Thursday, December 31, 2020

8 Ways Puerto Rican Youth Can Earn for a Living Online in 2020

 [caption id="attachment_9549" align="alignnone" width="640"] DISRUPTIVO[/caption]

With a stable internet connection and a decent computer, the realm of online employment is accessible to anyone, anywhere. With a population of 3.1 million people, Puerto Rico has much to benefit from the growing trends of remote working.

The youth unemployment rate in Puerto Rico was at 24.7% in 2019. For the island, it is, in fact, a fairly good percentage compared to the previous years. As an increasing number of people are switching to remote work, online jobs seem to be attracting a fair part of the younger generation. 

Here's the good news. Earning money from the internet is not that complicated. If you are willing to devote your time to it, here are some paths to try out online.

1. Academic Writing 

As students are flocking abroad to study, a huge demand for academic writing appears. If you have a good command of English and a flair for writing, it is not hard to find a job relevant to your expertise.

Websites such as EssayPro are always willing to employ native speakers with specialization in various academic fields. Their stream of orders is only growing; hence, they need new writers every day. If you can prove your qualifications and skills, then it is an easy way to make solid money.

2. Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is perhaps the most rapidly growing freelancing sector. It comes with plenty of opportunities to establish yourself online. Today, SEO analysis, PPC marketing, and competitor analysis are integral parts of digital marketing. All the skills you need for that job can easily be acquired online.

You can further break down your niche, from content writing to social media, to offer specialized services to each client. As an online job, you also have the option to work for multiple companies and projects at the same time.

3. Offer Consulting

If you are proficient in any particular field, you could potentially find people who would pay you to counsel them on the market. You can help them with their goals, set up a business, or boost their marketing. It would surprise you how many companies are willing to hire individual consultants. Especially if you can offer valuable insight into their operation. 45% of freelancers provide skilled services, including consulting on top websites. 

With the help of a legitimate website and social media, you can create a profile for people to find and book a session with you. 

4. Sell an Online Course

Apart from direct selling of your skills, another approach to take is to teach others. Today, all industries encourage their employees to consistently upscale and grow with the latest technological and market demands. You no longer need a Phd. to impart your knowledge to others.

Regardless of how advanced you are, there would be people looking for courses. There are several online platforms where you can curate an entire course and sell online classes to help others learn another skill.

5. Sell as an Affiliate

Affiliate marketing is certainly not the new kid on the block. However, it continues to be an excellent online income source. You can use multiple channels, be it blogs, social media, or vlogs, where you mention or advertise a project. You will receive a commission every time someone makes a purchase using your link or a code.

To begin with, you can start by signing up on existing affiliate programs such as Amazon or Rakuten. On the other hand, if you already have a substantial social media following, it will become easier to get new clients as well as good commission rates.

6. Become a YouTuber

With nearly 2 billion users, YouTube is the second largest social media platform. Unlike other social media sites, you can monetize YouTube content by connecting it to an AdSense account. Depending on the number of views and the cost per impression of the ad, you could be making substantial income through YouTube.

Additionally, you can resort to affiliate marketing and use your channel for marketing your other online endeavors.

7. Collect and Sell Leads

Another course to earn through a website is to collect and sell leads. Lead buyers are ready to pay for information such as email contacts and other data you collect. You will need to drive considerable traffic to your website through great content in the first place. 

And, of course, you will also need to ask the audience to agree to the terms when they visit your site. Through subscription and other tactics, you will be able to collect leads worth enough for any industry.

8. Leverage the Existing Websites

It would be challenging to start a freelance career without knowing which direction to take. Fortunately, there is a myriad of online portals that allow freelancers to connect with clients. Be it writing, consulting, marketing, or web development, such websites are the easiest way to land your first client.

To name a few, you can start with Upwork, Fiverr, Freelancer, or even Linkedin to advertise yourself and sell your skills.

In short, for the youngsters in Puerto Rico, online opportunities are not that different from the rest of the world. No matter what you pursue, understand that you will need significant equity in terms of hard work and patience to make money fast.

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

What To Pack for Puerto Rico: Tips & Packing Lists

Barbara Maier

Traveling to exotic locations can be a wonderful way to improve health, meet new people and gain valuable new experiences. When Puerto Rico is mentioned, many people envision beaches, sunshine and of course, reggaetón. When you combine all of these with a unique island atmosphere, you get a recipe for a perfect vacation. However, packing for this type of trip can be a bit tricky, so here’s a list of tips that will help you bring everything you need and enjoy Puerto Rico to the fullest.

1. Consider weather season before you book your flight

Puerto Rico has warm weather, but the period between mid-July to the end of November is known for hurricanes, so in order to avoid that, it’s better to go during the peak season which is from December till April. Another great period for visiting Puerto Rico is from March till early July, but be sure to bring traveling insurance, so you could be sure you’re safe in case anything happens. If you’re traveling during the mild weather season, feel free to bring a few different types of clothing, so you will be able to have fun without feeling limited in any way.

2. Pack batteries in case of a power outage

Power outages used to be quite common in Puerto Rico, but nowadays they’re less rare, especially in San Juan and Rincón. Still, in order to be safe, it’s advisable to bring external battery packs, because being unable to charge your phone or use your laptop is the last thing you need while being away from home. So, even though power outages aren’t that frequent anymore, they can still happen out of blue, so being prepared in advance can save you a lot of trouble in case of a sudden power cut.

3. Your comfort is the most important

Traveling often means having fun and trying different outfits on multiple occasions. However, there’s one important thing to remember: personal comfort. So, if you’re going to a place with a hot climate, you should remember to put your own comfort first, mainly if you plan to go sightseeing on foot. Therefore, it’s essential to opt for footwear that is comfortable, durable but also stylish and strappy Skechers sandals are a great choice as you’ll be able to walk and spend time on foot for many hours. Additionally, in order to prevent excessive sweating, it’s essential to pick clothes made from breathable fabrics such as organic cotton, linen, and moisture-detracting synthetic fabrics if you plan on being physically active.

4. Be sure to stay safe

As we mentioned previously, traveling insurance and other important documents should surely be on your packing list together with external batteries in case of power cuts. Still, since power cuts disrupt ATMs and credit card machines, it’s essential to bring some cash as well, so you’ll be able to eat out or buy some souvenirs. Also, since it’s going to be very sunny, you should make sure to pack a pair of quality sunglasses, a hat, and sunscreen. Wearing a sunscreen is a must, especially if you’re fair-skinned.


Puerto Rico is an amazing place that is definitely worth visiting, still, due to very hot weather, mixed with hurricane season, it’s absolutely important to go there during the right time, and bring all the essentials, such as batteries, cash, documents, and day cream with high SPF. Also, don’t forget to pack the right close and put your own comfort first, as that’s the only way to have a great time while visiting this unique and beautiful country. 

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Should You Rent a Motorcycle While Visiting Puerto Rico?

 Puerto Rico's tranquil sights and open trails make it ideal for motorcycle riding. For people who love to explore, traveling the fascinating countryside on two wheels offers them the feeling of independence they need. If you are going to visit there, renting a motorcycle can be a great idea. Given that narrow roads and steep heels characterize the remote areas of Puerto Rico, using a motorcycle could be a fantastic way to get around. Here is why you should rent a bike in Puerto Rico.

Why a Motorcycle?

Motorcycle riding is a trend in Puerto Rico. You can rent a motorcycle of your choice and explore new or familiar places in an outdoor environment. Unlike cars, motorcycles allow you to enjoy the fascinating scenery and natural beauty of the countryside. Motorcycles are the best choice for navigating the cities' narrow paths. Similarly, a motorbike offers the flexibility you need. You can ride to the most extreme local areas, making as many stopovers as you wish along the way.

