5 Places You Won’t Want to Miss in San Juan, Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico was one destination where I embraced the term beach bum and transformed into a wandering soul. I would roam the island on my own during the day and join my better half in the evening for some bar hopping or a dinner date. Needless to say, I had the best of both worlds. This article lists the 5 best places in San Juan from my trip to Puerto Rico.

According to legend, Puerto Rico, meaning rich port, forms one end of the Bermuda Triangle. Ships constantly battled the elements while carrying merchandise and goods between Florida, Bermuda and Puerto Rico. One of the Americas’ oldest and busiest ports, Puerto Rico has been coveted, owned and lost ever since Christopher Columbus came looking for India and found these islands.

Today, Puerto Rico is part Hispanic, Spanish, American, African-American and Tiano. If you’re heading to this island, be sure to spend a few days in San Juan. While present-day San Juan is urban and hip, old San Juan with its many forts, plazas, picturesque colonial buildings and winding streets of cobblestone adds the magic to the city. Here are five incredible things to do in San Juan, Puerto Rico

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Ravaged but Ravishing- San Juan

San Juan is the capital of the beautiful island of Puerto Rico, the city forms one end of the famed Bermuda triangle. The name Puerto Rico, translates to rich port which is one of the reasons for the legend of the Bermuda Triangle. Ships constantly battled the elements while faring between Florida, Bermuda and Puerto Rico carrying merchandise and goods. There is so much history, mystery and love that has shaped this tiny island, it pulls at your heart strings and leaves you in awe.

Puerto Rico is strategically located on the sea route  and is one of the oldest and busiest ports in the America’s. Puerto Rico has been coveted, owned and lost ever since Christopher Columbus came looking for India and found these islands. The forts and plazas in old San Juan have seen many conquerors and vanquishers.Culturally present day Puerto Rico is part Hispanic, Spanish, American, African-American and some parts Tiano (the native tribe of Puerto Rico). Old city San Juan has many forts, plazas, picturesque colonial buildings and winding streets of cobblestone.   Present day San Juan is urban and hip but it is the old San Juan that adds magic to the city.

The forts of EL Morro and Fort San Cristobal tell us about the history and the many wars that have ravaged this tiny island since the Spanish invaders till World War II. Bunkers from World War II can still be seen from San Juan Bay, these are still in use by the US army. The plains in front of El Morro were designed such that the enemy which were the native tribes at that time, did not have any scope of ambushing or hiding. At present the plains afford a good arena for flying kites and enjoying the view of San Juan bay. While the forts have grim stories of battles and loss, the plazas of San Juan tell stories of life and living. The night lights up and people celebrate life with music and food. In fair weather, the restaurants have open air seating and there would always be music and dancing. It is easy to enjoy in Puerto Rico as all you have to do is order a pitcher of sangria, some hearty mufango (dish made with plantains and meat)  and let yourself immerse  in the culture.

Urban San Juan
Urban San Juan
Kayaking at San Juan
Kayaking at San Juan
Waters Swirling with Mystery
Waters Swirling with Mystery
Castle San Felipe Del Morro
Castle San Felipe Del Morro
Tunnels at El Morro
Tunnels at El Morro, used for canons and other heavy weapons.
Bunker from World War II
Bunker from World War II
The Fortifications of El Morro
The Fortifications of El Morro
Artillery or Powder Room
Artillery or Powder Room
Spanish Architecture
Spanish Architecture
Flying Kites at El Morro
Flying Kites at El Morro
A Segway through Old San Juan
A Segway through Old San Juan
Plaza of Religious Procession
Plaza of Religious Procession
Balconies of Old San Juan
Balconies of Old San Juan
Plaza Colon - Remembering Christopher Clombus
Plaza Colon – Remembering Christopher Clombus
Vibrant and Live -Old San Juan
Vibrant and Live -Old San Juan
Winding Down an Eventful  Day
Winding Down an Eventful Day