Glowing Plankton

San Juan Travel Blog

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Fresh fried potatoes...right from the vending machine at the Ferry Port

This was another full day for us.  Leaving the hotel at 11am after the long first day was a good idea and got us plenty rested.  Our goal was to see the Barcardi Rum Distillery which is actually a bit farther from the resort area then we anticipated.  The taxi wanted $35 to do it, but when I told him $20 was the max he agreed to drive us to Old Town so we could catch the ferry across the bay to the distillery.  That actually worked pretty well, with the ferry costing only $0.50/pp.  Where we error-ed was in walking to the distillery from the Ferry station.  It took us an hour and we each lost about 10lbs in sweat since it was another hot day.

The tour was interesting and they gave us free drinks after of course. 

We caught a cab back, missed the ferry, waited 30 minutes, and then caught the bus back to the hotel.

On the walk to the Bacardi Distillery, a beautiful sight.
  We didn't really eat all day except for a small breakfast so we were starving and Kim found an awesome restaurant for dinner.  I had a mixed plate of seafood which was cooked perfectly.  Their bread and butter was incredible, as was the fried calamari appetizer we had.  I think it was called Miro, and it was one or two blocks south of Condado/Ashford. 

We had to rush out of the restaurant to get back to our hotel in time to change for our activity...night kayaking with glowing plankton.  The tour company picked us up on time and it took about 90 minutes to get to the bay.  Kim and I shared a kayak and jumped right in like pro's.  We were directed from the bay to a small river opening about 5 yards across.  It was dark and we were without lights so we had some difficulty just seeing where we were going.
On the walk to the Bacardi Distillery, a beautiful sight.
  Combine that with my rusty kayak driving skills and we had a couple of collisions.  Despite that we had a great time navigating up the river for about 20 minutes until we got to our destination. 

As we got farther into the river I could start to see something odd in the water.  My paddle hit the water the water around it started to glow.  It was amazing.  When we got into the open lagoon it was even more amazing.  I dipped my hand in and scooped up water and could see the plankton light up and squiggle around.  It was absolutely incredible.  Another couple of people in our tour got in the water (we weren't supposed to do this) but the light around them was amazing as they swam.  We tried to get video but it was just too dark.
The symbol of the Bacardi company.
 

The guide explained that the plankton in this area respond to the motion in the water by becoming excited and emitting light.   This type of plankton processes nutrients really effeciently so they need to have a steady supply of food which comes from the mangrove trees and the algea on the bottom of the lagoon we were in. 

 
Our trip back up the river was much more successful due to our refreshed kayaking skills.  Exhausted, and content, we hit the sack. 

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Fresh fried potatoes...right from …
Fresh fried potatoes...right from…
On the walk to the Bacardi Distill…
On the walk to the Bacardi Distil…
On the walk to the Bacardi Distill…
On the walk to the Bacardi Distil…
The symbol of the Bacardi company.
The symbol of the Bacardi company.
San Juan Sights & Attractions review
Rum Distillary Tour
The tour of the largest production facility of the Bacardi family is free and interesting. There's a great video they show at the beginning and the m… read entire review
San Juan
photo by: sethwd2