Old San Juan: Things To Do

Part 3 of a 4-part series on Things To Do in Puerto Rico. If you missed any of the previous posts, here are the links for: Islote, Arecibo and Rincón.

Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | Castillo San Cristobal | El Morro | Paseo de las Sombrillas | Paseo de la Princesa | La Perla | La Perla, Puerto Rico | www.anajacqueline.com

Ever since one of my life goals became to travel more often, my head would fill with colorful and vibrant images of Old San Juan at the thought of Puerto Rico. Just as I had hoped, the cobble streets and the pastel-colored Spanish colonial architecture offers a look into the beauty of the island’s past and luckily for us, its present.

This vacation was our first time using Airbnb and just as in Rincón, in Old San Juan we made a beautiful find. Three floor apartment building with the center of each floor looking down into the middle of a little yard. The railroad 2-bedroom apartment was well-preserved in what seemed its original built and design. The master bedroom’s focal point being the tall wooden doors exiting to the balcony, directly in front of the ocean and right between El Morro and El Castillo San Cristobal.

Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | Castillo San Cristobal | El Morro | Paseo de las Sombrillas | Paseo de la Princesa | La Perla | La Perla, Puerto Rico | www.anajacqueline.com

EL MORRO

El Morro | El Castillo San Felipe del Morro | El Morro Fort  | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
El Morro | El Castillo San Felipe del Morro | El Morro Fort  | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com

El Castillo San Felipe del Morro (El Morro Fort) which sits majestically on the northeast coast of Puerto Rico is the destination in Old San Juan most tourists are looking forward to visiting. Surrounded by lush grass fields it’s easy, especially with kids, to spend a couple hours lounging around on the grass soaking in the view and taking in the sun. El Morro itself is stunning, not only in architecture and history but also for the stunning views it offers of the city.

El Morro | El Castillo San Felipe del Morro | El Morro Fort  | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
Old San Juan street art | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
El Morro | El Castillo San Felipe del Morro | El Morro Fort  | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
El Morro | El Castillo San Felipe del Morro | El Morro Fort  | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
El Morro | El Castillo San Felipe del Morro | El Morro Fort  | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com

PASEO DE LAS SOMBRILLAS

Paseo de las Sombrillas | Fortaleza Street | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com

On Fortaleza Street, colorful umbrellas engraved with #PuertoRico have been placed across the entire strip giving the street a festive air. Oh, and a picture perfect backdrop! We captured a few fun shots but check out the beautiful couple I captured (picture below). They win, hands down, for best picture!

Paseo de las Sombrillas | Fortaleza Street | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
Paseo de las Sombrillas | Fortaleza Street | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
Paseo de las Sombrillas | Fortaleza Street | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com

VIEJO SAN JUAN

My favorite part of the trip was just walking around the town. The beautiful cobble streets and vibrant homes. Discovering little plaza’s, interesting streets, cool artwork -some with deep messages. Just strolling around, taking in the day to day in such a mesmerizing little city.

“But Sir, it’s just a wall. Why are walls so dangerous? Because walls speak when justice remains silent and the Media lies.”

“But Sir, it’s just a wall. Why are walls so dangerous? Because walls speak when justice remains silent and the Media lies.”

Old San Juan street art | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
Old San Juan street art | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com

CASTILLO SAN CRISTOBAL

Rising almost 150 feet above sea level, the Castillo de San Cristobal (Fort San Cristobal) is a massive castle where each piece of its structure has its own history. You can even step into a Garita, or sentry box, for a breathtaking look into the ocean.

Castillo San Cristobal | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
Castillo San Cristobal | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
Castillo San Cristobal | Fort San Cristobal | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
Castillo San Cristobal | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com

PASEO DE LA PRINCESA

Take a walk down el Paseo de la Princesa and, if you’re with kids, make a quick stop at the park. Fun balancing games will make it entertaining for the little ones who make the challenge seem much easier than it really is.

Continue walking and your eyes will be drawn toward the beauty of Fuente Raices (Roots Fountain). The fountain represents exactly that - the roots of Puerto Rican culture which is made up of Tainos, Spaniards and Africans.

Fuente Raices | Paseo de la Princesa | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
Fuente Raices | Paseo de la Princesa | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com

If you’re into long walks, continue walking down the sidewalk right on the border of the ocean that will lead you directly to the gate of the city (La Puerta de San Juan). We decided to do this walk at 5pm after we had been walking all day, with two toddlers, so to say we were tired is an understatement but the amazing views made it all worth it for us. The kids, on the other hand, had the stroller so they were feeling brand new and were happily running wild.

San Juan gate | La Puerta de San Juan | Paseo de la Princesa | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
San Juan gate | La Puerta de San Juan | Paseo de la Princesa | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com

LA PERLA

La Perla | La Perla, Puerto Rico | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com

A town still referred to by many as one of the most dangerous barrios (hoods) and which outsiders were afraid to venture into before, has slowly become more tourist-friendly. Since Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee’s mega hit, Despacito, many tourist make their way down to the barrio clinging to a steep hillside between Old San Juan and the sea.

In the last two years, over 400 houses have been repaired and painted in bright colors making it much more inviting. I hadn’t read up on the positive changes prior to visiting the barrio and since we were with the babies we decided to just walk down the main street before heading back out.

La Perla | La Perla, Puerto Rico | La Perla street art | Old San Juan street art | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
La Perla | La Perla, Puerto Rico | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com
La Perla | La Perla, Puerto Rico | Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | www.anajacqueline.com

EL JIBARITO & RAICES

We headed out to the charming city and walked a few blocks until we stumbled upon El Jibarito Restaurant. If you’re looking for authentic Puerto Rican food at reasonable prices, this is the place. The fogongo (of course I had the mofongo) was delicious and I also savored every last drop of the best Piña Colada I had ever had in my life. Shouldn’t have been surprising since Piña Colada is Puerto Rico’s signature drink but I couldn’t believe how “natural” it tasted. The atmosphere is cheerful with the main wall decorated to resemble the colorful little houses and balcony’s that Old San Juan is loved for.

Raices Restaurant Old San Juan

We opted for dinner at Raices Restaurant on our last night at Old San Juan and it was insanely delicious on top of being a fun place to go and enjoy a traditional experience. From the decor to the outfits and way of serving the food, it’s all part of the overall experience. As appetizers, we had the alcapurrias -fried green plantain stuffed with plantain. They were perfectly crunchy and yummy. Served in a traditional jarro (tin cup) the Piña Colada was once again, delicious. To finish it off, I had the paella and oh my goodness, it was THE BEST paella I have had! Ever!

Raices Restaurant Old San Juan

After our two day stay in Old San Juan, I can happily say that it was as charming as I had always envisioned it to be! How about you, have you ever been to Puerto Rico?

You may also enjoy: 5 Packing Tips for Flying With Toddlers and Things To Do In Quintana Roo, Mexico.

Old San Juan | Viejo San Juan | Things to do Old San Juan | Things to do Viejo San Juan | Puerto Rico Things To Do | Castillo San Cristobal | El Morro | Paseo de las Sombrillas | Paseo de la Princesa | La Perla | La Perla, Puerto Rico | www.anajacqueline.com