil” in English. The name is derived from the Taíno word of the same meaning. Many people agree that from a good viewpoint, the mountains of El Yunque do look like an anvil. But it’s rare to see the mountains without the blanket of clouds that usually cover them.

Is There an Entrance Fee for El Yunque National Forest?

Yes, an entry ticket to El Yunque costs $2 per car. This gives you access to the park’s main recreational areas and facilities as well as parking. You can also visit the new El Portal Visitor Center for only $8 per person. Here, you can learn more about the park, visit the gift shop and have a meal at the restaurant.

Some trails along Route 186 are accessible for free. However, if you don’t have a map and haven’t hiked the region before, it’s recommended you go through the main entrance.

You can buy your ticket (Reservaciones para El Yunque) at

When Is the Best Time to Visit El Yunque?

If you’re hoping for warm weather and minimal rain, the best time to visit El Yunque is from December to early April. While the weather in Puerto Rico is usually pleasant, heavy rains can put a halt to your outdoor adventure plans.

Heavy rains bring flash floods to areas like El Yunque, which can be extremely dangerous for visitors to the forest. The best time to visit Puerto Rico is generally in the dryer months. You may be tempted to visit Puerto Rico from June to November, as you’ll find cheaper flights and accommodation, however, this is Puerto Rico’s hurricane season.

How Much Time Should I Spend at El Yunque?

1 day is enough to experience the magic of El Yunque National Forest. But if you’re a serious nature lover and you want to explore all of the forest’s areas, set aside at least 7 days of your itinerary to discover El Yunque.

Final Thoughts on Things to Do in El Yunque National Forest

There you have it, the best things to do in El Yunque, tips on hiking, swimming, and more. Now that you have all the information, all you have to do is book your ticket, pack your bags, and get ready for a phenomenal experience in Puerto Rico’s great outdoors.

Island Journeys offers fantastic tours of Puerto Rico. To book an unforgettable tour, simply contact us, and our team of passionate guides will handle the rest.

Read Next: Puerto Rico Travel Guide