My five days in Puerto Rico (& stuff I learned)!

8 years ago

Follow up to my Where would you go for five nights? post.

As soon as we rested we took a short cab ride to San Juan from our hotel. Here is husband getting fitted for a custom Panama hat! We learned that Panama hats are actually Ecuadorian and made from toquilla palm plants. Back in the day the hats were first shipped to Panama before sailing to their destinations around the world. Even with us living in Florida it is HOT in PR in the summer.

Old San Juan, I think Fortaleza st.

Side street showing the blue cobblestones , originally adoquine - furnace slag brought over a ballast from Spanish ships.

I felt like I was back in Madrid when I came across some of the small plazas in "old San Juan".

Supposedly Christopher Columbus found PR in 1493. In 15 hundred something Juan Ponce De Leon founded the original settlement. We visited the El Morrow Castle which was amazing. This picture is a side street in "old San Juan" How cool to see so much history only a 2 1/2 hour flight away and in U.S jurisdiction!

I have a soft spot for some of the buildings on side streets that need rescuing. We saw some very cool architecture on this day ranging from classical Revival, medieval, Gothic, Renaissance style, Baroque, Colonial and more (I'm still trying to figure it all out.

We stayed at the Ritz and had a room with a panoramic view of the pool and ocean plus a small balcony for my morning tea.

We decided to venture out for meals (example: 1 little hamburger w/chips at the Ritz = $19). Here is a better restaurant within walking distance of the Ritz. I have to say that this is the first time ever when on vacation that getting restaurant recommendations from locals did not go well for me, I think it's because traditional Puerto Rican food and my digestion do not mesh. Monfongo (fried green mushed plantains) should NOT be eaten without the fiber from beans that is normally served on the side. Don't ask me how I know this.

Plates at Platos (everything around here comes with Mofongo). This was tasty, bacon wrapped chicken with...yep, more Mofongo, I have to say though that the twist on traditional Pureto Rican food was much welcomed. In both these dishes mofongo was mixed with rice and had Indian seasoning.

One of many pitcher's of Sangria consumed while on this trip.

Cock Fights! No I did not go!

We rented a car this day and saw some beautiful hilly country sides, visited the Luquillo Beach and El Portal Tropical Rain Forest (you can see the rain forest in the background).

FINALLY some good wine and fantastic seafood at Jose Enriques! We learned almost too late that one must do a cab drive from the hotel to eat at good restaurants. Jose was nominated best new chef this year by Food & Wine Magazine. Whole snapper...YUM ! And whole lot of yummy greens and perfectly prepared fish. Just when I was thinking there was a fruit and veggie shortage on this island!

If you can find this white wine buy it! It's from Spain and of the obscure Godello grape, very fantastic and great with seafood.

Inside Jose Enriques casual restaurant, the outside area is a bit scary. However, after dark the streets are packed with local partiers so when dark it looks festive.

So in conclusion, we packed a lot of fun and relaxation into a few short days.
My only regret is that I did not take pictures of some of the interesting looking locals against some of the old run down and colorful but faded buildings. It would have been fun and inspiring to try an paint.


This post was edited by jterrilynn on Fri, Sep 6, 13 at 22:35

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