Friday, March 5, 2010

Puerto Rico - Oh the places I've been...are few, actually.

Anytime someone tells me they're going to Puerto Rico, I get so excited for them! Perhaps you remember my last post... (click here for a refresher)

However, in compiling the places I've been over my life time (every year I travel to Puerto Rico), I have to say, I have yet to discover so many parts of the island. Perhaps some of you can help me with that. 

Mostly when I go to Puerto Rico, I go to our beach house in Aguadilla, to relax, bum out on the beach and eat comida criolla (home-grown food). siiiiigggghh. La tierra me llama... (the land is calling me)


But I do venture outside of my beloved town of Aguadilla, to some pretty cool places. Here are some places that I've personallly been to and recommend for those of you traveling to Puerto Rico:




AGUADILLA

If you're going to be in Aguadilla, you have to go to Chris Restaurant,  Seafood/Steakhouse, carr #2 km, Aguadilla 00605, Puerto Rico. Its a little pricey, but the service, the food, the drinks, the coffee, the dessert is all amazing. It's great for a night out!
    If you're like me and you want to be on the beach, all the time, 
    here are some beach suggestions and other places to eat:


    Parque Colon Marina St (SR-442)
    There is a beach and board walk, a small children's park and this ancient tree that is just a site for sore eyes. In recent years, the water here has gotten a little rough, but the water is still beautiful. The locals go here, that's for sure.


    One of my favorite restuarnats El Pabellon was there but they were closed when I went last year. Its worth a drive by in case they happen to be open. The food was amazing. Nothing like it. And its right across from the beach! There are also vendors for food by the boardwalk.


    Crashboat Beach SR-458 (Off SR-107)
    The beach is beauitful, the water is calm and you can always see your toes. I love this beach.
    There is a small outdoor restaurant there for lunch where they cook up fresh caught dorado for about $6 - $10.00 and the seafood is fresh!

    They also have a rinky dink bar but the pina colada is phenomenal and so very inexpensive ($4.00).  


    There are several stands selling a  pinchos (aka grilled pork or chicken on a stick) and tostones (fried plantain). A lot of tourists and surfers come here. There's access to jetskis, snorkellling and kayaking.

    Rompeolas Beach Marina St @ Colon St

    This is definitely a beach where the locals go. Its right off  la plaza (the town square). There are also kioskos (open air bar ) selling drinks and snacks during the day, which turns into music and dancing at night. 


    Rompeolas Bar & Grill is right on the beach. The food is good and relatively in expensive - but its bar food, so dont expect too much. They have great night life, dancing, live bands, and delicious drinks. 



    The following are just places I go to on occasion when I have 
    the desire to venture outside of Aguadilla: 

    MAYAGUEZ
    Mayaguez Resort & Casino Route 104, Km 0.3, Mayaguez 00680, Puerto Rico 
    I only go there to have a drink at the bar, play my hand at the slot machines, have a drink and do some dancing. The bar in the back is so relaxing, overlooking the pool and is just so beautiful.





    GUÁNICA
    Gilligan's Island Rt 333, access by ferry just east of Copamarina.
    An amazing place!!! You have to drive there, park and take a ferry with scheduled return visits. You have never seen anything like it! They're like your own personal mini islands and the water is about three feet deep. It's very romantic and family friendly. Bring your own food because its just you and the ocean.



    LAJAS
    You should go to the fishing village of La Parguera,which has a coral reef and phosphorescent Bay. You can take boat rides at night and a local diver will jump in so you can see the bay glow. 






    PONCE
    I have driven here from Aguadilla just to get King's Cream sherbet-like ice cream (parcha - passion fruit) across the Parque de Bombas. So yummy. 



    The Art Museum "Museo de Arte."  The grounds are breathtaking. It was a wonderful experience. I got to see the Frida Kahlo exhibit so I was thrilled.



    SAN JUAN 
    The Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino
    The suite was beautiful (look at the view from our balcony) and the service was good. The night life is ok (touristy), there was a small little band and at times a DJ by a small dancing area off the casino. The pool and beach were very nice. Just outside are an abundance of restaurants, bars and clubs. 



    Go horsebackriding! I like Tropical Trail Rides 
    http://www.tropicaltrailrides.com/  I had a wonderful experience with this company.






    Visit Viejo San Juan (Old San Juan ) My all time favorite place.
    Besides the history, it architectural beauty and the overwhelming sense of delight, there are so many little bars and restaurants. 



    My favoite little bar
    is a small hole-in-the-wall bar next to the Nuyorican Café. The drinks are inexpensive yet delicious and you take them to-go!!! Mojitos yummmm. 
     
    My favorite restuarants are those that are in El Convento, all of which I love!



    I also really enjoy Raices restuarant becasue the food is just plain awesome and inexpensive. The ambiance is also really cool. Click Here for Raices


    Cataño

    Casa Bacardi - The Bacardi Rum Distillery is located in  Cataño , right outside San Juan. Free tour, free drinks, good time!


    After you sober up and leave the distillery, grab a bite to eat:
    Restaurante Don Tello # 36 Las Nereidas Ave. (front of ferry terminal that takes you from San Juan and ten minutes from the distillery). Inexpensive, hearty and delicious Puerto Rican food! A must-try! 


    Well, that's all I've got in terms of advice on where to go!!! Hope that makes your vacation a touch more interesting. ( I really wish i could tell you where some of my favorite night clubs are in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, but I'd have to literally show you, since the locations are remote and very difficult to describe. )




    DO YOU WANT TO EXPLORE PUERTO RICO??


    I stumbled upon this site [CLICK HERE ] than can help you plan a vacation and it has some interesting videos.


    If you look at my last post, there are several comments with info on their favorite spots: CLICK HERE

    Also, on twitter, I received and provided the following comments: 





    As you know, I'll always keep you posted on the places I visit in Puerto Rico! 
    But please feel free to let me know where you've been! 
    HAPPY TRAVELS!