7 necessary issues to know earlier than your first journey to Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico has all the advantages of a Caribbean island trip mixed with the comforts of a giant metropolis. With 270 miles of shoreline, a lot of it distant, and dozens of outlying cities simply ready to be explored, Puerto Rico can definitely provide a quiet, peaceable getaway. On the identical time, because of the presence of the capital, San Juan, there are massive resorts and resorts, procuring and leisure districts and all of the comforts {that a} customer wants.

Guests simply must determine what kind of expertise they need and e book accordingly. Puerto Rico makes it straightforward for guests from everywhere in the world to have a good time.

Traffic near Luis Munoz Marin International Airport, Carolina, Puerto Rico
Luis Munoz Marino Worldwide Airport
(Photograph Credit score: refrina / Shutterstock.com)

1. People Do not Want a Passport (and Different Advantages)

For People, one of many predominant benefits of vacationing in Puerto Rico is that they do not want a passport. Exit the airplane, seize your bag and go to your resort. You do not have to attend in further strains. You think about your self out of the country, however with out all the trouble.

Different advantages for People embrace utilizing the identical foreign money, the US greenback. No foreign money change wanted and yet one more job to keep away from.

People will even admire the celebrity of many shops. When you want a pharmacy, there’s most likely a CVS close to the place you are staying. Walmart is simple to search out in case you forgot to pack one thing.

Lastly, your cellular phone service supplier is obtainable on the island and at no further price.

2. Each Spanish and English are spoken

When you discovered Spanish in highschool and wish an opportunity to observe it, Puerto Rico is right. But when you do not know Spanish, that is high-quality too. Kids be taught each languages ​​in class, so most adults are bilingual.

For these venturing exterior of San Juan and into smaller cities, the locals could not observe their English as typically, so it could be restricted. It is at all times a good suggestion to be ready with a number of primary phrases like “howdy,” “thanks,” and “the place’s the toilet?”

Old San Juan.
Previous San Juan
(Photograph Credit score: Wendy Lee)

3. Begin in San Juan

Most flights to Puerto Rico arrive within the capital, San Juan, so this can be a good spot to begin your journey.

With a inhabitants of over 300,000 individuals, San Juan is a bustling metropolis, similar to different American cities. Nevertheless, as one of many oldest cities within the US, it is usually stuffed with historic websites. San Juan will even have fun its five hundredth birthday in June 2022. To be taught extra in regards to the metropolis or to e book a particular birthday tour, go to the Uncover Puerto Rico web site.

Most first-time guests head to the San Juan Nationwide Historic Web site, which incorporates Castillo San Felipe del Morro, Castillo Cristobal, and Fort San Juan de la Cruz. Take the time to walk the grounds and find out about Puerto Rico’s historical past.

Then discover Previous San Juan. Right here you can find colourful buildings, stone-lined streets and loads of nice eating places, bars and cafes. If you wish to be taught extra about conventional Puerto Rican meals, e book a tour with Spoon. Over the course of three hours, you will pattern native dishes as you be taught in regards to the metropolis and the island’s historical past.

Do not go away the town till you’ve got had a piña colada on the place the place it was invented, the Caribe Hilton. That is the place Ramon “Manchito” Marrero spent 3 months in 1954 making this new cocktail. Nevertheless, there’s another idea that this candy pineapple and coconut rum drink was created by Ricardo Garcia in Previous San Juan’s Barrachina. Higher but, strive each and evaluate.

Discover past San Juan

Take the time to discover exterior of the town of San Juan, both on day journeys or by going to a brand new vacation spot. As soon as exterior the capital, the crowds fade and life slows down. It is a nice solution to expertise all facets of the island.

Zip lining at Toro Verde Adventure Park.
Zip lining at Toro Verde Journey Park
(Photograph Credit score: Wendy Lee)

Day Journeys from San Juan

  • Go to the Bacardi Manufacturing unit, the one working rum manufacturing unit you’ll be able to go to on the island. Your tour features a welcome drink and a tasting of reserved rum.
  • Hike to the waterfalls of El Yunque, the one rainforest in the US. Be sure to cease by the customer middle to see which trails are presently open.
  • Go ziplining at Toro Verde Journey Park in Orocovis. Select from a collection of seven zip strains or go for “The Monster”, the second longest zip line on the earth.
  • Make your individual cheese at Vaca Negra in Hatillo. Go to the cheese manufacturing unit, be taught in regards to the native agriculture after which make your individual cheese.

