Playa Vieja


Alternate name:
Playa Vaca
Good for:
Exploring, Beachcombing, Swimming, Wading in Tidal Pools

Sand Type/Color:
Light golden soft sand
No people means very little trash, except what washes up from storms
Water Quality: 
Perfectly clear Caribbean blue

First, go to Playa Grande. To do that, from Esperanza, go west toward Colmado Robin (a small store & bar on the right side of the road). Stop for supplies, or just drive on by until you get to the T; turn left onto 201.

Follow it around past Playa Negra and Oro Vieques (previously Gallery Galleon) and keep going west past the Vieques Gun Club. Enjoy the views on the way.

When you reach the next T in the road, take another left and follow the road downhill to Playa Grande, turning right onto the road along the beach. After Hurricane Maria, the road stopped just past the bridge, but now it is open the whole length of Playa Grande and beyond. Keep going.

Continue on the Playa Grande beach road as it curves away from the shore into the jungle. At the next T, turn left and follow the road to the end. Four wheel drive is probably not required, but don’t attempt any sections that you aren’t sure you can make. You can always find a place to stick your car in the bushes and walk from there. If you make it all the way, there is parking at the end.


We’ve been told by some old-timers that this beach was called Playa Vieja, so that’s what we’re going with. It is just past Punta Vaca (Cow Point) so we’re leaving Playa Vaca as it’s alternate name. It’s almost always deserted because it’s so far out, but it’s not as deserted as it was when we used to hike the 1 1/2 miles each way from the Sugar Mill ruins through the jungle. Now, the road is open and is in decent shape.

The beach itself is a natural beauty, nicer even than Playa Grande in our opinion. Beautiful blue water, great beachcombing, coconut trees and rocks to climb, tidal pools to explore, the fun goes on and on. It may require some significant scrambling and rock climbing, but you could conceivably continue walking this beach and climbing the rocks to the west, eventually ending up at Punta Arenas 3-4 miles away around the western end of the island. I would only recommend that for serious explorers who know how to put their own safety first.