Puerto Rico: San Juan and Guanica
Fly in/out: San Juan, Puerto Rico
Recommended ages: 3 and up
Ball Park Price: $1,000/person 4 travellers(airfare not included)
Best Season: April-June
Currency US Dollar
Time: CST +2 hours
DAY ONE: Fly into San Juan, Puerto Rico Airport, Luis Munoz Marin (SJU), pick up rental car and check into Ritz Carlton. Spend afternoon at the pool.
DAY THREE: Take a one hour drive for a day trip with Louie’s VIP Tours and explore the waterfalls and jungle of El Yunque Rainforest.
DAY FOUR: Take a day trip to Rio Camuy Cave through Louis VIP Tours.
DAY FIVE: Take a two hour (90 mile) drive to Copamarina, Guanica and check in to Copamarina Beach Resort & Spa. Take a short ferry from Copamarina to Gilligan’s Island to relax, picnic, swim and snorkel.
DAY SIX: Take a boat ride to Bioluminescent Bay to view a “light show” of micro organisms that emit light when disturbed.
DAY SEVEN: Spend last day enjoying water sports at Copamarina.
DAY EIGHT: Drive to San Juan Airport and fly home.
- Puerto Rico was a great and easy Caribbean destination with this family itinerary we planned. It was conducive to both the young and older kids.
- This trip was a great combination of relaxation and adventure for our family. Roads were easy to travel, excursions were ½ day to ¾ day to allow for relaxing siestas by the pool in late afternoon.
- We enjoyed our day trip in Old San Juan to see some of the colonial buildings that are Unesco World Heritage Sites. The kids especially loved the forts of the San Juan National Historic Site. We met up with a ranger who gave us a guided tour of some of the fort, tunnel and former prisons.
- We enjoyed all the excursions because they allowed us to be outdoors and explore new terrain easily…rainforests, forts, and caves in just a few days!
- Although some would consider Puerto Rico a less luxury style Caribbean location, it has so much to offer for the kids plus provided a resort feel.
- We loved the El Yunque Rainforest-the only tropical rainforest in the United States. We enjoyed our private tour which allowed us to set our own pace and stop to hike, explore and swim in the waterfalls.
- Exploring the Rio Camuy Cave Park was exhilarating for the kids. It is the third largest cave system in the world. Rio Camuy Cave Park is a huge set of subterranean caverns carved out by the Camuy River.
- El Morro, as part of the San Juan Historic Site, is a fort with cannons, stone walls, tunnels, dungeons and ramps. Our boys flipped for this adventure.
- We booked a tour in advance with the activities center of Copamarina Resort and had a great day, kayaking and swimming in a bay that were lit by these microorganisms “dinoflagellates” when disturbed at night.
Places to stay
- The Ritz Carlton Hotel had a wonderful beach and pool and was within minutes of both airport and downtown San Juan.
- Another family friendly hotel in San Juan is the San Juan Marriott with water slide.
- Copamarina Beach Resort & Spa, located in Guanica, is a full service resort which includes pools, beach activities and two restaurants. The hotel rooms were basic but there were so many relaxing things to do, we didn’t care.
- Both resorts feature restaurants that were very good for families. However, we tried some of the local Puerto Rican restaurants that we enjoyed in San Juan.
- Casada de Espana: Classic spanish food and ambiance at reasonable prices.
- Also for a more traditional family friendly menu we enjoyed St. Germain Bistro.
- Bring furnished backpack with you on all excursions including water bottles, lotion, snacks, and bug spray and cash. Many tour groups in San Juan only accepted cash.
- When booking your hotels, many websites like booking.com offer discounts and packages.
- Bring or buy a kite as it’s a past time in San Juan and kids will feel like they’re missing out without one.
- Set the expectations that swimming on the beach is iffy on the San Juan side. We had better ocean swimming on the southwest side in Guanica.
- For older kids, check out for more adventurous options.
Because Puerto Rico is a “Commonwealth” of the United States, no passport required.