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Advice/Recommendations on trip to Puerto Rico with 1 year old


Sep 29th, 2016, 06:08 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2013
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Advice/Recommendations on trip to Puerto Rico with 1 year old

Hi all!

We will be taking our first trip to PR in November with our 1 year old. We have never been to PR before, so would love any advice on what part of the island to stay on, places to visit, hotel recommendations, car rental recommendations.

For our trip we will be renting a car so that we can see things at our own pace (ie plan around 15 month old's meltdowns and naps haha).

For a hotel, we want a pool and a beach that is calm enough for us to swim with our son. I know some areas have very rough water so recommendations on beaches/hotels that would be better for this?

We would like a blend of a few days relaxing at the beach/hotel and a few days exploring. We like to do small hikes and enjoy nature as opposed to busy cities, although we definitely want to spend 1 day exploring old San Juan and El Morros.

Is it worth it to split up the trip and stay in Old San Juan for 1-2 nights and then on the beach for the remainder of the trip? Or if we stay at a beach resort is everything close enough for day trips?

dnd22 is offline  
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Sep 29th, 2016, 08:05 AM
Join Date: May 2003
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The Caribe Hilton is a large resort hotel with pools and a private lagoon beach. The lagoon has calm waters. The Hilton is large and offers all sorts of room types. They have small cottages called lagoon villas too which would be nice with a baby. We always stayed here with our family.

We just recently stayed at the Marriott on a points redepmtion located on the Condado which was great for our college aged kids as they could walk down the Condado to shops and food places. The water is much rougher at the Marriott.

The Hilton sits off by itself which gives it some privacy. It is a short drive from Old San Juan (or quick taxi ride). All the places such as El Yunque and Fajaro for biobay, you will need a car or take a tour. I think the Hilton would really be great match for being close enough to everything yet have the pools and calm waters.
girlonthego is online now  
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Sep 29th, 2016, 12:29 PM
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My family and I recently took our first trip to PR this past April, and we split the stay with 3 nights in Old San Juan (at the Sheraton), and then 3 nights at the Courtyard by Marriott in Isla Verde for some beach time. Although our children are ages 15 and 7, I feel that doing this would've still worked well even if they were quite a bit younger.

We didn't rent a car for the first half of the trip in Old San Juan because we chose to just walk everywhere in the old city and check out all of the sights, restaurants, museums and shops. This worked out fine, and the one time that we did leave the area, we just took a cab. Upon checking out from the Sheraton, we left in a rental car that we used for the rest of our stay (they had an agency there at the hotel, and then dropped it off at the airport upon departure.)

The Courtyard was great for the rest of the trip as well. The beach there is very nice and calm too, so it's definitely a good option for those traveling with kids. The rental car came in handy so that we could drive to a couple of different parts of the island after our morning beach time, and to hit up some restaurants and stores further down the road. Definitely make the drive to El Yunque rainforest for some great hiking! It's an easy 45-minute or so drive…at least from the Courtyard it was. Hope you have an amazing time like we did!
carnalismocc is offline  
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Sep 30th, 2016, 09:43 AM
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In and around the San Juan area, I would recommend Isla Verde beach for both a good swimming and walking beach. Much calmer surf than Condado Beach. For a first time trip and with a 1 year old, I would recommend you find a beach resort hotel in Isla Verde and just take a day trip to Old San Juan, which is very accessible by either taxi or bus.
tom42 is offline  
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Sep 30th, 2016, 09:49 AM
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Girlonthego also had a good suggestion. I forgot about the Caribe Hilton. I stayed there one time. Very calm, small beach but also very close to Old San Juan. Might be a decent option for you.
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Sep 30th, 2016, 09:56 AM
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We stayed at the Intercontinental for three days. The beach and waters were fine then, in late May. Outside of an asst. manager who thought he was El Cid all went well. The rest of the staff was great however and Señor El Cid toned it down believe me after we talked to him and his boss.

We did not rent a car but getting into town was easy.

We did stay in PR some yrs. back at the ESJ towers which is like a condo attached to the ESJ. Its right on the beach and then I did rent a car. The problem was that if it was marked on the map it wasn't marked awn the road and vice versa. However we managed. The locals didn't tell us to turn at such and such a street. It was more like turn left at the Shell station, turn right at Hooters. You get the idea. .
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