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Honeymoon Time in San Juan, PR -- need advice please

Honeymoon Time in San Juan, PR -- need advice please

Old Jul 17th, 2010, 11:41 AM
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Honeymoon Time in San Juan, PR -- need advice please

My husband and I are taking a cruise in August in and out of San Juan. Our flight is scheduled to arrive at 12:30 pm on a Sunday and we will not need to be on the ship until 7:30 pm. Also, when we get back from the cruise, we will be staying in San Juan for a night. The ship will be arriving back in San Juan on the following Sunday. We will then need to be at the airport on Monday to head home at around 11:30 am. So, we have two chunks of time to see Puerto Rico on the day that we arrive for the cruise and basically on the day that we get off of the ship.

We would like to see the following while we are there:
Old San Juan and El Morro
Bacardi Rum Distillery
El Yunque

How do you think that this would best fit in?

Also, we are considering three hotels:
El Convento
La Concha Resort
San Juan Marriott Resort and Stellaris Casino

Which do you recommend?

Thanks!
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Old Jul 19th, 2010, 10:07 AM
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On the day you arrive probly best to head straight to the ship to drop your bags off then head into Old San Juan and wander around - see the fort(s), cathedral, plazas etc.

Depending when your ship arrives back into San Juan consider heading to El Yunque - you could rent a car and drive yourself (easy drive of around 45-60 mins depending on traffic) check out 1 or 2 of the trails and if you have time check out Luquillo beach and or the Luquillo roadside food kiosks

As for hotels - if you want to be in the center of Old San Juan then El Convemto is a good choice (if they have 1 night stays available - sometimes they have a min 2 night) other wise La Concha and Marriott are good choices if you want to be on the beach

You will find a lot of info here http://www.visit-the-coqui.com
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Old Jul 19th, 2010, 11:13 AM
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I think coqui_07 has given you good advice, and I'm not sure I could add anything. You won't have time to see both Old San Juan and the Bacardi Rum Distillery on your arrival day, and you won't have time to see Bacardi and El Yunque on a single day after you arrive, so you are going to have to choose.

As far as hotels go, I'd choose El Convento for its proximity to Old San Juan and more great restaurants. However, the Marriot and La Concha are both close to each other in Condado (and on the beach); both are within walking distance of restaurants, which is a plus. So choose the latter if you want to be by the beach, the former if you want nightlife and more restaurants close by.
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Old Jul 19th, 2010, 02:34 PM
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Keeping in mind the places you wish to visit, you're better off staying in Old San Juan, since you'll save a great deal on taxi cabs. While staying in Old San Juan, you can walk to all the attractions like El Morro, walk to the $2 ferry terminal to get across the bay to the Bacardi Rum Factory, and make the same arrangements to El Yunque as you would from Condado (either drive or take a tour). Staying in Condado you will pay $15 each way to OSJ.

Also, El Convento and La Concha are sister properties, and they have an arrangement in regards to the pool and beach facilities. If staying at El Convento, you can use La Concha's facilities for FREE, just as if you were staying there, and you can even charge any drinks or food to your room at El Convento. Very convenient, and solves the beach problem too!
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Old Jul 20th, 2010, 06:58 PM
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Thank you so much for the helpful information! Would it be possible to go to the rum factory on the first day and then visit Old San Juan and El Yunque when I get back from the cruise?
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Old Jul 21st, 2010, 06:26 AM
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No. You simply do not have enough time. On your day of departure, if you check in and drop off your bags and can get off the ship by 2:30, you might have an hour after the Bacardi Rum Factory tour to take a quick look at Old San Juan, but you're going to have to be back on your ship by no later than 6. On your return day, it's going to take all afternoon to tour El Yunque. You'll probably get back in the early evening right before dark (if you are lucky), and then you can walk around Old San Juan a bit in the evening before dinner (assuming you have an Old San Juan hotel). But everything will be closed by then. You can soak up a bit of the atmosphere, but little else.

It takes at least a half-day to see a few of the sights in Old San Juan, a full day if you want to go to any of the museums. You don't have that much time.
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Old Jul 21st, 2010, 09:44 AM
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How far is Old San Juan from the airport? How far is Old San Juan from the cruise ship terminal?
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Old Jul 21st, 2010, 10:42 AM
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In terms of miles I'm not sure, but a taxi from the airport to Old San Juan can be as quick as 20 minutes, as long as 45 if there is a lot of traffic.

The cruise pier is IN Old San Juan, across the street from the Sheraton hotel (though there is another cruise pier across the harbor that is used by some ships, and that one requires a taxi ride into Old San Juan). The free trolley buses stop on various streets around there on their routes. Everything from the cruise pier is UP hill, though, so be aware of that.
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Old Jul 21st, 2010, 12:51 PM
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Thanks Doug. We are considering a cruise this Nov that is round trip San Juan. We would like to fly in the day before our cruise leaves and would also like to stay in Old Town. Need info on if a taxi is the only way to our hotel (yet to be determined) and from the hotel to the cruise. I read the trolleys do not permit luggage, so they would not work for us. Do you know if any hotels in Old Town have shuttles? Thanks.
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Old Jul 21st, 2010, 05:52 PM
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There are no shuttles, but taxis are pretty cheap. The Sheraton is quite literally across the street from the cruise pier and would require no taxi at all, but it is usually a more expensive option.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2010, 05:29 AM
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Thanks again Doug.
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Old Jul 24th, 2010, 09:01 AM
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Thanks, Doug, for the information.
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Old Aug 1st, 2010, 09:12 AM
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Believe me, I live here. If looking for a nice beach also, stay at San Juan Marriott Resort and Stellaris Casino. La Concha Resort is new and nice night life also like the Marriott. Both hotels are at walking distance.
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Old Aug 6th, 2010, 08:41 AM
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Thanks for the feedback! We wound up getting Caribe Hilton off of priceline.
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