Registration Package for School Trips

Kids at El Portal

Thank you for your interest in bringing an educational group to El Yunque! The safety and quality of your experience is important to us, so please read the following carefully and follow these guidelines: 

Minimum visiting requirements for all educational groups:

Safety: Due to safety regulations,visiting groups with grades K-12 must have a minimum of one (1) group leader for every 10 students, while university groups must have at least one (1) professor tending the group. We can provide programs for school groups of 30 or less at El Portal Visitor Center with prior reservations on Tuesday, Friday or Saturday when staff is available. 

Identification: Students must come in uniforms or have visible identification.

Reservation: All school groups are required to make a reservation at least two (2) weeks prior to visiting El Yunque National Forest. Sign off on Contacto Verde forms and access into the forest during heavy visitation cannot be guaranteed without prior reservation and may be limited for visitor safety due to parking capacity and ongoing road construction projects. If you have any additional questions, you may contact our Coordinator

Make your reservation:  

  • Once the reservation application is submitted under the appropriate time, the Forest’s Public Service Team Staff will process and schedule the visit, pending all information is complete. Forest staff may contact the group leader in case additional information is needed.
  • A confirmation email will be sent to the soliciting group, with the Reservation Confirmation​ at least one week in advance to the requested date.
  • The group leader must then print a copy of the Confirmation and have at hand for Forest staff the day of the visit.
  • Please be aware that due to weather or emergency closures, the forest may close with little to no advanced  notice.

Plan your visit: 

Regulations: Before visiting, group leaders must ensure that all group members are aware of the forest regulations, and uphold to them during their visitation:

  • Please talk with classroom noise levels while visiting the forest so as not to alter the experience of other visitors.
  • Pack it in, pack it out! Please dispose of trash by taking it with you out of the forest and disposing of properly.
  • If entering the Gift Stores, students must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
  • Do not feed or disturb any animals found in the forest.
  • Help preserve and protect this special forest  by informing Forest staff if someone is writing or scratching building surfaces or the trees of the Forest.  This can result in a citation and possible fines of $100.00 36CFR 261.9(a)
  • It is​ not permitted for buses to block the roads or the traffic flow.
  • For your safety, it is recommended that groups do not walk in the road.

Group Capacity: Maximum 30 people per group 

Transportation: Maximum of 40’ size of School Bus. Vehicles with commercial license plates are not permitted unless there is prior approval.  Due to parking capacity limitations and road construction, access to the main Rd 191 corridor may not be authorized for school buses.*Arranging transportation is your responsibility*

Entrance Fee: Fees are currently waived for non-commercial school/educational groups at El Portal Visitor Center. Fees for other non-educational groups apply at El Portal. 

Parking: School buses may only park in the designated areas.

Restrictions: Groups greater than 75 require a special non-commercial permit (but must split into groups of no greater than 30)  Permits can be requested by emailing SM.FS.EYNFSU@USDA.GOV.

For non-educational groups, entrance fees will apply at El Portal and advanced reservations in will be required to access the main recreation area on Rd 191.

What to bring: For greater enjoyment and safety during the visit, it is recommended that every group member brings water, snacks, a garbage bag, sunblock, rainwear, and comfortable shoes.

Contacto Verde: Forest Staff at El Portal Visitor Center are able to stamp forms for Contacto Verde hours.

Educational Talks: Forest Rangers can speak briefly to your students on a variety of topics at El Portal Visitor Center. This must be arranged with the Forest Service in advance to ensure availability. Plan for 20 minutes - 1 hour for this activity. Some of the available topics are:

  • Biodiversity of El Yunque
  • The Coquis and Tree Frogs of Puerto Rico
  • The Importance of Water to El Yunque
  • Extinction in Puerto Rico: what we lost, what remains  
  • The Wild and Scenic Rivers of El Yunque
  • Through the Years: the History of El Yunque
  • Climate Change: Potential Effects in El Yunque
  • The Importance of Trees
  • At-Risk Species