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Puerto Rico Travel

by Sam Opp

A Caribbean paradise, rich in culture and a territory of the United States, Puerto Rico is a dream island just waiting to be discovered! Here you will find all the inspiration you need to travel to Puerto Rico!

During our visit, we were overwhelmed by the beauty of this island. With 6 regions and several islands you will find a plethora of things to do making Puerto Rico perfect for all travelers!  

Puerto Rico Travel Tips

Planning a trip to Puerto Rico? Here is some practical information to know before visiting. 

Language: The main language is Spanish and while Puerto Rico is a USA Territory, we many locals speak little English from our experience.

Currency: USD is used in Puerto Rico.

Cards/ATM’s: Credit Cards are widely accepted and ATM’s can be found everywhere. It is always good to have extra cash for tipping

Tipping in Puerto Rico: Tipping is expected if you do not see it included in your check. Tips are expected to be 15-25%. 

 Puerto Rico Safety: In general, Puerto Rico is safe. Use normal precautions you would in everyday life. Throughout our time we found nothing but very kind people.

Power outlets: Puerto Rico and the USA use standards of voltage between 110 V to 120 V and the standard frequency is 60 Hz. I recommend using a universal adaptor if you are from another country.

Getting Around Puerto Rico: The best way to explore Puerto Rico is by renting a car.

If you plan on only staying in Old San Juan, you can just use Uber as a main source of transportation.

Visas: If you are a US Citizen, currently all you need is your drivers license to visit Puerto Rico. If you are from another country, you will need to check the USA requirements for Visas.

Weather in Puerto Rico

Being apart of the Caribbean, Puerto Rico travel is generally year round . The climate is warm and hot with average temperatures around 85 F throughout the year.

Hottest Months: May – September. Temps will be in high 80-90’s. During these months you will find very hot and humid days that can go over 100 F. 

Cooler Months: November – March are generally much cooler months in Puerto Rico and can even require a light sweater at night. 

Also take note of hurricane season in Puerto Rico. If you plan to travel during June – November, make sure to look into travel insurance to cover your trip.

Views from Yokahu Tower in Puerto Rico
El Yunque

Best Time to Travel to Puerto Rico

The most popular time to visit Puerto Rico is from December through March. During this time the temperatures are cooler and less humid. During this time you will find the largest crowds all escaping the winter. Pricing in Puerto Rico will also be at its peak for hotels and activities.

May through November is Puerto Rico’s shoulder season where you will find less crowds and lower prices across the island. We visited Puerto Rico in during the end of August – the beginning of September and had a great experience. We did almost have an hurricane scare, however the hurricane changed paths and if it were to hit, we had travel insurance to protect our trip!

Puerto Rico Travel After Hurricane Maria

Hurricane Maria is always a topic of conversation when speaking about Puerto Rico. While Puerto Rico is still recovering from the aftermath of the storm, tourism is booming across the island. All main attractions at this point are open and ready to go! Don’t let this storm stop you from booking a trip. 

Best Places to Visit in Puerto Rico

The Island has mountains, rainforest and of course beautiful beaches. In turn, theres tons of fun things to do in Puerto Rico. Did you know you can actually drive the entire perimeter of Puerto Rico in a day? I would highly suggest doing a road-trip if you have 4 days in Puerto Rico.

Old San Juan

Old San Juan is likely one of the most popular places to visit when traveling to Puerto Rico. Full of history, culture and great food it’s no wonder why most people never leave the area. 

In Old San Juan you will find pastel buildings, really great food, El Morro Fort, and Instagrammble spots at every turn!

Other places to visit while in Old San Juan is Casa Bacardi, Playa El Escambrón beach, Condado Beach and La Placita (night party every weekend). 

The best way to get around Old San Juan is by foot or Uber. It is almost impossible to find parking in Old San Juan and I wouldn’t recommend it since the city is so walkable!

El Yunque

El Yunque is Puerto Rico’s rainforest and the only tropical rainforest in the United States! Throughout the rainforest you will find waterfalls, tons of hiking trails, and lush green views.

Some trails might still be closed due to hurricane Maria, however most are open!

To visit El Yunque you can self-drive or take a tour through the forest.

If you drive yourself, which is what we did, just make sure to get gas for your car beforehand and make note that you likely wont have cellphone service. 

Find more details about visiting El Yunque in this Puerto Rico Guide!

Black Painted Puerto Rican Door Mural in Old San Juan
Visit El Yunque Tropical Rainforest for as one of the fun things to do in Puerto Rico
Villaronga House Ponce Puerto Rico
Villaronga House Ponce Puerto Rico

Ponce

Ponce is located on Puerto Rico’s southern coast and another big city on the island. Here you will find nice beaches nearby and a cute old Spanish Colonial town. Ponce is also very popular spot among tourist to stop and tour around. You can even fly into Ponce if you prefer to spend most your time in the South.

 

 

Vieques

If you are looking for real island life, you might want to look into Vieques. Known for its pristine beaches and tranquil vibes, enjoy beach hopping on what was voted one of the best islands in the Caribbean.

At night you can also enjoy kayaking around the Mosquito bio bay, which are known to be the best in Puerto Rico.

The best way to get to Vieque is by flying. While ferries are available, its said that currents make it difficult for the boats to reach the island.

Culebra

Sister island of Vieques, Culebra is also known for some of the worlds most beautiful beaches and amazing snorkeling. If you have lots of time to spare in Puerto Rico, you should definitely add this island to your bucket list. 

From San Juan, you can reach Culebra by ferry or commuter plane. 

Cabo Rojo

Most notable for there Pink Salt flats, Cabo Rojo is the perfect place to visit if you are going to do a road trip around Puerto Rico. Cabo Rojo sits on the lower West Coast of Puerto Rico where the weather is hot and drier. You can even see cacti growing around Cabo Rojo’s lighthouse! 

Salt flats in Cabo Rojo Puerto Rico
Pink Salt flats in Cabo Rojo Puerto Rico
Faro Los Morrillos de Cabo Rojo Puerto Rico
Faro Los Morrillos de Cabo Rojo Puerto Rico

Rincon

Known for its surfer vibes, Rincon is a cute and popular town on the west coast of Puerto Rico. They have great restaurants and beautiful beaches such as Steps Beach. We really loved the area and wish we had spent a couple of days in this beach town.

If you road trip out to Rincon, make sure to eat at  Tamboo, located a beautiful beach and likely one of the best meals we had!

 

Getting To Puerto Rico

The most common way to travel to Puerto Rico is by flying  Luis Munoz Marin airport (SJU) or taking a cruise to Old San Juan.

You can also fly into  Rafael Hernández Airport (BQN) located in Aguadilla.

For flights, I would suggest checking Skyscanner to find the best rates.

Once you are in Puerto Rico, the best way to explore the island is by car. You can actually drive the perimeter of the island in a day if you wanted to.

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