A little more than a two-hour flight from the continental U.S., Puerto Rico deftly walks the line between American territory and international charm. A blend of Spanish, Indian and African influences, this island has tropical forests, sandy beaches and an ever-expanding dining and nightclub scene. When you visit Puerto Rico— aside from taking a ferry trip to the pristine beaches of Culebra or the glowing waters off Vieques—you can otherwise cover the whole island by car with day trips, from the time capsule of Old San Juan, the posh designer boutiques of Condado and the small-town charms of Poncé. Read on in this Puerto Rico travel guide to plan your trip:
Things Not to Miss in Puerto Rico
- Hike in El Yunque Forest
- Seethe Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico, the best art collection in the Caribbean
- Ride the free hop-on, hop-off trolley in Old San Juan
- Take a day trip to the island of Culebra
- Explore the caves at Parque de las Cavernas del Rio Camuy
- Enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Flamenco
- Paddle through the Bioluminescent Bay off Vieques
When to Go to Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico boasts a pretty mild climate year round, with average temperatures consistently around 80. The peak of Puerto Rico travel season lasts from December to April, which is also the dry season. Rates are also the highest this time of year. August in the hottest (and rainiest) month in Puerto Rico, and summer through fall brings a risk of hurricanes.
- Taking advantage of the city’s free hop-on, hop-off trolley.
- Catching a salsa performance at Old San Juan’s Nuyorican Café.
- Perusing the 1,000-piece art collection at the 130,000-square-foot Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico, the most extensive Caribbean art museum.