Barcadi and Bio Bay

San Juan Travel Blog

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Outside Casa Bacardi

Our goal was to get up and spend some time on the beach and then head to Casa Bacardi. We missed our beach time because we slept in so late...oh well!

We tried to take a cab to Casa Bacardi, but it was too expensive, so our savvy cab driver offered to take us to Old San Juan where we could catch the ferry. The ferry goes from Old San Juan to Catano where Casa Bacardi is located and the ferry ride is only 50 cents, bargain!

Once we landed in Catano we checked the map and decided to walk to Casa Bacardi. It was much further than we expected, and it felt even further because of the heat. We were both sweating up a storm. Once we arrived and they offered us free mojitos we knew everything was going to be ok!

The tour itself was ok.

On the tour and very sweaty!
I have done the Coors Brewery tour and the Jameson Distillery tour in Ireland and those are both better. In the Coors tour you get the see the hops drying and other interesting parts of the process. At Bacardi they take you through a museum with exhibits on the family history and Bacardi history, but they don't let you anywhere near the actual distillation process. Since the company is family-owned and had to flee Cuba perhaps they like their secrecy.

At the end of the tour you get some free drinks, which is really why we were all there anyway! We also bought some already mixed mojitos to sneak on board our cruise tomorrow.

After Bacardi we stopped at the market to get some snacks and beers for our trip out to the Bio Bay.

At this point it was 5 p.m.

Finally, the free drinks
and we had not eaten all day. For some reason Brian was not interested in feeding me, which makes me very grouchy. Luckily I had a shake with me so I didn't bite his head off. :)

We stopped and had dinner at Miro a seafood restaurant by our hotel, which cooks Catalan style food and is decorated in the style of Jean Miro, hence the name. The food was amazing. The pitcher of sangria was amazing too!

Our big plan for the night was a kayak trip through the bio bay. Puerto Rico has a large population of biolumeniscent plankton in three locations on the island. You can tour these places at night by kayak. I have been looking forward to this for months.

They picked us up at the hotel and drove us about an hour to the bay. Once there we jumped in kayaks and paddled out. Oh, by the way, there is going to be a long paddled through a tunnel of mangroves, in the pitch black, without lights, in order to reach the bio lagoon. This was not on th website. If it had been I could have prepared myself and been super excited for it. But since it was a surprise, one which came while I was already in the dark, paddling and running into mangrove branches and getting stuck in the trees and feeling what I kept praying were not snakes and spiders falling on me, I did not cope too well with the surprise.

Looking back on it now, it was a great experience. But I wish I had known what to expect and I blame Peter at EcoAction Tours for not preparing us better to get through the mangroves. He was in the back, in a kayak with two young women, and the flashlight, and happy to let us find our way fumbling around in the dark. I was not pleased with his tour.

Putting all of that aside, kayaking in the dark, under the stars, while the paddles are glowing, seeing a dash of light as fish swim along, putting your hand in the water and watching the glow all around it, was awesome. Once we reached the lagoon and sat under a sky full of stars and just listened to the water lapping it was so peaceful. I would definitely do this again, I would just make sure not to be the front boat, or to have a light if I was. Brian and I are getting better at kayaking together, we made it through most of the experience without yelling and he only hit with the paddle twice. :) We tried to capture some of the biolumeniscence on our video camera, check out Brian's blog to see if it turned. out.

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Outside Casa Bacardi
Outside Casa Bacardi
On the tour and very sweaty!
On the tour and very sweaty!
Finally, the free drinks
Finally, the free drinks
San Juan
photo by: sethwd2