It's All Bueno


Dec 1, 2003
Outside Magazine

En route to the waves of Rincón

IN 1968, PUERTO RICO hosted the World Surfing Championship in Rincón, putting the west coast on the map for wave riders. "Puerto Ricans long ago became used to seeing crazy Americans out here," said Casey Moul, a surfer who moved to Rincón from Rhode Island in 1983 and is now headwaiter at the town's luxurious 52-room Horned Dorset Primavera Hotel. "Rincón is a very friendly place."
So are its waves.
The most popular surfing beaches—Tres Palmas, Sandy Beach, and Maria's—are scattered around Rincón's Punta Higuera Lighthouse. The best breakers are typically eight feet, and water temperatures hover around 80 degrees.
Surfers with disposable income will want to splurge and stay at the Horned Dorset. The Mediterranean-style hotel, which seems better suited to Monte Carlo, sits on an unnamed 20-foot-wide beach that extends for miles. It recently added 22 duplex villas cantilevered into a cliff, but the original 30 rooms are only feet from the lapping waves. Daily rates at the Horned Dorset (800-633-1857, start at about $600 for doubles, including breakfast and dinner.

For those not on the splurge plan, try the Rincón Beach Resort. The 120-room red-tile-roofed hotel and its swimming pool front a wide, sandy beach—nesting grounds for leatherback and hawksbill turtles. The owners smartly avoided beachfront lighting, which can be fatal to the turtle hatchlings. Doubles at Rincón Beach Resort (787-589-9000, start at $160.
For surfboard rentals, sales, and info on where the best waves are breaking, call Playa Brava Longboards and Coffee House, in Aguadilla, at 787-890-2189.