Following the advice of Bruce Van Sant, author of Passages South, we left Boquerón before sunrise so as to drop anchor in our next port of call before the trade winds pick up. We actually left a little later than we should have, but the winds were forecast to be rather light throughout the day anyway. At 6:30 a.m., we weighed anchor and began to make our way around the dramatic cliffs of Cabo Rojo. The beautiful Cabo Rojo lighthouse sits atop these cliffs, 121 feet above the water. Once we had rounded the southwestern tip of Puerto Rico, we continued just outside of Margarita Reef, making our way into the anchorage at La Parguera. A series of small mangrove islands lie just off shore. Most of the space inside of these islands is taken by local boats on moorings, so we dropped the hook just outside one of them. It is still quite protected from any swell or waves, but open to a nice breeze. We have fallen in love with the trade winds of the Caribbean while at anchor. It’s like having an air-conditioner. We open the windows, and a refreshing breeze blows through Beatitude’s interior, making life aboard very comfortable. Daily highs since our arrival have been in the low to mid-80s, and the lows have been in the low 70s.
So, yesterday around 10 a.m., we dropped anchor in about 14 feet of water just outside the mangrove islands. The scenery is beautiful with the mangroves and reefs surrounding us, along with the view of the mountains and hills which rise up behind La Paguera. La Paguera is a small seaside village named after a local snapper, the pargos. There are several colorful houses lining the shore, which sit right out over the water. Apparently, this place is pretty dead during the week, but like Boquerón comes alive on the weekend with visitors from around the island. Seeing how we arrived on Monday, there wasn’t a lot going on in town. About half the restaurants are closed, but for dinner we ate empanadas and rice and beans at a quaint authentic Puerto Rican place called Café Restaurante Puerto Parguera. We were quite surprised that there was no public dinghy dock in town. Maybe that’s why we are the only cruisers here. We asked someone on a dock where the dinghy dock was and she stated there was none, but we could pull up into an opening in the mangroves and tie our boat up there. We did. And we were a little startled to be welcomed ashore by a large orange iguana resting nearby in the mangroves.
After dinner, we returned to Beatitude to enjoy a magnificent sunset and a relaxing evening in our home on the sea.