On the island's southeast corner, Arroyo seems to have dozed off shortly after the reign of ‘King Sugar’ and never awakened. It’s the first town on the south coast you’ll hit when heading clockwise along the island from San Juan and is typical of the area's seaside burgs, with economies that hobble along through a trickle of tourism and small commercial fishing ventures. The dusty main drag, Calle Morse, passes 19th-century structures and salt-weathered wooden homes with drooping tin roofs and shuttered windows, eventually ending at the still, blue Caribbean.
Entering the village from Hwy 3 to Calle Morse, you’ll notice the upside of Arroyo’s isolation is a lack of commercial development – there’s not a fast-food chain in sight, and this lends it a more rough, ready and perhaps just plain real Caribbean feel. Nevertheless, the sleepy town is only worth the detour for those with time to spare.