Cueva Ventana: One of the best views in Puerto Rico
We love spending time taking our guests and friends on adventures to some of the most beautiful places in Puerto Rico. Cueva Ventana is one of those places. We've seen many changes to Cueva Ventana over the years, from a little known place where locals would go to snap that unmistakeable facebook profile picture to a full blown tourist attraction ranked among the best attractions to visit in Puerto Rico on TripAdvisor.
Cueva Ventana is Spanish for Window Cave, it's pretty easy to see where they came up with the name if you take a look at the breath taking view from inside the cave.
Cueva Ventana is situated atop a limestone cliff overlooking the Río Grande de Arecibo valley, close to the Arecibo/Utuado border, just off of Route 10 on kilometer 75 next to the Puma Gas station. It is amazingly easy to get to. There are 2 caves here that one can enter — and they are right next to each other.
For this trip to the cave we were joined by our friends Susie and Brittany. Susie is a radio personality on Mix 105.1 in Orlando, FL and Brittany is a Fort Lauderdale, FL based flight attendant and works with me at the same airline.
Before taking the ride up to Cueva Ventana, there's a few things you need to know. Flashlights will be provided by the tour guides that preserve this beautiful cave. In addition the fee for entry includes a guided tour with the history of the cave and information about the flora and fauna in and around the cave as well as history about the Taino Indians that inhabited the caves. The hike to the mouths of the caves is about 10-15 minutes, partly up-hill and partly in full sun — so bottles of water for everyone is a must. The caves are inhabited by bats, so there is a lot of guano droppings inside the cave — so antibacterial wipes are also good to have. Because the caves are in the karst region of the island, the cave floors are wet and slippery from the water leaching through the limestone, so shoes with some good grip are required. Puerto Rico is hot and humid, plan to go early and beat the hotter parts of the day.
Once we had all our gear, we were ready to go explore the caves.
The path leading to the caves is located just next to the Puma gas station. There is a free parking lot just for people visiting the cave.
There is an entrance area, with a desk for you to sign in and start your walk to get to the tour staging area- where you get your guide (or info on where to met your guide), and helmet. Once you've got your helmet and guide, it's off to the cave.
While you make the trek to the cave the tour guide will answer questions and give you the background information on the surrounding area and how the funds from the tour go into preserving the caves unique Taino cave paintings and carvings.
They also have information signs around about the trees and other things you are seeing.
As we walked the trail, we eventually noticed a large tree on the left whose roots are going down into a cave opening. This is the second cave’s little light source. You will be able to enter this cave at the large main entrance area, just next to the Window Cave entrance. Just keep following the trail. The trail will curve around and it will end up at the openings to two caves. We went into both.
Cueva Ventana is the cave on the left, with the steps going down into it. Your guide will give you a flashlight and walk with you through the cave. All the way, the guide talks about the nature in the cave, how caves are formed, about the bats and all sorts of other cave related info. Also the Taino experience. This cave has a bunch of very pretty formations — stalagmites and stalactites. It has a number of smaller caves, tunnels and hiding spots. It also has bats! But the goal is the window. We kept going through — and then we saw the light at the end. What a great view! We went out as far as we felt comfortable. One must be careful, it is a long way down and there is nothing to stop you from falling (except your own common sense to stay away from the edge). There is such a magnificent view of the green fields and river below. At this point the guide usually breaks off from the group and allows you to explore on your own.
The cave on the right is smaller and shorter. There is a large cavern inside, the entrance (with some steps) is just by the Ventana cave entrance (you will see a bench). Inside the cave was a bit slippery, but very neat.
Since both caves are open on both ends, they were the warmest and windiest caves I have ever been in. And they didn’t smell bad either (considering the number of bats living there)! I found this to be an easy place to go and see caves. Since this place is located up in the mountains, unlike the underground Camuy Rio Caves that close if there is rain (since it floods), I bet this place would stay high and dry. One can visit both this cave and Camuy Rio Caves in the same day if they wanted since they are located in the same general area.
What you need to know before you go.
- The cave is open from 10am – 6:00pm Mon- Fri, 8:30am – 6:30pm Sat and Sundays and holidays. Last tour at 5pm. Tours are on the hour and as needed.
- Admission to the cave is $19 ($10 for Puerto Rico residents, with ID) per person plus tax and it includes a guided tour, use of a flashlight and helmet and an informational booklet about the cave/area. Parking for the cave is free (go up the driveway to the left of the registration table). There are clean port-a-potties in the parking lot. Kids under 5 are free, but not recommended for kids under 3.
- Visit the Cueva Ventana web site or Facebook page for more information.
- You can call them at 787-322-3554 or contact them via email AventuraCuevaVentana@gmail.com for more information.
- They now offer NIGHT TOURS at times. Guided walk along trails by torchlight, learning about night creatures inside the cave and out. Then a dinner in the forest. Check out website for more info. Reservations required.
- Travel time from the Puntas Tree House took about an hour and a half with moderate traffic.
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About the author:
Don Reno Intreglia is the Digital Marketing and Web Developer for La Vida Hospitality and owner of DRI Media and Puntas Tree House Vacation Rentals. He holds a Master’s Degree in Computer Science and Engineering. He has developed marketing, social media, and customer retention programs in the hospitality industry for over ten years. In addition, he is the Master Executive Council of Communications for Spirit AFA - CWA, the largest flight attendant union in the world, creating nationwide mobilization campaigns. He splits his time between Rincon, Puerto Rico and Lewes, Delaware. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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