Last week I hopped a plane from Orlando to Puerto Rico. A three hour flight. No passport required. JetBlue extra legroom… I was prepared to eat my face off and bask in the warm Caribbean sunshine and that’s exactly what I did. Here’s a sample of all of the things I was able to do, see and eat while there to give you an idea of what you too can do with four days in Puerto Rico.
PUERTO RICO DAY #1
It was supposed to be a three hour flight from Orlando into San Juan but with a little help from the jet stream we arrived about a half hour early. Here’s a shot from the plane looking down over the Bahamas. Yep…the water really IS that blue.
After we landed, it was a quick fifteen minute ride from the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport to the Caribe Hilton. This resort is set directly on the Atlantic Ocean with it’s own private beach, infinity’esque pool and swim up bar.
In Puerto Rico the days were warm (80’s) and the nights were perfection (70’s) with a consistent tropical breeze.
PUERTO RICO DAY #2
Day two had us jettisoned from San Juan, which is on the Northern part of the island over to Fajardo on the Eastern tip of the island. From there we boarded the East Island Excursion’s Caribe Spirit…an 81 foot catamaran which transported us to Cayo Luis Peña Natural Reserve for a few hours of reef snorkeling and sea turtle watching.
After lunch we continued on to Culebra, an island approximately 17 miles off the coast of Puerto Rico. We threw anchor right off the shore at Flamenco Beach. This idyllic location was named “second most beautiful beach in the world” by the Discovery Channel.
Once back to the mainland we made a quick drive to the El Conquistador Resort for dinner and dessert. The El Con is a Waldorf Astoria property and it’s location on top of a 300-foot bluff overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and El Yunque Rainforest offers guests what can arguably be called the best vantage point on the entire island.
This was our view from Cafe Bella Vista where we noshed on traditional Puerto Rican fare.
…and imbibed in local craft cocktails like this Palomino Fresco made with Bombay Sapphire gin, cucumber, mint, lime and ginger ale. This drink gets its name from the resorts 100-acre private island.
Infinity pool sunset before capping off the evening with a spot of dessert.
PUERTO RICO DAY #3
Our third day on the island was filled with adventure and I mean that in the most literal sense of the word. We traveled about an hour into the most central part of the island to Orocovis. It was there that we entered the ToroVerde Adventure Park for a few hours of ziplining from mountain top to mountain top and across lush ravines.
Torro Verde was by far my favorite part of the trip. I had never been on a zip line before and I got to experience this type of sightseeing full throttle!
The trip happened to coincide with the grand opening of “The Monster”…the longest zip line in the entire world and if you were wondering…hell yes I rode it! 80 miles per hour “superman style” down a one and a half mile cable!
Upon our arrival back to San Juan we checked into a second resort…The Condado Plaza Hilton where we capped off the evening with a four-course meal served al fresco on the resort’s terrace.
Seriously…the view from my room at the Condado Plaza Hilton…SPECTACULAR!
PUERTO RICO DAY #4
On our last full day in Puerto Rico we headed South about an hour and a half to Ponce which is the island’s second largest city after San Juan. In Ponce we were treated to a tour of the Serrallés Distillery and indulged in a private rum tasting surrounded by aging barrels.
We then headed into the city’s center for a fabulous lunch at Lola Eclectic Cuisine.
One of my favorite bites were these sweet plantain balls stuffed with chorizo and served with guava sauce.
Upon our arrival back into San Juan the rest of the group toured the streets of Old San Juan while I rested the body of old Amanda at the Condado Plaza Hilton.
We ventured over to Que PezCa’o for dinner. Located in San Juan, Que PezCa’o is a fish market by day and a bustling local dinner spot at night. You can be sure to find some of the freshest seafood caught daily here as well as live music in this traditional Puerto Rican setting.
Whole fried snapper and tostones with mayo ketchup. I couldn’t get my fill of these crispy fried little numbers.
After dinner service we got to drink and dance like locals at La Placita which is basically one big food and cocktail block party in Condado. A farmer’s market during the day and then a hot spot at night.
I will have more in depth coverage of each one of these experiences in the coming weeks, but for now, I leave you with this stunning view of the island captured at the El Conquistador Resort.
Special Thanks to the Puerto Rico Tourism Company for hosting me on this trip. All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links.