About San Juan

Instituted in 1521, San Juan is the second-oldest European-founded town in America and the oldest under U.S. administration. Shoehorned onto a small island that overlooks the entrance to San Juan harbor, the old town was introduced almost a century before the Mayflower laid anchor in present-day Massachusetts, and it is now a well-known wonderland that compares historical authenticity with its vibrating modern energy.

Beyond its ancient 15ft-thick walls, San Juan is far more than a compilation of well-polished colonial-era artifacts. The city is also a collection of ever-evolving regions such as Santurce, which has raw energy fueled by street art, superb restaurants and a bar scene that takes over the streets at night. And then there are the beaches. Silky ribbons of the sand line San Juan's northern edge from rich Condado to resort-infested Isla Verde. You can land at the airport and be splashing in the blue waters about in an hour.

In early September 2017, San Juan was hit hard by Hurricane Maria, a Category 5 tornado that formed hot on the heels of record-breaking Hurricane Irm. It was the biggest and strongest hurricane to make landfall in Puerto Rico in eighty-nine years. While many constructions and roads defended wind and flood damage, this city has survived wars, pirates, and storms for centuries. With the help of its energetic and capable citizens, it will rebuild and remain a lovely and captivating place it's always been.

Public Transport System

Taxi, Bus, TrainTaxi: A convenient option for visitors to get around San Juan is by taxi. Bus: If you are patient, in no big hurry, and want a much lower cost option of taking a taxi, then you may want to ride a bus to travel.Train: Tren Urbano (Urban Train) is a state-of-the-art rapid transit electric train, affordable like the bus, and the fastest way to travel to and from the metropolitan and suburban areas of central and south San Juan and parts of the neighbouring towns of Guaynabo and Bayamón.

Cleanliness and Efficiency

. Cleanliness: High; Efficiency: High

Mode & Cost of Transports

Train:

  • Regular Fare = $1.50 (per trip)
  • Students = $0.75 (per trip)
  • Ages 60-74 = $0.75 (per trip)
  • People with Disabilities or on Medicare = $0.75 (per trip)
  • 6 years and under, 75 years and older = Free
  • Unlimited use rates: 1 day $5 | 7 days $15 | 30 days $50 | 90 days $90

Public Bus:

  • Regular Fare = $0.75 (with one bus transfer = $1.50)
  • Students = $0.60 (with one bus transfer = $1.20)
  • Ages 60-74 = $0.35 (with one bus transfer = $0.70)
  • People with Disabilities, on Medicare, or 75 years and older = Free

Basic Items & Cost

Name Price
Water Bottle USD 2.00
Cup of Coffee USD 3.00
Milk Carton Pack USD 2.00
Rice/Kg USD 3.00
White Bread USD 3.00
Eggs (12) USD 3.00
Combo Meal USD 7.00
Fine Dining USD 50.00
Bottle of Coke or Pepsi USD 2.00
Domestic Beer USD 2.00
Imported Beer USD 3.00
Bottle of Wine USD 15.00
Cigarettes (20 Pack) USD 10.00
Taxi ( 1 km ) USD 2.00
Ticket in local transport (Single way). USD 2.00
Rent ( One Bed Room) USD 715.00

Do’s:

  • Pack a suntan lotion, ear plugs, wet wipes, mosquito repellant.
  • Prepare for a lot of sunshine. The sun is 60% more intense in Puerto Rico than it is on the mainland.
  • Download a Spanish dictionary app on your mobile. Most people are bi-lingual in Puerto Rico. But for road signs and restaurant signs, it is very handy.
  • Do check the weather forecast for where you’re going.

Don’ts:

  • Do not drive here. Take public transportation as traffic is brutal and the parking is parallel here. Also, the roads are very narrow, you would not enjoy your drive.
  • Do not wear heels, wear a comfortable pair of shoes as there is a lot of climbing. Also, the beautiful blue-tinged cobblestone streets would break your heels.
  • Do not diet here. This place is a heaven to foodies. 
  • Do not spend most time indoors. Explore nearby museums, monuments, plazas, promenades, cafes, and shops. Stroll the city.
  • No swimming. This one might surprise those who aren’t familiar with Old San Juan, but it doesn’t have a beach to swim.

Night Life

No matter what side of the island you’re on, there’s always a place to go dancing, enjoy a drink, and experience the legendary nightlife of Puerto Rico. If you like to party in the street, hit La Placita de Santurce near Old San Juan and dance the night away. A legendary Farmers’ Market by day, La Placita converts into a hot outdoor club by night, complete with booming live music, great restaurants, and late-night bars.

San Juan boasts a vibrant nightlife, with most of its bars, lounges, and rooftops open till late night. Many also have unbelievable views of the city. If you want a more passionate scene at night, then head over to Old San Juan.  As you walk around Old San Juan at night, your senses will become loaded with sights, sounds and delicious smells.  Black, wrought iron lamps light up and radiate a golden glow to the cobblestone streets, while the huge city walls become more subdued. You’ll hear the sounds of salsa, flamenco, jazz, and classical music coming from eateries and clubs.  As you walk, your hunger will grow with the scent of delightful cuisine that makes San Juan so popular in the Caribbean.  In addition, you’ll often find live music and events taking place at the plazas and squares around Old San Juan.  And best of all, they’re free!  Be sure to wear comfortable shoes, as many places offer free salsa lessons.

From hot hotel night, clubs and rooftop hangouts to low-key beachside bars, San Juan's nightlife are so refreshing that you might be surprised to find out its almost morning.

Must See

  • Explore the fascinating forts guarding Old San Juan.
  • Sampling yummy innovative food at Miramar Food Truck Park.
  • Check out the Striking Street Art in the Santurce Neighborhood.
  • Hiking in El Yungue National Park.
  • Glide across bioluminescent water at Laguna Grande.

Experiences

  • Explore the colorful San Juan originally settled by Spanish. The cobblestone streets and pastel-shaded buildings are meant to be explored on foot.
  • Try the amazing local cuisine also known as the Dining Capital of the Carribean. Dishes like mofongo, aroz con dulche are to die for.
  • If you are a coffee lover, this is the place to try coffee. The coffee here is very smooth, rich and flavorful.
  • Browse the art galleries. Whether you like contemporary art or modern, there is something for everyone.
  • Join a Puerto Rican festival.

Activities

Shopping

Luna Market
Antique Markets
251 Calle de la Luna, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
Distance From City Center
1.8 km
Cosas de Ayer y Hoy
Antique Markets
1777 Av. Francisco Paz Granela, San Juan, 00921, Puerto Rico
Distance From City Center
13.3 km
Frankie Vintage Downtown
Antique Markets
363 Calle San Francisco, San Juan, PR 00646, United States
Distance From City Center
1.1 km
Fortaleza Antiques Inc.
Antique Markets
103 Calle San José, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
Distance From City Center
1.9 km
Colmado Borincano
Flea Markets and Bazaars
San Juan, 00912, Puerto Rico
Distance From City Center
6 km
El Bazaar de Mami Hilda
Flea Markets and Bazaars
San Juan, 00925, Puerto Rico
Distance From City Center
10.8 km
La Plaza del Mercado de Santurce
Flea Markets and Bazaars
1348 José M. Raffucci Morales, San Juan, 00907, Puerto Rico
Distance From City Center
4.7 km
Pulguero de Bayamón
Flea Markets and Bazaars
3023 Avenida Ramón Luis Rivera, Bayamón, 00957, Puerto Rico
Distance From City Center
20.7 km
Mariel arts & crafts
Handicrafts and Souviners
109 Calle Fortaleza, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
Distance From City Center
1.9 km
Souvenir Outlet Puerto Rico
Handicrafts and Souviners
00901, 255 Calle Tanca, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
Distance From City Center
1.3 km
Borinquen Discount Souvenirs
Handicrafts and Souviners
303 Calle Fortaleza, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
Distance From City Center
1.4 km
The Handcraft Store
Handicrafts and Souviners
101 Calle Fortaleza, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
Distance From City Center
1.9 km
  • Mundillo - the term refers to high-quality handmade lace. The lace is used to make tablecloths, handkerchiefs, blankets and the like. 
  • Pilón: If you love cooking, here’s an item to put on top of your list for things to buy in San Juan. These are the wooden mortar and pestles.
  • Vejigante Masks: A figure from folklore, it dates back to medieval Spain and is a representation of the fight between good and evil.
  • Ceramics: San Juan is filled with artists specializing in ceramics.
  • Santos: In San Juan, you will find plenty of hand-carved wooden or ceramic figures of saints called Santos.
  • Rum: San Juan is certainly one of the best places in the world to buy rum.
  • Spices: San Juan is a fantastic spot to buy some to take home with you to re-create your favorite dishes.
  • Güiro: Music is the heartbeat of Puerto Rican culture. Buy one from here.
  • Hammocks: Hammock weaving is somewhat of a tradition and comfortable designs are made by locals across San Juan.

Official Language

Spanish

Other Language

English

Spoken Language

Spanish is the major language ... Read more

Currency

US Dollar (USD)

Population

4 (Millions)

Weather Icon

Weather

Scattered Clouds 25.49°C

TimeZone

04:47 AM (GMT -04:00)

 

Ambulance

911

 

Police

911

 

Electric socket

Type A
Type A (120 V 60 Hz.)
Type B
Type B (120 V 60 Hz.)

Airport Name / IATA Code

Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport - ICAO

Airport Name / IATA Code

SIG - Fernando Luis Ribas Dominicci Airport (Isla Grande Airport)

Best time to visit

December, January, February, and March: These are the best times because of the tropical sunshine.

Moderate time to visit

April, May, September, October, and November: While April and May are rainy seasons, the off-peak season is September and October. You would get cheaper flights and hotels.

Worst time to visit

June, July, and August: Main hurricane period and it is better to avoid it.

Taxi

Start Tariff: USD 4.00

1 Km. Tariff: USD 2.00

1 Hour Waiting Tariff: USD 14.00

Available service

Monthly Average Temperature & Rainfall

Local Services in San Juan (Contact directly)

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