The Caribbean's Last Secret

A bombing range long kept visitors away and has left Vieques uniquely unspoiled

Part of the fun of vacationing on the Puerto Rican island of Vieques is to see the looks you get from folks back home. Many Americans recall the long-running controversy over U.S. Navy war games held on Vieques. They picture the place as a bomb-scarred moonscape, its waters poisoned with depleted-uranium shells. And that's exactly the image that some visitors would like to perpetuate--keeping to themselves the secrets of the island's miles of pristine beaches, brilliant coral reefs and unique glow-in-the-dark waters.

The truth is, the Navy bombed only about 1 sq. mi. on the eastern end of Vieques, even...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!