Moca, Puerto Rico

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Municipio Autónomo de Moca
City and Municipality
Skyline of Moca
Flag of Moca
"Rebeldes", "Los Vampiros", "La Ciudad del Mundillo"
Anthem: "Doce barrios, doce estrellas"
Location of Moca in Puerto Rico
Location of Moca in Puerto Rico
Coordinates: 18°23′41″N 67°06′48″W / 18.39472°N 67.11333°W / 18.39472; -67.11333Coordinates: 18°23′41″N 67°06′48″W / 18.39472°N 67.11333°W / 18.39472; -67.11333
CountryUnited States
TerritoryPuerto Rico
FoundedJune 22, 1772
 • MayorJosé E. Aviles Santiago (PNP)
 • Senatorial dist.4 - Mayagüez
 • Representative dist.17,18
 • Total51.4 sq mi (133.0 km2)
 • Land51 sq mi (133 km2)
 • Water0 sq mi (0 km2)
 • Total40,109
 • Density780/sq mi (300/km2)
Time zoneUTC−4 (AST)
Zip code
Major RoutesPR primary 2.svg CR 110 jct wide.svg CR 111 jct wide.svg CR 112 jct wide.svg CR 125 jct wide.svg

Moca (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈmoka]) is a municipality of Puerto Rico, located in the north-western region of the island, north of Añasco; southeast of Aguadilla; east of Aguada; and west of Isabela and San Sebastián. Moca is spread over 12 wards and Moca Pueblo (the downtown area and the administrative center of the ville). It is part of the Aguadilla-Isabela-San Sebastián Metropolitan Statistical Area.

The name of Moca comes from the tree Andira Ínermis whose beautiful pink/purple flowers expose their presence, which are very common in this region.

The Moca tree was officially adopted as the representative tree of the town on February 19, 1972. Moca is famous for its Mundillo lace. Mundillo is the Puerto Rican name for handmade bobbin lace. It is almost synonymous with the small town of Moca.


Moca known as "La Capital del Mundillo" (The capital of lace), it is famous for it's lace or Mundillo. It was founded by Don José de Quiñónez on June 22, 1772. Diverse versions exist on the date of its foundation. Manuel de Ubeda and Delgado, in his "Isla de Puerto Rico. "Estudio histórico, geográfico y estadístico", published in San Juan in 1878, says to us that it was founded on 1774. On the other hand, Cayetano Coll y Toste, in the "Boletín histórico de Puerto Rico", maintains that it was founded on June 22, 1772.

On August 14, 1898, The United States Armed Forces entered and took the town of Moca finding no resistance. On August 8, 1898, after the Spanish–American War officially ended, Puerto Rico became a United States territory as an outcome of the Treaty of Paris of 1898.


The Labadie Mansion inspired Enrique Laguerre to write La Llamarada. The property was restored as a museum and renamed the Palacete Los Moreau, in honor of Laguerre's fictional characters.
Moca Pueblo, August 2006

Moca[1] is located on the northwest.

Localization: 18° 23'N and 67° 06'W of the Meridian of Greenwich. It is located in a small valley, in the skirts of "The Tuna" mountains, at 141 feet (43 m) above sea level.

Climate: Tropical with hardly noticeable seasonal changes. Temperatures throughout the year range highs between76 and 98 °F (24 and 37 °C) and lows between 50 and 75 °F (10 and 24 °C).

Hydrography: The Río Culebrinas crosses its territory from east to west, and its tributaries include the gorges of Los Gatos, Lassalle, de las Damas, Vieja, Los Romanes, the Morones, Higuillo, Chiquita, Yagruma, Echeverria, Aguas Frias, Las Marias, de los Méndez, La Caraíma, Grande, y Dulce. Cerro Moca, Monte El Ojo, Monte Mariquita of the Jaicoa Mountain Range

On May 16, 2010, Moca was the epicenter of a strong 5.8 earthquake. The earthquake was felt in the entire island and also in the Dominican Republic and the Virgin Islands. Damage was reported in various towns.

