A round trip through the west half of the island would take in Ponce, the second city (reached by motorway from San Juan via Caguas), Guánica, Parguera, San Germán, Boquerón, Mayagüez (the third city), Aguadilla, Quebradillas and Arecibo, with side trips to the Maricao State Forest and fish hatchery, the Río Abajo State Forest and Lake Dos Bocas, the precolumbian ceremonial ball-park near Utuado, and the Arecibo observatory, with the world’s largest radio telescope. Route 625, T8782612, www.naic.edu, the Fundación Angel Ramos Visitor Center, open Wed-Fri 1200-1600, Sat and Sun 0900-1600.
Off the motorway which runs from San Juan to Ponce is Baños de Coamo, which was the island’s most fashionable resort from 1847 to 1958; legend has it that the spring was the fountain of youth which Juan Ponce de León was seeking. Take Route 153 from the motorway and then 546. It has been redeveloped by Paradores Puertorriqueños and still has a thermal bath (see under Sleeping). About 45 minutes southeast of Coamo is Salinas, a fishing and farming centre. There are several good seafood restaurants on the waterfront. The Marina de Salinas offers moorings and other services to yachties as well as boat transport to islands and accommodation, T7528484, F7687676, Email: jar...@coqui.net