Make Sure You Know How to Ride

Motorcycles can be a great way to explore Puerto Rico. However, assuming that you can ride a motorbike is dangerous. If you have never used one before, ensure you familiarize yourself with its usage. Make sure you train well and understand all safety measures. There are a few common causes of motorcycle accidents you should know beforehand and how to deal with them to keep yourself safe. Avoid tailgating, speeding and not paying attention to your surroundings when you're on a motorcycle.

Familiarize Yourself With the Local Roads

Once you rent your ideal motorbike, the next step is to ensure you understand the roads and paths where you'll be riding. Most of the local roads in Puerto Rico are narrow, with plenty of turns. If you haven't been there before, ensure you know safe places to visit with a motorcycle. If you don't have friends or family in Puerto Rico to help you, you can work with a guide to help understand the nice routes around. Or, get a good map to help plan your next safe trip destination.

To get the most out of your time in Puerto Rico, consider renting a motorcycle. With so many thrilling sights and open areas, a motorcycle can be ideal for your adventures. Just make sure that you take all the safety precautions that you can and make sure you know where you’re going so you can have the best experience.

Here’s another article you might like: 5 Romantic Ways to Propose in Puerto Rico

Monday, December 28, 2020

Latest Road Fatality In Puerto Rico: A Blunt Reminder To Stay Vigilant While On The Road

  Photo by Ashley Satanosky on Unsplash

The latest victim of a road accident in Puerto Rico is a 30-35 year old driver who died in the middle of a multiple collision in the direction of Bayamon to San Juan at Plaza Rio Hondo on March 5, 2020. The road had to be closed temporarily for the cleanup of an oil spill and to remove the damaged vehicles. Accidents like these are stark reminders to stay alert and obey traffic laws while driving. Although they can happen anytime, anywhere, accidents are preventable if drivers follow the rules of the road. If you’re visiting Puerto Rico and plan to tour the island, sensible actions such as obeying speed limits, avoiding driving under theinfluence of alcohol, and eliminating distractions enhance your safety and that of others.

Motor Vehicle Fatalities Rising

According to figures released by authorities, so far, there have been 43 deaths, including the latest fatality this year, six more than in 2019 when 37 were recorded. Puerto Rico, which has more than 3 million licensed drivers, has roughly 3.3 million registered vehicles. On average, 200,000 motor vehicle crashes occur each year. The causes of vehicle crashes are varied, ranging from alcohol consumption, excess speed, poor road conditions, and distracted driving.

Car accidents may cause serious injuries, and in severe cases, fatalities. Motor vehicle crashes have different consequences that not only affect the physical and mental condition; of those involved, but also imply financial and economic costs such as lost productivity, property damage or workplace losses. In addition to hospitalization and medical costs, aggrieved parties should consult personal injury lawyers, who can conduct the necessary investigations and represent their interests.

Road Safety In Puerto Rico

The Highway Safety Plan of Puerto Rico for 2020 outlines the safety problems in the country and offers strategies to improve road fatalities and injuries for drivers, passengers and pedestrians. For example, campaigns to enhance public awareness to reduce speeding are in place. Police patrols also work extra hours to enforce speed controls and seatbelt use. Distracted driving due to cell phone use is also part of police controls. Following traffic rules can drastically improve road safety while traveling if you're driving in Puerto Rico.

Another important component of the plan is its focus on pedestrian fatalities, which represented an average of 32% of the total traffic fatalities. Lack of resources to police pedestrians that break traffic laws is a limitation. There is a plan to review the law to issue traffic fines to pedestrians, as well to decrease the annual pedestrian fatalities. As a pedestrian, make yourself visible at night by wearing light colored clothing, cross on zebra crossings, and avoid texting or using the phone while crossing the road.

Road fatalities and injuries are an unfortunate reality. However, by obeying traffic laws and regulations when driving in Puerto Rico, your chances of getting into an accident are significantly reduced, making your stay an enjoyable experience. In addition, it will lower accident figures and improve mortality rates in the country.

Thursday, December 24, 2020

5 Romantic Ways to Propose in Puerto Rico


Puerto Rico WeddingFind Out Why Puerto Rico is Perfect for Proposals

Millions of tourists from around the world come to Puerto Rico for their vacations. The scenic beauty and rich history here are also attractive for marriage proposals. There are many fantastic attractions, landmarks, and resorts to choose from. These all make great backdrops for the perfect proposal, setting the groundwork for romantic memories of this special day.

Discover Puerto Rico highlights the diverse regions of this intriguing island. Each region is special and can be used as destinations for popping the question. It doesn’t matter whether you choose the north, south, east, west, metro, or the iconic central mountains. These are sights that can only be found in this part of the world. Marriage proposal ideas here often include nature in all its beauty.

Some couples will come to Puerto Rico for vacation and will leave engaged to be married. It is possible to plan these events no matter where you are staying or visiting here. One of the most important goals is to make this romantic and memorable. You may decide to plan a luxurious proposal at a top resort location. Trip Savvy, shares that travelers can do much more on the island by using budget-friendly options.

This means that while preparing for the right moment to propose, you will be able to enjoy and experience all that Puerto Rico has to offer. This is true whether you are taking an extended vacation or a weekend getaway. Fortunately for couples, there are a lot of options to consider for these precious moments. Let’s take a look at 5 Romantic Ways to Propose in Puerto Rico.

1 – Taking a Family Vacation

Depending on the couple, it may be very important that the proposal takes place alongside family and friends. Taking a family vacation is one way to plan a romantic proposal while visiting the attractions of Puerto Rico. Touring spots like Culebra & Vieques and its iconic beaches can be the perfect way to propose with loved ones around. The eastern region also offers beaches that are more secluded for this.

2 – Planning a Fine Dining Date

San Juan is one portion of Puerto Rico that is known for its amazing cuisine. In fact, this is where you will discover a selection of restaurants, hotels, and nightclubs. Planning a fine dining date with your better half is certainly a terrific way to propose. Open-air restaurants, such as Los Pinos, El Nuevo Rancho, and Los Amigos serving authentic and delicious food can be found on PR-52, 40 minutes from San Juan.

3 – Using Mountain Top Views

One of the most popular ways to propose in Puerto Rico requires using the wonderful mountain top views here. What better way for the couple to feel like they are on top of the world. El Yunque National Forest is a great place to explore and to plan your proposal. The 8-mile road at this destination goes upward and at points reaches an elevation of 3.5+K feet. There are romantic overlooks to enjoy, as well.

4 – Getting Immerse in History

Throughout the island, couples will discover areas, such as El Morro, which is filled with a rich history. You can schedule a tour of this location or simply take a romantic stroll on your own. Getting immersed in history is a nice idea for a romantic proposal. Castillo San Cristobal is a beautiful structure in Old San Juan for couples to visit. The Metro is another region to consider where history and modern life merge.

5 – Enjoying the Surf

This world-famous destination is known for its refreshing waters at locations like Domes Beach in Rincon. It is also considered one of the best places to surf in the Caribbean. WeddingWire took a look at some of the romantic and exciting ways that proposals occurred. For some, this place is a fancy restaurant and for others, it might be surfing near a sandy beach. Puerto Rico offers thrilling choices to make thoughts of this a trip that lasts for years to come.

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

5 Business Ideas for If You’re Wanting to Move Back to the Island


Do you want to move back to Puerto Rico, but are concerned about the economy and job prospects? You’re not alone. The island’s economy has taken hit after hit with all of the hurricanes, adding to the overall perception that the island doesn’t have much of an economy. With this, many young Puerto Ricans—the island’s future—are leaving and moving to the U.S. If you're planning to stay, or to move back, however, there are some business ideas that can help you make a living on the island.

Why Start a Business in Puerto Rico?

