Up with the rainforest, bright and early again! :)
The fruit plates Shirley at Casa Flamboyant puts together are simple and divine. The freshest, most perfect local fruit on the planet. Ahhh....
She also makes some ridiculously delicious breakfasts. A ham and broccoli quiche and a tomato jalapeno quiche. :)
We had intentions of visiting the Rio Camuy Caves, but when we arrived around 11a, the park was completely full- we were told to come back later, but when we returned, there was a line of cars waiting to get in.... Not our scene. So we hopped over to Lares to snag some fancy ice cream!
They boast over 120 flavors! I got arroz con dulce (sweet rice) and maiz (corn). Joe got sweet potato and pumpkin! :)
In our research we had learned of a nearby DIY cave (without guides or parking lots or entrance fees) called Cueva Ventana and decided to check it out, since Rio Camuy was so jam-packed. Boy are we glad we did! We parked in a nearby Texaco station parking lot and hoofed it on the nearby foot trail. There was a decent incline for the first 15-20 minutes of the walk, and some gorgeous vegetation!
Wild lantana! Beautiful!
About 30 mins in, we came across the entrance to the cave. Yep- my husband carries my pink backpack. That's love.
This cave is DARK. As in, DO NOT enter without a flashlight-dark. We were prepared with our headlamps and offered to share our light with a few unprepared hikers. There are a few large chambers with small side rooms upon immediate entrance. It takes a bit of poking around to figure out which way to go. Eventually, we saw a light in the distance, and when we got closer, we realized it was the ventana (window).
This cave opens up onto the side of a mountain overlooking a valley and river. A. MAZING.
Not for the faint of heart- Joe went down to get a closer look.
It's kind of hard NOT to do a SuperWoman pose- it's like being on top of the world!
We headed back to the entrance but noticed another cave entrance and decided to scope that one out, too!
This one was a bit more intense...
We made it out in one piece (the hole in the roots behind us was the exit from the cave- would YOU go in there?) :o
We were STARVING after all that hiking, so we splashed around a bit on the beach at Arecibo and then went to Salitre for dinner.
The view from the back patio. Stunning.
I got baked something (MahiMahi? Kingfish?) with yuca fries and a tamarind sauce.
Joe got baked something else (a white fish) with a Caribbean mash (yuca, sweet potato...) and a mango sauce.
The food was great, paired with what was probably the most amazing sunset I've ever seen...
Tips from Day 3:
-DO YOUR RESEARCH! We found www.puertoricodaytrips.com to be extremely helpful!
-Have a backup plan, or a GPS!