Playuela Puerto Rico: Help Us Save This Natural Wonderland
Of all the parts of Puerto Rico that I’ve yet to discover, Playuela intrigues me the most…for now. From the sky, as pictured here, its allure is plain to see. Playuela Puerto Rico is all palm trees and open fields; an untamed seaside paradise nestled in Aguadilla (northeastern P.R.).
Pristine Paradise for Eco Travelers and Surfers
Playuela’s coastline extends a good 4,000 feet. Five different ecosystems thrive here. This, naturally, makes the area an ideal spot to see a number of protected species.
The Puerto Rican hummingbird, yellow warblers, el bobo mayor, manatees, hawksbill and green turtles, Puerto Rican boa – they all call Playuela home.
Surfers are the primary people that share these virginal surrounds. Blessed as it is with steady onshore winds, Playuela Puerto Rico boasts some of the top surf spots in the West Indies. El Mix, Wishing Wells, Pressure Point – the names are legend in Caribbean surfing circles.
Snorkeling, hiking, fishing, stargazing, and camping are also great here.
Playuela’s wild and rustic nature, its world-class surf and serenity all have me anxious to visit. If you, like me, want to experience Playuela in all of its untamed natural glory, though, you’ll want to do it soon.
Actually, it may already be too late.
The Worst Kind of Development
Indeed, development has come to Playuela Puerto Rico. It’s come in the form of a major resort project. The kind of project that makes access to heretofore blessedly hard to reach places easier. (You know, easier for tourist hordes.) The kind of project rife with environmental issues. Among them: a high potential for polluting freshwater aquifers, displacing/killing protected species of flora and fauna, and destroying prized Playuela surf breaks.
Adding insult to injury is the proposed mega-resort’s name:
Christopher Columbus Landing Resort.
Yeah, the resort intent on raping and destroying one of the most pristine corners of Puerto Rico is named for the man who did the same (and worse) all over the Caribbean.
Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up.
(Read more about all that’s wrong with this project at Surfrider.org.)
As you might imagine, it hasn’t been smooth sailing for this controversial resort project. Planning and construction of the Christopher Columbus Landing Resort has been 20+ years in the making. Sustained protests, lawsuits, and political wrangling, though, have effectively stalled the project.
Sadly, though, recent reports seem to indicate that the project is moving forward. Is this the end of the story? Maybe not…
Save Playuela Puerto Rico
As noted above, I’ve yet to visit Playuela. I’m hoping to change that in 2024, though, to get a sense for whether or not this abomination of a resort project is becoming a reality. Reveling in what remains of Playuela’s natural charms will also be a priority, of course.
I can’t wait to report back to you on this. In the meantime, though, I hope that you’ll join me in signing this Change.org online petition to stop the latest crime being perpetrated in Columbus’ name.
Also be sure to check out and support Salvemosaplayuela.com. The site offers several great ways to make your voice heard toward saving this very special natural treasure.
*Photo credit: Chase Walker for Discover Puerto Rico.