If you’re a Puerto Rican already living in the U.S., you’re most likely already seeing what is happening to the homeland from a distance. You might be thinking that starting a business on the island is a laughable idea given the current economic challenges. You want to move back home, but you’re not sure how you will survive.

While it might be true that job prospects on the island aren’t what they once were, there are some excellent opportunities to start a business and employ more locals back home. Many successful people both past and present have found, and still find, victories by looking for the opportunities in current problems.

In Puerto Rico, there are a plethora of problems with the economy that need fixing, so why not be one of the island’s much-needed entrepreneurial heroes? Below are 5 business ideas to consider if you’re wanting to move back to the island and be part of a stronger future for the home you love.

Hotels and Vacation Homes

Opening, building, or running a hotel or a series of vacation homes is an excellent business to break into in Puerto Rico. Why? Because tourism is climbing and many Caribbean Cruise ships are bringing tons of tourists to the island, making home a hot vacation spot. Due to this, hotels are always booking up, which means there’s an opportunity to help increase that traffic by adding more hotels or improving on existing ones.

All of the more recent tragic hurricanes didn’t stop Puerto Rico’s tourism, they actually increased it. To add to this, The New York Times listed the island as the top tourist destination in a 2019 article. Vacation rentals are currently earning over 15 billion in the U.S. alone. There really is nothing but opportunity for the hospitality industry back home.

Restaurant Options

With tourism up, the need for restaurants serving local cuisine is also in demand. Restaurant ideas could include adding more farm-to-table type restaurants to help support and sustain the island’s agriculture industry, and today’s more socially conscious tourists will flock to these types of dining spots.

You also might want to consider a café that serves coffee made from Puerto Rican beans for modern tourists. Eating spots that sell popular island street foods would be great for tourists coming through for a day or two as well. With any restaurant idea, location and accessibility paired with a brilliant concept such as supporting the island’s farms could easily make your restaurant a tremendous success.

Tourism and Transportation Services

With the surging tourism back home, starting a travel agency will really get you in the game. Since you’re from the island, you most likely know all of the best spots off the beaten path that tourists will pay good money to see.

Many of those spots could be on one of the surrounding islands or beach areas, and there’s no better way to add value to your tourism business in Puerto Rico than by adding transportation services. You could add boats, ferries, canoes, as well as some ground transportation services. When adding this option, the profits will be yours and could be for years to come since you will be offering a full-service travel and transportation service to your clients.

Importing, Exporting, and Shipping Business Opportunities

As you most likely know, shipping pretty much anything to Puerto Rico is expensive and almost hardly worth the trouble and the cost. This is where owning ships and allowing your fellow islanders to order products and pay a better shipping rate compared to what most transport companies currently offer comes in. This will require some capital; however, this is a current problem whose solution has the potential to really help the island grow.

The importing and exporting opportunities are huge in Puerto Rico, especially since duties are not applied when exporting goods from the U.S., the costs can be cut down even further with the proper export license of course. This will allow more goods to be shipped to Puerto Rico and will help more people to open up businesses who sell products that don’t require the consumer to pay high shipping costs.

Web-Based Business Ideas

Starting an e-commerce business is one of the quickest and easiest ways to start a business and move back to Puerto Rico. You can start the business while living in the U.S., meet with and set up supplier accounts, build up some good traction, and start packing your bags back to the beach.

If you can get the right pricing established, you may be able to set up a business that exclusively ships items to Puerto Rico. Starting an online business will help you make some extra money before heading home and could help you raise some capital to start one of the above-listed ventures so you can show banks and lenders that you have some skin in the game.

Other types of web-based businesses could include a services-based business such as coaching or education. You could also start a blog and advertise. When it comes to online business opportunities, the sky is literally the limit, and you can live anywhere you want. So if brick-and-mortar type businesses aren’t your thing, an internet business could also buy you that ticket back home.

With many big publications touting Puerto Rico as one of the top tourist destinations, you really cannot go wrong with moving back and starting up a business. While there is some research and planning involved to help you get set up for the best business opportunity for you and for the island, it could be well worth it so you can get back home and be a positive part of Puerto Rico’s future growth.

Need a place to stay in Puerto Rico? Click here to get tips on finding the best hotels!

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

How to Determine Which Hotels to Stay at During Your Puerto Rican Vacation

 How to Determine Which Hotels to Stay at During Your Puerto Rican Vacation

Puerto Rico is a stunning vacation destination filled with unforgettable cuisine, lively music, and one of the most vibrant cultures you will ever experience. Maybe you’re from or live in Puerto Rico and are looking for a hotel to stay in to take a break from workaday life. While vacationers never plan on spending too much time at the hotel, you can’t be away on an adventure 24/7. Getting some great rest, lounging by the pool and visiting the buffet line are all key parts of the vacationing experience. Therefore, select a hotel that works for you and your family early on. If you need help narrowing it down, use these tips as a useful guide.

Plan Your Budget

You don’t have to plan out every small detail of your vacation. Your budget, on the other hand, should be thorough. Hotels and resorts offer different packages that are suitable for budgets of all types. This raises the question of how much you should spend. If you’re in charge of planning your family’s vacation, draw out these details months in advance whenever possible. Start by creating a maximum budget. How much are you willing to spend on the entire vacation? That includes flights, hotel, food, souvenirs, transportation, and excursions.

To give you an idea to work with, according to Stuffed Suitcase, the average family of four will spend upward of $5000 on a single vacation. However, this number is based on a variety of factors. Where you go and what time of year you decide to vacation are both significant variables, so play with different scenarios and check multiple ticket prices. You can get something as low as $2000 for a complete vacation package during the off-season.

Try to aim for any time between July through August. Flights and hotels are typically cheaper around this time of year. When you have your dates and flights locked down, it’s time to look for a suitable hotel or resort package. Hotel fees should only take up 30 to 40% of your trip’s budget; however, if you’re planning to stay solely at your hotel throughout your vacation, Traveler’s Joy recommends you splurge a little more, especially if it’s an all-inclusive resort. If you're stuck and don't know which one to pick, consider how much of the island you want to explore. If you have a unique experience lined up every day of the week or will be visiting with family and friends, perhaps an inclusive resort isn't the best option. Choose something more economical and with fewer amenities instead.

If the idea of an all-expenses-paid resort sounds like a relaxing dream, make sure you’re getting an excellent value for your money. Check the list of amenities offered. These resorts and hotels should include the cost of your meals and drinks, gratuity, entertainment and lodging all on one bill. It all boils down to price versus convenience. Decide which one ensures that you’ll have a better time.

Check Online Reviews

Sites like Yelp or TripAdvisor have countless reviews of hotels ranging in price and quality. These reviews can help you determine if that 4-star beachside property is worth the high cost, so use them as a valuable resource while searching. According to Podium, hotel reviews typically include pictures that can help you decide which experience you'd prefer. Do you want something secluded and off the coast? Or perhaps a hotel near the ancient ruins would be more suited to your liking. Maybe you need a hotel with an event space.

Also, use the reviews to determine whether it’s a family-friendly resort. Family resorts will have more children running around, so if this could put a damper on your vacation, keep searching. On the flip side, if you have children of your own, and want them to feel comfortable while on vacation, this is a huge plus. Some resorts have kiddie pools so your little ones can splash safely in your line of sight. More so, if you have children, search for a resort with a daycare or kids’ center so that you can drop them off in the morning for a few alone or with your spouse.

Online reviews will also give you a good idea of what kind of food the resort offers. Do you have any dietary restrictions? If so, you want to make sure your hotel of choice will accommodate you.

When checking reviews, read up on the hotel’s customer service. Regardless of their star rating, how do they treat customers and deal with problems that may arise throughout a stay? Is it an overall clean and safe establishment?

