By ¡Qué Pasa! Staff

Plan a trip whose purpose is to live a pleasant experience, either with your partner or with your family or friends. The ambiance is relaxed and brimming with the certainty that you will find perfect places to make this one of the best vacations of your life. If you add the fact that you will be in direct contact with the locals, good and helpful people waiting for you with open arms, the experience becomes even better.

Take as a starting point the privileged location of the family-run inns that are part of the Paradores Puertorriqueños (country inns) program. Consider staying in one of them to enjoy a great location with a family-friendly atmosphere and affordable prices. At the end of this story, you will see the list of participating hotels as well as their contact information.

Diversified North

How about we begin the journey along the north coast? Parador El Buen Café in Hatillo is close to the Río Camuy Cave Park as well as the Arecibo Observatory—featuring the world’s second-largest radio telescope—the Arecibo Lighthouse, and the imposing statue of Christopher Columbus. Cueva Ventana is also located nearby, as are Sardinera Beach, Cueva del Indio, and the historic Stone Church built in 1912 in the town of Camuy.

Western Countryside and Coastal Area

As you head to the Guajataca area, you’ll discover impressive views of the Atlantic Ocean, as well as an old railroad tunnel and the San Antonio de Padua hermitage. We also recommend a visit to the Guajataca Forest as it is a subtropical rainforest in which unique flora and fauna coexist. La Cueva del Viento (Cave of the Wind) is another natural site to consider.

Great attractions will be much closer if you choose to stay at Parador Villas del Mar Hau in Isabela. This municipality has beautiful sand beaches—including Middles and Jobos, two world-known surfing sites. Visitors should be cautious since the surf is sometimes strong. In the area, you can enjoy delectable food, as well as fried fish and local seafood dishes.

From Isabela go to Aguadilla, where Parador El Faro awaits you. Make it your home base to enjoy superb beaches such as Crashboat, Wilderness, and Surfer Beach, perfect for watersports. Nearby, you’ll find Paseo Real Marina, Aguadilla Iceskating Arena, and Las Cascadas Water Park. The gastronomic choices have grown in this part of the island, so it will be easy to satisfy your demanding palate.

Head on to the town of Rincón, a mecca for surfers and the home of Parador Villa Antonio. If you want to watch a beautiful sunset, you can do so at the Rincón Lighthouse Park. Snorkel at Tres Palmas Marine Reserve or enjoy scuba diving on Desecheo Island. There are different certified operators who will gladly take you there. Find them on the Having Fun / Scuba Diving section.

Cabo Rojo is the town where Parador Boquemar and Parador Combate Beach are located, very close to internationally acclaimed attractions. The eateries located in the Boquerón area will give you a better idea of just how tasty the local seafood really is. The Caribbean Sea amazes great visitors with beautiful beaches such as Joyuda, Buyé, La Playuela, and Isla Ratones. The salt marshes and Los Morrillos Lighthouse are must-see sites due to their surroundings of indescribable beauty.

Access to this part of the island is easy since there are direct flights to Aguadilla from some U.S. destinations. Therefore, the western region is an excellent option to begin your stay in Puerto Rico.

The Southwest and Head to the Central Region

In the island’s southwestern region, you will find the attractions of La Parguera, home to a world-acclaimed bioluminescent bay, the beautiful Caracoles and Mata La Gata cays, and Parador Turtle Bay Inn, which is ready to welcome you. La Pared Beach is a highly recommended diving destination. Playita Rosada, which boasts a Blue Flag distinction, is also highly recommended, as is touring the lovely mangrove canals.

Just a few minutes away, you will find the town of Guánica and Parador Guánica 1929. Take advantage of your stay and visit the nearby attractions: the Guánica Dry Forest, the ruins of the Ensenada sugar mill, Hammock Bridge, the Fort Capron ruins, and Gilligan’s Island, one of the area’s most frequented beaches.

Once you get to the center of the island, visiting the town of Adjuntas will allow you to appreciate another side of Puerto Rico: its beautiful rural setting. Parador Villas de Sotomayor could become your home-away-from-home while exploring Las Garzas waterfall and reservoir, El Ataúd natural pool, Guilarte Forest, and Cerro Guilarte peak.

Spectacular East

Have we mentioned that Puerto Rico’s eastern region will captivate you with its spectacular cliffs, dream spots, and seductive beaches? Take note when planning your visit!

To explore El Yunque rainforest at a leisurely pace, consider staying at the nearby Parador Yunquemar. Continue your journey in Puerto Rico’s eastern region by visiting the town of Yabucoa, whose peaceful surroundings will disconnect you from the everyday hustle and bustle. Parador Palmas de Lucía is located on the beach bearing the same name, while Parador Costa del Mar offers panoramic views and is close to places of interest such as the Wildlife Park and the Inés María Mendoza Reserve, among others.

The cliff near the Maunabo Lighthouse is a spectacle of nature that must be witnessed. Maunabo’s Bohíos Beach is favored by locals and tourists looking to capture images of impeccable beauty. If you want to hike, the place to visit with a certified guide is the majestic Sierra de Guardarraya. Bring your day of adventures to an end by resting peacefully at Parador MaunaCaribe.

As you can see, Puerto Rico could very well be described as a wonderland, thanks to its charming natural resources, its hotels that provide impeccable service, and its people who can’t wait to shower visitors with friendly assistance.

See our list of Paradores in the Lodging/ Paradores section.


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