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“Quirky museum, low admission, beautiful venue” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Museo de Las Americas

Museo de Las Americas
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Old San Juan Half-Day Sightseeing Tour
Ranked #26 of 195 things to do in San Juan
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: A folk art museum with vibrant exhibits you can buy.
Washington, DC
Level Contributor
205 reviews
46 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 122 helpful votes
“Quirky museum, low admission, beautiful venue”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 7, 2014

For a mere $3 to be paid at the gift shop in the lower courtyard, this museum with multiple separate gallery rooms is indeed curious. Located on the second floor, each themed area in a separate room numerically labeled along the courtyard balcony. Several of the seven or so rooms or galleries were closed and as deserted as it was, a few struck me as a little creepy - could've been the shrunken head (yes, really) in the first tribal gallery. Another room was an art and crafts classroom for kids, with a passionate teacher eager to share about the fun and innovative projects they were doing. Along the balconies are a few intricately carved wooden ox carts and canoes, all gifts from other nations. Katrina, a monstrous Day of The Dead skeleton "doll" standing about ten feet high greets you on the stairwell. Overall, it is an odd adventure. Be sure to stop in the lower courtyard at the Sala Pablo Casals, a small but amazing (and free) gallery with his lovely music and history. and there is a cute little coffee shop next to the Casals room with both indoor and outdoor searing. All close by 400 or 430 pm and the museum closes at lunch (12-1) so plan accordingly.

Visited August 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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248 reviews from our community

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English first
Level Contributor
33 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 3, 2014 via mobile

For $3, it's a good value for an hour or two. There were some guys playing drums when we went, and some local artisans, which we enjoyed. The exhibits are pretty small but do a good job of showing the roots and history of Puerto Rico. Not a place to spend more than a couple of hours at though.

Thank Chris B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Museo de Las Americas”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 2, 2014

This museum is a MUST! You will leave the exhibitions wanting to learn much more of El Indio en America, La Herencia Africana, la Conquista y Colonizaciion. You will visit 5 amazing exhibits (1, 4, 6, 7 & 8). The concept is to give the visitor a synopsis of the history and the culture of the Americas from pre-colombian period through present. It is located in El Cuartel de Ballaja en Old San Juan and considered one of the most important and impressive architectural masterpieces, built by the Spaniards during the 19th century. You will definitely enjoy this museum. Bring time with you because they break for lunch between 12 and 1:00 p.m. and through 5:00 P.M. Don't miss this one!

Visited July 2014
Thank Tillit2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, NY
Level Contributor
58 reviews
35 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Wonderful, Odd Little Museum”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 9, 2014

I almost didn't both with this place thinking that I wasn't in Puerto Rico to spend time indoors, but I'm so glad I did. It was one of the highlights of my trip.

This is a wonderfully weird, quirky place. The museum is on the second floor of the old armory. The exhibits are divided into different corridors by theme. The first one I went into was a intricately themed exhibit on natives in the Americas. It was nicely done with thorough explanations in Spanish and more briefly in English. The exhibit was on par with any nicely curated culture museum I've seen. The second exhibit I entered was a rotating exhibit that was a stark contrast to the first. I walked in and immediately heard the pulsing of neon lights from a giant modern art crab sculpture whose legs appeared to walk with the changing of the lights. In this room there was a series of photos of barbies doing. . . very adult things. . . some costumes, a room with films and some other modern exhibitions. The next room I went into was a homage to the Caribe Jazz and was less museum and more immersive experience. The room was set up as an old cafe with Jazz playing and tables left with dominos and drinks upon them.

I never knew what was going to be behind a door when I entered it and the experience was maybe unintentionally exhilarating, but exhilarating none the less. It reminded me of Sleep No More in NYC in a wonderful, odd sort of way.

Visited July 2014
3 Thank ntjvy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Guaynabo, Puerto Rico
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“The Hidden Jewel in Old San Juan”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 3, 2014

This is truly a hidden jewel. You see, there are not many signs to direct you to one of the most beautiful boutique museums of the Western Hemisphere, right across the much visited El Morro Castle. Four permanent exhibits (Amazonian and North American Indians, African Heritage, Culture and Conquest, and Folkloric Arts plus several visiting exhibits on popular fashion, arts, music, in addition art workshops for kids, etc. INCREDIBLE!! Don't miss visiting the Cuartel Ballaja, 2nd Floor. Its only 3$, yet worth a million...

Visited June 2014
2 Thank Pedro R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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