Camuy – An Intriguing Destination with Many Treasures
The city of Camuy has two nicknames, "La Ciudad del Sol Taino", which means the “City of the Taíno Sun”, or "La Ciudad Romantica" meaning “Romantic City”. It is said the city’s name was derived from the Taíno word for sun, which is Camuy. Others believe that it was named after the Camuy River. No matter how the name originated, one thing is for certain - it is a breathtaking city. The sprawling beaches lined with large palm trees and the beautiful coastal sunsets are a sight many visitors will never forget.
Camuy is a lovely coastal destination in Puerto Rico that is near to the cities of Hatillo, Quebradillas and Lares. It has an estimated population of approximately 35 000 and covers and area of 120 square kilometers. Camuy will be celebrating its 200th anniversary this year after being established by Petronila Matos in the year 1807. The city is known for its spectacular landscape and fascinating attractions. Noteworthy sights that are recommended to visitors include the Iglesia El Calvario, Hacienda Morell, Penon Brussi Beach and Lake Guajataca. But its most spectacular tourist attraction is the Rio Camuy Caverns.
The Rio Camuy Caverns, also known as the Rio Camuy Cave Park, is set on 268 acres of park grounds with picnic areas, a souvenir shop, trails and a very interesting exhibition hall. Due to its popularity, it is suggested that reservations are made in advance. The caves were opened to the public in 1987, even though their existence had been know by the Taíno people for centuries and it became a significant research site for speleologists from the 1950’s. The caves were formed by the Camuy River and are accessible through a sinkhole, which is 200 feet deep. Once in the caves visitors will be transported into a magical world of cathedral-like caverns, limestone sculptures and glistening stalactites and stalagmites. The clear water and caressing rays of the sun make the caverns dance with light. It is also home to fascinating fish species that are completely blind since having adapted to their dark cave habitat. It is also the third largest system of caves and caverns in the world.
The citizens of Camuy are also great sportsmen with Martial Arts, Basketball and Volleyball being the primary sports of the city. Most of the city is predominantly Catholic, but a handful of other religions are practiced here. The Church of Stone, or Protestant Iglesia de Piedra, is a great attraction as the entire building has been constructed from stone.
This majestic destination in Puerto Rico is a fascinating and historically rich city. Over and above having some of Puerto Rico’s most breathtaking attractions, Camuy also boasts colorful and rhythmic festivals throughout the year. It is a seaside resort with many hidden treasures and diverse adventures.