PUERTO RICO

PUERTO RICO

PUERTO RICO

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Name: El Yunque National Forest
Location: Puerto Rico
El Yunque National Forest is a forest located in northeastern Puerto Rico. It is the only tropical rain forest in the United States National Forest System and the United States Forest Service. The second-tallest mountain within El Yunque is also named El Yunque.

El Yunque National Rainforest is located on the slopes of the Sierra de Luquillo mountains, encompassing 28,000 acres (43.753 mi2 or 113.32 km2) of land, making it the largest block of public land in Puerto Rico.

The highest mountain peak in the forest rises 3,494 feet (1,065 m) above sea level. Ample rainfall (over 20 feet a year in some areas) creates a jungle-like setting—lush foliage, crags, waterfalls, and rivers are a prevalent sight. The forest has a number of trails from which the jungle-like territory's flora and fauna can be appreciated. El Yunque is also renowned for its unique Taíno petroglyphs. Indigenous people believed that El Yunque was the throne of their chief god Yúcahu, so that it is the Caribbean equivalent to Mount Olympus. El Yunque National Rainforest is currently partially closed until further notice due to Hurricane Maria.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Yunque_National_Forest
Name: Castillo San Felipe del Morro
Location: San Juan, Puerto Rico
Castillo San Felipe del Morro is a 16th-century citadel located in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Lying on the northwestern-most point of the islet of Old San Juan, Castillo San Felipe del Morro is named in honor of King Philip II of Spain. The fortification was designed to guard the entrance to the San Juan Bay, and defend the Spanish colonial port city of San Juan from seaborne enemies. Over two million visitors a year explore the castillo, making it one of Puerto Rico's leading tourist attractions. Facing the structure, on the opposite side of the bay, a smaller fortification known as El Cañuelo complemented the castillo's defense of the entrance to the bay.

In 1961, the United States Army officially retired from El Morro. The fort became a part of the National Park Service to be preserved as museums. In 1983, the Castillo and the city walls were declared a World Heritage Site by the UN. In honor of the Quincentennial of the voyages of Columbus in 1992 the exterior esplanade was cleared of palm trees that had been planted by the U.S. Army in the Fort Brooke era, and restored to the open appearance this "field-of-fire" for El Morro's cannon would have had in colonial Spanish times.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castillo_San_Felipe_del_Morro
Name: Old San Juan
Location: San Juan, Puerto Rico
Old San Juan is a historic district located at the "northwest triangle" of the islet of San Juan. Its area roughly correlates to the Ballajá, Catedral, Marina, Mercado, San Cristóbal, and San Francisco subbarrios of barrio San Juan Antiguo in the municipality of San Juan, Puerto Rico. Old San Juan is the oldest settlement within Puerto Rico and the historic colonial section of the city of San Juan. This historic district is a National Historic Landmark District and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as the Old San Juan Historic District. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

With its abundance of shops, historic places, museums, open air cafés, restaurants, gracious homes, tree-shaded plazas, and its old beauty and architectural peculiarity, Old San Juan is a main spot for domestic and international tourism. A free tourist trolley serves the area, which is one of the safest in the city. The neighborhood of La Perla outside of the historic city wall on the rocky north coast belongs to subbarrios Mercado and San Cristóbal. The district is characterized by numerous public plazas and churches including San José Church and the Cathedral of San Juan Bautista, which contains the tomb of the Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Old_San_Juan
FLIGHT TIMES / MAJOR CITIES
PLEASE SEE BELOW MAJOR CITIES IN PUERTO RICO / CLICK OR TOGGLE BELOW FOR FASTEST AVERAGE FLIGHT TIMES FROM USA.

New York: TBC
Washington DC: TBC

New York: TBC
Washington DC: TBC

New York: TBC
Washington DC: TBC

COUNTRY INFORMATION GUIDE
PLEASE SEE BELOW FACTS, USEFUL US GOVERNMENT TRAVEL LINKS AND BUSINESS VISITOR ACTIVITIES, FOR TRAVEL TO PUERTO RICO.
FACTS:
Official Languages: Spanish / English
Currency: United States Dollar (USD)
Time zone: AST (UTC-4)
Drives on the right
Calling code: +1-787 / +1-939
Local / up-to-date weather in San Juan (and other regions): BBC global weather – click here
US GOVT TRAVEL LINKS:

For more useful information on safety & security, local laws / customs, health and more, please see the below official US travel.state.gov web link for Puerto Rico travel advice. NB: Entry requirements herein listed are for US nationals only, unless stated otherwise.

