Check out the party scene at the two Puntas beaches—Antonio’s and Sandy—on the North Coast. During the day, experienced surfers revere the area waves that can rise 25 feet. In the evening, join the beach-bum set at three of the local late-night bars: Bunger’s Inn, a rollicking spot for live music or karaoke; Rock Bottom Bar and Grill, a second-story, in-the-round bar surrounded by palms and surfboards; and Tamboo, a beachside bar where you can sip tropical drinks in the sand.
Watch for whales from the shoreline of Maria's beach, a narrow strip of sand popular among surfers for its six-foot swells in spring. Watch the sun set from the deck of the Calypso Café, one of the only beachfront businesses in this stretch of the town.
Snorkel in the calmer waters along the southern Caribbean Coast. Scuba divers should explore the area around Desecheo Island, a national wildlife refuge known for its vivid array of angelfish (Charter boats fromTaino Divers; $95).
Soak up the scenery at Tres Palmas, a federally protected nature reserve where wild cows and horses graze in the fields. Beaches in this downtown area are largely uninhabited by tourists, save a mellow crowd of surfers and beachgoers who don’t mind the lack of snack bars and public bathrooms. Cross the street to the pinchera—a kebab stand—for chicken-on-a-stick for $1.50.