We all know that Puerto Rico is called the Island of Enchantment, but do you know why? Our island is surrounded by incredible beaches and has a unique flora and fauna in each corner you can think of. Not only that, but we have a story to tell as to how did we became to be called Puerto Rican and you can see it all in Old San Juan.
Old San Juan is a 500-year-old city packed with history about us and the Spaniards. When you walk through Old San Juan, you walk through history and we are going to break it down a little bit for you.
A Walk Through Old San Juan
Let’s say you begin your walk at the ports, where you can view the San Juan Bay (Bahía de San Juan) there you can see the big island, that at first was called San Juan Bautista (St. John Baptist) by the Spaniards.
And walking a little to the west you’ll see the Promenade of the Princess (Paseo de la Princesa) where you can experience local artisans selling their merchandise, view incredible statues about our culture, history, and the Fountain of Las Raíces. This fountain represents five statues about our culture, the mountain person called “Jibarito” with a string instrument known as “El Cuatro”. You can see a family with food in their hands, a couple dancing, dolphins that represent the meaning of intelligence and happiness (just like Puerto Ricans), and a woman with two feathers on her hand that represent freedom.
Walk a little further and you’ll see the Gate of San Juan. Did you know that Old San Juan what surrounded by a big wall? Now, you can only see a part of it, but before it, people enter this historical city through three gates and only one of them remains. Walking past it you can go either straight to the Cathedral of St. John Baptist, where you’ll see the chapel where the word “puertorriqueño” was born and so much more. Or if you go right, you get to San Felipe del Morro and enjoy the seven-level high building finished in 1526, the Plaza of Fifth Century and Ballajá, where Spanish soldiers lived...
The list goes on and on, there are a lot more places to talk about and the history to go through, but there are also a fe other places we want you to go and have a great time.
Top places to Visit at
Old San Juan
1. Barrachina Restaurant - where the Piña Colada was created
2. San Sebastian Street - the famous “Fiestas de la Calle San Sebastián” began right there, now, you can experience bars, restaurants, and local people having a good time walking up and down.
3. San Cristobal Fortress - the second fortress near “El Morro”
4. La Fortaleza - a fortress that over time became the house of the governor of Puerto Rico. (you can take a nice picture with the flag of Puerto Rico covering the street.
5. La Factoria - if you visit Old San Juan and don’t have a drink at this famous bar, then, you missing the best.
Have a great time visiting Puerto Rico. Experience life in a tropical paradise, know the history that you can find at Old San Juan. Take a walking tour pr to wander by yourself. The important part is that you discover a little of our story and have fun while it. After your day in San Juan, we want to hear all about it, tag us in your adventures using #TheIvyHotelCondado