You can also find recommended information on vaccinations, malaria and other more detailed health considerations for travel to Puerto Rico, at the below official US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) weblink.

BUSINESS VISITOR ACTIVITIES*:
Activities you may undertake on a business visa / as a business visitor:
PERMISSIBLE
ATTENDING MEETINGS / DISCUSSIONS: TBC
ATTENDING A CONFERENCE: TBC
RECEIVING TRAINING (CLASSROOM-BASED): TBC
NON-PERMISSIBLE
AUDIT WORK: TBC
PROVIDING TRAINING: TBC
PROJECT WORK: TBC
*This information does not constitute legal advice and is not an exhaustive list. For a full legal assessment on business visitor activities, please revert to your internal company legal team / counsel.
TRAVEL INFORMATION**
It is highly recommenced that you access the above official US travel.state.gov web link and read all safety & security information prior to making your travel arrangements / planning your trip.
PLEASE CLICK / TOGGLE BELOW FOR USEFUL TRAVEL INFORMATION TO PUERTO RICO.

Puerto Rico uses the U.S. dollar, denoted by the symbol “$” (ISO code: USD).

There are plenty of ATMs around the commonwealth. Most are linked to the Cirrus, Plus, American Express and Discover networks.

BY TAXI:

Official Tourism Company-sponsored taxis on the Island are clean, clearly identifiable and reliable. Look for the white taxis with the official logo and the “Taxi Turístico” on the front doors.

Under a recently instituted Tourism Taxi Program, set rates have been established for travel between San Juan’s major tourist zones. See San Juan#By taxi for details.

Official Puerto Rico Tourist Taxi

http://www.cabspr.com/ (787) 969-3260

Several other taxi company numbers:

Asociación Dueños de Taxi de Carolina (787) 762-6066

Asociación Dueños de Taxi de Cataño y Levittown (787) 795-5286

Cooperativa de Servicio Capetillo Taxi (787) 758-7000

Cooperativa de Taxis de Bayamón (787) 785-2998

Cooperativa Major Taxi Cabs (787) 723-2460 or 723-1300

Metro-Taxi Cab. Inc. (787) 725-2870

Ocean Crew Transport (787) 645-8294 or 724-4829

Rochdale Radio Taxi (787) 721-1900

Santana Taxi Service, Inc. (787) 562-9836

If you are planning to explore outside of San Juan, renting a car is by far the most convenient way to get around. Rentals are available from the airport as well as larger hotels. There are sometimes long waits of up to an hour when renting a car at that airport, especially with some companies. Rental cars can be had for as little as $28 a day.

Many U.S. mainland car insurance policies will cover insured drivers involved in rental car accidents that occur anywhere in the United States, including outlying territories like Puerto Rico, so check with your own insurer before you rent a car in Puerto Rico. If you have such coverage, you can probably decline collision insurance from the car rental company and request only the loss damage waiver.

Red lights and stop signs are treated like yield signs late at night (only from 12AM to 5AM) due to security measures.

The roads can be quite bad, with potholes and uneven pavement. Be cautious of other drivers, as turn signals are not commonly used or adhered to. Most natives do not drive like mainlanders are used to. Watch out for cars pulling out in front of you, or crossing an intersection, even if you have right of way. Also, there are many cars with non-functional head lights or tail lights, making driving in traffic even more dangerous. If you are not a very confident, even aggressive driver, you may not wish to drive in urban areas. Speed limits are considered suggestions for the locals (particularly taxi drivers), but high fines should make wise tourists cautious.

Parking in the Old Town of San Juan is virtually non-existent. There is a public parking lot called “La Puntilla”. On weekends you only pay a fixed rate for the whole day and on weekdays you will pay less than $5 for a full day. The lot usually has available parking spaces. Traffic in all major cities is bad during rush hour (8AM-10AM, 4PM-6PM), so give yourself plenty of time coming and going.

Road signs are Spanish language versions of their U.S. counterparts. However, note that distances are in kilometers, while speed limits are in miles. Gas is also sold by the liter, not by the gallon, and it’s a little bit cheaper than on the mainland.

