This week I am going into the third week of classes here at the University of Puerto Rico and so far, its been an incredible experience. There are so many places that I have had the chance to visit and so many cultural experiences waiting to be seen in this small yet preciously beautiful island. I want to keep you all updated about all of the places I visit and my experiences there, including cultural, entertainment and gastronomical locations so here is my first list of destinations in Puerto Rico 🙂

1. Hacienda Buena Vista in Ponce, P.R.

This is a coffee plantation high up in the mountains of the town of Ponce. Let me just say, I have never tasted coffee so aromatic and perfect (and thats coming from a regular, at least one cup a day coffee drinker). The hacienda has a tour that takes you all over the property explaining the history of coffee, the mechanisms used to the harvest coffee and the evolution of these mechanisms as well as many other things with respect to this crop. For more information about the property click HERE.

2. Massa Artisan Bakery and Cafe in Mayagüez, P.R. 

Not only will the Baristas create incredible works of art of your favorite animal using the milk in your coffee, but you will also find that anything you order tastes absolutely amazing. This is one of my current favorite places to eat, specially because its so close to the university campus. They have a wide variety of sandwiches as well as an “A la Carte” menu that opens in the evening prepared by a chef that can do no wrong. It is an incredible atmosphere for studying with a cup of coffee or having lunch with a couple of friends! If any of you are vegetarians, like myself, some of my favorite selections are the massa veggie, pasta aleoli, and the minestrone soup cup. Massa FB page HERE.

3. El Yunque National Rainforest 

The Yunque National Rainforest is a federal forest reserve. It houses the unique puerto rican species of el Coqui, which is a small tree frog known for its distinguished song that sounds just like “Coqui, coqui”. The waterfall seen below is one of the main waterfalls where visitors can take a swim in the fresh and clear waters. I loved going through el Yunque and getting in touch with the nature that lived within. It is an amazing place to unwind from the stresses of life and let all your troubles be carried away by the flowing waters of el Yunque. More info about El Yunque HERE.

4. El Viejo San Juan in San Juan, P.R. 

El viejo San Juan is found in the capital of the Puerto Rico and it is one of the most tourist packed areas of the island. It is incredible to walk through the cobble stone streets in the small city and marvel at the beautiful Spanish architecture of the old buildings while also being caressed by the ocean breeze that sweeps the atmosphere. There are plenty of restaurants and attractions waiting to be experienced through these streets as well as a wonderful variety of night life.

Until the next one! 🙂

Yours truly,

Laiana Isabel

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Cultural and Artistic Island Destinations