Location of MARICAO
in the Map of Puerto Rico
Maricao (mah-ree-KOU) is the second-least populous municipality of Puerto Rico located at the western edge of the mountains, is a small town set around a small plaza in hilly terrain, north of San Germán;, Saban Grande and Yauco; south of Las Marías and Lares; southeast of Mayagüez; and west of Adjuntas. Maricao is spread over 15 wards and Maricao Pueblo (The downtown area and the administrative center of the city).
The town borders the Maricao Fish Hatchery, a collection of tanks and ponds in a garden setting, where some 25,000 fish are raised yearly to stock farm fishponds and island lakes. The hatchery is part of the Maricao Commonwealth Forest, also known as Monte del Estado. Though of dryer vegetation than the other mountain forest, Maricao is home to large number of bird species. Its stone observation tower provides far-flung views to the coast and the Mona Passage.
Maricao is known as "La Ciudad del Café" or "El Pueblo de las Indieras" (The town of the Indian regions). It was founded on April 10, 1874 by Bernardo Collado, Julián Ayala, Francisco M. Sojo, Napoleón Pietri and Leoncio S. Martínez. Puerto Rico is the most Indian of the Caribbean islands and the western mountain range is the most Indian region within the island. While Maricao may or may not be the single most Indian town within Puerto Rico, it has adopted the Indian identity as its signature and this is expressed in its official town motto of El Pueblo de las Indieras. Indieras is term used in PR for the regions of greatest Indian influence. Before the start of the coffee industry in the late 18th century poor farmers of mostly Indian descent, called Jibaros, had most of the mountainous interior of the island to themselves. During the 19th century coffee boom Maricao and similar coffee growing regions did well and many elegant plantation houses were built. The coffee boom ended with the start of the 20th century and the economic conditions of the region deteriorated. Many of the old plantation houses have been converted for use in the tourism industry. While Puerto Rico still has a niche in the gourmet coffee market, the large scale coffee growing which built Maricao is no longer economically feasible.
The flag of derives its colors, design and symbolism from the municipal shield. It consists of a green cloth, with the three usual dimensions of the municipal flags of Puerto Rico, crossing from an end to another one a yellow band with three points. The color green symbolizes the vegetation of the municipality and the yellow band symbolizes the mountains of the region.
 Coat of Arms
In a silver field, resides an inverted "V"-shaped green band. Contained in the band are five gold huts. To either side and below the band are a total of three Maricao (Byrsonima spicata) tree branches with flowers. Surrounding the shield below and to either side are two coffee tree branches. Above it is placed a gold mural crown with three towers outlined in black with green doors and windows
Reference: Wikipedia.org / census.gov / mapquest.com