In addition to the regular free highway (carretera) network, there are three toll roads (autopista) on Puerto Rico. They’re much faster and less congested than the highways, and it’s worth using them if in any kind of hurry. Tolls for a 2-axle car range from $0.50 and $1.50. The lanes on the left are reserved for people with RFID (Autoexpreso) toll passes (an electronic pass typically called a speed or E-Z pass in the states), which you probably won’t have on your rental car. Lanes marked with an “A” generally accept only coins. If you need change, head for the lanes marked with a “C”, usually the furthest to the right. Note that if you are heading to Ponce on PR-52, the autopista toll system has gone all RFID, so head to the first “C” booth you come to and buy a travel card if they will let you, or they might require you to buy the Autoexpreso RFID tag for $10. If you put $10 on the tag it will get you to Ponce and back once.

Off the main highways, roads in Puerto Rico quickly become narrow, twisty and turny, especially up in the mountains. Roads that are only one-and-a-half lanes wide are common, so do like the locals do and beep before driving into blind curves. Signage is often minimal, although intersections do almost always show the road numbers, so a detailed highway map will come in handy. Expect hairpin turns in the mountains – experience driving in West Virginia can help a good deal here. Don’t be surprised if you see chickens in the middle of the road – Puerto Rico is one place where the local fowl are still trying to figure out the old joke. They are harmless to vehicles – just drive around them or wait for them to move aside.

Navigating a car can be very challenging because most locals give directions by landmark rather by address and using maps in Puerto Rico can be very challenging for visitors. Google Maps has lately been improving and now most small roads and all major roads are covered. Google Navigation doesn’t work. Slight problems include street names either missing or incorrect, and address lookups & business entries (POI’s) either give no result or are wrong. Other online maps suffer the same issues. Note that the larger metro areas, especially San Juan, can have several streets with the same name, so it’s important to know the neighborhood (urbanization) name when communicating with taxi drivers, etc.

Police cars are easy to spot, as by local regulation, they must keep their blue light bar continuously illuminated any time they are in motion. Avoid getting a speeding ticket: fines start at $50 + $5 for each mile above the speed limit. It is also against the law to talk or text on a phone while driving, except when using BlueTooth or a speakerphone. The fine for talking or texting on the phone is $50.

BY PUBLICO:

A público is a shared taxi service and is much cheaper than taking a taxi around the island, and depending on your travel aspirations, might be cheaper than renting a car. Públicos can be identified by their yellow license plates with the word “PUBLICO” written on top of the license plate. The “main” público station is in Río Piedras, a suburb of San Juan. They’re also known as colectivos and pisicorres.

There are two ways of getting on a público. The easier way is to call the local público stand the day before and ask them to pick you up at an agreed time. (Your hotel or guesthouse can probably arrange this, and unlike you, they probably know which of the multitude of companies is going your way.) This is convenient, but it’ll cost a few bucks extra and you’ll be in for a wait as the car collects all the other departing passengers. The cheaper way is to just show up at the público terminal (or, in smaller towns, the town square) as early as you can (6-7AM is normal) and wait for others to show up; as soon as enough have collected, which may take minutes or hours, you’re off. Públicos taper off in the afternoon and stop running entirely before dark.

Públicos can make frequent stops to pick up or drop off passengers and may take a while to get to their destination terminal, but you can also request to be dropped off elsewhere if it’s along the way or you pay a little extra. Prices vary depending on the size of the público and the distance being traveled. As an example, a small público that can seat three or four passengers from Ponce to San Juan will cost roughly $15, while a 15 passenger público that is traveling between San Juan and Fajardo will cost about $5 each person.

BY FERRY:

Ferries depart from San Juan and Fajardo & the most popular arrivals are Cataño, Vieques Island & Culebra Island. Also the Mayaguez ferry travels between the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico.

  • Mayagüez, Puerto Rico 787-832-4800 787-832-4905
  • San Juan, Puerto Rico 787-725-2643 787-725-2646
  • Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic 809-688-4400
  • Santiago, Dominican Republic 809-724-8771

BY TRAIN:

Tren Urbano — or Urban Train in English — is a 17.2 km (10.7 mile) fully automated rapid transit that serves the metropolitan area of San Juan, which includes the municipalities of San Juan, Bayamón, and Guaynabo. Tren Urbano consists of 16 stations on a single line.

