Cabo Rojo Los Morillos Lighthouse - El Faro | Puerto Rico

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Cabo Rojo Lighthouse Photography Hot Spot

Faro Los Morrillos de Cabo Rojo, also known as Los Morrillos Light, is a historic lighthouse located in the municipality of Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico.  This is a top ten photography location. The area also has The Natural Rock Arch just a short walk away making this a top location for photography.

Located at the southwestern tip of the island of Puerto Rico, this lighthouse was constructed in 1882 in order to guide passing ships through the southeast entrance from the Caribbean Sea through the treacherous Mona Passage into the Atlantic Ocean. The lighthouse is located over a white lime cliff which is surrounded by saltwater lagoons and marshes. The cliffs surrounding the lighthouse drop over 200 feet into the ocean.

The lighthouse’s architecture is distinguished by its simplicity, with minimal decoration and an unelaborated cornice repeated through the structure. The illuminating apparatus is housed in a cast-iron, copper, and glass lantern. The lenticular lens was manufactured by the French firm Sautter, Lemonnier and Company.

On the way to the Cabo Rojo lighthouse, you will drive through the wildlife refuge and the salt flats. The salt flats were added to the Cabo Rojo Refuge in 1999, becoming a part of the National Wildlife system. This addition will allow the Service to conserve and protect the single most crucial point of convergence for migratory shorebirds in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The Cabo Rojo Salt Flats are considered unique and irreplaceable. The coastline, mangroves, seagrass beds, and offshore coral reefs next to the area are prime fish habitat and are considered individual aquatic sites.

Just a short distance down the hill on the trail from the lighthouse, you will find  “El Punte Natural or El Puente Natural de Piedra” (The Natural Bridge or The Natural Stone Bridge). This is a fabulous photography hot spot in itself.

The very attentive staff is well aware of all of the photography hot spots in the area. Where you see the image of the beach area, it is just a short walk through the wilderness to the beach.

Combate Beach Resort 

RESERVATIONS

1-787-254-2358

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Luquillo Sunrise Beach Inn 

When you stay on the northern side of the Island.

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Photography Information

Lens: Generally this area is a wide-angle lens location, but you will go through the wildlife refuge to get here so bring your zoom lens too. Keep in mind this can be a great night photography location at the right time of year.

Gear List at a Glance: Circular polarizing filter, neutral density filters, tripod, shutter release, wide-angle, and zoom lens. CPL filters will help you to create dynamic images. We recommend never shooting outdoors without one. They will make your white puffy clouds whiter, take the silver glare off of waters and replace it with a beautiful reflection. You have moving waters at the location so you will want to have your neutral density filters with you to get the long exposure, milky water effect.

When to Go: Any time of year. It is a tourist location, so midweek is the best offseason. Summer can be sweltering of course.

See our How to Shoot Waterfall Photography Page for more details.

This will also be a great night photography spot the right time of year. We were here during a full moon and when the milky way is below the horizon during winter.

How to Shoot Milky Way and Night Sky Photography

What you will need:

Light pollution map light pollution map

Camera – You will need a camera that you can manually control your ISO, shutter speed, and aperture.

Lens – A fast wide-angle lens of 1.4 – 2.8 is ideal. If you use a 3.5 or higher (slower lens) you will have to increase the ISO. The higher the ISO the more grain or digital noise or grain that will appear in your photos. Nikon’s 28mm f/1.8G or Canon’s 28mm f/1.8 are good choices if you are going lens shopping for your night photography trip.

Tripod – A good sturdy tripod is essential for night photography. If it gets windy you will need a sturdy one and we never know what Mother Nature will bring us while we are out there. Keep that in mind when you buy one to go in your suitcase if you are going on a plane. It should be sturdy enough to withstand the wind but small enough to fit in your suitcase.

Sky Map – Sky Guide is available through the iTunes Store for $1.99. It has a 5 out of 5-star rating on both the current (3.2) version (1200+ ratings) and all previous versions (8600+ ratings).   Android Version? Sky Guide is not currently available as an Android app. The closest thing I can suggest is SkySafari ($2.99).

