Puerto Rico is one of the best places you can visit in the Caribbean Islands. The island has so much to offer that you might end up missing some of the best spots, resorts, and activities to do. This tropical Caribbean travel destination has stunning palm-lined beaches, some with famous breaks and vast waves, and others with calm, warm waters overtaking the golden sand, that attract all types of beach seekers, from hard-core surfers to families and couples. This is a sophisticated island with an obvious American twist and a Spanish Caribbean culture. This is seen mainly in San Juan, where American chain restaurants and other US comforts are situated. Here are some of the best places to stay, activities to try, and sights to see:
Best Places to Stay
There are a lot of great places to stay in Puerto Rico, so don’t take this as a comprehensive list. The following are some of the very best resorts this beautiful island nation has to offer.
- Isla Verde – This resort is located on Puerto Rico’s northern coast. It is all inclusive with the main location that allows the visitors to explore the island and enjoy the excitement of the beachfront neighborhood. San Juan Airport is a few minutes’ drive from the resort, making it convenient for you. You can enjoy the many nightclubs, restaurants for fine dining, world-class beaches, and upscale shopping arcades. Some of the Hotels you can stay in the resort include ESJ Azul, Intercontinental San Juan, and Hampton Inn & Suites San Juan.
- Culebra – This is a tiny island in Puerto Rico that is a lesser-known gem. The place is known for its unmatched beauty and tranquil atmosphere. This is an ideal place for those who love nature. It has the Flamenco Beach, which is the highlight of many travelers. Some great hotels to book include Villa Ensenada Honda, Culebra Island Villas, and Club Seabourne Hotel.
- Rio Grande – This is the best luxury beach resort neighborhood in Puerto Rico. The area boasts of lavish beach resorts with a limited crowd and private beach access. It is located in the Northern Coastal Valley and nears the El Yunque National Rainforest. Some great hotel recommendations include Ocean Villa Yunque Mar and Margaritaville Vacation Club Wyndham Rio Mar.
Exciting Activities to Try
When travelling throughout the island, there’s a lot of different activities that people may wish to try. It’s a vacation, try to have some fun!
- Drink a Rum-based Cocktail – Puerto Rico is home to the best rum in the world. In addition to the invention of the Pina Colada, its mixologists are progressively innovating. Local bars encourage local fruits such as pineapple, star apple, chironja, papaya, soursop, mango, and passion fruit. Many local bartenders participate in mixologist competitions, meaning they are very talented. La Factoria is a fun place to drink various rum cocktails.
- Scuba Dive and Snorkel in Culebra – If you are near or in Culebra, the place provides beautiful blue waves, sunny skies, and soft white sand. The Flamingo Beach is a perfect place to snorkel. Other places to carry out snorkeling and scuba diving include San Juan and Vieques.
- Join a Festival – Puerto Ricans are popular for knowing how to let loose. The country hosts many festivals every month as well as year-long celebrations. The best times to visit San Juan is in December and January. One such celebration is the festival of Sebastian that lasts for four days and includes dancing, food trucks, free-flowing beer, and street parades. You also get the chance to wear a huge paper mache mask and take a picture with it.
Sights and Attractions You Can't Miss
In addition to some wonderful activities you can take part in, there’s other beautiful attractions to see.
- Castillo de San Felipe – This is the most recognized landmark in Old San Juan. It is a citadel with six levels that has a military allure to it. Its history goes back to the 1500s, and it has cannons that face the direction of the ocean. It also has a sentry box where the soldiers used to work and live in the colonial times. You also get to see the enhancements implemented by the US during World War II.
- El Yunque – El Yunque is the only tropical forest in the United States National Forest System. This lush and mountainous terrain is only two hours’ drive from San Juan. You will get the opportunity to walk among the abundant flora in the rainforest, dive under a waterfall, and hike along one of the many trails. This part of Puerto Rico has not changed in many years.
- Camuy Caves – The Rio Camuy Cave Park is similar to Ponce’s Museum of Art. This is because you can also visit the amazing Arecibo radio telescope while you enjoy some adventurous trips. The cave is the third most massive in the globe. Touring through the cave will take you via subterranean ravines to the caves’ edge more than 600 feet deep, where you will see an underground river. Some great activities include mud-sliding, free jumping, body rafting, and rappelling down a cave mouth.