Located on the west coast of Puerto Rico, Mona Island (also known as Isla de Mona) is an uninhabited island filled with caves, secret gems, beautiful coastlines, mangrove forests, coral reefs, hiking trails and amazing turquoise waters. Covering 14,000 acres of land, this natural paradise is called “the Galapagos of the Caribbean”. Protected by the Puerto Rican Department of Natural and Environmental Resources, Mona Island has rich biodiversity and contains historical inscriptions and relics. Check out what's the island's remoteness and natural beauty has to offer you during your Puerto Rican holiday.
Things to know about Mona Island
- Mona Island is located close to the Dominican Republic and Cabo. It is about 41 miles east of the Dominical Republic and 43 miles west of Cabo.
- Its name was derived from the Taíno name “Amona”. It is a Coral island formed many, many years ago which is why you can see dolomite and limestone here.
- This is a nature reserve and boasts many endemic plants and animals.
- It is the first island in the world that has a marine-originated cave system and 200 foot cliff.
- The island is used for research, hiking and other controlled activities. The government has provided permission for the hunting of goats and pigs, in some seasons in an effort to control the population of these animals.
Things to do in Mona Island
The only way to travel to Mona Island is on a private charter. You need to plan your trip in advance as licensing and permits are required to visit this island. The government allows only 100 guests to visit Mona in a day. You can plan a day-trip to Mona Island or camp here overnight.
- Bird and Animal Watching: Mona Island has some endangered species such as Mona Ground Iguanas, Mona Yellow-shouldered Blackbirds, Mona Boas and Hawksbill Sea Turtles. We recommend our guests tolook out for these rare species in their natural habitat.
- Cave Exploration: Explore the island at your own pace. There are many petroglyphs from Tainos who used to live in the caves of Mona Island. There are around 200 caves on this island and we highly recommend our guests to explore these secret, hidden places with native arts.
- Mona Island Lighthouse: Also known as Faro de la Isla de la Mona, this lighthouse is built out of iron and steel. This Light house was designed by the Spanish engineer Rafael Ravena. Faro de las Isla de la Mona is listed in the U.S. National Registery of Historic Places in 1981, so definitely add this lighthouse to your trip to Mona.
- Beaches: The island has many stunning beaches where you can explore and soak in the splendour of Mona Island. In the southeast, it has the following beaches: Playa Escalera, Playa Pájaros, Playa Brava, Playa Coco, and Playa Caigo. The southwest side has Playa Uvero-1, Playa Uvero-2, Playa U-8, Playa U-1, Playa Carabinero, Playa Mujeres and Playa Carite. Its western beaches are Playa Sardinera and Playa Carmelitas. Campsites in Mona Island are Playa Sardinera and Playa Pájaros.
- Scuba diving and Snorkeling: Mona Island is very close to the deepest trench of the Atlantic Ocean which can account for its unique topography. There are reefs, underwater caves, sea walls and vast marine trenches. More than 250 species of fish are found in the waters surrounding Mona Island. The water is clear, warm and offers phenomenal visibility. While diving, you can expect to see dolphins, sea turtles, whales and blue marlins. Drift diving is also possible in Mona's neighbouring beach Little Monita.
- Fishing: You can enjoy spearfishing and free fishing in Mona Passage. Possible catches include snapper fish, grouper fish, finfish, and lobster. The deep-reef systems have varied fish species but you may need a permit for fishing them as a majority of marine life here are endangered.
Mona Island has become a popular tourist spot for Dominicans, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, Haitians and Americans. This majestic island offers dramatic views of nature, from rugged cliffs, soft white sandy beaches, to secret caves. If you are ready to visit this isolated yet beautiful island, we would love to plan your charter today.Whether you are planning a one-day trip or multi-day excursion, we will arrange everything for you. Our luxury yachts are equipped with modern accommodations, great food & beverages, entertainment options, water toys and more. All of our charters come with a skilled skipper, talented chef and well trained staff. To book your vessel for a Mona Island trip, contact our charter specialist here.