Calle de la Fortaleza is the quintessential walking experience in Old San Juan as is many other streets that intersect with each other inside this enchanting historical core. Most of the shops and plethora of restaurants are situated within the beautiful colonial styled buildings painted in tropical colours with white trim – it’s an architectural spectacle to appreciate while strolling around (traffic can be a bit treacherous).
As tourists we spent a few hours liberally absorbing the ambience of this walled ‘town’ including Fortaleza St. No doubt the reputation of being ‘restaurant row’ is deserved – plenty to choose from with local Rican menus or other global fusions.The cooking aromas drifting out was amazing but equally, restaurants in other streets had tempting menus to study - Barrachina on Fortaleza is where the Piña Colada was invented.
At the western end of the street is ‘La Fortaleza’ the gorgeous blue/white, historical Governors’ Mansion (no admittance allowed) and from there the street progresses into souvenir/art/ craft /linen/ jewellery stores and eateries. We just didn’t limit ourselves to Fortaleza St, the surrounding streets are worth exploring and can be a lot quieter too - for atmosphere though, Calle de la Fortaleza cannot be missed!
Enjoy your experience!
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