Where to stay:
Luquillo is actually where I stayed during my time in Puerto Rico. We stayed on Playa Azul in Playa Azul Condominium Tower Three which we rented through a private owner and it was awesome. We decided to forego staying in San Juan because we were craving more of a real, local experience and I think staying here was the perfect choice. There were other travelers around us with lots of things to do, but there were also lots of locals around us so the food and activities were sure to be top notch.
What to do:
Go to the beach! The beaches in Luquillo are the prettiest on the mainland in my opinion! However, be aware, lots of areas on this beach are some of the top surfing spots on the island so, in those areas, the currents are extremely strong. However, if you follow the families with children, you’re sure to find very tame, swim-able areas.
Also, something you absolutely cannot miss are the kiosks in Luquillo. This was incredible and super fun. It’s basically a strip of shops, bars and restaurants and it was so fun to walk through. I bought some super pretty handmade jewelry and AMAZING drinks. It is definitely more lively at night and on the weekends, so plan accordingly! It rains a lot, SO do this if you’re trying to stay dry!
Where to eat:
Nothing that we ate in Puerto Rico was bad and coming from a family of intense foodies, that’s saying something!
–Boardriders: This was the very first place we ate while in PR, and we were very jetlagged so this may have tasted so good because of that. It is located right on the beach and it’s pretty much all outdoor eating and the later it gets, the crazier. I had the Congo Burger! Around $15 per person.
-Brass Cactus: This place was pretty good, BUT it tasted a lot like Texas food so we didn’t like die over it. I ate the chili burger and it was very, very spicy (not to mention HUGE!) Around $15 per person.
At the kiosks:
-#38: I cannot remember the actual name of this place for the life of me, (I think it had a German name) but I do know it was number 38! IF YOU’RE GOING TO PR, THIS IS A MUST. Some of the best food I have ever eaten in my life. Ever. I got the lobster (pictured above) and it was four freakin pounds! Luckily my dad shared it with me, but honestly I probably could’ve stuffed myself full of the entire four pounds because it was that good. This was quite expensive at around $30 per person.
-Revolution Pizza: Puerto Rican pizza is quite different, but this place had a pretty cool vibe! The slices are as big as my head, but the service is pretty slow! Around $10 per person!
El Yunque National Forest
What to do:
Go hiking! When we went, it was STORMING. So luckily we were wearing swimsuits! We hiked to La Mina Falls and it took us around 2 hours total! Be aware that the paths are quite narrow and at times pretty steep! Since it was pouring, the river got very full and extremely rough so we didn’t get to really get in, but normally you are allowed to swim in the falls! We also hiked up Yokahu Tower and the view was stunning but right as we got to the top our hair was standing straight up because of static electricity so we hurried down to avoid lightening! This was my first time hiking in a rain forest and I was wide-eyed the entire time.
What to eat:
Lluvia- This was such a hip brunch spot. I felt like it belonged in a city scene. I had the Frittata which I shared with my mom, but honestly four people could’ve eaten it! It had a very herb-y taste, but interesting nonetheless! My siblings got the waffle sandwich which looked AMAZING. Around $15 per person. Be sure to visit the cute store right across the street!
La Familia Bakery 2- We visited here twice, it was so good. Visiting a bakery in PR is a must and the sweet bread is something you absolutely have to try. I ate multiple loaves by myself.
Yikes. I also got cheesecake on a different occasion! It was around $7 per person!