San Juan, Puerto Rico – Image courtesy of tourist-destinations.com
Introducing Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico is famous for its vibrant culture and exuberant nightlife, which pulsates around the clock to the traditional rhythms of salsa, merengue and bomba y plen.
What to do and see in Puerto Rico
Discover a lush green landscape of rolling hills and mountains edged with pristine white-sand beaches and encircled by clear turquoise waters that are perfect for swimming, kayaking, scuba diving and snorkelling.
Sunbathe and swim on a choice of stunning white-sand beaches such as San Juan’s beautiful Playa del Condado at Isle Verde, Playa Flamenco on Culebra and Playa Sun Bay on Vieques.
Scuba dive the nature reserve around Mona Island, snorkel the dazzling phosphorescent bays at La Parguera, Vieques and Fajardo or catch a 6m-high wave on the northwest coast at Rincon – just perfect for adventurous honemoon couples.
Explore El Yunque rainforest on foot or mountain bike, try spelunking the underground caves of the Rio Camuy Cave Park and ride horses along mountain trails or white beaches around Playa de Luquillo. Spot rare birdlife in the Guanica Dry Forest and the Cabezas de San Juan nature reserve, nesting sea turtles on Culebra Island and iguanas on uninhabited Mona Island.
Savour one of Puerto Rico's Fiestas Patronales – celebrations held in towns and villages throughout the island to honour the region's patron saint.
Fiestas often last up to 10 days and include religious processions, local cuisine, music and dance. Try to catch San Juan’s Bautista Day fiesta – one of the best fiestas of the year.
In the island's capital of San Juan, explore narrow cobbled streets, wide tree-lined boulevards and colonial squares lined with historic sights, ancient monuments and well-preserved Spanish colonial buildings, some of which date back 500 years to the Spanish conquistadors.
Visit the 16th century La Fortaleza, the Plaza de San José and the San José Church – the second oldest church in the western hemisphere. Explore the maze of secret tunnels, dungeons, lookouts, barracks and vaults in the massive El Morro fortress, which sits on a 19m-high headland overlooking the sea.
Enjoy scenic views of the city from the 17th century City Wall, which winds its way around the peninsula. Then learn about Puerto Rico’s fascinating history at the African Heritage Museum, the Museum of Colonial Architecture and the San Juan Museum of Art and History.
Elsewhere, discover the beautiful town of Ponce and its Museum of Art, home to more than 1000 paintings and 400 sculptures, including one of the finest collections of 19th century pre-Raphaelite paintings in the Americas.
Visit the ancient Tibes Indian burial ground nearby or see 800-year-old ruins at the Caguana Indian Ceremonial Park at Arecibo.
Browse the shops in Old San Juan for designer clothes and shoes, cigars, jewellery, leather goods and local handicrafts. Check out the three-storey Plazas Las Americas – the Caribbean's largest shopping mall – boasting more than 250 shops with a range of US brands.
After dark, people-watch while strolling La Princesa Promenade, savour Puerto Rican-style cuisine at a choice of lively cafes and fine dining restaurants and then party the night away at a range of traditional Latin nightclubs where you can find live bands playing salsa and merengue music.
Or try your luck at the gaming tables of a glittering casino, such as the stylish El San Juan Hotel and Casino (also a great place for people-watching).
Where to stay in Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico offers an excellent choice of accommodation options to suit all honeymoon budgets, including the following 5-star hotels…
St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort
Location: Rio Grande, Puerto Rico
Ave nightly price: AUD1,132 per room
Description: Offering direct access to Bahia Beach, St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort features a golf course, spa and a pool with Atlantic Ocean views. There are 3 restaurants, a tennis school and a watersports centre. Each spacious, air-conditioned room has attractive décor and a terrace with garden, pool or sea views. All rooms have free WiFi, butler service and a seating area with a flat-screen TV, Blue Ray player and an iPod docking station. Spacious bathrooms offer custom-designed fixtures, an oversized tub and double shower, double vanity and a wall mirror with an embedded flat-screen TV. Balconies lead to spectacular ocean views. The Fern Restaurant offers Puerto Rican cuisine, while American and Caribbean dishes are served in Molasses. Offering ocean views, Seagrapes Restaurant features international cuisine. The Rèmede Spa offers a range of treatments including massage, facials and manicures. There is a hot tub, plunge pool and gym. Yoga and Pilates classes are also available. This property earned the AAA Five Diamond Award. Activities such as hiking tours, kayaking, art lessons, bird watching tours, paddle boarding, biking, fishing and canoeing can be arranged. El Yunque National Forest is a 15-minute drive from the resort, while San Juan is 40 km away.
Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve
Location: Dorado, Puerto Rico
Ave nightly price: AUD1,070 per room
Description: This luxurious beach-front resort features an on-site golf course, a fitness center and excellent views of the Caribbean Sea. Dorado Beach, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve has several swimming pools. Each beautiful room at this property features modern décor, a large wardrobe and marble floors. Some rooms feature an en-suite plunge pool and spectacular ocean views. The property features 4 on-site restaurants that provide elegant dining with gourmet dishes like ceviche and oysters. There are also open-air and beach-front dining options. There is an on-site spa that features relaxing massage treatments, and the property can also arrange activities for young children. Puerto Rico’s capital of San Juan is 40.2 km away, and guests can reach Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport within a 50-minute of the property.
