I had a five night visit to Los Roques in Jan 2013 and thought I would post a mini review of the place which may help people who are planning there trip.
Firstly, I read a lot about people saying that you shouldn’t stay more than a couple of nights as you’ll get bored. This is not the case, I wish we had had more than five nights there. Met various people who were there for 10 days/2 weeks and they loved it.
The basics of Los Roques are that they are a collection of small Islands and you will most likely stay on Grand Roques, I think this is the only island with accommodation actually, although I heard about an island with a single house on it that you can hire. On Grand Roques you have lots of Posadas, places to buy beer, sweets, drinks some excellent cheap ice-cream (helado de coco). You can walk up to the top of one of the small peaks on the island (about 20mins from the town) for views of the island and out to see – good for sunset/sunrise.
There are beaches on the main island but generally everyone takes a boat out to one of the other islands. There are many to try, the closest are six minutes away and the furthest is an hour I think. Some have restaurants where you can try cheap lobster others don’t have any shops at all so you need to bring food and drink with you which all posadas can provide. Otherwise there is a Empanada shop (think south American Cornish pasty) which sells cheap and tasty fish, cheese and beef empanadas.
Scuba diving is good there, I saw some decent sized fish and a manta ray. If you’re lucky you’ll see a turtle. There are two scuba diving shops there. The one I went with is close to the airport and run by a Colombian and his son. All the people there were very nice and safety conscious.
Kite surfing – I didn’t do any of this myself but it looks like some of the islands there are excellent places to learn. You have to travel to one of the other island to try it as a couple of them have decent wind and more importantly shallow seas, some only up to hip height for a couple of hundred meters out which helps the instructor to be with you and to get up and your balance again when you fall.
Where to stay – most of the Posadas are all inclusive on the island. They will provide breakfast, lunch, dinner and pay for the boats out to the other Islands. There are a couple which do Bed and breakfast only and you can choose to add on lunch and dinner as extras. We stayed at one of the Bed and Breakfast places called Piano y Papaya which was very nice with very friendly staff. We ate empanadas for lunch and then went out to dinner at night. I think that this worked out a decent amount cheaper than staying at one of the all-inclusive places but then I didn’t try one so can’t be sure. One thing you need to know is that the other Posadas only serve dinner for their guests so you won’t be able to eat at those. There only seemed to be two or three proper restaurants on the island but they were good. Also the Empanada place turns into a chicken and beef burger place in the evening.
Prices (based on the black market exchange rate of £1 to BSF 25)
£60 per room for Bed and breakfast
£0.60 per empanada
£0.20 per ice-cream from the little shops
£80 2 x dive scuba
£8 for boat, chair and umbrella to the closest islands
£14 for three course set meal at restaurant#1
£10 for a meal from the a la carte menu
£1.50 for a burger
£1 for a beer from an expensive bar
£0.35 for a beer from the shop
Hope this helps.