If you never visited Puerto Rico, this island is one of the must see destinations because it is full of life and lots to do. Puerto Rico is an American territory but main language is Spanish and English is second language. We all heard the stories about the pirates and this is where all started. Puerto Rico is known for its Rum. The world known Rum company Bacardi is located in Puerto Rico. Before you pack your suitcases and get all excited to visit Puerto Rico here are things that you need to know.
Applying for Visa can be hard because you are basically visiting a US territory. Once that is taken care then call it a success because I will mention another surprise for you in the end of this blog. If you are a US citizen, you do not need a passport, you only need a photo ID. I recommend you carry your passport in case you want to jump to neighbouring islands.
Rent a car
If you want to move around in the Island, it is better to rent a car. It may look like a small island but moving around paying for taxi can be costly. The downside of renting a car is finding a parking space if you are staying in Old San Juan. Here are the reasons why I recommend renting a car:
- Old San Juan to El Yunque Rain Forest- 1Hr drive
- Old San Juan to the Ferry-ship- 1.5 Hr drive
- Old San Juan to the Longest Zipline on the other side of the island- 2 Hr Drive
- Weather is unstable, so imagine taking a cab and then it starts raining. Hard luck!
Old San Juan
I highly recommend staying in Old San Juan. The area is full with hotels, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, shopping and all tourist attractions. It is very nice and safer than other areas in Puerto Rico. You can walk around or hop in a cab for another attractions such as the casino, or the fortress San Cristobal. Old San Juan is full of life at night. Lots of bars and clubs for dancing depending on your choice. Old San Juan has beautiful architecture. Lot of colors and nice building with graffiti on the walls. You can relate the city to the Spanish history.
El Yunque Rainforest
El Yunque rain forest is about one hour drive from old San Juan. The forest might seem small on the map, but do not be fooled. You will need a whole day to hike depending on the weather conditions. The forest is known to be safe from any wild animal and rarely any snakes. You can drive inside the forest, and find parking on a week day. Also there are maps for the trails provided if you decided to hike. The trails are muddy so a special shoes and ponchos are a must. There are some waterfalls inside the forest and some people like to to swim. Another cool activity that I did was ziplining inside the forest. Check the weather in advance because sometimes they close due to heavy rain.
Vieques or Culebra
There are two neighbouring islands that are about 45 minutes ferry ride. This part is tricky when it comes to seeing these islands. These are the things that you need to know about visiting these amazing islands. Vieques is known to have great activities. Culebra is known for the best top ten beaches in the world.
- Check the weather before you go
- You have to be at least 2 hrs in line waiting for the ride and you maybe lucky to find a place on the ferry.
- Once you buy the tickets, stand in line, and do not leave. Local people have the priority, so purchasing the ticket does not mean you have a secure place on the ferry.
- Book a hotel with transportation in advance because you will be lucky to find any.
- Depending on which island you are going, they have different times of leaving and returning.
- The other way to get to these islands is by plane.
I love music and dancing, and Puerto Rico is the place to be. We all know El Gran Combo, Hector Lavoe, Mark Anthony, J Lo, and famous “Despacito” song by Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee. All from Puerto Rico. If you are ready to get down, you have to practice on some moves.
Puerto Rico has many different types of cuisines but they are famous for their Mofongo. They have nice breakfast places in Old San Juan. You can also hit some nice restaurant on the weekend depending on your mood.
Once you get the visa to Puerto rico, it does not hurt to jump to the Virgin Islands-St. Thomas- check out my blog “Surrounded by water“– It is with no doubt heaven on earth. Flights are so cheap from Old San Juan to Charlotte Amalie is about $140 round trip and 45 minutes flight. ENJOY PARADISE.
I had great time in Puerto Rico, check the weather forecast before you travel to that amazing island. People are very nice and friendly. The island has so much to offer and lots of beautiful scenery. I highly recommend visiting.
If you are from the US, T-Mobile phones work good without any extra charges. ATT has better connection in the caribbean islands.
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