The Tren Urbano complements other forms of public transportation on the island such as the public bus system, taxis, water ferries and shuttles. The entire mass transportation system has been dubbed the “Alternativa de Transporte Integrado” (Integrated Transportation Alternative) or “ATI”.

Its services are very reliable and are almost always on time.

Fares – A single trip costs $0.75 including a 2-hour public (AMA) bus transfer period. If you exit the station and wish to get back on the train the full fare must be re-paid; there is no train to train transfer period. Students and Seniors (60–74 years old) with ID pay 35 cents per trip. Senior citizens older than 75 and children under 6 ride for free. Several unlimited passes are also available.

A stored-value multi-use farecard may be used for travel on buses as well as on trains. The value on the card is automatically deducted each time it is used. It is a system similar to the Metrocard system used in New York City.

BY BUS:

Autoridad Metropolitana de Autobuses, also known in English as Metropolitan Bus Authority or by its initials in Spanish, AMA, is a public bus transit system based in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The AMA provides daily bus transportation to residents of San Juan, Guaynabo, Bayamón, Trujillo Alto, Cataño, and Carolina through a network of 30 bus routes, including 2 express routes and 3 “Metrobus” routes. Its fleet consists of 277 regular buses and 54 paratransit vans for handicapped persons. Its ridership is estimated at 112,000 on work days.

The daily, weekend and holiday bus service from 4:30AM to 10PM with the exception of a few routes that are limited to certain hours and the express routes.

There are two routes which are very reliable, M-I & M-II, commonly called Metrobus (metroboos). MetroBus M1 transit between Old San Juan to Santurce downtown, Hato Rey Golden Mile banking zone and Rio Piedras downtown where a nice open walking street mall and great bargains could be found, the Paseo De Diego. The Metrobus II transit from Santurce to Bayamon city, passing Hato Rey, including Plaza Las Americas Mall and to Guaynabo City. Many interesting places could be found on the routes, like the remains of the first European settlement on the island and the oldest under USA government, the Caparra Ruins (Ruinas de Caparra Museum).

As a tourist staying in the Isla Verde hotel district, be aware there is a bus line going to and from Old San Juan. It costs only 75 cents, but takes 45 minutes to an hour and the right bus comes by irregularly. The bus till only takes quarters and no bills, so plan ahead. So the trade-off is between low cost versus your time and convenience. In the rainy months, standing at the bus stop can be uncomfortable.

BY PLANE:

Cape Air flies between San Juan (both (SJU IATA) and Isla Grande (SIG IATA) airports) and Culebra (CPX IATA), Mayaguez and Vieques. Vieques Air Link flies between San Juan, Culebra and Vieques, with onward connections from it’s Vieques hub to other Caribbean islands. Vieques Air Link also flies from Culebra to Vieques and from Ceiba to Vieques. Air Culebra also flies from San Juan to Culebra and Vieques as does Air Flamenco. Air Culebra also flies from Ceiba to Culebra. MN Aviation provides charter flights between San Juan, Culebra and Vieques and from Ceiba to Culebra and Vieques. Tickets from San Juan-SJU to Vieques on Vieques Air Link cost around $250 return (2015), and the flight takes about 30 minutes.

EAT:

Puerto Rico is a drive-through buffet. All you need is a car, an appetite (the bigger the better), time, and the realization that your swimsuit won’t fit as well when you get to your destination. The island has the most diverse culinary offerings in the entire Caribbean. There’s something for everyone. You can enjoy the finest Puerto Rican food at most traditional town squares and also (for those of you who get homesick) have a steak at a place like Morton’s.

Cuisine:

Authentic Puerto Rican food (comida criolla) can be summed up in two words: plantains and pork, usually served up with rice and beans (arroz y habichuelas). It is rarely if ever spicy, and to many visitors’ surprise has very little in common with Mexican cooking.

