You may have noticed that I wasn't around to blog last week! That's because I was in Puerto Rico!! Every year starting in 2005 my Holy Cross girlfriends and I get together somewhere for a couple of days. In 2005 we went to New Orleans, in 2006 we went back to HC for our 5 year college reunion, in 2007 we went to St. Louis, in 2008 we visited Philadelphia and in 2009 in celebration of our 30th birthdays we decided to take it up a notch so we decided on Puerto Rico. It was a blast, we had a great trip, fun conversation, and a good variety of activities. I definitely know how lucky I am to have such amazing friends in my life and I cherish that we are able to get together once a year and explore together. I decided to break down the blog entries about our trip into a 3 parts, one for each full day that we were there to explore. So this is Day 1!
We all arrived on Wednesday, April 8th at varying times and had a fairly chill afternoon and evening together. Thursday was when all the craziness began. When we're planning our trips, depending on how many days we have, we each pick 1-2 activities that are a "must do" for us and then we try to arrange the itinerary to accomodate everyones wishes.
The first activity we did on Thursday was to get up early and drive about 90 miles Southwest of San Juan to visit the Camuy Caves. You get there and have to wait for your number to be called. Then you watch a short video on the "history" of the caves and their safety rules for your visit. You then hop into the "modern & fun" trams and travel down 200 feet to Clara Cava the Cave that is open to visitors.
Once there you walk through the cave out the other side. Inside it is amazing. My pictures didn't come out because it was all lit up inside the cave and so they came out all dark. It was breathtaking. Our guide Hector, was incredibly passionate about his job. Kirsten and I were able to walk up front with him for awhile and ask him questions about caves in general and Clara Cava in particular. You could just tell that he loved what he did and he loved exploring caves.
It was about a 45 minute tour but definitely worth the drive out there. I wish we could have repelled down the cave but alas maybe next time. The one thing I would say about visiting Camuy Caves is that you have to be patient. We waited about 80-90 minutes before our tour started so make sure to leave yourself plenty of time and if you're in a rush then skip it because you won't enjoy your visit.
Afterwards, we drove back East past San Juan and spent an hour at Luquillo beach. It took us awhile to figure out exactly where the entrance was and as we found out the next day we didn't even go to the real entrance, we were definitely at the local entrance, but we were there. It was beautiful (although very windy when we were there). Everyone was just enjoying themselves, drinking, eating, playing in the sand & water.
Kayaking back was much more difficult as we were against the current, it took a lot of hard work, paddling & communicating to get back to the start but it was worth it. It was by far my favorite acitivity of the trip, although the caves were a close 2nd, it just was so peaceful. I love to kayak and it isn't something I get to do often, I hope it's something I get to do more often in the future!