Caribbean Travelweb


Guide To Puerto Rico



Excellent scuba diving, spectacular surfing, fishing, kayaking, horseback riding, parasailing, challenging golf courses, tennis, sun drenched beaches, Puerto Rico offers these and much more to the active traveler. A perpetual summer weather beckons you to enjoy the outdoors!


Puerto Rico is a 110 by 35 mile island. Endless activities, coupled with first-class hotels, easy access from the US, affordable dive accommodation packages, and a choice of rural or urban settings, it is gaining popularity as an all-around vacation spot for visitors to the Caribbean. Puerto Rico is located at the eastern end of the Greater Antilles chain, and has the Atlantic Ocean to the north and the Caribbean to the south. Vieques and Culebra islands lie to the east, and Mona Island is to the west. There are 3.5 million residents of Puerto Rico, with about one million in the San Juan metropolitan area.

Getting There

By Air

Getting to Puerto Rico almost always means flying to Luis Muñoz Marín (LMM) International Airport. The gleaming white terminal located just outside of San Juan is ranked 34th among passenger airports in the United States.

Most U.S. and many international airlines offer direct flights to Puerto Rico, and making connecting flights is easy. LMM is one of the largest airports in the Caribbean and is a popular place for hopping over to the U.S. Virgin Islands and other Caribbean destinations.

Transferring from the airport to your hotel usually requires taking a taxi, although some hotels provide complimentary transportation to their properties in special buses. Puerto Rico Tourism Company representatives at the airport will assist you in finding the right transportation. Major car rental agencies are located at the airport, and others offer free transportation to their off-airport sites.

Although there is no regular passenger service to Puerto Rico by sea, more than a million passengers visit the island on cruise ships every year, whether on one of the many cruise lines whose homeport is San Juan, or on one of the visiting lines.

From North America
2 ½ hours from Miami
3 ¼ hours from Atlanta
3 ¼ hours from New York
3 ½ hours from Washington, DC
4 ¼ hours from Toronto
4 ½ hours from Chicago and Dallas
7 ½ hours from Los Angeles


From Latin America
2 ½ hours from Caracas
5 ¾ hours from Mexico City
11 hours from Sao Paolo


From Europe
7 ¾ hours from Madrid
10 hours from Paris
10 ¼ hours from Brussels
12 hours from London

Airlines Serving Puerto Rico
Aerolineas Argentinas
1-800-333-0276
American Airlines
787-749-1747
Air Canada
1-800-426-7000
British Airways
1-800-247-9297
Condor
1-800-524-6975
Copa Airlines
787-722-6969
1-800-981-9284
Delta Airlines
1-800-221-1212
Iberia
787-725-7033
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
1-800-374-7747
LIAT
787-791-3838
Qantas Airways
1-800-227-4500
Spirit Airlines
1-800-772-7117
1-800-756-7117
United Airlines
1-800-426-5561

Getting To Culebra

The easiest way to reach Culebra is via San Juan. San Juan International Airport is served from the U.S. Mainland by American Airlines, Delta, TWA, USAir, Carnival, Continental, Northwest, PanAm, and United. Culebra has daily flights arriving from the San Juan International Airport on Isla Nena Air Services (787-741-1577), and from San Juan Isla Grande Airport on Vieques Air Link (787-722-3736). A 1 1/2 hour ferry ride is also available from Fajardo, a sea port on the east shore of Puerto Rico, about 1 1/2 hour drive from San Juan.

Puerto Rico Ports Authority
Phone Numbers --- Culebra (787) 742-3161
Fajardo (787) 863-0705, (787) 863-0852
Voyage to Culebra is about 1 1/2 hours. The cargo ferry also takes passengers. Passengers do not need reservations. However, reservations are required for cars, and car should be at the ferry dock at least one hour before departure. Schedules are subject to change and should be verified ahead of time. Passenger fare: only $2.25 per person. For vehicle and cargo fares, call the Ports Authority.

Customs and Documents Required

The passport and visa requirements for entering Puerto Rico are the same as for entering the USA. Non US and Canadian citizens must have a valid passport, but it's best to consult your travel agent before book your tickets. However, citizens of many Western European countries, Australia, New Zealand and Japan can take advantage of a US reciprocal visa waiver program if they intend to stay less than 90 days.

Visitors over the age of 21 may bring the following items into the United States duty-free: 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars (but not cigars from Cuba) or 4½ pounds of tobacco, 1 quart of spirits or wine, and gifts or articles up to a value of US$100. Narcotics and dangerous drugs are prohibited; fresh meat, fruit, vegetables, and plants are either prohibited or restricted.

Helpful Visitor Information

Getting Around

Ground transportation in Puerto Rico can mean a taxi, a tour bus, a rental car, a ferry, a small plane, a charter boat, a Metrobus, or a público. In the near future, you will also be able to get around part of greater San Juan in a shiny new Urban Train.

By Ground

Rental Car

Most of the major car rental companies have offices at the airport, in San Juan and in the larger cities and towns. Roads are clearly marked and maps are available. Note that speed limits are indicated in miles per hour, but distances are shown in kilometers.

All major highway systems circling the island are in good condition; several of these highways are toll roads. For the more adventuresome traveler, you may choose the "Ruta Panoramica" (panoramic route) through the middle of the island. These roads are often curvy, narrow and not well marked, but with the willingness to "ask directions", you can follow the route through the mountains for a very unique trip across Puerto Rico (allow plenty of extra time for this route!)

Taxi

Taxis are available at the airport, hotels and major tourist points. In the tourism zones, rates are fixed and posted. Outside the zones, taxis are metered and can be hired by the hour.

Bus

Public transportation in the metropolitan San Juan area is convenient and practical, with regular bus service on established routes.

By Air

You can fly to many of the cities and towns within Puerto Rico, including Vieques and Culebra, by chartering a small plane or taking one of the regularly scheduled commuter-type flights from the Ribas Dominicci Airport in Isla Grande, San Juan, or other local airports. If you are staying in the west of the island, look into direct flights to and from the Aguadilla airport.

By Water

Ferry service to Culebra and Vieques is available at the small port of Fajardo on the east end of the island. Private boats can also be chartered at many of the marinas on the east coast.

By Publico

Among the most interesting and adventurous ways of traveling in Puerto Rico is by público. Públicos are independently owned and operated vans that service hard to reach urban areas. They also travel between island towns; if you have the time and inclination, they can be an inexpensive and fascinating way to learn about the island. You may find yourself riding with a family on its way to see a grandmother on the other side of the island, or a half dozen ballplayers on their way to a game. All in all, públicos offer visitors a terrific opportunity to meet Puerto Rico and its people.

Language

Spanish and English are the official languages, but Spanish is without a doubt the dominant language. Knowledge of Spanish will be very useful, although English is widely spoken. (Sometimes you will find yourself surrounded by Spanish speakers only, but be sure that in every store, restaurant, medical and/or government facilities, they would search around and find one person, who knows enough English to help you.)

Time

Puerto Rico is in the Atlantic Time Zone, but does not observe Daylight Savings Time.

Electricity

The island uses standard U.S. electric current - 110 volts/60 cycles. European appliances require an adapter.

Business Hours

Business hours are similar to those on the mainland, 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM weekdays (the siesta has pretty much disappeared). Most stores are open Saturdays, and all of the larger towns have shopping malls that are open evenings and Sundays.

Money

Currency is the US Dollar. Major credit cards are accepted at most businesses, and ATMs connected to major US and international networks are easy to find.

Weather

Averages 83°F (22.7°C) in the winter and 85°F (29.4°C) in the summer. The trade winds cool the coastal towns and the temperature decreases as you go up into the higher mountains.

Dress

Because of its tropical climate, dress is generally quite informal in Puerto Rico. Due to the warm, humid climate, light-weight clothing is recommended.

Health

Medications
Bring enough prescription medication for your stay. Unexpected delays and extended stays can upset your medication regimen. Similar to the United States, pharmacists cannot distribute prescription medications without authorization from a doctor.

Vaccinations
No vaccinations are required for visitors to Puerto Rico. However, those arriving from, or transiting through countries where a health epidemic has been formally declared, may need proof of vaccination before they can enter the island.

Telephone

Phone cards or calling cards and IDD service are readily available. Long-distance services from AT&T, MCI, and Sprint make calling home relatively convenient and let you avoid hotel surcharges.

Pets

Importation of animals is prohibited without an Import Permit. Proper health documents must be produced and the Government Veterinary Officer must be notified of the port of entry and the expected time of arrival.

Activities and Attractions

Whether you're dreaming about spectacular surfing waves, a challenging golf course, or the perfect sunbathing beach, Puerto Rico offers the active traveler a tremendous array of opportunities. Surfing and golf compete with tennis, fishing, kayaking, SCUBA diving, and horseback riding, not to mention windsurfing and parasailing, for your active time. The perpetual summer weather begs you to enjoy the sport of your choice!


Dining & Nightlife


San Juan is the Caribbean capital of nightlife and entertainment, where you can indulge in bar hopping, enjoy fine dining, partake in Vegas-style gaming or anything in between.

Throughout the San Juan area, bars, discos and popular restaurants are found on nearly every corner of the city, but be sure not to miss the vibrant nightlife out on the island, including the special charms of resorts in Dorado, Rio Grande, Ponce and Mayagüez. Discover all of Puerto Rico's Top Entertainment Areas .

Beaches

Puerto Rico is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, and its hundreds of miles of coastline harbor an almost endless selection for the beach lover. Beaches come in every size, color, and form, from the pure white dunes of Isabela to the black volcanic sands near Punta Santiago. You can find a beach for any level of seaside activity, from a stroll in the shimmering shallow waters at Luquillo to a thrilling ride in the boisterous surf of Rincón.

Surfing

The best surfing is along the northwestern stretch of coast between Rincón and Isabela between October and April.

Windsurfing

Serious windsurfers arrive in winter to take advantage of the swells on the northern Atlantic coast, particularly at Isla Verde. Rincón and Jobos near Isabela are also pretty hot, though beginners prefer the sheltered waters of San Juan's Condado Lagoon.

Hiking

There are hiking opportunities galore in the island's interior, particularly in the rainforest of El Yunque, in the karst region of Río Camuy Cave Park.

Caving

Experienced cavers can explore the extensive underground sections of the Camuy River system with National Parks guides. Novices can take an expensive trolley-tram that accesses one cave via a sinkhole - be aware that weekends are so crowded that the experience is more rush hour transit than restful nature.

Scuba Diving/Snorkeling

Puerto Ricoís tropical waters are a diverís paradise. The average ocean temperature is 81F and underwater visibility averages from 60 to 75 feet near the beach. Offshore it is easily 100 feet or more! While experienced divers may prefer boat diving, there are countless sites - especially on the northeast coast near Aguadilla and Isabela - for equally impressive shore diving.

Puerto Rico offers many Scuba Diving and snorkel adventures for both experienced and novice divers. From reefs to walls, underwater caves and wrecks, warm water and great visibility will greet you as you descend into deep blue. The small islands shown on the map above offer a special treat to divers, including Mona, which is known as the "Galapagos of the Caribbean". Water Temp: 75 - 85F 24 - 29C / Visibility: 60 - 150 ft 23 -45 m

The best snorkeling sites are also reached by boat. There's a number of spots on the southwestern coast, notably around La Parguera. Other superb spots are the deserted islet of Palomenitos, off the coast of Fajardo, and Mona Island.

Whale Watching

During the winter months (primarily late January - late March) the Mona Passage serves as a highway for migrating humpback whales. They can often be seen from the mainland, as well as on whale-watching cruises.

The humpback whales migrating along the coast of Puerto Rico are headed to the cooler waters of the North Atlantic for the summer. While "visiting" Puerto Rico, the whales are primarily mating and giving birth. The males will sing long elaborate songs to attract the females - these songs can be heard for miles underwater!


Attraction Highlights

Old San Juan, San Juan
Consisting of 400 restored buildings from the 16th- and 17th-century Spanish colonial period, this area in San Juan is steeped in history with an old-world and romantic European charm.

El Yunque, San Juan
This tropical rainforest, also called Caribbean National Forest, consists of 28,000 acres of dramatic ecological extremes including an average annual rainfall of 240 inches, many species of rare wildlife and the towering Pico del Toro, rising 3,523 feet above sea level.

Bioluminescent Bay, Isla de Vieques
A truly brilliant natural wonder, this bay, particularly on moonless nights, literally glows in the dark.

Culebra, Puerto Rico
Largely untouched by tourist development, this 25-square-mile island is a nature reserve and home to many rare species of birds, fish and turtles.

El Morro (Castillo de San Felipe del Morro), San Juan
Constructed to defend the San Juan coastline during the 17th and 18th centuries, this dramatic fortress rises 140 feet above the sea on a rocky promontory, and is composed of six huge levels of ramps, barracks, dungeons, turrets, towers and tunnels.

Bacardi Rum Plant, San Juan
Take a 45-minute tour of the world's largest rum distillery, Bacardi Museum, and be rewarded with a tasty sample at the end of your visit.

Teatro Tapia, San Juan
If you are part of the theatre crowd, you'll be pleased with this historic theater, which presents a variety of plays, ballets and concerts.

Castillo de San Cristobal, San Juan
This massive 27-acre series of fortifications is the largest the Spanish built in the New World.

El Museo Castillo Serralles, Ponce
Evoking the era of the sugar barons of Puerto Rico, this beautiful Spanish Revival mansion was built in 1930 for the Serrallés family, owners of the Don Q rum distillery.

Rio Camuy Cave Park, Puerto Rico
This spelunker's playground consists of the Camuy River and more than 200 caves, some large enough to make skyscrapers disappear.

La Fortaleza, San Juan
Visitors can take guided tours through this World Heritage Site, a 40-room mansion completed in 1540 that was used to defend against foreign invaders.

Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico, San Juan
More than just an art museum, the Museo del Arte hosts concerts and festivals as well.

Hyatt Dorado Beach, Puerto Rico
Boasting two 18-hole championship golf courses designed by Robert Trent Jones, East and West.

La Parguera, Puerto Rico
A tiny village by the sea full of homey bed and breakfast inns.

San Juan Cathedral (Catedral de San Juan), San Juan
Built in 1540 and the site where the body of Ponce de Leon is entombed, the the Catedral de San Juan is an authentic and rare New World example of medieval architecture.

Parque de Bombas, Ponce
This loudly-colored building in black , red, green and yellow was built for a volunteer fire-fighters brigade.

Luquillo Beach, El Yunque National Forest
Take your camera to this lovely palm-lined beach, which features calm waters for children, and a chance to ride the "paso fino" horses along the beach.

Museo del Nino, San Juan
This highly interactive museum encourages the inquisitive spirit to question what makes things happen and then to find out.

Felisa Rincon de Gautier Museum, San Juan
A visit to the former home of Dona Felisa Rincón, the first woman to serve as mayor of San Juan from 1946 to 1968, provides a glimpse into a typical Old San Juan home reflecting the politics and personal life of its previous occupant.

Cathedral of our Lady of Guadeloupe, Ponce
This elegant 17th-century cathedral rises majestically in the midst of Ponce.

Arecibo Observatory, Puerto Rico
The largest radio telescope in the world, this vast 20-acre dish, which is used to explore the heavens, sits in a karst sinkhole that measures 1,300 feet across.

Museo de Las Americas, San Juan
A folk art museum with vibrant exhibits you can buy.

Patillas, Puerto Rico
Called The Emerald of the Southeast,Patillas, an hour-and-a-half drive from San Juan, is a small city with lovely beaches, sugar cane fields and orange groves.

Pablo Casals Museum (Museo de Pablo Casals), San Juan
18-century home devoted to exhibits on the famous cellist/musician.

Museo de Nuestra Raiz Africana, San Juan
Delve into Puerto Ricos African influences through exhibits ranging from slave histories to African utensils.

Casa Blanca, San Juan
Built in 1521 as a home for Governor Juan Ponce de Leon, today this historic landmark contains two interesting museums of Indian and colonial artifacts.

Media Luna Beach, Isla de Vieques
This appropriately-named beach, curving like a half moon, is shallow enough to walk out 40 feet.

Condado, San Juan
A strip of beach that means "action" since it's packed with high-rise hotels, condominiums, shops, restaurants,jazzy nightclubs and world-class casinos.

Chapel of Christ the Savior (Capilla de Cristo), San Juan
A small 18th-century chapel with a fascinating history.

Museo de Arte de Ponce, Ponce
Well worth a visit, this history museum is housed in Casa Salazar, which is an exquisite blend of neoclassical and Moorish architecture.

Hacienda Buena Vista, Ponce
The hacienda on this 19th-century coffee plantation not only protected the coffee beans from rain, but established a farm to feed the black and Puerto Rican slaves who tended the plantation.

Tibes Indian Ceremonial Center, Ponce
This historical site features a 1,500-year old Taino village, much of which remains intact, and skeletons dating back to A.D. 700.

Observatorio de Arecibo, Puerto Rico

Parque Ceremonial Indigena de Caguana, Puerto Rico

Parque de las Cavernas del Rio Camuy, Puerto Rico

Vieques, Puerto Rico

Puerto Rican Art & Crafts, San Juan
If you are looking for traditional and contemporary Puerto Rican arts and crafts, this store located in Old San Juan offers a wide range of items, from hand carvings to ceramic objects.

Museo de Arte e Historia de San Juan, San Juan
Exhibits fine art in the context of the island's history.

Alcaldia (City Hall), San Juan
Built in stages from 1604 to 1789 and resembling the city hall in Madrid, Spain, this government building also houses a tourist information center and a small gallery of rotating exhibitions.

El Arsenal, San Juan
The site where Spanish soldiers awaited their departure after the Spanish-American War in 1898, today this historic building presents changing exhibitions in its three galleries.

Fort San Jeronimo, San Juan
This small military museum was a fort that was built in 1786, and attacked by the British eleven years later.

Iglesia de San Jose, San Juan
Built in the early 17th century, this is the second oldest church in the Western Hemisphere.

La Casa del Libro, San Juan
This 18th-century house displays the art of printing and bookmaking, plus offers a collection of rare books, including some more than 400 years old.

Museo del Indio, San Juan
This Museum of the Indian features the life and culture of Puerto Rico's indigenous people through photographic exhibits, dioramas, ceramics and findings from archaeological digs.

Museum of History, Anthropology and Art, San Juan
Exhibits and objects of this museum range from 19th-century paintings from local artists to pre-Columbian objects from past civilizations.

Plaza Acuatica, San Juan
Great fun for the entire family at this outdoor water and amusement park that features water slides, miniature golf and a "shooting-the-rapids" experience.

Time Out Family Amusement Center, San Juan
Kids of all ages can have fun at this family-friendly amusement and recreation center.

Jardin Botanico, San Juan

Munoz Rivera Park, San Juan

Parque Central Municipio de San Juan, San Juan

Luis Munoz Marin Park, San Juan

Luis Munoz Marin Foundation, San Juan

Isabel Segunda, Isla de Vieques
The pretty capital of Vieques offers a restored 1840s fort and busy waterfront.

Vieques National Wildlife Refuge, Isla de Vieques
Much of the land on this new wildlife reserve was once a naval bombing range.

El Vigia Hill, Ponce
At the top of El Vigia Hill, Ponce?s tallest geologic feature, you?ll still have to look up: to the 100-foot Cruz de Vigia.

Teatro la Perla, Ponce
Extensively restored in the 1990s, this beautiful neoclassical-style theater hosts a wide variety of performances.

El Yunque Peak, El Yunque National Forest
The rugged hike up this 3,496-foot mountain, located in the middle of El Yunque Forest, takes visitors through four different ecosystems, from towering candlewood trees and moss-draped landscapes to Sierra Palms and a mystical dwarf-forest.

Sandy Beach, Rincon

Caribbean National Forest, Puerto Rico

Rincon Surf Museum, Rincon

Punta Higuera Light House, Rincon

Mona Passage, Puerto Rico
The waterway separating Puerto Rico from the Dominican Republic.

Conservatory of Music of Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico
Check out their free weekend concerts.

Plaza del Mercado, San Juan
This central market square is not merely home to a number of vendors, but this busy plaza also plays host to a number of festivals throughout the year.

Bellas Artes, San Juan
An art venue featuring theater, dance and music events.

Museum of Puerto Rico Music, Ponce
See a variety of Spanish, African and Indian musical instruments on display, as well as exhibits on beloved Puerto Rican musicians.

Laguna Grande, Puerto Rico
A seasonally phosphorescent lagoon in the Cabezas Nature Reserve.

Loiza Aldea, Puerto Rico

Maricao Fish Hatchery, Puerto Rico
Find this hatchery in Mayaguez.

Buye Beach, Puerto Rico
An immaculate and secluded beach in Cabo Rojo.

Mosquito Bay, Puerto Rico
Maybe the best of all the bioluminescent bays in the world.

Paradise Scuba and Snorkeling Center, Puerto Rico

Galeria Botello, San Juan
An art gallery featuring local modern artists.

Isla Verde, San Juan
This Eastern San Juan suburb is home to a pristine beach and luxury condominiums.

Bithorn Stadium, San Juan
Catch the Caribbean World Series at this baseball stadium.

Plaza las Americas Mall, San Juan

Joyuda, Puerto Rico
A small village billed as the islands seafood capital.

El Portal Tropical Forest Center, El Yunque National Forest
Learn all about rainforests here, at this education center in El Yunque Rainforest.

Maricao Forest Preserve, San Juan
Follow the mountain roads to this preserve where youll find La Torre de Piedra, the stone tower.

Guanica State Forest (Reserva Forestal Guanica), Puerto Rico
A terrific example of subtropical dry forest with diverse bird, insect and plant life.

Fajardo, Puerto Rico
Coastal resort area that offers accommodations, dining, beaches, scuba diving, snorkeling, golfing and excellent sailing along the eastern coast of Fajardo.

Isla Desecheo, Puerto Rico
The waters off this tiny island make for a labyrinthine dive, with its intricacy of tunnels.

Mora, San Juan
An art gallery in Old San Juan featuring realist and magical realist paintings.

Ocean Park Beach, San Juan
The most popular of San Juans beaches is also the most lively.

Santurce Marketplace, San Juan
A lively and eclectic market with everything from fruit vendors to religious artifacts to street dancers.

Camp Garcia, Isla de Vieques
Navy used this base to train soldiers.

La Guancha, Ponce
Ponce's boardwalk and beach area isn't so popular for swimming, but the people-watching and socializing are great.

El Toro Peak, El Yunque National Forest
Take the difficult 4-hour Trade Winds Trail all the way to El Toro Peak, which is the second-highest peak in Puerto Rico.

Cabo Rojo Lighthouse, Puerto Rico
A landmark Spanish-colonial style structure, this picturesque lighthouse sits perched atop a high cliff providing nearly 360-degree views of the sparkling Caribbean Sea.

Hyatt Regency Cerromar, Puerto Rico
Luxury resort boasts two championship 18-hole golf courses, the North and South, designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr., where fairway bunkers, water hazards and guarded greens challenge players at every turn.

Ponce Museum of Art, Ponce
Housed in a unique building comprised of hexagonal rooms, this art museum features major works by great European masters such as Van Dyck, Gainesborough and Rubens.

Paseo de la Princesa, San Juan
This restored 19th-century esplanade is the place to begin your stroll through Old San Juan, because of its central location and its inexhaustible charm.

Church de Juan Baptista, Puerto Rico
A simple church with old frescoes, religious sculpture and an electric prayer table.

San Jose Church, San Juan
Built in 1513, this architectural gem is the second oldest church in the New World, and a lovely example of Spanish Colonial architecture.

La Ostra Cosa, San Juan
The cuisine of this little restaurant is billed as aphrodisiacal, and indeed, with a menu of grilled prawns, king crab legs, octopus and fillet of sole, who can resist?

Plaza de Armas, San Juan
The original Old San Juan town square is a good spot to orient yourself as you begin your tour of this charming area.

Cruz del Vigia, Ponce
Visitors can climb La Cruz del Vigia, a 100-foot observation tower, to get an incredible view of the mountains meeting the Caribbean Sea at Ponce.

Cabezas de San Juan Nature Preserve, Puerto Rico
Commonly referred to as "El Faro," this 316-acre reserve is an ecological region consisting of beaches, cliffs, coral reefs and forests.

Boqueron, Puerto Rico
Full of fishermen, great beaches and wonderful views.

Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico
Relax amid natural surroundings that consist of a broad protected bay with plenty of incredible beaches ideal for swimming, boating, picnicking and boardsailing.

Wyndham El Conquistador Golf Course, Puerto Rico
A par-72, 18-hole course open to guests and non-guests of the hotel.

Toro Negro Reserve, Puerto Rico
One of fourteen forest reserves on the island, which features the peak Cerro de Punta and a number of hiking trails.

Cerro de Punta, Puerto Rico
The tallest mountain is in the center of the island, which at an elevation of 4,389 feet with an area of 3,515 square miles, offers spectacular vistas of the entire island and Caribbean Sea.

San Juan Bay, Puerto Rico
This bay abounds with sailing and boating opportunities.

La Casita Tourist Information Center, Puerto Rico
Plan your sightseeing excursion of Old San Juan here.

Plaza of San Jose, San Juan
The younger crowd loves the plaza because of the many nearby cafes and pubs.

Statue of Ponce de Leon, San Juan
This memorial to Puerto Rico's conqueror is located in the Plaza de San Josem, which overlooks El Morro fortress.

104 Calle La Fortaleza, San Juan
The birthplace of the Pina Colada: a bronze plaque marks the site where Don Ramón Portas Mingot created the popular tropical drink.

San Juan Gate, San Juan
Four centuries ago this gate was the main entrance into the city.

Fortaleza Street, San Juan
A bustling street full of shops and boutiques.

La Princesa Gallery, San Juan
A gallery devoted to island art, with 200 works by local artists.

Ocean Park, San Juan
A serene and charming beachfront neighborhood.

San Juan Cemetery, San Juan
A seaside cemetery where a number of notable Puerto Ricans rest.

Casa del Libro, San Juan
Book lovers will want to visit this museum that houses a collection of 5,000 books, including rare volumes dating back 2,000 years.

Condado Beach, San Juan
Beach that extends for several miles east of downtown (Old San Juan), which is lined with high-rise resorts and packed with sun worshippers.

Condado Lagoon, San Juan
A narrow body of water that separates the Condado Beach area from the rest of San Juan.

Roots Fountain, San Juan
Dramatic water fountain that commemorates Puerto Rico's early history, its people and their commitment to peace.

Hospital Alley, San Juan
A quiet and lovely street in Old San Juan lined with blue stones that were carried in the hulls of the Spanish ships.

Sun Bay, Isla de Vieques
If paradise had palm trees...they'd call it Sun Bay.

Navio Beach, Isla de Vieques
The rough surf of Navio Beach attracts surfers and a younger, more hip crowd.

Secret Beach, Isla de Vieques
This rather remote beach is scenic and breathtaking with a mildly rugged coastline and perfect waters for swimming and snorkeling.

Highway 997, Isla de Vieques
Highway 997 runs in front of Camp Garcia.

Serrales Castle, Ponce
High atop a hill overlooking Ponce, this magnificent castle, with its indoor patio, fountains and formal gardens, is the former home of a powerful rum and sugar cane baron.

Torre Britton, El Yunque National Forest
This lookout tower in El Yunque is sometimes incorporated into Santeria (an Afro-Caribbean religion) ceremonies.

Big Tree Trail, El Yunque National Forest
This short, memorable and popular walk is the best way to experience the rainforest.

Flamenco Beach (Playa Flamenco), Puerto Rico
A pleasant beach on the northern coast of Culebra.

Playa Resaca, Puerto Rico
This secluded and hard-to-reach beach in Culebra is worth the hike.

Culebra National Wildlife Reserve, Puerto Rico
Much of the land area on the island of Culebra and the outlying islands is designated as a wildlife reserve, which is designed to protect important seabird colonies and turtle-nesting sites in Puerto Rico.

Clara Cave (Cueva Clara), Puerto Rico
Part of the Rio Camuy Cave Park, the cave has trails, bridges and a trolley.

Tres Pueblos Sinkhole, Puerto Rico
A 400-foot deep sinkhole in the Rio Camuy Cave Park.

Camuy River, Puerto Rico
Flowing underground to form one of the largest subterranean rivers in the world, this waterway travels through dramatic landscapes of sinkholes, limestone formations and more than 200 caves, some big enough to engulf skyscrapers.

Church of Porta Coeli, Puerto Rico
Built by Dominican monks in 1606, this Gate of Heaven served as a town jail in the 19th century, and is now a small museum displaying carved wooden religious figures.

Boqueron Beach, Puerto Rico
This lovely three-mile stretch of sand slopes gently to the calm waters, making it a great beach to sun, swim and relax.

Phosphorescent Bay (Bahia Fosforescente), Puerto Rico
Visitors observe millions of glowing tiny animals that react to the slightest disturbance in the water: a fish, boat or hand can light them up like millions of tiny underwater light bulbs.

Spiral Cave, Puerto Rico
Part of an interconnected network of caves in the Rio Camuy Cave Park.

Dewey, Puerto Rico
Culebras main town, where most of its residents live, is fairly nondescript.

Flamenco Peninsula, Puerto Rico
A favorite spot for sooty terns, whose population was at one time estimated to have been 160,000.

Melones, Puerto Rico
This Culebra beach includes a half-mile coral reef located within Culebra Marine Underwater Park.

Rio Grande de Camuy River, Puerto Rico
An icy river at the base of a rock climbing area.

Parguera Wall, Puerto Rico
Located six miles offshore, La Paguera Wall is a giant coral reef extending more than 20 miles and dropping at a maximum depth of 1,500 feet.

Jobos Beach (Playa Jobos), Puerto Rico
This beach on the northwest coast offers an interesting combination of mild waters, perfect for families with children, and rough water perfect for surfers, plus opportunities for fishing, snorkeling, scuba diving, wind surfing and canoeing.

Borinquin Golf Course, Puerto Rico
A golf course in Isla Verde.

Spanish Ruins, Puerto Rico
Haunting, weathered Spanish-built structures.

Chatarra, Puerto Rico
One of the best and most consistent surf areas is located on the north shore of Puerto Rico; great tubes mostly lefts, for experienced surfers only.

La Selva, Puerto Rico
Surfers rejoice: a triple wave on the islands northeast coast.

Isabela, Puerto Rico
This resort neighborhood plays host to an infinite variety of water activities, particularly on Jobos Beach.

Piones, Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico's largest mangrove forest.

Ocean Golf Course, Puerto Rico
A championship course part of the Westin Rio Mar hotel.

River Golf Course, Puerto Rico
Together with the Ocean Course, the River is the second of the Westin Rio Mars championship links.

Guanica, Puerto Rico
A small and friendly town with nice beaches and a boardwalk.

Bahia Ballena, Puerto Rico
A protected tract home to the sapo concho, a toad thought to have been extinct.

United Nations Biosphere Reserve, Puerto Rico
One of the best bird-watching places on Puerto Rico, this region is a tropical dry coastal forest that features a strangely beautiful collection of twisted, bonsai-like trees and tall cacti.

San German, Puerto Rico
This 400-year-old fortress rises dramatically to greet seaborne visitors to the island.

Heaven's Gate Convent (Porta Coeli), Puerto Rico
A former convent thats now a museum of religious artifacts, some of which like the museums walls date back to 1606.

Caguana Ceremonial Park and Museum, Puerto Rico
The most significant archaeological site in the Caribbean.

Iglesia del Espiritu Santo y San Patricio, Puerto Rico
The oldest active church on the island is located in Loiza Aldea.

Plaza de Recreo, Puerto Rico
Loiza Aldea plaza where youll find the Iglesia del Espiritu Santo y San Patricio.

Joyuda Beach, Puerto Rico
You wont go hungry after a swim thanks to the variety of nearby restaurants.

Seven Seas Beach, Puerto Rico
Part of La Cabezas Nature Reserve, this is a prime beach for relaxing.

Panoramic Route (Ruta Panoramica), Puerto Rico
A series of curvy roads link the island's east and west coast. The three-day route is studded with small villages and farms.

Miramar, Puerto Rico
An elegant and upscale area with Spanish-style patios and gardens. Worth a stroll.

Bahia Beach Plantation, Puerto Rico
An 18-hole course on an expansive green.

Berwind Country Club, Puerto Rico
A palm-fringed 18-hole championship course.

Coamo Springs, Puerto Rico
A rugged golf course in the Coamo hills.

Dorado Del Mar, Puerto Rico
Designed by Chi Chi Rodríguez in 1998, this 18-hole golf course offers exceptional views of both the ocean and mountains, and a challenging round of golf due to changes in elevation between greens and lakes.

The Palm, Puerto Rico
This Rees Jones-designed 7,142-yard course offers up a variety of challenges to golfers at all skill levels.

El Commandante, Puerto Rico
Spectator sports on the island of Puerto Rico feature year-round thoroughbred racing at this track.

Club Deportivo Del Oeste, Puerto Rico
The marina from which to embark upon your ocean adventures.

Coffin Island, Puerto Rico
A Ponce forest and sea life preserve thats a far cry from sepulchral.

Arecibo, Puerto Rico
A small colonial town known for the enormous radio telescope used to explore the heavens.

Camuy, Puerto Rico
An area best known for the Rio Camuy Cave Park.

Combate Beach, Puerto Rico
A Cabo Rojo beach with summertime concerts.

Cabo Rojo National Wildlife Refuge, Puerto Rico
Located in the coastal plain of southwestern Puerto Rico, this area is classified as a subtropical dry forest and known for its fabulous birdwatching opportunities.

Lajas, Puerto Rico
Find a bioluminescent bay in this lovely town.

German, Puerto Rico
Find the lovely Porta Coeli Museum in this small town.

El Conquistador Golf Course, Puerto Rico
This championship 18-hole course makes a round of golf a pleasure due to fabulous water and mountain views, and a challenge due to constant trade winds and elevation changes of 200 feet.

East Course, Puerto Rico
A masterfully designed golf course with a renowned par five.

West Course, Puerto Rico
The companion course to East Course on the grounds of the Hyatt Dorado Beach hotel.

Shacks Beach, Puerto Rico
This beach with its underwater cathedral-like caverns make for a great dive.

Hole in the Wall, Puerto Rico
This deep dive site is aptly named, where divers swim through a hole situated 120 feet down, and end up at 100 feet of water.

Chimney, Puerto Rico
A reef with a swim-through and lots of interesting marine life like octopi and barracudas.

Las Cabezas de San Juan Nature Reserve, Puerto Rico
Comprised of three headlands that extend into the Atlantic ocean, this nature reserve encompasses seven different ecosystems including forests, beaches and offshore coral reefs.

Yellow Reef, Puerto Rico
One of the island's premier diving spots, this is a pyramid-shaped underwater mound with an average depth of 60 feet, with coral caverns, soaring arches and a multi-color patchwork of big star coral heads, purple lace corals and big barrel sponges.

Figure 8, Puerto Rico
An interesting dive site right off the beach in San Juan.

Horseshoe Reef, Puerto Rico
The second largest barrier reef in the Caribbean offers splendid caves and tunnels for scenic diving adventures.

Punta Borinquen Golf Club, Puerto Rico

Isla Mona, Puerto Rico
Uninhabited island in the Mona Passage that is a mecca for divers, biologists, hunters and tourists interested in seeing unique wildlife.

Sala de Arte, San Juan
This art gallery in Old San Juan features the work of Nono Rivera.

Galeria las Americas, San Juan
The largest privately owned art gallery in Puerto Rico features Caribbean and Latin American art, from paintings and ceramics to the much sought-after santos.

Conservation Trust of Puerto Rico, San Juan
The mission of this Trust is to value, protect and enhance the natural environment of Puerto Rico, and complement its historical and cultural resources in order to insure a better quality of life for residents and visitors.

Parque de las Palomas, San Juan
A park dedicated to San Juans lively pigeon population and the pigeons definitely use it.

Santurce, San Juan
This San Juan neighborhood is just southeast of the old city.

SoFo, San Juan
South Fortaleza Street is known for its trendy restaurants.

La Rogativa, San Juan
A monument portraying a San Juan legend.

Plaza of Five Centuries, San Juan
Instituted in 1992, this plaza commemorates Columbus' expedition to the New World.

Palomino Island, San Juan
A private island where Wyndham El Conquistador guests are often ferried for more water activities.

Tower of Stone (La Torre de Piedra), San Juan
Glimpse an incredible panorama from atop this stone tower.

Calle del Cristo, San Juan
"That shopping street," as known to cab drivers; a tourist must.

Calle San Sebastion, San Juan
A lively strip of cafes and bars - and well-dressed pretty people.

Fine Arts Cinema, San Juan
A three-screen theater showing U.S. and foreign films.

Metro Cinema, San Juan
Shows commercial films usually, but runs film festivals on occasion.

Del Parque Theater, San Juan
A theater featuring Spanish-language plays.

Guaynabo Performing Arts Center, San Juan
A fine arts center featuring plays and concerts.

Munoz Marin Amphitheater, San Juan
Many outdoor concerts are held in this park.

Ruben Rodriguez Coliseum, San Juan
A concert and sometimes circus venue.

Sixto Escobar Park, San Juan
An outdoor event venue.

Museum of Popular Art (Museo de Artes Populares), San Juan
Rotation exhibitions often feature Caribbean contemporary art, and theres a permanent folk art exhibit as well.

Museum of Contemporary Art, San Juan
One of Puerto Rico's best collections of contemporary art by local artists and those from other Caribbean islands.

Science Park, San Juan
Guaranteed to keep kids of all ages entertained, this science complex features a world-class planetarium, seven themed-museums and a zoo.

La Casa de los Contrafuertes, San Juan
This traditional Spanish-style home, built in the early 18th century, offers periodic art exhibitions, a small pharmacy museum and a graphic arts museum, which displays prints and paintings of local artists.

Ashford Avenue, San Juan
The majority of San Juan's hotels, restaurants and nightclubs are centered along Ashford Avenue in the Condado section of the city.

Casa de los Contrafuertes (House of the Buttresses), San Juan
Reportedly the oldest home in Old San Juan, this building now contains pharmacy and graphic arts museums.

Museum of Our African Roots, San Juan
This small museum celebrates the African cultural influence in Puerto Rico through paintings, artifacts, and photographs.

Isla Real, Isla de Vieques
Snorkel among colorful fish in the coral gardens of this Vieques island.

Angel Reef, Isla de Vieques
This shallow reef is teeming with coral and sea creatures, making this underwater site alive with movement and color that surrounds the diver.

Anchor Reef, Isla de Vieques
An open-water dive with depths from 50 to 75 feet, this popular site was an area used by the Navy for anchoring, and where underwater explorers can find bottles and other interesting "artifacts."

Patti's Reef, Isla de Vieques
A popular diving spot for underwater explorers with scuba or snorkeling gear.

Green Beach, Isla de Vieques
Located at the far western end of Puerto Rico, this narrow beach gets high ratings for diving the offshore reef in 10 to 30 feet of water, which features sloping valleys and huge coral.

Plaza of Delights (Plaza de las Delicias), Ponce
Ponces main square has enough to keep you busy, from historical sites to boutiques.

Twenty-Sixth of January, Ponce
This street is lined with about 60 red- and black-striped houses, the local fire-fighters' colors.

Catholic University of Puerto Rico, Ponce
This institution enrolls more than 7,000 students and has colleges of business, education, science and law.

School of Fine Arts, Ponce
Ponce's School of Fine Arts, housed in old Spanish army headquarters, may have something to do with the city's prodigious artistic output.

Museum of the History of Ponce, Ponce
Situated in a beautiful and architecturally significant building, this museum traces the city's history from pre-Columbian times to the present.

Luquillo Mountain Range, El Yunque National Forest
The gem of this range is El Yunque, the 3500-foot peak renowned for its hiking trails and other outdoor activities.

La Coca Falls, El Yunque National Forest
A premier attraction of El Yunque Rain Forest, these dramatic waterfalls cascade down mossy cliffs, where the more adventurous can climb up slippery rocks to its base for a closer look.

Yokahu Observation Tower, El Yunque National Forest
A tower in El Yunque offering a sweeping view of the rainforest.

La Mina Falls, El Yunque National Forest
Be sure to leap into the cool waters at the base of this 35-foot cascade.

The Mine Trail (La Mina), El Yunque National Forest
An extension of Big Tree Trail, this rainforest trek passes by a waterfall and gold mine.

El Faro Lighthouse, Rincon
Find a maritime museum and dolphin-spotting platform at this lighthouse in Rincon.

El Faro Park, Rincon
Find the Rincon Lighthouse, the Maritime Museum and if you're lucky, humpback whales, by this park.

Maritime Museum, Rincon
Located in El Faro Park in Rincon, this small museum of the sea features platforms for spotting dolphin and whales.

Christopher Columbus Statue, Mayaguez
Find the great explorer in Plaza Colon gazing out at sea.

Plaza Colon, Mayaguez
The Mayaguez main square has a statue of Columbus.

Art Deco Post Office, Mayaguez
A remarkable structure in Mayaguez.

Yaguaz Theatre, Mayaguez
A noteworthy Mayaguez theater.

Tropical Agriculture Research Station, Mayaguez
Offers self-guided tours through its tropical gardens.

Parque de los Procures, Mayaguez
A Mayaguez park with notable walkways and fountains.

Mayaguez Zoo, Mayaguez
The only large-scale zoo in Puerto Rico, this 45-acre tropical attraction is home to a wide variety of animals including elephants, hippos and exotic birds and reptiles.

Tropical Casino at Holiday Inn Nayaquez, Mayaguez

Club Bacchus, Dorado
From Motown to Latin, this club takes ancient mythology as its theme.

 
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Caribbean Travelweb