Combate

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Indeed, people from this gritty seaside settlement, wedged incongruously between Boquerón beach and the Cabo Rojo lighthouse, are still known locally as Los Mata con Hacha  for their historical penchant to wield sharp weaponry against rivals from the nearby town of Lajas. believed that on this beach a battle indeed took place between invaders from the north and local villagers, who fought with axes and so earned the nickname mata con hachas, or kill with axes. Situated at the end of Hwy 3301, a short spur road that branches west from Hwy 301, El Combate today is an untidy sprawl of tawdry guesthouses, backyard trailer-camping sites, beach houses and restaurants. But while the down-at-heel bar scene might be a little on the rough side, the thin 3-mile-long strip of sand that affronts the Pasaje de la Mona is a perennially popular vacation spot for Puerto Rican families and high-school and college kids looking for some fun during the weekends. To be honest, these days the history lesson takes a back seat to the sheer indolent beauty of this place, which occupies a quiet corner of Cabo Rojo and a special place in Puerto Rican hearts. On any long weekend or holiday, expect a mob scene at Combate, with parking next to impossible, plenty of kiosks and activities, and large families enjoying one of the most pleasant beaches on the island.

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