Plantains (plátanos) are essentially savory bananas and the primary source of starch back in the bad old days, although you will occasionally also encounter cassava (yuca) and other tropical tubers. Served with nearly every meal, incarnations include:

  • mofongo — plantains mashed, fried, and mashed again, when filled up (relleno) with seafood this is probably the best-known Puerto Rican dish of them all
  • tostones — twice deep-fried plantain chips, best when freshly made.
  • amarillos — sweet fried plantain.
  • sopa de plátanos — mashed plantain soup

The main meat eaten on Puerto Rico is pork (cerdo), with chicken a close second and beef and mutton way down the list. Seafood, surprisingly, is only a minor part of the traditional repertoire: the deep waters around Puerto Rico are poorly suited to fishing, and most of the seafood served in restaurants for tourists is in fact imported. Still, fresh local fish can be found in restaurants across the east and west coast of the island, especially in Naguabo or Cabo Rojo respectively.

  • chicharrones — crispy dry pork rinds.
  • chuletas — huge, juicy pork chops, available grilled or deep fried.
  • lechón asado — roast suckling pig, this is the pinnacle of Puerto Rican porkcraft. Served at specialty restaurants, with the Cayey city’s barrio of Guavate off the San Juan-Ponce highway being particularly famous.
  • morcilla — blood sausage
  • pernil de cerdo — pork shoulder with oregano and garlic

A few other puertorriqueño classics include:

  • arroz con gandules — rice with pigeon peas, the unofficial national dish of Puerto Rico
  • arroz con jueyes — rice with land crab meat
  • asopao — a spicy tomato stew with rice and chicken or seafood
    bacalaitos — salted cod fritters
  • chillo — red snapper, the most common fresh fish on the island
  • empanadillas — fritters of cheese, meat or lobster
  • sofrito — a fragrant sauce of sweet pepper, herbs, garlic and oil, used as base and seasoning for many dishes
  • quenepas — a green grape-like fruit common in summer, don’t eat the skin or seeds (and watch where you put them, they stain clothes easily)
  • sorrullos — corn sticks, which come either sweet or salty

Places to eat:

Meals in sit-down restaurants tend to be fairly pricey and most touristy restaurants will happily charge $10–30 for main dishes. Restaurants geared for locals may not appear much cheaper, but the quality (and quantity) of food is usually considerably better. It’s not uncommon for restaurants to charge tourists more than locals, so bring along a local friend if you can! Note that many restaurants are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.

If you want to eat like a local, look for places that are out of the way. There is a roadside food stand or 10 at every corner when you get out of the cities. Deep-fried foods are the most common, but they serve everything from octopus salad to rum in a coconut. You might want to think twice and consult your stomach before choosing some items – but do be willing to try new things. Most of the roadside stand food is fantastic, and if you’re not hung up with the need for a table, you might have dinner on a beach, chomping on all sorts of seafood fritters at $1 a pop, drinking rum from a coconut. At the end of dinner, you can see all the stars. In the southwest of the island, in Boqueron, you might find fresh oysters and clams for sale at 25 cents a piece.

If you are really lucky, you might get invited to a pork roast. It’s not just food – it’s a whole day – and it’s cultural. Folks singing, drinking, hanging out telling stories, and checking to see if the pig is ready, and staying on topic, you’ll find the pig likely paired with arroz con gandules.

Typical fast food restaurants, such as McDonald’s, Taco Bell, and Wendy’s are numerous in Puerto Rico and are almost identical to their American counterparts with minor exceptions.

Finally, there are some wonderful restaurants, and like everywhere, the best are found mostly near the metropolitan areas. Old San Juan is probably your best bet for a high quality meal in a 5-star restaurant. However if your experimental nature wanes, there are lots of “Americanized” opportunities in and around San Juan. Good luck, keep your eyes open for the next roadside stand, and make sure to take advantage of all the sports to counteract the moving buffet.

Dietary restrictions:

Strict vegetarians will have a tough time in Puerto Rico, although the larger towns have restaurants that can cater to their tastes. Traditionally almost all Puerto Rican food is prepared with lard, and while this has been largely supplanted by cheaper corn oil, mofongo is still commonly made using lard, bacon or both.

DRINK:

Unlike most U.S. territories and states, Puerto Rico’s drinking age is 18. That, coupled with the fact that the U.S. does not require U.S. residents to have a passport to travel between Puerto Rico and the continental U.S., means Puerto Rico is becoming increasingly popular during spring break. Beer and hard liquor is available at almost every grocery store, convenience store, panadería (bakery), connell cabinet shops, and meat shop. There are many bars just off the sidewalk that cater to those of age, especially in San Juan and Old San Juan.

