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Plan Your Trip to Puerto Rico: Best of Puerto Rico Tourism

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Explore Puerto Rico

You’ll go to Puerto Rico for beautiful beaches and Caribbean breezes, but once you’re there, it’s easy to see what makes this archipelago so special—from historical architecture to its diverse natural geography. Tour San Juan for shopping and sightseeing alongside colorful buildings and cobblestone streets. Hike the massive El Yunque rainforest to explore waterfalls and wildlife. And as far as beaches go, it doesn’t get better than the sands of Isla de Vieques—particularly Mosquito Bay, where at night, the water glows blue-green thanks to bioluminescent organisms. The best part? Puerto Rico’s doable size means you can cover a lot in a single trip. Check out more recs below.

Travel Advice

Essential Puerto Rico

How to do Puerto Rico in 5 days

From kayaking a bioluminescent bay to hiking through the rainforest
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Live Boricua

In Puerto Rico, we celebrate every last ray of sun. Dare to Live Every Moment. #Live Boricua.
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Live Boricua

Bask in the warmth of our beaches. Taste the love in our food. Feel the passion of our music. Live Boricua. No passport needed for U.S. Citizens.

The best beaches in Puerto Rico

As a born and raised Boricua (Puerto Rican), the island holds a special place in my heart. Though I've traveled extensively, nothing quite compares to the beaches here. My favorite hidden gems all hold cherished memories, and trust me, once you experience the golden sands, breathtaking sunsets, and the thrills of jumping into the waves, you’ll be equally captivated.
  • Playa La Cueva Las Golondrinas
    49
    Located about 45 minutes west of San Juan, this serene escape from the hustle and bustle is a true local’s secret. The quiet beach has crystal clear waters and plenty of shaded areas; if the sea is calm, you can explore the cave here, which is home to swallows, bats, and birds—a beautiful spectacle. (Be cautious of small sea urchins when entering). Bring your own drinks and snacks as there are no nearby restaurants.
  • Playa Fortuna Beach
    1
    With over 12 miles of white-sand coastline, Luquillo—about 45 minutes east of San Juan—has tons of opportunities for swimming and sunning with the lush El Yunque National Forest as a backdrop. Base yourself at Play Fortuna for access to one of area’s highlights: Kioskos de Luquillo, a row of 60 family-owned restaurants serving addictive bacalaitos (codfish fritters), seafood, pina coladas, and ice-cold beers.
  • Playa Sucia
    932
    Picture this—golden sands, rugged cliffs, and turquoise waters stretching as far as the eye can see—and you’ll know why Playa Sucia is a must visit. On the island’s southwest corner, you’ll get breathtaking views of the area’s rugged Acantilados cliffs from this remote beach near the historic Faro Los Morillos lighthouse. Adventurous travelers will want to climb down the rocks (carefully!) for an up-close look at the Insta-worthy Puente de Piedra rock bridge.
  • Playa Buyé
    311
    If I could choose just one beach to visit for a lifetime in Puerto Rico, this would be it. I'm not exaggerating when I say that experiencing the sunset on this soft-sand beach is like a religious experience. Last time I visited, a group of locals began playing bomba music while the tranquil waters shimmered under the fading sun—it was pure magic.
  • Playa Crashboat
    1,138
    Crash Boat, on the island’s northwest corner, is a playground for water lovers thanks to its iconic bright green pier, originally built by the U.S. Air Force during WWII to dock rescue boats. The pier is popular both for fishing and for leaping into the aqua sea. And snorkelers and scuba divers like to explore by the pilings under the pier as well. Don’t miss the frituras (fritters) at the nearby stalls.
  • Flamenco Beach
    3,610
    On Culebra, an island 20 miles off the coast of mainland Puerto Rico, Flamenco is consistently ranked as one of the top beaches in the world for its clear, shallow waters (perfect for snorkeling) and snowy white sand. You can rent chairs and umbrellas, and there are showers, bathrooms, and food kiosks. On the beach, there are abandoned military tanks covered in graffiti, giving an intriguing glimpse into Culebra’s past when it was occupied by the U.S. Navy.

Puerto Rico Travel Guide

Travelers' pro tips or experiencing Puerto Rico

Lilisland

Look up the schedules for the festivals in Puerto Rico. There is always a festival going on somewhere on the island.

paris7002

If this is your first time, I strongly recommend that you stay in San Juan, especially if you are looking for nightlife, which is pretty much non-existent anywhere else on the island.

babyblueeeyes2

The weather is always warm with the sweetest sea breeze caressing your face.

sherive

There is a wide variety of things to do: historical sites, museums, outdoor adventures, white sand beaches, and that incredible blue, turquoise and green water.

shoppinmama

Puerto Rico has a little bit of everything.

CoquiPR

It is a good day to explore the historic district, you can also go gambling at the hotels during the evening as you said, the Sheraton Old San Juan has a casino too.

What is the best way to get there?

flying

Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport is the main commercial airport serving San Juan. Shuttle buses run from the airport to hotels and car rental destinations.

cruising

Several cruise companies including Carnival Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, and more dock in Puerto Rico as part of a regular itinerary.

Do I need a visa?

If you’re a U.S. citizen no, you do not need a visa. If you’re visiting Puerto Rico from overseas, use the State Department’s Visa Wizard to see if you need a visa.

Get around

bus

The city of San Juan has an active bus line, however, there is no island-wide bus system. There are buses that service different sections of the island available from the Río Piedras bus terminal.

taxis and rideshare

Taxis, as well as Uber and Lyft ridesharing companies, are available in the city.

driving

Driving around the island is possible, and recommended as much of the island lacks public transit. However, be warned, traffic can get very heavy near the city of San Juan and the island does maintain a large system of toll roads.

On the ground

What is the timezone?

Atlantic Standard Time

What are the voltage/plug types?

The standard voltage in the United States is 120 V and the standard frequency is 60 Hz. The plug has two flat parallel pins.

What is the currency?

The U.S. Dollar

Are ATMs readily accessible?

Yes.

Are credit cards widely accepted?

Yes.

How much do I tip?

Tipping is not obligatory in Puerto Rico, however, a tip for exceptional service is always appreciated.

Bartender

$1 a drink or $2 for a more labor-intensive cocktail

Restaurant

15-20%

Bellhop

$1 to 3 per bag

Housekeeper

$2-$3 per night

Taxis/rideshare

15-20%

Shuttle driver

$1-$2 per person

Are there local customs I should know?

Drinking

The legal age for buying and drinking alcohol is 18 years old.

Walking

Walk to the right of the sidewalk and step off to the side of the sidewalk if you want to stop to check your phone, look up directions, or want to take in a view.

Public transport

Allow others to disembark before boarding, don’t take up more than one seat, and stand to offer seating to pregnant women or someone with a disability.

Try to speak the language

Learn a few basic phrases as a sign of respect. Locals will often switch to English for your ease and comfort but they appreciate the effort.

Spitting

Spitting is considered rude in any public setting.

Find more information about local customs and etiquette in the United States generally here.

Frequently Asked Questions about Puerto Rico

Some of the most popular restaurants in Puerto Rico include:

Puerto Rico is known for some of its popular attractions, which include: