You see them on the beaches. You see them in the streets. You see them in the hills, scattered about open fields, and in the bush. You see horses wandering around on their own across so much of Vieques, in fact, that it’s only natural to assume they must be wild.
It fits a certain narrative some might find attractive, the wild horses adding a touch of romance, perhaps a dash of swashbuckling adventure and intrigue hearkening back to a simpler time.
Alas, unlike their equine cousins on nearby St. John, the wild horses of Vieques are, in fact, anything but… for the most part.
The longstanding cultural norm among horse owners here is to allow their steeds free reign of the island. The system works in large part because Vieques is so small. When you need to go find your horse, you usually don’t have to go too far.
Plus, most everyone knows each other (and their horses) here. Vieques is communally familial in this way; indeed, very much a throwback to a simpler time.
More on Vieques here.
*Photo credit: Flickr user karlnorling.