Consider the Location and Your Lifestyle

Research the island and pick out things you’d like to do when out exploring. You don’t want these destinations to be far from where you’re staying or else you end up paying way more in rental car fees than you’d originally planned. You also want to consider your lifestyle. Do you love trying new food or can’t wait to have some of your old Puerto Rican favorites? If so, book a hotel close to what Ordinary Traveler calls some of the best eateries on the island. Perhaps you're more active and would rather spend your vacation hiking and swimming. Puerto Rico is home to some of the most beautiful and scenic trails, so stay somewhere that allows you to experience the beauty of nature every day. El Yunque National Forest, for instance, is a top hiking destination. See if you can make it to the top of El Toro for a breathtaking view.

Puerto Rico is a hub of diverse culture and unique sights and sounds. It’s a must-see travel destination for both novice and experienced travelers. If you live in Puerto Rico, it’s wonderful to take a vacation in a resort for a change of pace. However, where you stay can largely influence the quality of your trip. Pick the best hotel to suit you and your family by planning out your budget, checking the online reviews, and taking your lifestyle into account. By ironing out all of the details when planning your dream vacation, and it’ll turn out to be your best one yet.

Want more activity recommendations for your trip to Puerto Rico? Read on here!

Monday, December 21, 2020

3 Best Destinations for Tourists in Puerto Rico

 The breathtaking attractions of Puerto Rico make it the best tourist destination across the Caribbean. From the beautiful beaches, waterfalls, historic spots, to incredible mountains, the island is a perfect destination for fun lovers. Being a U.S territory, Puerto Rico has a diverse culture, and although people speak Spanish, English is a popular language too. San Juan is its capital city and also happens to be the largest town in the region. The town is filled with amazing events such as beach restaurants and bars, colonial buildings, casinos, and many other exciting scenes. With so many choices to choose from, it can be hard to figure out the best destination. You don't need to worry, though; we've highlighted some of the top destinations that may interest you.

3 Best Destinations for Tourists in Puerto Rico

Old San Juan

Old San Juan gives you a chance to connect with the past. With its unique fortifications and exciting castles, it attracts many tourists from all corners of the world. While driving around can be fantastic, travelers are advised to walk because the driveways are narrow and risky for non-locals who may not understand the roads. Old San Juan is also an excellent cruise stopover destination for sea travelers. The town is home to many world-class restaurants that let travelers enjoy a variety of foods. Nights are enjoyable at Old San Juan with bars offering exclusive music and dance clubs. You can as well have a glimpse of the oldest building, Ponce De Leon, which was built in 1521.

Flamenco Beach in Culebra

Flamenco beach is probably the biggest across Puerto Rico. With spectacular sceneries and a wide range of activities to undertake, Flamenco is located in the east, 20 miles away from the mainland. In fact, it’s one of the most popular and best beaches across the region. With stretching sand beaches along the bay, you can enjoy a wide variety of activities. Also, boat rental Puerto Rico facilitates fun activities on the luminescent waters by offering exclusive services to travelers. Furthermore, you can engage in swimming or snorkeling as well as sunbathing.

El Yunque National Forest

El Yunque National Forest is a wonderland and is a must-visit forest. Its located in the East part of San Juan, and it's a perfect destination for outdoor adventures. Being the only tropical rain forest across the region, it’s an ideal destination for nature lovers. Nothing beats the adventures of the forest’s outstanding mountains, crag, incredible waterfalls, and rivers. And if you’re looking for a unique hiking excursion trails, make a stopover at El Yunque National Forest. How about wandering around and enjoying the sight of Taino petroglyphs and rare birds? Wrap up with the rest tops that allow you to have the best views of different scenes.

Puerto Rico is one of the best tourist destinations across the world. The Caribbean has a range of fun activities to choose from, ranging from beautiful forests and outstanding mountains to white sandy beaches. The culture of the region is also diverse, making it even more ideal. So, if you can’t figure out the best destination to visit, the places mentioned above can be suitable for your holiday in Puerto Rico.

Sunday, December 20, 2020

What to Keep in Mind About Technology Use During Your Trip to Puerto Rico


Gearing up for a vacation or work trip to Puerto Rico? Though it's common practice to take our tech devices along when traveling, many travelers express concern about everything from safety to the availability of Wi-Fi during their time away. Here is some tech-related information to keep in mind as you prepare for an upcoming trip to Puerto Rico.

Cell Phone Coverage

Planning a trip to Puerto Rico requires extra attention to your cell phone plan. Puerto Rico may be outside your network's coverage, so it’s important to research the details for getting service in this country before you arrive. According to frequent travelers, most major wireless operators provide service in Puerto Rico. U.S. wireless operators like ATT, Sprint, and Verizon offer roaming plans that work well in Puerto Rico. Google Fi charges no roaming in most global areas, including Puerto Rico.

The best way to prepare for international calling is to call your wireless provider ahead of time. Determine whether or not you'll be able to receive and make calls while in Puerto Rico. At this time, be sure to check the exact rates as well.

Even if roaming is covered as part of your cell phone plan, it’s best to take additional steps to prepare for a worst-case scenario. Consider bringing along a GSM handset while traveling. This unlocked handset only requires a SIM card and will make it easy to send texts and make calls to local numbers when in Puerto Rico.

Connecting to Wi-Fi

It’s hard to travel these days without having access to Wi-Fi. Though many travelers have hotspots, their data may not always make it easy to access the Internet this way. Thankfully, a majority of the local restaurants, cafes, and bars in Puerto Rico have free Wi-Fi. If possible, try contacting local establishments ahead of time to ask them about Internet access. In most cases, you’ll discover that you will have an easy time accessing the Internet in popular places throughout the country.

When searching for free Wi-Fi, make sure you’re taking the necessary precautions to prevent hackers from gaining access to sensitive information. Best practices for using public Wi-Fi include avoiding using airdrop, not accessing sensitive information, using two-factor authentication, and watching out for Wi-Fi networks with suspicious names such as “free wifi”.

Helpful Websites

Puerto Rico is an incredible country filled with exciting activities like touring the bioluminescent Mosquito bar or visiting El Yunque National Rainforest. As you gear up for new adventures each day, make sure to plot an itinerary filled with stops for food, exciting cultural sites, and natural landmarks. Keep your schedule up-to-date with the help of sites like TripAdvisor to find the best activities for each day.

When using your computer to surf the web in Puerto Rico, make sure each website is safe to use by checking the URL. Keep in mind that a URL with https indicates the site is secured by an SSL certificate, which will help to keep you protected when visiting various websites.

Data Protection

Few travelers give extra thought to protecting their data while on-the-go. While it’s essential to make sure your devices will function properly when in Puerto Rico, it’s just as important to take the necessary precautions to protect your devices when traveling. Experts recommend that travelers remove any sensitive data from their phones, laptops, or tablets when traveling. If you must access this sensitive data, it’s best to store this information on separate servers that you can access remotely through secure means like a VPN. The VPN will provide an encrypted and secure way to connect to your information remotely.

It’s best to set up the VPN before traveling. Download the VPN to your tablet, laptop, and smartphone. Follow the instructions for setting these up and open your VPN before connecting to a new server.

Powering Up

When visiting Puerto Rico, it isn’t likely you’ll be close to power outlets all the time. During the days when you’re traveling throughout the countryside, you’ll likely run out of juice on your mobile devices if you don’t prepare properly ahead of time. Bring extra power with you in the form of portable power banks. These chargers will make it easy to keep your devices at full power for as long as possible.

Before heading to Puerto Rico, make sure your back up battery packs are compatible with all your devices. This way, you won’t have to scramble to find a way to charge your mobile device when you need to.

Updating Passwords

Before traveling with technology, another practice to consider is using password managers. Password managers are secure applications that make it easier to manage and store your passwords for various services and devices. Sites like LastPass are ideal for keeping track of the many passwords you use for various sites without compromising your safety.

