This is the last of Capt. Gregg's
regular articles for Enchanted-Isle.com. A huge
"Thanks" goes out to Gregg for all his years of service
as a fishing columnist for this Vieques site. We
look forward to hearing from him from time to time as a
guest writer. Gracias, amigo!
Now that another early and seriously frigid
winter is settling in on most of the US, Iím starting to get
daily calls and e-mails from folks planning a first trip to
Vieques. If youíre one of these people and youíd like to head
down in the next few months hereís a few pieces of advice that
will make your vacation a bit easier.
The first thing you should do before booking airline tickets or
accommodations is call and reserve a rental car on the island.
This may sound strange and a bit backwards but trust me on this
one. Between Christmas and Easter Week there are rarely enough
cars to go around for all the tourists and a decent vehicle,
preferably a Jeep, is essential on Vieques. You wonít be able to
enjoy our great beaches to the fullest without one.
Reserving a car can be a bit frustrating this time of year since
the rental companies are so busy. Donít even attempt to do this
by e-mail. Call them directly and donít bother leaving a message
if you get a machine. Keep calling until you get a live person.
If there are no cars available then you might want to alter your
travel plans. Thatís why I recommend doing this before making
any other reservations, such as airlines or hotels, which will
be a lot more difficult to change.
If there are no cars available and you canít move your travel
plans you should still move forward with your trip. Deciding on
where to stay will now be more important. Esperanza is by far
the best choice since so much is within walking distance in this
town including several great restaurants and some really nice
beaches. Publicos, our local taxis, are available at all hours
and many of the drivers live nearby. Itís likely that youíll
find one driver and use him for most of the week. Itís also
likely that youíll meet other travelers who you can bum rides
from especially if you hang out at Duffyís or the Yacht Club
during Happy Hour. The Bio Bay trips also depart from Esperanza
and the weekends have a street fair atmosphere. Itís definitely
a fun town but can be a bit noisy if youíre staying right on the
Malecon. Book a place one street back and you wonít have any
As an added convenience, if youíre planning a
fishing trip both Capts. Franco Gonzalez and J Fergeson depart
from the pier at Esperanza. Since Iím going to be staying up
here in Florida this coming season those guys will be the only
charter fishing boats available. Their schedules are sure to
fill up quickly so Iíd recommend contacting them soon. Kayak
fishing with Vieques Adventures is another option and theyíll
also pick you up right there in Esperanza.
Even though Iíll be up here on Pine Island, Florida this coming
season, feel free to contact me with any questions you might
have about Vieques. With the economy hurting so badly these
days, Vieques is still a very affordable place to get away from
it all without too much hassle. So if youíre snowed in somewhere
in New York right now and could use a little Global Warming, go
ahead and make your plans for the island.
Capt. Gregg McKee,