Off the coast of Joyuda in Cabo Rojo, white sand beaches await along with spectacular snorkeling opportunities! Originally called Isla de Pinas, “Island of Pineapples” for it’s pineapple and sugar cane crops, the island was then deserted and renamed “Isla de Ratones”/Mouse Island due to it’s non use and garbage problem. Don’t let the name scare you! Amazingly, the island has been transformed in recent years, and offers snorkeling, quiet white sand beaches and a beautiful view of Puerto Rico peeking at you from your oasis.
In 1988 the island was sold to MTV, and the station planned to use it for a TV show, promoted by Cyndi Lauper. While this never came to fruition, the island’s custody has since been granted to Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources, along with help from Tourmarine, a private company offering daily trips to and from the island. Massive restorative projects have been done to ensure the island’s exotic coral reef thrives, including artificial reefs, and thousands of red mangrove trees have been planted to ensure this floating oasis can withstand erosion and all of the ecological challenges.
The island is accessible by boat or kayak only. Tourmarine is an excellent choice for booking an excursion to the island, and at only $5.00 per person, (with a minimum of four passengers) this can be an economical choice for a day trip. Joyuda also boasts bio-kayaking tours, and many more opportunities for recreation.
Should you go in the winter months, you may have your own private island, as it tends to be very quiet. Make sure to take toilet paper, food, water and beach equipment, as unlike the main island there are no services available. Tourmarine does rent kayaks and snorkel equipment, they recommend calling three days in advance, and hours are Tuesday through Sunday 9am-4pm for Tourmarine. Phone number 787-375-2625
Before you go, we recommend stopping to enjoy one of the many seafood restaurants in Joyuda along the 102 on your way to soak in the sun for the day on Isla de Ratones. The white sand beaches of this one acre island make it a great choice for spending the day with loved ones enjoying the beauty Puerto Rico has to offer!