Puerto Rico is obviously famous for its rum and rum drinks, and is the birthplace of the world renowned Piña Colada. Several rums are made in Puerto Rico, including Bacardì, Captain Morgan and Don Q. Rum is, unfortunately, not a connoisseur’s drink in the same way as wine or whiskey, and you may get a few odd looks if you ask for it straight since it is almost always drunk as a mixer. The best rum available in Puerto Rico is known as Ron de Barrilito. It isn’t available in the mainland US, and is considered to be the closest to the rums distilled in the Caribbean in the 17th and 18th centuries, both in taste and the way it is distilled. It has an amber-brown color and a delicious, clean, slightly sweet taste. Very refreshing on a hot day with ice and a mint leaf.

The local moonshine is known as pitorro or cañita, distilled (like rum) from fermented sugarcane. It is then poured into a jug with other flavorings such as grapes, prunes, breadfruit seeds, raisins, dates, mango, grapefruit, guava, pineapple, and even cheese or raw meat. Its production, while illegal, is widespread and a sort of national pastime. If you are lucky enough to be invited to a Puerto Rican home around Christmastime, it is likely that someone will eventually bring out a bottle of it. Use caution as it is quite strong, sometimes reaching 80% alcohol by volume (although typical alcohol levels are closer to 40-50%).

During Christmas season, Puertoricans also drink “Coquito,” an eggnog-like alcoholic beverage made with rum, egg yolks, coconut milk, coconut cream, sweet condensed milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. It is almost always homemade, and is often given as a gift during the Christmas holidays. It is delicious, but very caloric. It will also make you very sick if you drink too much of it, so be careful if someone offers you some.

Most stores stock a locally produced beer called Medalla Light that can be purchased for $1–$2 each. Medalla Light is only sold in Puerto Rico, and is first in the Puerto Rican market share. It is comparable in taste to American light beers, i.e. bland and watery. Other beer options for the discriminating drinker include Presidente, a light Pilsner beer from nearby Dominican Republic (note: it’s a different brew from the Dominican version), and Beck’s. Beck’s imported to Puerto Rico and the rest of the Caribbean is a different brew from the one that makes it to the U.S. mainland, and is considered by many to be better. Other beers which have popularity on the island are Budweiser (Bud Lite is not available or very difficult to find), Heineken, Corona and Coors Light, which happen to be one of the prime international markets. Many other imported beers are also available, but usually at a higher price.

Most of the beers sold vary from 10- to 12-ounce bottles or cans. The portions are small (compared to the Mainland) in order to be consumed before the beer has time to warm up.

Tap water is treated and is officially safe to drink, although somewhat metallic-tasting.

If you are an avid coffee drinker, you may find heaven in Puerto Rico. Nearly every place to eat, from the most expensive restaurants to the lowliest street vendors, serves coffee that is cheap, powerful, and delicious. Puerto Ricans drink their coffee in a way particular to the Caribbean, known as a café cortadito, which is espresso coffee served with sweetened steamed milk. A cup of coffee at a good panadería is rarely more than $1.50. Although coffee was once a formidable component of Puerto Rico’s agriculture, its domestic production has declined significantly and most coffee sold in Puerto Rico is actually from Brazil or Colombia. However, indigenous coffee is experiencing a comeback, with a variety of excellent brands such as Alto Grande, Yaucono, Altura, and Café Rico. Puerto Rico’s best coffee is now some of the most expensive and exclusive in the world, and a box of estate-grown coffee is an indispensable souvenir for the passionate coffee lover.

For those who want non-alcoholic drinks, horchata is a popular drink in Puerto Rico that is made from vanilla, cinnamon and sesame seeds, and differs significantly from its better-known Mexican counterpart.

As a legacy of Puerto Rico’s status as one of centers of world sugarcane production, nearly everything is drunk or eaten with sugar added. This includes coffee, teas, and alcoholic drinks, as well as breakfast foods such as avena (hot oatmeal-like cereal) and mallorcas (heavy egg buns with powdered sugar and jam). Be aware of this if you are diabetic.

There are over 12,000 hotel rooms in Puerto Rico and 50% are located in the San Juan area.