Puerto Rico is a beautiful place to visit! As you prepare to take a trip to Puerto Rico, make sure to take the necessary precautions to protect and prepare your tech as well. Keep this guide in mind as you get ready for your upcoming trip.

For helpful Puerto Rican travel advice, read on here!

Saturday, December 19, 2020

How to Plan the Perfect Puerto Rican Vacation


Thinking about taking a trip down to Puerto Rico for a little fun in the sun? Before you start packing, there are a few other matters you should take into consideration. Here are some tips to help ensure that your Puerto Rican excursions are both safe and enjoyable.

Understand Local Culture

Although Puerto Ricans are American citizens, the country embraces its Spanish heritage in more ways than one. Spanish is the predominant language, and the Catholic culture is alive and thriving, although there are religious sub-factions that also incorporate some African traditions. Before you go, be aware that feminism is not a concept that's celebrated in most Puerto Rican households. On the contrary, it's frowned upon for a woman to subscribe to a non-traditional role within the family.

Should you find yourself engaged in a social situation, remember this term: Respeto. Translating into the English word respect, it refers to the deference that Puerto Ricans will pay to a person of higher status, specifically elders. If the person speaking is noticeably older than you, be careful not to interrupt or otherwise engage in any type of disrespectful behavior in their presence. If you're an American tourist who's worried about how to tip while you're on the island, be reassured that the protocol pretty much aligns with what you're used to back in the United States.

Choosing the Best Time of Year to Visit

Many people choose to visit Puerto Rico during the winter and early spring from December to May. Why? Mainly because they're hoping to escape from the dreary weather up north. Also, these months tend to be less rainy, making for a more enjoyable tropical getaway. That being said, if you have more flexibility regarding what time of year, you're able to travel, try to plan your visit for the off-season from May to November. You'll encounter fewer crowds and just as many amazing recreational opportunities. While there might be a bit more rainfall, the overall weather patterns don't differ much from season to season, so you can have a great time no matter when you decide to drop in.

Research Best Places to Travel

While vacations are meant for relaxing, you'll probably want to plan a few excursions to help fill your days, travel agents help plan such vacations. As is the case with most countries, however, some areas are better suited for these purposes than others. Try to find out as much as you can about the areas you'd most like to visit. If you're a city person, take a stroll around historic San Juan and take in the fabulous local architecture. Water-sports enthusiasts will have a hard time tearing themselves away from Culebra, where snorkeling and diving opportunities are prime.

Puerto Rico is also home to El Yunque National Forest, the only subtropical rainforest in the US. For an unforgettable experience (not to mention a ton of photo opportunities), take in the bioluminescent waters of Vieques, an island off the eastern coast, where the bay literally glows in the dark. If none of these options sound appealing to you, fear not. Puerto Rico offers a myriad of recreational opportunities, all of which are bound to add multiple pages to your personal memory book. If you don't have the time a travel agent can help plan your vacation, don't stress.

Take Precautions

When you're planning a trip, it can be a drag to hear about the risks involved. However, if you don't plan ahead, you could find yourself facing a number of difficult situations. First, make sure your vaccinations are up to date. There are no specific vaccines currently required for travel to Puerto Rico; however, check on the status of your tetanus booster and MMR vaccine before you leave. Also, be aware that certain mosquito-borne viruses have been known to crop up in the region. Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants whenever possible, especially if you'll be hiking. A DEET-based insect repellent will also come in handy.

You might also consider investing in travel insurance to cover any medical expenses that you might incur during your travels. There are a number of packages available that will reimburse you if your plans fall through, and even provide emergency assistance if needed. While we certainly hope that you won't have to use the insurance, it's one of those things that's better to have just in case. We would strongly recommend buying an insurance package if your visit falls during hurricane season.

A vacation is a big investment of time as well as money. To get the most out of your experience, you need to understand the culture, take precautions to maintain your health, and do your research on the best spots or hire a travel agent. With the proper amount of planning, you can ensure that you'll get a marvelous return on that investment the next time you visit Puerto Rico.

You might also like this article: Where To Go When Visiting Puerto Rico

Friday, December 18, 2020

Packing Guide for Your Upcoming Trip to Puerto Rico

 Old San Juan Streets

Home to lush rainforests, beautiful beaches, historic cities and mountainous terrain, Puerto Rico has a lot to offer in terms of things to do. While its varied landscape makes it an ideal destination for travelers, it also makes it difficult for visitors to pack accordingly. Many visitors under-pack, while those who are familiar with the terrain tend to overpack. You can get the packing part just right, however, with this ultimate packing guide for Puerto Rico.

Lightweight Clothing

The weather in Puerto Rico is generally hot and humid, so you should stick with clothing that is lightweight, loose and, if possible, sweat wicking. Ideally, you should pack items that are either cotton or linen. Think t-shirts, tank tops, loose-fitting shorts, skirts and sundresses. If you plan to trek up the mountains, you should also pack a lightweight jacket or sweater, as the mountain areas do get cool at night.

A Quality Raincoat 

The weather in Puerto Rico can go from sunny and humid to dark and stormy in the blink of an eye. Bring a long a good raincoat for yourself and a durable kids rain jacket for your little one. Look for coats that are lightweight and that, when folded, are compact enough to store in your backpack, purse or fanny pack.

Waterproof Bag

Again, the weather is unpredictable in Puerto Rico. In addition to the risk of being caught in monsoon-style rainstorms, chances are you will also be visiting the beach frequently when in country. Protect your most valuable belongings from water damage with a waterproof bag.

Comfortable Footwear

When visiting Puerto Rico, you’re going to want to pack at least two types of footwear, possibly three. The first is flip flops or a comfortable sandal. For trips to the beach or walks around the markets, you’re likely to prefer an open toed or breathable sandal. The second type of shoe you’ll want to pack is a comfortable tennis or walking shoe, or possibly even a hiking boot. A lot of visitors to Puerto Rico spend a lot of time hiking, biking and exploring. The third and final type of shoe is optional but nice to have: A dress shoe. If you plan on going out dancing or to a nice restaurant, you may want something a little dressier than sandals or athletic shoes.

Beach Wear

If half your time in Puerto Rico is spent exploring the rainforest and hiking the mountains, the other half will undoubtedly be spent on the beach. A trip to this part of the world will not be complete without hours put in sun bathing, swimming and playing in the sand. To make the most of your beach time, pack a bathing suit and bathing suit coverup (the latter which you can use to cover yourself during a hike to a secluded waterfall or wading pool). Don’t forget sun protection such as your sun hat, sunglasses and sunscreen. Other items, such as beach towels and umbrellas, should be available through the resort at which you plan to stay.


Finally, ditch the purse and briefcase and trade it in for a backpack. You’re going to want your hands free when exploring Puerto Rico. You’re also going to want plenty of room to carry around a rain jacket, water bottle, snacks, currency, bathing suit, binoculars, change of shoes and other necessities you may suddenly need when away from your hotel or resort.

Though this packing list may seem daunting, you can fit everything you need into one small suitcase or backpack if you plan smartly. For instance, you’ll probably only need to pack one pair of lightweight pants, a couple of pairs of shorts and a few tank tops, as you’re likely to spend most of your trip in a bathing suit. Buying compact walking shoes and raincoat can also help to keep your luggage limited to a single bag. Bearing this advice in mind, you can ensure to pack for a trip of a lifetime.

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Economic Recovery From Hurricane Katrina Is A Revived Puerto Rico

Economic Recovery from Hurricane MariaMany think that Puerto Rico's economy is still recovering from the hurricane. The truth is that Puerto Rico was devastated by the hurricane, but is slowly, slowly recovering

Hurricane hit the island in September, 2020, damaging the airports, hospitals, markets, electricity and other infrastructure. It took two months to fully repair the damages. After that, the island's economy really started to recover.

