THE AFAR INSIDERS' GUIDE TO
Sponsored by Discover Puerto Rico
From a pro surfer’s favorite beaches to a local conservationist’s ecotourism tips, we tapped the local experts who know Puerto Rico best for a curated, in-the-know take. Sip your way around the Island with an impresario of San Juan’s craft cocktail scene, check out picks for agritourism (and good eats) from an executive chef, savor wellness experiences thanks to the founder of a holistic clinic, and celebrate Island history and culture through an artist’s lens. Keep reading to learn how to travel deeper in Puerto Rico.
7 Ways to Drink Up Puerto Rico’s Rum and Cocktail Culture
Birthplace of the iconic piña colada and rum capital of the world, Puerto Rico makes it easy to fill your vacation (and cup) with delicious cultural adventures.
We caught up with Roberto Berdecia, co-founder of Colectivo Ícaro, the group behind some of the Island’s most popular hotspots like La Factoría, Jungle Bird, and Caneca Coctelería Móvil for his perspective. He shared some of the best ways to dive deeper into rum and cocktails when visiting Puerto Rico, from enjoying rum tastings at distilleries around the Island and touring museums to taking cocktail-making classes and visiting stylish cocktail bars.
Get his recommendations for how to do it right.
Discover his favorite destinations for celebrating
Countless opportunities to enjoy stunning natural wonders exist in Puerto Rico. But Raimundo Espinoza, founder of environmental research and conservation nonprofit Conservación ConCiencia, has one simple, overarching tip: “Get lost in Puerto Rico,” he advises. “Go to the mountainous towns and coastal towns. You’ll find amazing local restaurants everywhere in Puerto Rico. Dining at these restaurants, bars, and food trucks, and even fueling up at the gas stations throughout the Island—they’re all typically locally owned, not chains—really helps to support the local communities.”
Make Travel a Force for Good on a
Fabulous Eco-Trip in Puerto Rico
From hiking through rainforests to kayaking with sea turtles, a conservationist recommends the most fun and feel-good ways to travel here.
Explore his POV on eight incredible beaches
throughout Puerto Rico.
Professional surfer and Puerto Rico native Otto Flores grew up on the Island and began catching waves at age nine. Today, at 46, he still calls this tropical paradise home and is passionate about preserving the destination’s natural beauty. “As far as sustainability and protecting the ecosystems, I’m a big advocate and activist,” says Flores, who advises visitors to “mind your surroundings—leave the place better than you found it.” There’s no better way to enjoy the spectacular beauty of Puerto Rico’s beaches, whether you’re riding waves, kayaking tranquil waters, or simply soaking up some Vitamin D.
A Pro Surfer Weighs in on the
Ultimate Beach Vacation in Puerto Rico
Whether you’re down for a spirited surf trip, just want to chill out on the shore, or anything in between, there’s a beach just for you in Puerto Rico.
Check out Cuevas’s top suggestions for agritourism.
A tropical climate, rich biodiversity, and varied landscape make Puerto Rico a natural agricultural hub. Yuca, sugarcane, and coffee plantations date back centuries and today, a new generation of farmers is diversifying crops, supplying the country’s chefs with delicious, fresh ingredients and fueling the farm-to-table movement. One chef who helped spearhead it is Juan José Cuevas, the Michelin-rated executive chef behind the acclaimed 1919 Restaurant. From coffee hacienda tours to chocolate tastings at cacao farms, there are many ways to experience the Island’s culinary culture and connect with nature on a relaxing and rewarding adventure.
What Makes Puerto Rico a Mindful
Getaway for Food and Nature Lovers
According to a local top chef, this Island is booming with agritourism opportunities—with plenty of good eating included.
See where to find inspiration and wonder.
Founded in 1521, San Juan holds the title of oldest city in the U.S., boasting more than five centuries of history spanning native Taíno, Spanish, African, and American heritages. Its rich history, vibrant creative scene, and multi-cultural legacy fills the days of local artist and surfer Mauro Díaz when he explores Puerto Rico by land and sea. From the juxtaposition of historical architecture against a backdrop of crystalline sea to the bursting present-day creativity spread across the capital city of San Juan, a trip here thrills your imagination and your senses.
How to Explore 500 Years of History and Culture in Old San Juan
Armed with artist Mauro Díaz’s insider knowledge, celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Puerto Rican capital and explore centuries-old traditions, art, and architecture.
Learn about the best spots to discover complete and
“Just being in Puerto Rico is a wellness experience in and of itself. It’s just so beautiful, and you can easily connect with the serene ambience,” says Dr. Veroshk Williams, clinical psychologist and founder of Infinite Healing Puerto Rico. What makes Puerto Rico an ideal destination for travelers who prioritize wellness? For starters, there’s “the perfect weather all year round—you can wear one layer of clothing the entire year—and the pace of life here…is slower than in most places...” Add to that diverse nature to enjoy, from rainforests to beaches, “all within a two-hour range, that’s unique.”
Puerto Rico’s Best
For a trip that’s as good for your body as it is for your mind and soul, check out these recommendations from one of this Caribbean Island’s foremost wellness experts.
Relax, get into nature, and decompress
Beaches are an iconic part of Puerto Rico’s heritage
I am deeply passionate about organic farming, sustainability, and seasonal cooking
Much more than a hotel in front of the beach
Take time to be present and enjoy each moment