In Spanish, “el yunque” means “the anvil,” named for the powerful lightening that sweeps the rainforest during storms. El Yunque gets up to 200 inches of rain annually, making mudslides and flash floods a potential hazard.
El Yunque National Rainforest is the only rainforest in the US Forest Service system. Located around part of the Luquillo Mountains range in Puerto Rico, it occupies only a small 28,000 acre part of the island. Some of the main features of the rainforest are Sierra Palms and parasitic plants known as epiphytes. here are 240 native tree species–23 of them found only in El Yunque–50 native orchids and 150 types of ferns.
There are no poisonous snakes, but watch out for stinging nettles plants.
La Coca Falls
Right by the roadside, this 85 foot falls provides an opportunity for lazy tourists to snap photos. The more energetic can climb the rocks to get right up to the fall’s face.
If you enjoy hiking, you have a large number of options:
|Trail Name||Length||Time (One Way)||Difficulty||Min / Max Elevation|
|El Yunque||2.4 miles||2 hours||Challenging||2,067 to 3,445 feet|
|Caimitillo||.2 miles||20 minutes||Moderate||2,067 to 2,427 feet|
|Baño de Oro||.3 miles||20 minutes||Moderate||2,132 to 2,362 feet|
|Enlace / Spur Mt. Britton||.3 miles||10 minutes||Easy||2,788 to 2,952 feet|
|Los Picachos||.2 miles||8 minutes||Easy||2,952 to 3,051 feet|
|Roca El Yunque||.1 miles||7 minutes||Easy||3,379 to 3,412 feet|
|Mt. Britton||.8 miles||40 minutes||Challenging||2,493 to 3,087 feet|
Located a mile up the road from La Coca Falls, Yokahu Tower rests at 1,575 feet and provides an amazing view of Luquillo and El Yunque from the top. You have to climb 98 stairs to the top, but the view is worth it. The stone tower was built in 1962.
Things to Do
- Take a half-trip to La Coca falls, Yakahu Tower, and El Baño Grande
- Take a full trip to La Mina Falls
- Go adventure zip-lining through the rainforest
- Hike to the top of El Yunque peak
More Puerto Rico
Check out these other posts in the Puerto Rico travelblog series:
- Travel Tips for Puerto Rico
- Fort El Morro, Fort San Cristóbal
- Old (viejo) San Juan
- Puerto Rico Museum of Art
- Bio Bay Kayaking in Laguna Grande
- Puerto Rico Photos Album
- Plaza Las Américas mall
|This entry was posted on Saturday, March 5th, 2011 at 2:27 pm and is tagged with el yunque puerto rico rainforest, el yunque puerto rico, el yunque national rainforest, types of ferns, rainforest hike, luquillo mountains, native orchids, yunque puerto rico, parasitic plants, poisonous snakes, us forest service, mountains range, flash floods, stone tower, epiphytes, potential hazard, mudslides, tree species, britton, anvil. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback.|