For a period of four years, the Caribbean island was affected by extreme weather. Only recently did the health facilities, restaurants and industries begin to show signs of recovery. One of the largest economic sectors of the island is tourism.

The island is known for its tropical climate, which attracts tourists from all over the world. A general prosperity has been developed since the hurricane, which has allowed tourism to thrive. The government has the funds and many tools to attract foreign tourist dollars. The island has been ranked among the top 10 tourist destinations in the world.

Many tourists have already returned from Puerto Rico to the mainland. The economic recovery has benefited Puerto Rico's economy, and tourism is expected to continue growing for many years to come. Other areas of the Caribbean are also showing signs of recovery, as economies recover from the devastation.

Tourism is expected to rise in Puerto Rico in the years to come. The rebuilding efforts will benefit tourism, in turn. Puerto Rico is a beautiful destination for tourism, and its recovery will greatly benefit the island.

The country is still recovering, but the strong economy is evident. Many businesses have improved conditions and profitability. The government continues to invest in the economy. Only time will tell how much, if any, impact Hurricane Katrina had on Puerto Rico.

Friday, December 11, 2020

Parque de Bombas Ponce Puerto Rico

Parque de Bombas

The Old Ponce Fire Station at Plaza las Delicias
Parque de Bombas Ponce Puerto Rico
Parque de Bombas Ponce Puerto Rico
The Parque de Bombas de Ponce is located at the Plaza de las Delicias in Ponce, Puerto Rico. It is open 9:30am to 6:00pm, Wednesday-Monday. Call 787-284-4141, ext. 342 or 787-284-3338 for more information.
The Parque de Bombas (English: firehouse) is a historic former fire station in Ponce, Puerto Rico. It is one of Puerto Rico's most notable buildings, with some considering it "by far the most easily recognized landmark in the Island." It is located at the Plaza Las Delicias town square, directly behind Ponce Cathedral. Originally built in 1882 as a pavilion for an exhibition, it became Puerto Rico's first ever fire station. In 1990, the fire station closed and was converted into a museum. It was listed in the National Register of Historic Places on 12 July 1984.

PARQUE DE BOMBAS Ponce percibió, desde muy temprano en su historia como pueblo, la importancia y necesidad del servicio de Bomberos: en el año 1820 más de un centenar de casas fueron destruidas por un voraz incendio; en 1823, por disposición del gobernador de entonces, don Miguel de la Torre, se creó el primer Cuerpo de Bomberos de Puerto Rico, el servicio era de carácter obligatorio para todo varón de entre 16 y 60 años de edad. El Cuerpo de Bomberos Civil Municipal de Ponce, que ha sobrevivido hasta el día de hoy, se creó en el año 1853. La estructura que alberga el Museo del Antiguo Parque de Bombas se construyó en el año 1882, para servir como pabellón principal de la Feria-Exposición que tuvo lugar en Ponce en julio de dicho año.
Parque de Bombas Felicidades
Parque de Bombas Felicidades

Museo Parque de Bombas
Museo Parque de Bombas

Learn more about Parque de Bombas
Discovering Puerto Rico Visit Ponce Discover Puerto Rico

Thursday, December 10, 2020

Hotel Belgica Ponce Puerto Rico

​Hotel Belgica

Relax in the Magic of Time
722 Villa Street Ponce, PR 00730 Tel: (787) 844-3255

Hotel Belgica is a family owned boutique Hotel, landmark structure in the historical district of Ponce. Characterized by neoclassical architecture developed at the end of the XIX century and located by a vast array of sightseeing activities, restaurants, museums, shopping areas and trolleys.

Founded in 1872, the Hotel fulfilled the demand for the many visitors to the city of Ponce. The hotel has recently been restored for the enjoyment of the modern day tourist looking for the traditional beauty of centuries past.

​Hotel Belgica

Relax in the Magic of Time
Hotel Belgica Front Entrance Hotel Belgica Front Entrance  Guest Room Guest Room Guest Services Guest Services
Hotel Belgica Lobby Hotel Lobby Hotel Courtyard Hotel Courtyard Morning Coffee and a Good Book
Morning Coffee and a Book

Hotel Amenities

  • Pet Friendly
  • Free Wifi access
  • 24 hour reception
  • Room service
  • Business center
  • Conference facilities
  • Laundry facilities
  • Small refrigerator (upon request)
  • Air conditioning
  • Cable TV
  • Tea & coffee in lobby
  • Iron & ironing board
Cuarto espacioso...a 30 segundos de la plaza del pueblo (!ciudad!)...desayuno mas que "continental"...probablemente el propio dueno te reciba.
"Quiero extender el más caluroso agradecimiento a todo el personal del Hotel Bélgica de Ponce, por su hospitalidad y su trato excepcional. Mis compañeros y yo estamos sumamente agradecidos con ustedes por regalarnos su valioso tiempo y permitirnos filmar en el hotel. Mega recomendado, cinco estrellas, es hermoso, elegante y tiene una vista espectacular, si van a visitar el casco urbano de Ponce ya tienen el lugar ideal para hospedarse ¡Visítenlos!"  
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Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Viejo San Juan Restaurant Orlando Florida

Mi Viejo San Juan Restaurant

Viejo San Juan Restaurant Orlando
7229 East Colonial Drive Orlando, Florida 32807, USA Email: Phone: (407) 380-2061 Open Monday to Saturday 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM Sunday 11:00 AM to 9:00 PM

Yo soy Boricua, pa que tu lo sepas! Serving Great Orlando Florida Area since 2005. But under new administration in recent years. Using years of experience, we decided to follow our dreams and passion for great food and provide the community and travelers a great flavor and memories to enjoy and return. Providing Lunch and Dinner with variety of Puertorican Dishes and Subs Restaurant and Cafe. Take out Available -Dine In Restaurant -Catering for Pick Up is also available.

An Authentic "Boricua" Puertorican Restaurant featuring, the Mofongo, Mashed Plantains, Chuletas Can Can-Rib/Pork Chops, El Chillo "Red Snapper", Puertorican Seafood Dishes Subs and Salads.

Mofongo Pasteles [ Bistec Encebollado
5 stars review: I flew into Orlando executive and found this place through a recommendation from one of the guys at airport and the reviews were good. I had the mofongo with chicken and as additional side of arroz con gandules. It was delightful! ...Very authentic and will go back next time I am there. Liz F. Yelp review. Fort Lauderdale

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

What to Know About Raising Chickens in Puerto Rico

 What to know about raising chickens in Puerto RicoRaising chickens can have so many benefits. You can count on the hens to lay eggs regularly, and many people claim there is nothing better on the dinner table than a delicious locally-raised roasted or fried chicken. However, there are some things you should pay attention to if you’re raising chickens in Puerto Rico. Here are a few things you might want to think about.


You will need to think about how you are going to protect your flock from predators. The red-tailed hawk, also known as a "guaraguao", can be a problem, so you may need to cover your chicken runs with a welded wire netting. If you cannot keep your chickens in one location all the time, then a chicken tractor may be the best answer because it allows you to move your coup around quickly. Hanging some shiny objects, like old CDs, also works as a deterrent. You may also need to cover your chickens' food; aerial predators may be interested in having a feast on the chicken feed.


Puerto Rico has almost the perfect environment to raise chickens, but you need to be prepared to protect your flock from tropical storms. If you have to transport them for their safety, put your chickens in cardboard boxes filled with cat litter or wood shavings. Choose boxes that have secure lids, but be sure to poke some air holes in the side. If you are staying put, then you should stock up enough food to feed your chickens for at least a week. It should be stored at least 2 feet off the ground. A large flock may require a feeder with a larger capacity. You should also store up 1/3 gallon of water for each chicken per day that you expect the storm to last. If you are afraid that your coop might not hold up against the wind, then bring the chickens inside a more secure structure. You can use playpens with nets to keep them safe. If you are going to leave them outside, then remove any dead tree limbs or other debris that can easily be blown onto the coop.