Hurricane Maria[edit]

Hurricane Maria on September 20, 2017 triggered numerous landslides in Moca with the significant amount of rain that fell.[2][3]


Like all municipalities of Puerto Rico, Moca is subdivided into barrios. The municipal buildings, central square and large Catholic church are located in a barrio referred to as "el pueblo".[4][5][6][7]


  • Agriculture: Fruits, dairy farming, cattle and bovine ranching.
  • Business:
  • Industrial: Alarms, clothing, electronic machinery, footwear, plastic products.
  • Services: Lawyers, Engineers, Appraiser (


Landmarks and places of interest[edit]

  • Enrique Laguerre House
  • Enriqueta Hacienda
  • Julia's Mundillo Shop
  • Our Lady of Monserrate Parish
  • Hacienda Labadie
  • Palacete Los Moreau



Moca has a Double-A Baseball team called the Moca Vampiros that play in the Superior Baseball League.

Moca also had a volleyball team named "Los Rebeldes", which played in LVS (Liga de Voleibol Superior) through the years of 1998 to 2005. The team went to the post season every year, obtained a controversial second place in its 1998 final with the "Changos" of Naranjito. In addition, "Los Rebeldes" were National Champions against the "Changos" in the 2000 final. "Los Rebeldes" swept the "Changos" 4-0 in the finals.


Like all municipalities in Puerto Rico, Moca is administered by a mayor. The current mayor is José Avilés Santiago, from the New Progressive Party (PNP). Avilés was elected at the 2000 general election.

The city belongs to the Puerto Rico Senatorial district IV, which is represented by two Senators. In 2012, María Teresa González and Gilberto Rodríguez were elected as District Senators.[8]


There are 12 bridges in Moca.[9]



Erick De Jesus was the designer of the flag. The rectangular flag consists of a purple equilateral triangular field, the color of the Moca tree flower. In this field appear five point stars, silver-plated, surrounding a greater gold star, also with five points.

Coat of arms[edit]

It has oblong form. Divided in a silver-plated field and blue sky united by a purple rhombus (diamond shape), the color of the Moca flower. The rhombus has within religious symbolisms. The rhombus is surrounded, in its inferior part, by two branches of the Moca tree; in its superior part, an arc of eleven silver-plated five-point stars. Within the rhombus is a gold monogram (of the Virgin Mary) topped by a Christian crown of the same metal. A silver-lined crown in form of a three-tower castle crowns the shield. On the frontal portion of the crown, carved in gold, the word Moca. The stones of the castle are lined in blue. The doors and windows are purple.

Latest Population Estimate[edit]

As of 2017, the U.S. Census Bureau estimated that Moca had a total population of 36,328 inhabitants (a significant drop since 2010).[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Moca Municipality - Municipalities - EnciclopediaPR". Fundación Puertorriqueña de las Humanidades (FPH).
  2. ^ "Preliminary Locations of Landslide Impacts from Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico". USGS Landslide Hazards Program. USGS.
  3. ^ "Preliminary Locations of Landslide Impacts from Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico" (PDF). USGS Landslide Hazards Program. USGS.
  4. ^ Picó, Rafael; Buitrago de Santiago, Zayda; Berrios, Hector H. Nueva geografía de Puerto Rico: física, económica, y social, por Rafael Picó. Con la colaboración de Zayda Buitrago de Santiago y Héctor H. Berrios. San Juan Editorial Universitaria, Universidad de Puerto Rico,1969.
  5. ^ Gwillim Law (20 May 2015). Administrative Subdivisions of Countries: A Comprehensive World Reference, 1900 through 1998. McFarland. p. 300. ISBN 978-1-4766-0447-3. Retrieved 25 December 2018.
  6. ^ Puerto Rico:2010:population and housing unit counts.pdf (PDF). U.S. Dept. of Commerce, Economics and Statistics Administration, U.S. Census Bureau. 2010.
  7. ^ Map of Moca
  8. ^ Elecciones Generales 2012: Escrutinio General Archived 2013-01-15 at the Wayback Machine on CEEPUR
  9. ^ "Moca Bridges". National Bridge Inventory Data. US Dept. of Transportation. Retrieved 19 February 2019.
  10. ^ Census Demographics

External links[edit]