8 Reasons to Add Puerto Rico to Your Travel Plans IMMEDIATELY
March 2, 2017
The first time I visited Puerto Rico was on a cruise stop. I enjoyed a tour of Old San Juan, tested out a pina colada, sat in awe of Condado Beach, took some pictures with birds, and went on my merry way.
BOY WAS I MISSING OUT!!!
I returned to Puerto Rico last week, and was MESMERIZED. While I don’t typical like to repeat destinations (other than Vegas), Puerto Rico is a place I would revisit in a heart beat! Read along as I share a few of the MANY reasons that Puerto Rico should be on your bucket list.
1. Puerto Rico is NOT a city Little-known fact that is worth mentioning. It is an island that is home to multiple cities. Amazingly, beautiful and unique cities. When most people think of Puerto Rico, they think of the poster-child for Puerto Rico – San Juan, more specifically Old San Juan. There is so much more to Puerto Rico than OSJ, and you should plan to see all of it. You can drive around the island of Puerto Rico in roughly 6 hours. While you could easily drive around Puerto Rico in a day, you definitely would not want to. There is so much to see and do here. Each place is worth a vacation on its own.
2. Old San Juan Now I know I just said there is more to PR than Old San Juan, but you would be doing yourself a HUGE disservice if you did not visit. Cobblestone streets, bold colorful buildings, fortresses, and great food available at every turn. Old San Juan is most-easily navigated by foot. There are multiple tour companies that will show you the major sites, but with a little planning, you can create your own tour.
3. Pina Coladas Puerto Rico is the birthplace of the Pina Colada. Outsiders know Ramon Portas of Barrachina as the inventor of the Pina Colada, but with the locals there is debate on who actually invented it. Bartenders Ricardo Garcia and Ramon Marerro from luxury hotel Caribe Hilton both claim they were the original mixologist, while Ramon Portas of Barrachinas claims he holds the title for inventor of the iconic drink. Either way, a visit to Puerto Rico warrants sampling the delicious drink. You can have the drink made with or without rum.
4. Rums of Puerto Rico Tasting Bar – Inside of Princesa Speaking of rum, this place was FASCINATING even to a non-drinker. Here they distill rum to take on the flavors of other alcohols. They claim to have rum that tastes like tequila, vodka, brandy, and all other spirits. While I can’t vouch for this personally, I’m curious to know if it’s true. Test it out for me!
5. Flamenco Beach Named one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. It is housed on Culebra Island. To get here, you’ll have to take a ferry or a plane to the island. I’d go with the plane, as it is said that the line at the ferry is pretty long. The plane ride is a short 10-14 minutes, depending on where you depart from. The beach boasts powdery white sand and clear waters. A must see for any beach lover.
6. Bioluminescent Bay Ever seen water light up at night? This can only been seen at 7 places in the world, and Puerto Rico is one of them! Apparently you have to go on the right night, but if you can catch it, it is a sight like no other!
7. Coffee Plantations Coffee is hit or miss to me, but every drop of coffee I had in Puerto Rico had me like:
Man, that coffee was GOOOOODD!!! I didn’t even need any sugar with the coffee I had at Bistro Cafe (but I added some anyway, just to ensure that it wasn’t healthy). I don’t know what’s in that stuff, but my goodness! There are coffee plantations in different parts of the island. Ponce, Adjuntas and Jayuya have some of the more popular ones according to USA Today. The plantations are houses in remote areas with beautiful views.
8. El Yunque The United States Forest System’s only tropical rain forest. It is located in Farjardo, about 45 minutes outside of Old San Juan. You can drive or hike up into most of the areas in the rainforest. Some of the falls are only accessible by foot. The views are like nothing I’ve ever seen. From the top of the Observation Deck, you can look out over the rainforest to the beaches and the cities. These views that had me wanting to run out and purchase an overpriced camera, just so I could capture them in all of their glory. Definitely worth a day or a few hours, depending on how much time you have.
I could go on, but I won’t. I’ll stop here, and let you get ready to plan your trip! Unless you want me to plan it for you, then you can visit me here to get started!
What else would YOU add to the list? Connect with me on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter and let me know some of your favorite spots in Puerto Rico!