All major international hotel chains have properties in Puerto Rico. Guests can expect a high level of service even in lower quality properties. The San Juan area is very popular and perennially full of visitors but also suffers from a shortage of hotel rooms which results in high prices during the winter season. New developments on the horizon look to alleviate this problem.
International chains such as Sheraton, Westin, Marriott, Hilton, Ritz-Carlton, Holiday Inn as well as some luxurious independent resorts offer very reliable accommodations. There is a boom underway in boutique hotel construction which promise a higher level of service and Miami-chic appeal. Most large cities have at least one international chain hotel.

There are properties to rent, buy, or lease available, whether it is a quiet home or a vacation rental. There are also many fully furnished apartments you can rent by the day, week and month, especially in Old San Juan. These are usually inexpensive, clean and comfortable and owned by trustworthy people. They are located mostly in the residential area, which is safe (day and night), and within walking distance to everything from museums to nightlife.

Plaza las Americas is the largest shopping mall in the Caribbean and one of the largest in Latin America. It offers a wide array of stores, eating facilities, and a multi-screen movie theater. Most major U.S. mainland and European mass retailers are located in the mall.

The Condado section of San Juan is home to fine designer stores such as Cartier, Gucci, Ferragamo, Mont Blanc and Dior.

You might want to check out the Belz Factory Outlets and Puerto Rico Premium Outlets (Barceloneta). They house stores like Polo Ralph Lauren, Hilfiger, Banana Republic, Puma, Gap, PacSun, etc.

Most of the large cities on the island have a large regional mall with very familiar international stores.

If you’re looking for local crafts of all sorts, and want to pay less than in Old San Juan while getting to know the island, try going to town festivals. Artisans from around the island come to these festivals to sell their wares: from typical foods, candies, coffee and tobacco to clothing, accessories, paintings and home décor. Some of these festivals are better than others, though: be sure to ask for recommendations. One of the most popular (yet remote) festivals is the “Festival de las Chinas” or Orange Festival in Las Marías.

Don’t forget that Puerto Rico is a large rum-producing island. Hand made cigars can still be found in San Juan, Old San Juan, and Puerta de Tierra. Also a wide variety of imported goods from all over the world are available. Local artesanías include wooden carvings, musical instruments, lace, ceramics, hammocks, masks and basket-work. Located in every busy city are gift shops with the typical tee-shirts, shot glasses, and other gifts that say Puerto Rico to bring home to friends and family. Make sure to visit the Distileria Serralles, the home of Don Q, one of the oldest rums made in Puerto Rico. You would not only enjoy tours of the process of making rum, but a little taste of the rum. They also have a museum and it is an enjoyable place for a warm afternoon in the Enchanted Island.

**All travel information has been sourced from wikivoyage. However like wikipedia, wikivoyage is an open platform editable by any member of the public. Therefore, although very useful, all above information IS INDICATIVE ONLY and must be verified prior to personal use. Moreover, if you wish to see more information please visit: https://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/Puerto_Rico
TOP ATTRACTIONS
PLEASE CLICK / HOVER ON THE IMAGES BELOW FOR MORE INFORMATION.
Name: El Yunque National Forest
Location: Puerto Rico
El Yunque National Forest is a forest located in northeastern Puerto Rico. It is the only tropical rain forest in the United States National Forest System and the United States Forest Service. The second-tallest mountain within El Yunque is also named El Yunque.

El Yunque National Rainforest is located on the slopes of the Sierra de Luquillo mountains, encompassing 28,000 acres (43.753 mi2 or 113.32 km2) of land, making it the largest block of public land in Puerto Rico.

The highest mountain peak in the forest rises 3,494 feet (1,065 m) above sea level. Ample rainfall (over 20 feet a year in some areas) creates a jungle-like setting—lush foliage, crags, waterfalls, and rivers are a prevalent sight. The forest has a number of trails from which the jungle-like territory's flora and fauna can be appreciated. El Yunque is also renowned for its unique Taíno petroglyphs. Indigenous people believed that El Yunque was the throne of their chief god Yúcahu, so that it is the Caribbean equivalent to Mount Olympus. El Yunque National Rainforest is currently partially closed until further notice due to Hurricane Maria.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Yunque_National_Forest
Name: Castillo San Felipe del Morro
Location: San Juan, Puerto Rico
Castillo San Felipe del Morro is a 16th-century citadel located in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Lying on the northwestern-most point of the islet of Old San Juan, Castillo San Felipe del Morro is named in honor of King Philip II of Spain. The fortification was designed to guard the entrance to the San Juan Bay, and defend the Spanish colonial port city of San Juan from seaborne enemies. Over two million visitors a year explore the castillo, making it one of Puerto Rico's leading tourist attractions. Facing the structure, on the opposite side of the bay, a smaller fortification known as El Cañuelo complemented the castillo's defense of the entrance to the bay.

