A couple of weeks ago, we featured some Puerto Rico Things to Do, including some resorts and places to visit. Today we chat with
Alisha Miranda, who is now is based in New York City, but her roots are in Puerto Rico. She’s got some great tips for making the most of a trip to Puerto Rico and some additional ideas for you when exploring the island. Let’s dive in.
Please introduce yourself.
I was born in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico and then moved to New York with my family where I grew up in the Hudson Valley. My earliest childhood memories were spending summers and the holidays with my grandparents and uncles and aunts and cousins traveling around Puerto Rico, eating and cooking a lot, and spending as much time as we could on the beach. When I wasn’t running around the island, I went from house to house seeing family members, playing on farms, and chasing animals around the streets.
Now as I look back at my career in travel, I realize I’ve always loved exploring on my own and I have those memories to thank.
If someone was going to Puerto Rico for the first time, what would you tell them to go do to get a great first impression?
If you’re going to Puerto Rico for the first time, I’d recommend renting a car and taking a trip driving around the coast, stopping along for roadside food breaks – especially “lechon” and a Medalla, our favorite beer. You’ll get to see beautiful views of the ocean, peaking mountains, and locals on their day-to-day.
San Juan is a bustling city. Where are some areas to go and find some character and good urban experiences?
As cliche as it sounds, I really love Old San Juan and think it isn’t overrated. Going in the early evening is a nice time to explore around the historic district, eat traditional plates of rice and beans with plenty of fried goodies on the side, and try “piragua” too! Or, get outside the city by driving along PR-1 to head inland where you’ll pass army bases (I know weird, but cool!) and lovely town homes.
Where would one go for some peace and quiet on Puerto Rico?
For peace and quiet go off the mainland to Vieques or Culebra islands. You can book private boat tours and underwater activities. We’ve also rented cabin houses in Bayamon where the beach is secluded save for locals who live there. It’s a perfect getaway with close friends.
Any tips and suggestions for getting off the main island?
Rent a jetski to get off the mainland and hit the waves!
Thanks Alisha! Readers, feel free to join in this Q&A with your Puerto Rico travel tips – just leave a comment down below!