Play and learn about Classic Puerto Rican Music (Afro-Rican, Salsa, Taíno Native music, Folkloric, etc…), Ecology, History, Culture and our Environment along the road…
(Prices and dates are subject to group size and availability; please call or email for status!) Below all the pictures are the full descriptions of some of our favorite adventures!
1: Yukiyú Coast to Rain Forest Adventure:
Day Tour departing from San Juan for delicious local Lunch in historic & folkloric Afro-Puerto Rican beach neighborhood. We continue on an incredibly scenic drive through virgin coastline, local street food shacks and optional beach dip/swim before reaching majestic El Yunque Rain Forest. Here we explore lush off the beaten path rain forest trails, learn about El Yunque’s unique ecosystem & history; legendary folk tales, and revitalize in a pristine mineral rich waterfall shower.
a-Isolated Turtle-Refuge Beach/Yunque Combo
b-Afro-Puerto Rican music Jam on the way back (Sundays)
c-Secret River Spots with falls, slides and fun rock formations
Lunch, transportation, pick-up & Guide Included. Epic FUN GUARANTEED!
2: Magical Mystery Tour!
Discover one of Planet Earth’s Longest Subterranean Rivers! This tour is true adventure into a mystical landscape waiting to take you away…
Features Karst country Hiking to a Mind-Blowing Gaping Cave, Wild Swim in Sediment Rich river where Waterfalls, Canyons, Caves and erupting Spring Water sources surround you. This is followed by an Exfoliating Mud Bath on the bank of the river where there is a special source of exfoliating mud for the skin.
3: Alternative Old San Juan Tour!
At Atabey Tours, we specialize in several alternative tours for those of you who really want to try something different in Puerto Rico. One of these is our own custom tour of “Viejo San Juan”, our historic and mystical colonial city which we call home. Traditional tours of the old city are informative but do not take you beyond the touristy experience. We are the only local guides living within the fortified walls which have stood for over 400 years guarding our sacred city, which was fought over by British pirates, Dutch, Spanish and other European powers who wanted control of this “gateway to the Caribbean and the Americas”.
Today, history, architecture, cafe culture, music and art merge within these ancient walls and create a fascinating experience for the savvy world traveler. Our alternative Old San Juan tour begins with a bang as we sip fresh, wild harvested coconuts atop the 40 foot high walls of San Cristobal fort. We take in the stunning Atlantic Ocean views just below along with the wild prairie as we spot huge green iguanas and ocean birds while drinking sweet native coconut water and learning about the history of this fort and the folk legends surrounding it. Then we explore the fort itself which is a true wonder with its subterranean tunnels featuring old rock art, embrasures for cannon firing and surreal panoramic ocean views. We go on to explore “La Perla”, the ultimate Puerto Rican barrio by the shore at the foot of Old San Juan’s historic walls. This neighborhood has its own culture, history, design and is a very autonomous and independent community living within prime beach front real estate. This is the opposite of gentrification as we see the rambling colorful houses and alleys full of surprises like wandering crowing roosters, a beautiful ocean front cemetery and a cast of very friendly characters. We continue down towards the Southern section of the wall and along the way we check out some of the best Puerto Rican coffee spots where we can relax and enjoy a cup. We also will enjoy a delicious lunch in one of the hidden “locals-only” spots where Sanjuaneros fill themselves with home cooked foodie goodness. We will spot wild parrots, century old native trees, learn much more about the lore and legends of the old city and in the end, you will come away with a true local perspective on this unique and magical colonial city.
4:CUSTOM ADVENTURE TOURS!