You also need to watch for pests when you raise chickens. Observe your chickens to make sure that they do not become infested with mites. These bugs are tiny, and they are often fall off the bodies of other birds that may be flying near your flock. Another common problem is lice. Since new chickens brought into your facility may be infected, you should make sure to keep new arrivals isolated. Carefully inspect all carry cages after using them, or use disposable ones. If you find signs of lice or mites, then you should spray the area with an insecticide that is safe for use on chickens.

Raising chickens in Puerto Rico can be fun for the whole family. Keep these tips in mind, and you can have a safe and healthy flock.

Here’s another article you might like: Visiting Puerto Rico in 5 Unique Ways

Monday, December 7, 2020

Three Kings Festival in Puerto Rico

Puerto Ricans are a friendly, outgoing, and always looking for a reason to have fun. Visit Puerto Rico from Thanksgiving Day until mid January and you'll find the island in full party mode. Of course they enjoy Christmas and New Years but in Puerto Rico, the really big celebration is reserved for the Three Kings Festival on January 6. The festival, celebrated since 1884, honors the Three Kings who brought gifts of incense, gold and myrrh to the Baby Jesus. While the holiday is celebrated throughout Puerto Rico, the largest gathering is found in a town outside Ponce, called Juana Diaz. People of all ages and nationalities converge on this small town to watch and participate in the festival.

The night before, children leave hay or grass by their beds to feed the camels ridden by the Three Kings. In return, children will find presents left to them by the Three Kings, just as the Kings left presents for Baby Jesus. After opening their gifts, families head to Comercio Street in downtown Juana Diaz to await the coming of the Three Kings. This is actually a homecoming for the Kings from Juana Diaz as they are so popular, they actually tour the entire island. Gatherers are encouraged to be more than spectators. Anyone who dresses up as a shepherd, adult, child, Puerto Rican or not, can join the parade. The parade is generally quite long, including simple shepherds as well as elaborate floats. The crowds wait in growing anticipation and just when it seems they can't wait any longer, the Three Kings make a grand entrance. Dressed in the finest robes of gold, blue, and red, with crowns of shimmering jewels atop their heads, the kings make their appearance. Riding horses though, not camels, the Three Kings are treated like rock stars by the adoring fans. The Kings are announced one by one, and over cheers and sometimes swooning women, make their way to a huge altar set up in the Plaza. From there the festivities take on a more solemn tone as the Kings find the Baby Jesus and the Holy Mass is celebrated.

Things don't stay solemn for long. After the Mass, the Kings make their way back through the frenzied crowds. Though they are gone until next year, there is still much to do. On the edges of the Plaza, artists and craftsman have set up booths selling the finest Puerto Rican crafts. If you get hungry, there are plenty of food vendors selling drinks, ice cream and traditional Puerto Rican food. If you get tired, you can simply sit on one of the benches under the trees in the Plaza and people watch. You won't get bored.

So if you are looking to stretch out your holiday season a little longer, head to Puerto Rico and Juana Diaz. It is a festival you will never forget.

Friday, December 4, 2020

la Fonda Boricua el Barrio New York City


Re-join our weekly updates and newsletters!

Seasons greeting to all! Considering this is the holiday season we will keep this short... WE'RE BACK!

Our goal is to make sure we update all of our clients on what's happening with us, the community and more. In addition please note our goal is to get this out either weekly or monthly.

Thank you for your love, support and being a patron of La Fonda Boricua - Currently known as La Fonda Restaurant and Tapas Bar.


  • Cocktails! Yes, you read right. It's time El Barrio has a place with the best cocktails in and around the area.
  • Brunch!  We're looking to introduce our menu in January (more of a soft launch to test what works) to then move to a full launch in mid February.
  • DJD (DJ & Dancing)! You are reading this correctly. As of November 1st and every Friday moving forward, we now have a local DJ spinning live. The music will range from salsa, bachata, merengue, to disco and more - so come and enjoy!
  • Learn More

Thursday, December 3, 2020

A Puerto Rican Tradition-by Nick D. Gomez

 The holidays are always a time of reflection, and as they approach the mind is flooded with warm memories of the past. My 'hybrid ' Mexican, Puerto Rican, and American family always had an interesting fusion of traditions.

The Puerto Rican influence of my mother's family was always more dominate, and that was in part to the powerful presence of my late grand father, Louis Reyes. My nephew Tim put it best in his eulogy for our abuelo, "If you were Chinese and hung out with Grandpa, you would be proud to be Puerto Rican". The funniest part of the statement is that it was true.

For Christmas my Puerto Rican mother always made tamales. Like a Carmen Lomas Garza painting, the family gathered at the table to form a production line and worked into the night listing to music and making tamales. This was just a warm up. In the days after Christmas, we would gather again at the table to make over a hundred Puerto Rican pastels for the family celebration of Los Santos Reyes.

Growing up, I always new this was a special holiday for our family. Christmas was an intimate family gathering, but the Fiesta de Los Reyes was a party, and people came from hundreds of miles to share a Puerto Rican meal, sing alguinaldos and dance at this party our family religiously held.

my grandfather around 1930 age 24My Grandfather would tell me every year about why our family celebrated the Feast of Los Santos Reyes. Most people that attended assumed it was because the family name was Reyes. As the oral history goes, the celebration originated with a promesa my great grandmother Antonia Reyes made to Los Tres Magos when the family migrated to Hawaii.

A hurricane hit Puerto Rico in 1921, destroying all the crops the family had to sell at the market. Financially hit, the choice was made to go to Hawaii where good paying jobs and nice accommodations were being offered. When the family arrived, they soon realized they had been deceived. The houses were shacks and the work was hard and the pay was not what was promised. "They made us work 9 to 12 hours a day, six and sometimes seven days a week." my grandfather used to tell us.

Life was hard in Hawaii, and when my grandfather's brother seriously injured his leg badly do to unsafe working conditions, my great grandmother Antonia new she had to get the family out of there. She prayed to Los Santos Reyes for her son not to loose his leg, and to help guide the family out of Hawaii and onto California. If these things came to pass, she would religiously celebrate the Feast of Los Santos Reyes for as long as she lived

Uncle Juan kept his leg and by 1924 the familia Reyes had made it to California. As promised, on January 6th my great grandmother Antonia celebrated the Feast of the Three Kings. She always started the celebration with a prayer and then a meal, before the music, singing and dancing began. The Party would last for 3 days, a Paranda, and would go from house to house.

The family picture taken in Hawaii in 1923

The tradition was kept up and after my great grandmother passed, my mother Damisa Reyes Gomez took on the responsibility for the family of organizing the celebration and maintaining the tradition. For the past 33 yeas, the celebration has been at a hall in Union City, California. Family and friends of the family, show up every year on the 6th of January with Puerto Rican rice, beans, rum, cuatros and congas. Every Jibaro in a 50-mile radius manages to find out about it and shows up.

In the mid 90's I met an older man by the name of "Sandoval" at the Puerto Rican club in San Francisco. He asked me what my family name was and I told him my Puerto Rican side is "Reyes", and my grandfather was Louis Reyes. He new my grandfather, and recounted a story of how my grandfather gave him a ride back to his army base because he had missed his bus. Sandoval also told me how he remembered my great grandmother Antonia and how great her celebrations for Los Santos Reyes were. " Back then, the parties would last for 3 days. We did the traditional Paranda, where you go house to house. Antonia started it all for the Puerto Ricans here in California. She revived the tradition we left behind in Puerto Rico. " He told me.

