I take my hostess duties very seriously and I want our friends to have a good time... so they'll come back soon! The lighthouses that dot the coastline of Puerto Rico are always a favorite of mine. Sooooo, we were up and out early for a drive to the west.
Puerto Rico has many difference faces. Many visitors never leave the San Juan area where the mountains are covered with lush green foliage. We want to make sure that our friends get to experience all of the island so that they will love her as much as we do!
The secondary roads leading west are punctuated with sleepy little towns that we adore. Every time we drive along this way, we discover something else to put on our regular route.
But our first stop today was a well worn favorite, the Guánica Lighthouse.
|Looking up into the tower, you can see that the lower spiral stairway has been removed.|
|Looking up from what was once the living area for the lighthouse keeper. The roof is gone.|
|The structure provides awesome photo opps!|
|I wish there was more (some?) funding to keep these treasures in better shape.|
Down the road again, we made a stop at the scene of last outing's difficulties. The point at Playa Ballena was the treacherous spot that swept my son-in-law's feet from beneath him. Today, the conditions were much less boisterous. The tide must be out because the waves weren't crashing as high. But the Caribbean still showed her might!
|The prehistoric-looking creatures that lured Michael to peril|
During our last expedition west, we arrived too late to see the Los Morellos Lighthouse in Cabo Rojo. We made sure that we didn't repeat that mistake. Parking was scarce when we arrived but after circling the lot a couple of times, we spotted a group leaving and were able to get primo parking! The hike up the hill from the front lot is dusty and hot, but we need the exercise, and what a pleasurable way to get it!
Near the top we paused to look back at the breathtaking view of the water along both sides of the narrow strip of low-lying land we travelled across to get here. The salt pans on the east side would be our next stop!
|This lighthouse has some funding!|
My day was only slightly dampened by learning that the lighthouse was closed today! The grounds were open though, and it's really the impressive exterior of the building and the stunning cliffs that we came here for... and those did not disappoint.
|This cliff affords an amazing view, but it can be treacherous as rocks fall at any time!|
|This iguana has no fear of heights as he climbs up onto a ledge.|
|We took every opportunity to get a group shot with our former Travel Buddies!|
This was as far as we could go, so we backtracked to the thin spit of land that separates the mainland from this peninsula where we could get a closer look at the huge white mounds of salt we passed on the roadside coming out.
|Pink salt pans|
We stopped in to see what the little "Salt Museum" had to offer. There are some historical photos and an explanation of the history of salt production in this area. They also have some little trinkets for sale to support the non-profit organization. It's astonishing that there is no charge for the lighthouse or this fascinating place. We would have gladly paid a few bucks for the privilege, but instead, I purchased a couple of sea-glass necklaces and earrings to support the cause. SCORE!
We climbed to the top of the Mirador, or tower, where we could look out over the peninsula and see the lighthouse from the opposite direction.
|Lighthouse in the distance, the view is reversed!|
|One of three huge salt piles|
|Clouds are reflected in the salt water|