Seven Wonders of Puerto Rico
– A state located on the island of the same name in the Caribbean. Translated from Spanish, its name means “rich port”, and although initially it meant something completely different, today it clearly explains the popularity of Puerto Rico among tourists from all over the world. Resorts for every taste and perfect beach vacation – this is just the tip of the iceberg; Today we will tell you about the treasures of Puerto Rico – places you can’t help falling in love with.
1. Living story
New generations of residents of the island respect the heritage of their ancestors, so in Puerto Rico modern hotels peacefully and organically coexist with centuries-old buildings. San Juan, the capital of Puerto Rico, was built up in layers, so any of the historical eras can be seen in the city. So, the famous Spanish restaurant La Mallorquina opened 150 years ago. The best paella on the island is served, like one and a half centuries ago, in the walls painted with paintings by elegant ladies of the 19th century. The city itself is surrounded by the wall of the fort Fuerte San Felipe del Moro, whose age is approaching 500 years. The first Christian church in the Western Hemisphere was also built here. The Cathedral of San Juan Bautista, decorating the center of the old city, was built of wood in 1521, and later restored by stone. The pearl of a journey into the past is the Tibs Native American Ceremonial Center in Ponce, a restored village of Arawak Indians who lived on the Caribbean islands in 25 BC. This center will soon be 2000 years old!
2. Festivals for any reason
No matter what time of year you decide to visit Puerto Rico, you will surely catch some bright festival. Puerto Ricans’ ease of climbing and cheerful disposition make even a modest event a holiday. Parades and shows are held here for any reason, whether it be a festival of orchids or pineapples, beer or sugarcane and … the list is still very far away! The street festival of San Sebastian is celebrated on a large scale, during which a colorful parade is held, dances are organized, tents are set up with traditional treats and items of art by local masters. Every year, starting in the 1970s, in the middle of January, thousands of tourists flock to the old part of San Juan to become part of the noisiest and most fun festival in Puerto Rico.
3. Traditional crafts
In colonial times, Puerto Rico was a rich port in terms of export – coffee, sugar and tobacco were actively grown on the island. Nowadays, farms and plantations have been transferred to private owners and continue to produce products of excellent quality using traditional technologies. Excursions to reed and coffee plantations will be especially interesting for families, because here children will be able to get acquainted with real rural life and see with their own eyes that sugar and coffee do not grow in a supermarket. And in the city of Vega Baha there is a farm where horses are bred and trained, where you can chat with these smart and kind animals.
4. Dancing until the morning
Salsa is a visiting card of Puerto Rico. Here everyone dances and always, as if born on the dance floor. In the evenings, groovy rhythms are heard from cafes and restaurants, musicians perform here and there, and smart people dance until the morning. If you don’t feel confident about going to the dance floor, you can take a lesson first; Many cafes and clubs host special training evenings for beginners. Well, if your interest in salsa goes beyond night dances, go on a tour of San Juan called Salsa Route.
5. Rum and pastries
Puerto Rican rum is the main ingredient in many local cocktails, including the famous Pina Colada, which was invented here. Instead of the famous Bacardi, be sure to try the local varieties of rum, which you are unlikely to find elsewhere, such as DonQ, Palo Viejo, Ron Llave or Ron del Barrilito.
After a nightly adventure, the most enjoyable morning activity is a leisurely brunch at Panadería. So in Puerto Rico are called street bakeries working in the morning. They serve excellent coffee, fresh pastries, hearty breakfasts and dinners.
It’s worth a little drive away from the beaches deep into the island, and you will see wild landscapes that amaze with their beauty. The main natural attractions of Puerto Rico are the Camuy River Cave Park, which is an extensive cave with an underground river, the Parguera Nature Reserve with a sophisticated coral reef system, and the El Yunque National Forest rainforest.
7. Vieques and Culebra
These two strange words are the names of small satellite islands located east of Puerto Rico, they can be reached by ferry from Fajardo or fly on a small plane from San Juan. On the island of Culebra, there is Flamenco beach, where old rusty tanks left here forty years ago can be seen from the sand – a surreal nature for memorable photos. And the Zoni beach was chosen by sea turtles crawling here to lay eggs.