The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan
Location: San Juan, Puerto Rico
Ave nightly price: AUD499 per room
Description: This 5-star hotel is on 8 acres of beachfront property in Isla Verde. It features a vibrant casino, 5 on-site restaurants, a full-service spa and free Wi-Fi. Guest rooms at The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan come equipped with a flat-screen TV and iPod dock. They also feature a fully stocked minibar as well as gourmet coffee and tea. Plush terry bathrobes and slippers are available. The beachfront San Juan Ritz-Carlton features an oceanfront pool and hot tub. Guests can enjoy the well-equipped gym with personal training services and group classes. Tennis courts and complete concierge services are available, in addition to relaxing spa facilities, including 11 treatments rooms and hair and nail salon. BLT Steak restaurant at the Ritz-Carlton serves American steakhouse cuisine and fresh seafood. Il Mulino New York serves Italian cuisine with an extensive wine list. Ocean Bar and Grill has tapas and refreshing cocktails on a beachfront terrace, and casual fare is available at Mares and the Lobby Lounge.
Condado Vanderbilt Hotel
Location: Condado, San Juan, Puerto Rico
Ave nightly price: AUD472 per room
Description: Offering an outdoor pool and a spa and health club, Condado Vanderbilt Hotel is in San Juan steps from Condado Lagoon. Free Wi-Fi access is available in all areas. Each room here includes a TV, air conditioning and a sitting area. Complete with a refrigerator, the dining area also has a coffee machine. The private bathrooms come with a bathtub or shower and a hairdryer. Extras include pay-per-view channels. At Condado Vanderbilt Hotel there is a restaurant and a fitness center. A made-to-order breakfast is available for an additional fee. Other facilities offered at the property include meeting facilities, luggage storage and dry cleaning. The hotel is less than 100 m from La Ventana al March Park and just over 1.6 km from Museum of Art of Puerto Rico. Old San Juan City Centre is 4.8 km away and Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport is 6.4 km away.
Hotel El Convento
Location: Old San Juan, Puerto Rico
Ave nightly price: AUD347 per room
Description: This hotel is located in the heart of historic Old San Juan, Puerto Rico. Hotel guests will receive beach privileges at the El Convento Beach Club on Isla Verde Beach. Hotel El Convento is housed in a restored 350-year old building. The hotel’s pool and hot tub overlook the San Juan Bay, and a fitness center, library, and business center are offered to guests. Facials, manicures, and massages are available upon request. Every evening, the Manager’s Reception serves hors d’oeuvres and wine on La Veranda Terrace. Rooms at the El Convento have Spanish décor and are furnished with refrigerators. The rooms include goose down pillows, flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi. The Hotel El Convento has 2 on-site restaurants. Patio del Nispero offers a gourmet menu served in an open-air setting and El Picoteo offers a tapas menu and a wide variety of wine. Hotel El Convento is located just a few minutes from many cruise ship piers. The renowned museums and historic landmarks of San Juan are within walking distance. Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport is 15 minutes away.
La Concha Renaissance San Juan Resort
Location: Condado, San Juan, Puerto Rico
Ave nightly price: AUD344 per room
Description: With an outdoor infinity pool overlooking Condado Beach, this 4-star resort features a 24-hour casino and several fine dining restaurants. The large guest rooms have private sea-view balconies. The brightly decorated rooms at La Concha Resort have floor-to-ceiling windows opening to the balcony. They have flat-screen TVs with channels such as HBO and ESPN. Other amenities include iPod docks and work desks. Guests can relax on a lounge bed at the deck surrounding the outdoor pool, or enjoy a drink from the poolside bar in the hot tub. The hotel also features a fitness center with cardio equipment and free weights. Free bike rental is also available. For breakfast and dinner, guests can choose from a variety of on-site restaurants such as Perla or Komakai, offering poolside tapas and seafood. Guests can also choose to dine in the privacy of their own room. The breakfast included in the rate is only for 2 people.
Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa
Location: Rio Grande, Puerto Rico
Ave nightly price: AUD269 per room
Description: Offering 3 outdoor swimming pools and a spa and wellness centre, Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa is located in Rio Grande, with access to over 1.5 km of beautiful beaches. Free Wi-Fi access is available in all rooms. The rooms will provide you with a flat-screen TV and cable channels. There is also a coffee machine. Featuring a bath or shower, private bathrooms also come with a hairdryer and free toiletries. Extras include a desk and a safety deposit box. At Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa you will find 10 restaurants, 1.6 km stretch of beach, 13 tennis courts and a fitness centre. Other facilities offered at the property include 2 golf courses, shared lounge and a laundry. Guests can enjoy a variety of water sports, dance lessons, and seasonal activities like Sea Turtle Nesting and Iguana feeding. This resort is 38 km from Luis Munoz Marin Airport.
Find the best deal, compare prices and read what other travellers have to say about these and more hotels and resorts in Puerto Rico at TripAdvisor.
Best time to honeymoon in Puerto Rico
The best time to visit Puerto Rico is during the winter dry season from mid-December through April, when temperatures average 24°C (75°F) with a high of 29°C (85°F).
The rainy (read hurricane) season lasts from May to November, coinciding with the island’s tourism low season when you can enjoy great deals.
For more climate info: Puerto Rico Weather Guide…
Getting to Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico is located east of the Dominican Republic and just north of the US and British Virgin Islands. The island nation also includes a trio of smaller islands: Culebra, Mona and Vieques.
As the major airline hub for the Caribbean, Puerto Rico receives daily non-stop flights from major US cities including New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Miami. There are also twice-weekly flights from Madrid, Spain.
Find out how to get to Puerto Rico…
Latest update Puerto Rico honeymoon destination:
24 May, 2017
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