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Puerto Rico guide

Puerto Rico national flag

Puerto Rico at a glance


Puerto Rico is a relatively large island (a rectangular 100 miles by 35, very mountainous) with three smaller islands and many cays, easily accessible from the US (less so from Europe), mainly Spanish-speaking but English understood everywhere. Highly developed and quite modern compared to the rest of the Caribbean, strong and lively Latin culture, visible history (particularly Old San Juan), salsa music, local art. Beaches varied, some excellent (particularly on Vieques and Culebra), inland excellent country including rainforest. Extremely broad range of tourism at all price levels, urban and beach hotels (many chain hotels), beach resorts and country retreats, some smaller hotels with charm in town and country. Huge cruise ship traffic (into San Juan), shopping, extensive sports, golf, national parks, hiking, sailing. 

Vieques and Culebra (off the east coast towards the Virgin Islands) are smaller, much less developed and lower key, with generally better beaches. Small, charming hotels. Excellent sand, some sports, sailing. Mona is a natural reserve and barely visited.

Read our guide about Puerto Rico - with independent reviews, listings, and information from top travel journalists and Caribbean specialists.

Best for:
Outstanding beaches, scenic mountains, Spanish history, surfing, gambling, top class resorts
What for:
Beach, Corporate & Incentives, Cruise, Culture & Heritage, Eco/Nature, Family, Golf
Not for:
All-inclusive, Cricket
How to get there:
Direct from the US or British Virgin Islands
Top tip:
Swim at night in the phosphorescent waters of Mosquito Bay, Vieques

Or read our other island guides

Anguilla | Antigua | Aruba | Bahamas | Barbados | Bermuda | Bonaire | British Virgin Islands | Cayman Islands | Cuba | Curacao | Dominica | Dominican Republic | Grenada and Carriacou | Guadeloupe | Haiti | Jamaica | Martinique | Montserrat | Nevis | Puerto Rico | Saba | St Barthélemy | St Eustatius | St Kitts | St Lucia | St Martin/St Maarten | St Vincent and the Grenadines | Tobago | Trinidad | Turks & Caicos Islands | US Virgin Islands

Puerto Rico weather

Puerto Rico weather chart

When to go and weather

Looking for inspiration?

  1. Take a day trip to Vieques or Culebra for their fantastic beaches
  2. Enjoy the thrill of Vegas and hit the casinos
  3. Immerse yourself in the lively Latin culture of Old San Juan
  4. Take in the views from the imposing Castillo San Cristobel, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  5. Visit the Casa BACARDI Visitor Center in Catano, home to the world's largest rum distillery

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