Swimming or Surf in your very own isolated white sand beach followed by a secluded, pristine river of Eden to wash away the layer of salt on your skin; hiking through lush rain forest jungle on the way to your prized destination; gaping caves that reveal epic panoramas below; limestone canyons; Taíno indian petroglyphs; cliffs overlooking azure Caribbean water; Salsa and Afro-Puerto Rican music; Delicious native Specialties for the true Foodies and much more than you can imagine…
1) “The Magical Mystery Tour” is for the adventurous souls. We can do
it several different ways depending on your needs as this is a custom
tour. The full tour includes a short trek to a spectacular cave which
is the one we have photographed on our website and then a half hour
hike through an enchanted rainforest echoing with bird calls where we
have the opportunity to spot and possibly harvest several varieties of
wild native fruits on the way towards a subterranean river which
features natural springs of crystalline drinkable fresh water and
waterfalls, canyons, caves, exfoliating mud bath, etc… This is an
epic and magical place unknown to most Puerto Ricans and we usually
have it to all to ourselves. These are all custom tours, meaning you
will most likely be enjoying the adventures by yourselves with me as
we don’t like to take big groups since we feel its important to
connect personally with our fellow travelers. The “Magical Mystery
Tour” is our most remote adventure so it is more of an investment but
it’s also our favorite adventure and guaranteed to be a lifetime experience.
-We also have the option of including either a family coffee
plantation where we can see coffee plants growing in abundance (along
with many other fruits), get to know the whole process of roasting and
preparing fresh mountain coffee firsthand for export and of course,
try and buy some of the best coffee in the world fresh from the
fertile mountains of Puerto Rico.
-The other option is a pilgrimage to the Caguana Ceremonial Park,
which was and is a sacred place for the Taíno natives who were the
original inhabitants of Puerto Rico before the Spanish and the
Africans came. This is perhaps the most important archaeological site
in all of the Caribbean as it was uncovered in the early 1900s and
features a ceremonial ball park lined with rows of huge boulders the
Taínos carried from the nearby river. They used this space for rituals
and ceremonies full of song and dance called Areytos. Also for playing
a ball game call Batú which was somewhat of a mix between soccer and
volleyball played with a ball made out of tree fibers. You can see in
perfect detail the preserved petroglyphs (rock carvings) they carved
on the stones of their deities and spirit gods like the original
Atabey (Mother Earth) petroglyph along with many others.
These options can be combined in any way you like and we can adjust
the times and details to fit in these activities into “The Magical
2) Caving Adventure:
For those looking to explore the most stunning & diverse caves in the
island, we offer a unique caving tour which visits 2 of the best and
lesser known caves in the island. The first cave is by the coast and
used to be a ceremonial gathering place for Taíno Indians. Thus, it
has tons of Taíno Indian rock carvings (petroglyphs) from our
ancestors. It is a beautiful area by a gorgeous beach with cinematic
panoramic ocean views of bizarre rock sculptures from high atop the
limestone cliffs. We can take a dip in a pristine undeveloped beach as
well. Then, we visit another cave which is The Gaping Cave by the
central highlands; we explore the stalagmites and stalagtites (and
bat’s nests) with our headlamps and go to a stunning viewing area
where the cave opens up to a view of the river hundreds of feet below
below, the limestone karst hills and a lush valley.
3) For the “Yukiyú Coast to Rainforest Adventure”, we have different options
depending on what kind of experience you’re looking for. The main rainforest our we
do arrives in the rainforest via the scenic route (beautiful deserted beaches,
historic Afro-Puerto Rican beach village full of local flavor and -delicious optional Afro-Puerto Rican beach lunch- or a lovely organic cafe in a garden oasis beneath the rainforest, on through lovely
coastal farms until reaching a leatherback turtle nesting beach
sanctuary and ascending to the rainforest mountains above). This is a
full day tour (from around 10:30 am to 5:30pm approximately) which
includes some hiking in the rain forest as well explorations of
stunning secluded waterfalls deep within the jungle. This tour gives
you a great introduction on the rainforest and Puerto Rican culture
(including optional swimming in a paradise nature reserve beach).
4) Another great option is the Alternative Viejo San Juan Tour. This
tour focuses on the locals’ insider perspective to give you a unique
insight into what makes Old San Juan a unique city in the world beyond
the traditional tourist route. As a native living within the centuries
old fort walls of this magical city, I know not only the most
compelling historical insights and legends but also the alternative,
bohemian art scene that is flourishing in Viejo San Juan from the most
intense Afro-Caribbean and alternative music scene to the thriving
coffee culture featuring some of the best coffee in the Caribbean and
the world, to artisanal local, organic Puerto Rican dining and even
tree and bird watching (parrots galore) within the historic walls of
this mesmerizing colonial gem.