Can I see the bioluminescence in the daytime?

No, the glow is only visible at night.

Why should I go with a licensed guide?

Licensed tour operators are complying with the conservation protocol established and have the necessary course requirements to provide a safe and educational tour. Licensed operators are required to purchase permits, pay taxes, have a navigation license, insurance, be certified in CPR and First Aid, pay a fee to the DNER which contributes to the conservation efforts, and comply fully with the regulations set in the management plan. Guides have taken courses and adhere to a strict safety code. The licensed operators listed here each offer you a magical experience on the Biobay. Their expertise is invaluable.

What should I wear?

Clothing that you don’t mind getting wet. Bathing suit and shorts, with a loose fitting top or rashguard.

What shoes should I wear?

Water shoes or flip flops are recommended.

Are trips cancelled due to rain?

No. To be on the bay when it is raining is a magical experience and has been called the Bay of Lights. Each raindrop hitting the surface will provide a display of light.

Will I get wet?

You won’t get completely wet because you won’t be swimming but you will have water in your kayak and may be splashed by the paddles.

What do I need to bring with me?

As little as possible. Many companies provide storage on the van or bus while you are on the tour, but it is advised not to bring valuables or electronics including cell phones, cameras, or devices. Bring a towel and water. Pay for the tour with a credit card on the phone when you make the reservation so you don’t need to bring your wallet or purse.

Do I have to drive my own car on the bumpy road?

Tour operators have transportation to the bay but in unique circumstances you may be asked to drive and follow the guide to the entrance.

Will anything jump in my boat?

Small fish or shrimp may jump in your boat. Just help it out or tell your guide. It’s a sign of good luck!

Should I tip the guide?

It is courtesy to tip your guides.

Why can’t I swim?

The law against swimming in the bay is a proactive step taken to reduce the human impact on the bay. Body lotions, sunning oils, soap residue, shampoos, etc. all have a biologic impact.

What if I have never kayaked?

When you make your reservation tell the guide your experience level. It helps to have a basic understanding of kayaking but guides can assist you. The bay is protected and usually very calm so the level of difficulty is very easy.

What are the glowing stones in the pathway made of?

The stones are made of Phosphorescent plastic. The pathway is designed to light your way without light pollution. They also help your eyes transition to the glow of the bay.

Is bioluminescence the same as phosphorescence?

Phosphorescence is a different type of light emission. The plastic phosphorescent stones charge up with the sun then glow in the dark.

Is alcohol permitted on tours?

No. It is illegal, as is smoking on the bay.

 

About The Author

Kelly Thompson
editor • publisher • designer

Kelly’s background in graphic design and photography led her to creative jobs all over the U.S., Australia and Europe. She moved to Vieques in 2003 and started publishing the Vieques Insider magazine in 2014 allowing her to share her love of the island through photos and stories.

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