In 1961, the United States Army officially retired from El Morro. The fort became a part of the National Park Service to be preserved as museums. In 1983, the Castillo and the city walls were declared a World Heritage Site by the UN. In honor of the Quincentennial of the voyages of Columbus in 1992 the exterior esplanade was cleared of palm trees that had been planted by the U.S. Army in the Fort Brooke era, and restored to the open appearance this "field-of-fire" for El Morro's cannon would have had in colonial Spanish times.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castillo_San_Felipe_del_Morro
Name: Old San Juan
Location: San Juan, Puerto Rico
Old San Juan is a historic district located at the "northwest triangle" of the islet of San Juan. Its area roughly correlates to the Ballajá, Catedral, Marina, Mercado, San Cristóbal, and San Francisco subbarrios of barrio San Juan Antiguo in the municipality of San Juan, Puerto Rico. Old San Juan is the oldest settlement within Puerto Rico and the historic colonial section of the city of San Juan. This historic district is a National Historic Landmark District and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as the Old San Juan Historic District. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

With its abundance of shops, historic places, museums, open air cafés, restaurants, gracious homes, tree-shaded plazas, and its old beauty and architectural peculiarity, Old San Juan is a main spot for domestic and international tourism. A free tourist trolley serves the area, which is one of the safest in the city. The neighborhood of La Perla outside of the historic city wall on the rocky north coast belongs to subbarrios Mercado and San Cristóbal. The district is characterized by numerous public plazas and churches including San José Church and the Cathedral of San Juan Bautista, which contains the tomb of the Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León.

SOURCE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Old_San_Juan
FLIGHT TIMES / MAJOR CITIES
PLEASE SEE BELOW MAJOR CITIES IN PUERTO RICO / CLICK OR TOGGLE BELOW FOR FASTEST AVERAGE FLIGHT TIMES FROM USA.

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...WHO ARE WE?

...WHO ARE WE?

…WHO ARE WE?
…WHO ARE WE?

My name is Manny and I would like to personally welcome you to Global Visas.

Our team is dedicated to providing a consular service which focuses on attention to detail, delivering a personal approach and with a high focus on compliance. Feedback is very important to us, therefore any comments you provide about our service are invaluable.

Our team is dedicated to providing a consular service which focuses on attention to detail, delivering a personal approach and with a high focus on compliance. Feedback is very important to us, therefore any comments you provide about our service are invaluableI have provided some of my own personal testimonials over my years in immigration below; working and leading on very large projects...

I have provided some of my own personal testimonials over my years in immigration below; working and leading on very large projects.

Please do also view our introductory video at the following web link:

https://usglobalvisas.com/personal/more/about-us

We look forward to working with you and meeting all your expectations.

Global Immigration Leader, Big 4

“Manny. You have really gone the extra mile in supporting the US Business Visitor Service. You have demonstrated real commitment and energy, working a late shift night while we try and find others to fill the position. I know that the other night you stayed until 4am. You are always so positive and your cheerful disposition and attention to detail has resulted in excellent client feedback. On Monday the key client came to London and she was effusive about the service. This is largely due the cover you provide.”

Internal stakeholder, Big 4

“Manny is a big reason why the move from (external provider) to the UK firm’s passport and visa provision has been so smooth. He’s an extremely likeable honest hard working guy who takes his role very seriously. We’re very fortunate to have him leading our dedicated team”

External client, Private practice

“Most of my contact was with Manpreet Singh Johal. He did the best job someone could imagine. Extraordinary service from his side.”

Team member, Big 4

“Working on two priority accounts is naturally pressurised especially where he has also been responsible for billing on both accounts; yet Manny delivers every time and this I believe is an exceptional quality.”

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