My grandfather Louis Reyes passed away a few days before the Feast of the Three Kings in 2000, at the age of 93. The family decided to lay him to rest on the 6th of January, the feast day his family always celebrated. Serenaded by a band playing aguinaldos and carried by his grandsons, and great grandsons wearing white guayaberas Louis Reyes was buried.

When the cuatro player hit the first notes of the aguinaldo jibaro that night, it was strange not to see my grandfather up at the head table with the microphone in hand surrounded by family and friends as I had seen every January 6th my whole life. I found solace in the thought that this night he was dancing with Antonia and seeing all his family that had gone before him.


the band playing with my Grandfather Louis watching

This article was contributed by Nick Gomez.

Rore Information about Puerot Rico Holiday Traditions
Holiday Traditions in Puerto Rico from Discover Puerto Rico
Holiday Traditions Puerto Rico from Vieques Insider
Puerto Rican Christmas Traditions from el Boricua
December Events in Puerto Rico from Discovering Puerto Rico

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

10 Best Spots for a Date in Puerto Rico

 There is plenty of sights to see and picturesque spots in Puerto Rico, and the capital of San Juan should become the destination-city in your must-visit list too. A vibrant modern city with a long and fascinating history continues to enthrall people from all over the world with its combination of high culture and amazing nightlife. Our list of the best spots for a date in Puerto Rico will include destinations around San Juan, as well as natural places of interest around the country.

San Juan

The city is primarily the capital of Puerto Rico, but it is also an important administrative center. Founded in 1521, San Juan is the largest port in the Caribbean, and due to its excellent location and geography, this city has left an impressive mark on centuries. To this day, San Juan serves as a vital port in the Caribbean and is also a popular holiday destination for tourists from all over the world.

Old San Juan

Part of the city, known as Old San Juan, was primarily of military importance. It was made mainly of barracks for many years. Today, Old San Juan is better known as a government and vibrant tourist center. Visitors will be delighted with the cobblestone streets of Old San Juan. Here, you can have a date at one of the small restaurants or visit shops that dot the entire street. Fans of Spanish architecture can enjoy more than 400 buildings of the 16th century, many of which have been restored and are now in excellent condition.

San Jose Square

The impact of historical events on the city is visible to the naked eye, but it is especially striking in the square of San Jose. This amazing place has become a meeting place for both tourists and locals alike; it should also be noted that this is one of the first places you should visit in the capital of Puerto Rico. The first time you are sure to be struck by a huge bronze statue of Ponce de Leon, which is located right in the center of the square. To spend an evening here with your beloved, looking at the night city, or find a good woman at this place is simply magnificent.

Pigeon`s Park (Parc de la Palomas)

Nature-lovers should definitely walk through the “Pigeon Park,” known to locals as “Parc de La Palomas.” In this park, you can enjoy wonderful city views, including views of the crowded harbor and the beautiful mountains surrounding the capital of Puerto Rico. Among other things, the park offers a view of La Princesa Prison, the notorious prison, which is now a historical museum.

Fortress Castillo de San Felippe del Morro (Castillo de San Felippe del Morro)

This formidable structure takes us back to the 16th century; it played a big role in the defense of the city from enemy attacks. The thickness of the walls of the fortress is 18 feet, and the height of the fortress itself is about 140 feet. Anyone interested in military history and architecture should definitely see this unique building. It will serve a perfect spot for a photoshoot or you can have a picnic near it.

Chapel of Cristo - Capilla del Cristo

Tourists seeking religious inspiration may be interested in climbing the Cristo Chapel, also known as the Capilla del Cristo. This magnificent chapel is a great place for relaxation, rest, and the opportunity to touch something unearthly. From here you get a picturesque panoramic view of the city.

The Centro de Bellas Artes Luis

This is one of the most important centers of the city of San Juan, in Puerto Rico, for creative expression and cultural development. It was founded in 1981, and the modern building of the center has four main concert and theater halls. The halls are equipped with good acoustic displays. Here, you can spend a wonderful date listening to classical music or modern remade operas.

The Island of Culebra

Translated from Spanish, it means "Island of the Snake." Located in the east of Puerto Rico, near the island of Vieques. On this island, you can stay in a cozy family hotel, rent a villa lost in the mountains, or choose a luxurious new hotel. And most importantly, admire the beautiful reefs, some of which are natural areas with limited access.

The Botanical Garden of the University of Puerto Rico

Here you can enjoy the beauty of botanical collections, lakes, waterfalls, cozy roads, and sidewalks, allowing better to appreciate the native and tropical flora. The territory is divided into two parts - northern and southern; the latter contains most of the attractions. In the south, you can see the garden of heliconias, orchids, palm trees, herbarium.

Luis Muñoz Rivera Park

The park has bike paths, picnic areas, a children's playground, the Armory of the XVIII century, and the Pavilion De La Paz, where there are craft fairs and other events. Suitable for the lovers of active leisure.

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Where To Go When Visiting Puerto Rico

 Visiting a tropical island might be the perfect type of a vacation for you. While spending your days on the warm beach next to a crystal clear surf sounds like fun, there are many other exciting things to do while you are in Puerto Rico. Here are a few things you should add to your itinerary while you are there.

A Capital Idea

One definite stop on your trip should be San Juan. The capital of Puerto Rico, the city is full of history and vibrant color. Take time to try to cuisine of the area especially at the food trucks in the Santurce area. Try the local Puerto Rican coffees. You should also stop by Old San Juan. The oldest city on this side of the world, it is home of El Morro, a massive stone fortress that was built in the 1500’s. You can walk around this huge piece of history and learn what life was like when the Spanish first settled the island. You also must check out the Observatorio de Arecibo to see the stars and exhibits.

Explore the Rainforests

While seeing the beaches might have you considering financing a pool, you might consider going inland while in Puerto Rico. Go hiking and enjoy the beautiful scenery of the El Yunque National Forest, the only rainforest in the United States Park Service. There you will see many colorful parrots occupying the trees along the trail. Explore the many cave systems like the Camuy River or Window Cave. You can take a swim in the clear waters of El Charco Azul. Once you’ve had a cup of coffee, visit the fields that the beans are grown in at the Coffee Zone in Toro Negro. Experience multiple climate systems as you visit the Humacao Nature Preserve. While you are there you will see multiple iguanas while walking through swamplands and lagoons. And don't forget your outdoor gear when you are on your Outdoor Adventures.

Dive Into the Oceans

There are many things to do in the ocean aside from the beach. Scuba dive among the sea turtles or use those skills to study the wrecks that rest along the ocean floor. These ships have been there since the sixteenth century and contain a great deal of history. Take a boat out on Mosquito Bay at night to watch the luminescent fish glow below you as you paddle. Sail out to Cayo Santiago to observe the monkeys there, the only occupants who live there.

Learn a Little History

The city of Ponce holds a deep history of Puerto Rico among its unique buildings and multiple museums. Study cave markings that predate the Spanish at Cueva de Indio or walk around San German. This town was also built when the settlers arrived and holds quite a bit of history in its cathedrals and houses. You can also learn more about the Spanish settlers at Mayaguez. While this town is difficult to get to, you will learn quite a bit about life back then among the brightly colored buildings. You can also witness a time before the settlers by stopping by Tanio Stonehenge, a monument set up by the original people that occupied Puerto Rico.

Find a Fun Place To Stay

While you are in Puerto Rico, you can indulge your adventure while choosing your lodging. Spend the night in a treehouse mounted to a tree in the rainforest. Find a beachside cabin either among other tourists or off by yourself. Revel in the history of the island by choosing a hotel in San Juan. Here you can also enjoy the nightlife and great food of the city. Find a place that is enclosed or enjoy the nature around you by selecting and open air villa. Rent a home in the mountains and enjoy the beauty of the island around you. You can also sleep on the water by reserving a houseboat to spend your vacation on so you can enjoy the water all day.