Though often underrated and skipped over by visitors, Aguada is a city in western Puerto Rico with a ton of great things to do. Not only should you make a point to check it out during your next visit, but you should set aside a solid few days to explore all the hidden gems.
Known as the Vatican City of Puerto Rico, Aguada is rich in both history and nature and is one of my personal favorite places to watch the sunsets on the west coast. It’s even on my list of the best destinations in Puerto Rico!
From seeing World War II Canyons to swimming off sandy beaches, here are 15 things to do in Aguada.
Table of Contents
- 15 Best Things to Do in Aguada
- FAQs About What to Do in Aguada
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15 Best Things to Do in Aguada
Enjoy a festival in the local plaza
📍 Map It: PR-115 Aguada, 00602
A gorgeous central public area, the town square of Aguada dates back to 1648 but has since gone through multiple renovations. Featuring frequent festivities on the weekends, the plaza features a gazebo, lanterns, benches, a statue of Christopher Columbus, and a food kiosk where you can enjoy local snacks.
👉 Did you Know? Aguada is one of the Puerto Rican cities that claim to be the port where the Spaniards first landed. Mayaguez, Aguadilla, and Añasco also claim to be the first landing point of Cristopher Columbus & crew.
The Fashion Route
Shop until you drop in the city’s boutiques
📍 Map It: C. Colon Aguada, 00602
If you’re a shopaholic (or just want to pick up a souvenir or two), one of the best things to do in Aguada is to go shopping in the town center’s fashion route. The two-street route harbors dozens of boutiques including Madame Louise, She is Lola Boutique, and Leolina Regular and Plus Size Boutique.
✈️ Looking for more adventure? Don’t miss my top picks for the best activities in Puerto Rico!
Walk on a historical beach
📍 Map It: 9RX6+WJR, Aguada 00602
Playa Cañones is one of the most popular places in Aguada, not for the warm waters or dark sand, but for the ruins of canyons that date back to World War II. These canyons were built as part of a strategy to protect the Caribbean, the Panama Canal, and the Ramsey military base in Aguadilla during the military conflict.
⛱️ Are you a beach lover? Don’t miss the most popular beaches in Puerto Rico!
Visit the only pyramid in Puerto Rico
📍 Map It: PR-411, Aguada, 00602 | Phone: (787) 868-4640 | Hours: 7 am – 4 pm daily
Although not exactly an ancient historical site, the Aguada Pyramid is one of Puerto Rico’s coolest hidden gems. Inspired by Mayan architecture, Nelson Ruiz and Emiliano Matos built it in 2009 as part of their interest in ancient civilizations and to serve as the final resting place for Ruiz and his wife.
🚗 How to Get There: You will find the pyramid in an open field with nothing else around. Park across the property in Parque Ramon Domenech and cross the street. Don’t mind the chain blocking the entrance, you’re allowed to freely walk up to the pyramid even if there is no one around.
Ermita de Espinar
Discover one of the first churches in the country
Don’t let the exterior fool you, Ermita de Espinar is one of the best things to do in Aguada for a dose of history. The church was constructed in the 17th century by the Spaniards and features the stone walls and floor from an even earlier church that was destroyed by a fire (set by the Taino) in 1529.
📚 Bookmark for Later: Puerto Rico’s Best Places to See
Parroquia San Francisco de Asis
Admire the church with the tallest twin towers in Puerto Rico
One of the top attractions in Aguada, the San Francisco de Asis Church has astonishing architecture. The current neogothic facade of the church was built between 1922 and 1936 following the 1918 earthquake, but the foundation of the church dates back to 1692.
🛏️ Need a Hotel? If you’re taking a trip to the Western region of Puerto Rico, Aguada is one of the best destinations to stay in. Browse the top apartment rentals in Aguada to find the best spot close to restaurants, outdoor activities, and top attractions.
Hike to a hidden waterfall in Puerto Rico’s mountains
📍 Map It: Aguada 00602
Just a short drive away from Aguada you’ll find Salto Atalaya, a beautiful waterfall also known as Salto La Loca. There are multiple ponds for swimming at the waterfall itself, but if you hike up the mountain, then you’ll find one of the best natural infinity pools in Puerto Rico.
👉 Did you Know? Puerto Rico has hundreds of waterfalls around the island. Here are the best waterfalls in Puerto Rico you can visit during your vacation.
Earthship Puerto Rico
Learn about Puerto Rico’s self-sustainable housing
After Hurricane Maria left hundreds of people in Puerto Rico homeless and without basic utilities like water and electricity, Lauralina Melendez and Mario Atunez collaborated with Earthship Biotecture to create self-sustaining houses in Aguada. The unique project consists of houses made with recyclable materials, solar panels, batteries, and a ventilating system that allows them to cool down – touring them makes for a super interesting experience!
Hacienda Jeanmarie Chocolat
Indulge yourself with locally made chocolate
Chocolate lovers can’t skip Hacienda Jeanmarie Chocolate, one of the most popular places in Aguada. This cacao farm offers tours to taste and learn about the crafting process of locally-made chocolate, but they only run during the weekends so make sure to call ahead and book a space in advance.
👉 Local Tip: Aguada is a city with top-notch gastronomy. If you’re a foodie, check out the top Puerto Rico foods you should hunt down in Aguada.
Pico de Piedra Beach
Enjoy a beach day with your kids
📍 Map It: Cam Playa, Aguada, 00602
Want to spend a day on the beach with your kids, friends, or partner? Then you’re in luck – Aguada is full of beautiful beaches! Pico de Piedra Beach is a sandy beach that offers facilities like bathrooms, showers, food kiosks, and gazebos. Besides sunbathing, visitors can go snorkeling, fishing, and scuba diving.
🚗 How to Get There: Public transportation doesn’t run from San Juan to Aguada, and renting a car in Puerto Rico is the best way to get to the city. Discover Cars offers great online deals without extra added fees.
Proyectos Uvas de Puerto Rico
Explore the only grape farm in western Puerto Rico
📍 Map It: Carretera 110 km 8 Barrio, 00602 | Phone: (787) 717-5759 | Hours: 10 am – 2 pm Mon-Sat, Closed Sundays | Entrance: $3
Touring a grape farm is another great outdoor activity to enjoy in Aguada. Known as Puerto Rico’s Grapes Project, the farm has an amazing crop of wine grapes and other produce. You can book a tour by calling Nadja Vale, the owner of the project, at least a day in advance of your visit.
Madre Vieja Reserve
Spend a day hiking in nature
📍 Map It: Espinar, Aguada
Located between Aguadilla and Aguada, and close to Espinar Beach, Madre Vieja Reserve is a lush area that offers activities like hiking, birdwatching, and fishing. Although not officially a reserve, many local groups are fighting to protect this heavenly space.
Hop between restaurants, beaches, and popular attractions
📍 Map It: Cam Playa, Aguada, 00602
If you’re looking for a condensed area with a ton to do, then the Guaniquilla coast is a great place to go. Besides being home to beautiful sunsets, this family-friendly area on the coast features sculptures, restaurants, local crafts, food kiosks, and top beaches like Playa Espinar, Playa Mameyito, and Playa Guaniquilla.
Refresh yourself with ice cream and sangria made from exotic fruit
📍 Map It: PR-419, Anasco, Aguada 00610 | Phone: (787) 431-1764 | Hours: 11 am – 4 pm Sat- Sun
Another fun attraction to explore in Aguada is the Pithaya Seguí farm. This peculiar fruit is not original to Puerto Rico, but many locals love its flavor. The fruit season runs from June to August, but you can enjoy the farm’s locally made pithaya ice cream or pithaya sangria any time of year.
Central Coloso Ruins
Explore the ruins of the last sugar mill in the country
📍 Map It: Aguada, 00602
History lovers can’t miss a stop at Central Coloso, an abandoned sugar mill that reflects the importance of the sugar cane industry in Puerto Rico during the 19th century. Coloso was active until 1998, becoming the last active sugar mill in Puerto Rico, and in 1999, the government declared the abandoned structure a historical monument.
FAQs About What to Do in Aguada
Is Aguada safe?
Aguada is a safe city for tourists. As with other Puerto Rican cities, visitors should take common safety measures like not leaving belongings in a car, not leaving things unattended in a public place, and not walking alone at night.
📚 Related Reading: Safety in Puerto Rico
When is the best time to visit Aguada?
The best time to visit Aguada is during the summer season when the tides are at their best, or from late August to November to get better prices on hotels and tours.
How do you get to Aguada from San Juan?
To get to Aguada, visitors need to get a rental car as public transportation doesn’t reach the city from San Juan. The fastest driving route is through José de Diego highway until Arecibo and later taking PR-2 to Aguada. The drive takes around two hours.
Where should I stay in Aguada?
Travelers visiting Aguada should stay in Rio Grande, Guayabo, Guaniquilla, Carrizal, Espinal, or Aguada Pueblo for a central location close to the best beaches, top attractions, outdoor activities, and the downtown area.
What are the best beaches in Aguada?
The best beaches in Aguada include Balneario Pico de Piedra, Guaniquilla Beach, Rio Grande Beach, Aguada Beach, Mameyito Beach, and Espinar Beach.
Thanks for reading all about the best things to do in Aguada. Don’t skip this city during your next visit to Puerto Rico!