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Travel: My Stay in Puerto Rico

Photos by: Key Moments Photography

I had the chance to stay in beautiful Puerto Rico. The last time I was able to visit was only for 8 hours while on a cruise in 2019. We arrived in San Juan at 6 am, which gave us the entire day to explore. We dropped off our bags and got changed at Hotel El Convento. Hotel El Convento first opened on Jan. 27, 1962, as the first Carmelite Convent housing nuns for 252 years. Beside the hotel is the Escalinata de las Monjas (Nun’s Stairway), one of the first plazas in the city of San Juan.

After dropping off our bags, we walked around the city, grabbed food at El Meson, and were the first lucky customers at Nono’s for some pretty strong Passion Fruit frozen margaritas. We were also very lucky able to see a couple of cool spots like Puerta De San Juan (The Gate of San Juan) and El Morro.

Camuy, Puerto Rico

For the second part of our trip, we traveled to Camuy. If you plan on traveling outside of the city, I highly suggest renting a car. Uber outside of the city is nearly impossible.

We stayed at Casita Castillo Del Mar. The view was absolutely beautiful and the aesthetics of the house were breathtaking. From the balcony and roof, there is a spectacular view of the ocean. If you’re an early bird like me, waking up to see the sunset is absolutely worth it.

This house was an architectural marvel that allows natural light to flood through each room. There were 5 beds with 3.5 bathrooms. There was a grocery store around the corner thankfully, because I love to cook breakfast in the morning. I’m pretty thankful we were able to stay at this location because it’s highly booked for the next few months.

Here is the link to Casita Castillo Del Mar.

Dinner by Freché

Friday night, a four-course dinner was prepared by Freché. These two women can COOK. Here is the lineup of what they whipped up. (I didn’t get pictures of the first two courses because I ate them ?)

  • First Course – Plantain Cream soup
  • Second Course – Mamposteao Rice Croquette
  • Main Course – Skirt Steak with Tamarind sauce, Mahi Mahi with Lemon cream sauce, Mashed Taro & Asparagus
  • Dessert Trio – Brownie with Nutella cream, Raspberry Orange Parfait, Butter Pecan Cupcake

If you are looking for a chef or in-home catering in San Juan please reach out to them. They were incredibly friendly and did a fabulous job.

Contact: Freché

La Playa (The Beach) : Peña Blanca

There’s no way we could’ve visited Puerto Rico without visiting the beach. We drove out to Peña Blanca. I’m used to the typical crowded jersey shore beach, with a million rules and regulations. After hiking down the beach steps, Peña Blanca offers you a private beach that really feels like it’s your own. There were only 10 people on the beach which I loved. The water was warm but a little too rough to get in, so we just let our feet get wet and relaxed under the tree.

After our beach trip, we headed back to El Fongon De Abuelita, a restaurant 1 minute away from our house. This restaurant looked out on the water and had incredible food and drinks. The menu is pretty large, but the food they have to offer is super fresh. It’s the type of food that feels like a hug. I’ve included a link to their Facebook for those who are interested in joining them for lunch or dinner.

Travel Suggestions

  • Rent a car. Uber/Lyft is not always an option.
  • Explore San Juan, but travel outside the city to truly embrace the culture Puerto Rico has to offer.
  • Brush up on your Spanish for when you order food.
  • Check the weather and prepared for random rain showers.

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