Old San Juan
Spanning 500 years of history, Old San Juan is, without a doubt, one of the most iconic and treasured places in Puerto Rico. Wander the cobblestone streets to soak up the unique architecture and colorful streets. You’ll find fun local shops and lively restaurants and bars scattered throughout the old city.
Free golf carts called Garita Carts can take you around the most important landmarks such as El Morro, Castillo San Cristóbal, Cuartel de Ballajá, La Fortaleza, among others.
El Yunque Rainforest
Located in Río Grande, on the east side of the Island, El Yunque is the only tropical rainforest that is part of the U.S. National Forest System. Home to more than 240 types of trees, unique birds, native species like the coquí frog, and beautiful scenery, the forest spans 28,000 acres of land that includes 25 waterfalls, several rivers, and ancient petroglyphs of Taíno deities.
Only a one hour drive from San Juan, you can either navigate it on your own or take a guided tour to get to the most popular locations.
Just minutes from San Juan and the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (SJU), you can find the Afro-Caribbean coastal neighborhood of Piñones. Full of delicious authentic street food, made in the traditional fogón, the many little chinchorros (small dining stands) offer fritters made from plantain, fresh fish, oysters, and a lot sazón. You can also buy cold coconut water, drink it from the coconut itself, or try the crabmeat alcapurrias and bacalaítos (codfish fritters).
The Santurce neighborhood, home to the Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico and Museo de Arte Contemporáneo, among many other galleries and local shops, is located very close to the Condado district, and about 20 minutes from Old San Juan. The area has become an arts and culture hub with many buildings displaying murals, and galleries showing works by local artists.
Food is also a big deal in Santurce. You can find elegant restaurants alongside little pop-up eateries at gastronomy parks (Lote 23).
A trip to La Parguera in Lajas might be a two and a half hour journey from San Juan, but it is definitely worth it. Located on the southwestern side of Puerto Rico, the village has many Seasons to visit. Eat local food and drink an authentic Puerto Rican cocktail in the Malecón, a waterfront area with colorful souvenir shops and beautiful views. Find different species of birds
and sea creatures in Caracoles, Mata la Gata, or Cayo Enrique. If you stay for a while, you might even be able to catch a glimpse at a dolphin or manatee.
Vieques and Culebra
Vieques and Culebra are two nearby islands you should definitely add to your list of places to see. Vieques, known as la Isla Nena, is located 15 nautical miles from Fajardo, on the east side of Puerto Rico. Culebra is 19 miles from the coast. Both islands have some of the most beautiful beaches you’ll find anywhere and are frequently included on lists of the world’s best beaches. You can camp on the white sand in selected areas of Flamenco beach (Culebra), or stay at a local bed & breakfast or rental house. Experience the bioluminescent bay in Mosquito Bay (Vieques), walk around the small towns, or simply relax and enjoy the laid-back vibe.