Culebra Island (officially Isla Culebra, aka "Snake Island", Isla Chiquita /“Little Island”, and Ultima Virgen /“Last Virgin”) is an island-municipality of Puerto Rico. The isle is located 17 mi (27 km) east of mainland Puerto Rico, 12 mi (19 km) west of St Thomas and 9 mi (14 km) north of Vieques. Culebra covers a total area of approx 30 km2 (12 mi2) and has population of around 1,800 people, ranking it the least populous municipality of Puerto Rico.
Culebra Island is spread over 5 wards and Culebra Pueblo - port town and administrative center. Because of the island's arid nature, there is no run-off from streams or rivers, resulting in clear waters around the archipelago. Culebra is popular as a weekend (short-break) cruise destination for Americans and local residents (mainly from Vieques). The island features numerous beaches, among which is Playa Flamenco (also Marine Wildlife Reserve).
Until 1975, the lands west of Flamenco Beach was used for joint-US Navy/Marine Corps training (amphibious) exercises, including naval gunfire support and beach landings. Many military relics (including tanks) still remain in this region.
Many beaches on Culebra Island are only accessible via boats or private car. Of the smaller isles, only Culebrita and Luis Pena permit tourists to visit via water taxis from Culebra. Nature photography, hiking and snorkeling are other popular activities. To protect the nature park, motor vehicles, camping and littering are not permitted. Year-round camping is allowed only on Playa Flamenco.
Culebra Island cruise terminal
Cruise ships to Culebra Island dock (anchor) at Culebra - port town on the southwestern coast. On the following map of Isla Culebra you can see all the surrounding isles and the island's 5 barrios (neighbourhoods) named Flamenco, San isidoro, Fraile, Playa Sardinas 2 and Playa Sardinas 1.