Flashlight –  Our choice is Coast brand for flashlights. The ideal flashlight will have high lumens and you will be able to zoom the in and out on the amount of light emitting from the flashlight. I like a small stream of light not a wide amount of light. That was I can be specific as to what exactly I want to paint with light. Get the HP7, PX45, or the G50. Ideally, go with the  HP7 if you can.

Light Pollution and Moon Phaze Map – The best time to go is during a new moon and you want to be in the darkest area possible.

Remote Shutter Release – When painting with light and you want to go over a 30-second exposure you must have a shutter release to use your bulb mode. When exposing your pictures in general you can use the remote release so you are not using your hand to press the shutter button and make the camera move even a little bit.

Milky Way Photography

Use a Tripod – First of all you must be on a tripod. A good sturdy tripod is necessary if it is windy. If the tripod moves your picture will blur.

Focus – Use live view. When you use live view your mirror locks up and it does not drop so avoid any movement at all inside the camera.

To focus in the dark use your camera’s live view and focus on a bright star. You can also use the infinity setting on your lens but do several test shots to see if it is accurate. It can be off a little on some lenses.

ISO – Start with ISO 3200.  This is just a standard starting point and you will adjust from here.

Shutter Speed – Remember the earth is rotating. If you leave the shutter open for too long you will see star trails that will not make for a crisp image. You can do star trails specifically but that’s not what we are going for here since we are starting out with milky way photography. We want crisp non-star trail images when doing this. Here is the formula to avoid star trails. The 500 rule – Divide 500 by the focal length of your lens. So, if you have a 24mm lens on a full-frame camera, you will set your shutter speed to 20 sec. (500/24 = 20.83). If you are using a crop sensor camera first do the math of the crop sensor to find the focal length. Cannon is 1.6, Nikon is 1.5. Convert to full-frame focal length then use the formula. Nikon 18mm x 1.5= 27mm – 500/27 = 18.51 seconds.

Aperture – Depth of field isn’t very important on these shots but letting the light into the camera is, therefore you should shoot wide open if. If the depth of field is important to you try not to go to high. (wide open = the lowest aperture your camera will allow, ex. 2.8).

Those are all of the basic starting points for doing your milky way shots.  You will want to find some interesting foreground to make your shot dynamic. Doing plain old milky way shots will not win you any awards.

White Balance – Always shoot your night photography raw so you can edit it in Lightroom.  When in live view mode, you can change your white balance settings and see what it will look like. You can shoot in shade or cloud as a standard-setting and adjust things later. You can shoot the sky in tungsten mode to make it bluer but if you have trees and such in the picture they will come out blue also.  I sometimes add in color in my milky way to match my subject.

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♦ Waterfalls ♦ Long Exposures ♦ Studio ♥ Trick Photography ♦ Milky Way ♦ Custom Lessons

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Photography Magazine Extra Pam Goodyer
Combate Beach Resort - Puerto Rico Photography Hot Spot Hotel location

We foud it to be the best place with the best rates and great service!

Hotel Information: 

Combate Beach Resort  -Email: combatebeachresort@live.com – Phone:1-787-254-2358 – Carr. 3301, Km. 2.7 Interior, Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico, 00623,

FUN IN THE SUN

Recreational activities to enjoy before, during or after your photo day.

Whether it’s setting out into the clear waters off the coast, exploring the trails that crisscross the area’s lush forests or simply enjoying their on-site recreational activities, they have something for the whole family to enjoy:

  • Spend some time frolicking in the adult and children’s pools – after a long day of photography.
  • Serve up a match of beach volleyball at the sand court.
  • Paddle the day away with their convenient kayak rentals.
  • Get your adrenaline pumping with mountain bike rentals and throw your camera in your backpack.

Photography Magazine Extra Pam Goodyer

Park and Area Information:

Entrance Fees: There are no entrance fees to the park/lighthouse. 

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 Restaurants:

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Camping:

Call DRNA Information: Phone: 787-999-2200 x 5156 (Mon-Fri) Fax: 787-999-2303

Departamento de Recursos Naturales y Ambientales
Carr 8838, San Juan, 00927, Puerto Rico
http://goo.gl/maps/mtp3a

IT TAKES UP TO 10 DAYS TO GET CAMPING SET UP. YOU MUST PLAN IN ADVANCE.

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