In case you have extra time, contemplate spending a number of days in one of many following locations:

Positioned on the south coast, Ponce is Puerto Rico’s second largest metropolis and the right upscale place to probe for a number of days. Begin with a strolling tour of the attractive downtown, go to the Museum of Puerto Rican Music, and tour Castillo Serralles.


Residence to the brightest bioluminescent bay on the earth, the island of Vieques is filled with pure magnificence. Kayak by way of the bay at night time, journey horseback on the seashore, and hike the rugged shoreline.

Camuy Cave.
Camuy Cave
(Photograph Credit score: Wendy Lee)

4. The island’s biodiversity is spectacular

The gathering of islands that make up Puerto Rico is one among 36 biodiversity hotspots on the earth. In accordance with Conservation Worldwide, there should be no less than 1,500 native vegetation to qualify for this designation, most of that are discovered nowhere else on the earth. Whereas a go to to the island may be about ingesting piña coladas on the seashore, it can be an exploration of nature.

There may be all kinds of ecosystems in Puerto Rico, together with rainforests, dry forests, sandy seashores, rocky coasts, coral reefs, seagrass beds, and mangrove forests and lagoons. It’s dwelling to the one tropical rainforest in the US.

To see all of the biodiversity the island has to supply, contemplate a few of these experiences:

  • Go to Camuy Caves, one of many largest cave methods on the earth.
  • Kayak by way of a bioluminescent bay in Vieques.
  • Go for a stroll on the seashore or extra inland.
  • Go birdwatching at one among Puerto Rico’s many wildlife sanctuaries.
Mofong with shrimp
Mofong with shrimp
(Photograph Credit score: Wendy Lee)

5. Puerto Rican meals is scrumptious

Whereas you’ll find any sort of meals in Puerto Rico, you’ll undoubtedly wish to strive the native delicacies. Go to one of many native eating places, meals courts or e book a meals tour.

One of many must-try gadgets is mofongo, a Puerto Rican dish that consists of fried inexperienced plantains, mashed with pork chops, garlic, salt, and olive oil or butter. It’s historically mixed with meat or seafood. It’s believed that this dish was dropped at the island from Angola, when slaves from that nation arrived on the island within the 1500s.

Different in style and attractive dishes embrace pernil (roast pork), arroz con gandules (rice and beans), and bacalaitos (salted cod fritter). For dessert, do not miss the prospect to take pleasure in flan, tres leche cake, or arroz con dulce (a neighborhood model of rice pudding).

If you wish to strive quite a lot of Puerto Rican dishes in a single place, head to Lote 23, a meals park within the artsy Santurce neighborhood of San Juan. El Cuchifrito focuses on mofongo, Budare creates conventional arepas and Caneca makes cocktails with regionally produced juice.

Puerto Rico is thought for its pork dishes, so if that is you, find time for a drive alongside the Pork Freeway. Begin in Pinones, a beachfront city simply 10 minutes exterior of San Juan, then proceed to Luquillo on the east coast. End the day in El Guavate close to the Cayey Mountains. Snack on chicharrones (fried pork), black pudding, and pernil alongside the way in which.

Professional tip: Whereas Puerto Rico has loads of scrumptious meals, lots of these things cannot be taken off the island. Once you examine in your baggage at Luis Muñoz Marín Worldwide Airport, you can be requested to clear it with the USDA to make sure you do not need any of those prohibited gadgets.

Puerto Rico beach.
Basically, Puerto Rico has excellent vacation climate.
(Photograph Credit score: Maridav / Shutterstock.com)

6. Count on tropical climate

Puerto Rico has tropical climate, which frequently means scorching and humid. At decrease elevations, the daytime climate averages 80 levels Fahrenheit, though it may attain 100 levels in the summertime. At larger elevations, 70 levels is frequent. Rain is frequent all 12 months spherical, typically briefly bursts. The wet season is from April to November.

Basically, Puerto Rico has excellent vacation climate. If it will get too scorching, head to the pool or seashore to chill off. Different actions are finest completed earlier within the day earlier than the warmth spikes hit.

Professional tip: Summer time garments, akin to shorts and T-shirts, are excellent for many daytime actions, however Puerto Ricans like to decorate a bit for his or her night actions, so remember to observe swimsuit.

7. Best Occasions to Go to Puerto Rico

The excessive season – and the very best climate – is from December to April. Nevertheless, July and August are additionally busy occasions for resorts and resorts, as many Puerto Ricans go on trip. Lodge costs shall be larger throughout these occasions.

April to mid-June is a pleasant time to be in Puerto Rico because the climate is not too scorching, crowds have decreased and resort costs are usually higher throughout this time.

Take a look at a few of our previous articles on Puerto Rico, together with: