Every adventurous traveler should visit the Puerto Rico at least once in their lifetime.
And when you visit, you need a bucket list! This awe-inspiring destination has something for everyone but Puerto Rico is most famous for it’s breath-taking beaches, vibrant Old San Juan and the resilience of it’s people. There are so many amazing things to do in Puerto Rico; from hiking in rainforests, to exploring world heritage sites and visiting museums and fortresses. Here is what we consider to be the top things to do in Puerto Rico, worthy of being on your bucket list anyway.
Here’s our pick of the top things to do in Puerto Rico
Hike El Yunque National Rainforest
El Yunque National Forest is a tropical rainforest in northeastern Puerto Rico. El Yunque National Rainforest, also known as the Caribbean National Forest is the sole lush tropical rainforest in the United States. The forest has many unambiguous hiking trails. The two most popular are Big Tree Trail and La Mina. Many adventurous travelers visiting El Yunque National Rainforest choose to camp overnight so they can explore the rainforest fully and experience the nightly calls of coquí tree frogs.
Visit El Morro
Castillo San Felipe del Morro, (El Morro) was built between the periods of 1539 till 1589 and sits atop a high promontory overlooking the entrance to the San Juan Bay. El Morro is a six storied fortress that survived two world wars. It’s now one of Puerto Rico’s top attractions. El Morro is inside the San Juan National Historic Site. The fortress is full of mysterious tunnels, dark prison cells and barracks. Take a guided tour of the fortress so you can learn more about the fascinating history.
Playa Flamenco is a popular beach destination for both Culebra and Puerto Rico. The Culebra Island, situated towards the eastern side of Puerto Rico, is home to the beautiful Flamenco beach which is known for its shallow turquoise waters, white sand, swimming areas, and diving sites. The perfect beach for snorkelers, families and anyone who needs to work on their tan.
Bioluminescent Mosquito Bay
Bioluminescent Bay (aka Mosquito Bay or Puerto Mosquito) is one of Puerto Rico’s three bioluminescent bays, located on the island of Vieques. This bay is often referred to as “magical”, those blessed with the opportunity to experience it always agree. At night the water glows when it moves due to special organisms (dinoflagellates) in the water. It is so surreal.
Tamarindo Beach Trip
If you’re a lover of snorkeling, scuba diving and kayaking, then Tamarindo is the beach for you. Playa Tamarindo Grande in Culebra is one of the best snorkeling beaches in Puerto Rico where you can snorkel with sea turtles. The beauty of Tamarindo is so captivating. Although the waters are calm be aware that there are no lifeguards present on site.
Explore Old San Juan
For a small corner of a major capital, Old San Juan has plenty to offer. A historic district located at the “northwest triangle” of the islet of San Juan. Old San Juan is the cultural epitome of Puerto Rico and home to 400 restored buildings from the 16th and 17th century Spanish colonial period. The streets of Old San Juan are dotted with churches, castles and colorful buildings that are now home to excellent restaurants, great shops and chic cafes.
Museo de Arte de Ponce
After undergoing an elaborate renovation, the Museo de Arte de Ponce was re-opened in early 2010. Currently, the Museo de Arte de Ponce is home to over 4500 different artifacts from Africa, Americas, and Europe dating back to the 14th century. The museum is open six days a week except on Tuesday. Entry fee for adults is about $6 but for children (under 12 years) the entry fee is $3. Definitely opt for the guided tour of this museum.
Parque de las Cavernas del Rio Camuy
Located towards the southwest of San Juan, the Parque de las Cavernas del Rio Camuy is a huge park within numerous caves. The main entrance to the park is located in Quebrada, Camuy and the park has trams leading to caves that are home to crabs, bats, and tarantulas. Make the most out of your tour to Parque de las Cavernas del Rio Camuy; if it rains several caves get shut so keep up-to-date on the current weather conditions if you plan a visit.
Castillo de San Cristobal
Part of San Juan National Historic Site and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Relax at Carolina Beach
The Isla Verde coastline is long, wide and framed by coconut palm trees and is very popular among both locals and travelers. Due to this, Carolina Beach is usually quite crowded, so the best time to visit is early morning or early evening. There’s a kiddie water park at the eastern end of the beach and a life-guard too.
Looking for more cool things to do in Puerto Rico? Pick a tour…
Other than these top things to do in Puerto Rico, there is so much more to see and experience in this great country. Plan ahead so that you can take your time exploring and be prepared to be flexible because sometimes travelers you meet along the way will have the best suggestions for undiscovered gems and awesome things to do in Puerto Rico.
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