Puerto Rico

Travel Guide
La Chiva Beach featuring a sandy beach, general coastal views and tropical scenes
Enjoy some of the most exotic experiences you can find in the U.S., from rainforest to sugar refineries to unique cultural traditions and foods.

Puerto Rico is an important United States territory, allowing ease of travel to a Caribbean destination. The island is a dramatically different vacation spot from other parts of the U.S. Come for the white sand beaches and pleasant climate or the intriguing colonial history, diverse culture and delicious local food. Explore the capital city San Juan, large national forests and the many towns dotting the long coastline.

Portions of Old San Juan are designated as UNESCO national historic sites. See La Fortaleza, built in the 16th century as a defensive structure and now serving as the governor’s residence. Look for pastel colonial architecture and listen for the distinctive drumbeats of bomba music. While in the city, eat local dishes of fried plantains in tostones or mofongo and mamposteao, uniquely Puerto Rican fried rice.

On the southern coast visit historic sugar refineries and sample one of the island’s biggest exports, Puerto Rican rum. Travel west to Porta del Sol for great surfing and continue on to the tall cliffs of Cabo Rojo.

When the rest of the U.S. is covered in snow, Puerto Rico’s nearly 300 beaches offer soft sand and warm waters. Snorkel across the ocean surface to appreciate colorful marine animals swimming beneath you. Discover the magic of bioluminescent Mosquito Bay, where energy from tiny organisms creates a glow-in-the-dark effect. Look for the famous coquí frog in Vieques National Wildlife Refuge and the subtropical rainforest of El Yunque.

While Puerto Rico is a United States territory, with English and Spanish the official languages, you’ll find that many of the local residents primarily speak Spanish. Enjoy the traditional customs of the mixed heritage of Spanish, African and native Taino people.

Fly to Puerto Rico directly from many mainland U.S. cities or arrive by cruise ship or chartered sailboat. Once you’re on the island, rent a car or use taxis. Be sure to visit the outlying islands of Vieques and Culebra for quiet beaches and glorious natural surroundings.

Fairmont El San Juan Hotel
Fairmont El San Juan Hotel
5 out of 5