Puerto Rico with an infant

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Feb 5th, 2007, 08:06 AM
  #1
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Puerto Rico with an infant

First time traveling with our baby who's 6 months old. I want to stay at a Westin (to use points) and was looking into Puerto Rico. I guess I want to know if it's safe to go there with an infant.. is there anything to caution? We could stay at the Westin Rio Mar... is that a nice beach? Are there nice beaches on the island?? I sometimes hear that the beaches on PR aren't that spectaculor. We could also stay on Vieques and split up the trip? Any thoughts on that with a 6 month old? And we would love to hike the rainforest, but again, not sure about the safety, the locals, etc... please advise.
roro is offline  
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Feb 5th, 2007, 11:00 AM
  #2
 
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The Westin beach is pretty nice, and it's fairly isolated, so I don't think you'll want to travel far. To be honest, I wouldn't recommend Vieques with an infant because there aren't any resorts or hotels on the good beaches, so you have to drive, and that's not necessarily a pleasant experience with an infant. Safety isn't going to be an issue at the Westin, and in general, the areas you are likely to visit in Puerto Rico will not be a problem.
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Feb 5th, 2007, 11:52 AM
  #3
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thank you for your reply. i think 7 nights in one spot would be better than splitting it w/ vieques... more complicated. does anyone know if the beach at the westin is nice?? and is there anything to do at nite in the area or will we have to drive far???
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Feb 5th, 2007, 01:00 PM
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As a PR native, let me give you some advice:

1. I stayed overnight at the Westin Rio Mar once. I remember the pool and beach being nice, although the beach is kind of rough. I like this, but if you plan to have your 6 months old baby in the beach you have to be careful. Otherwise the pool is always a good option. Safety should not be an issue.

2. As for your observation that the beaches in PR are not that spectacular, this is true. That is the result of the island being more developed and populated than most of its Caribbean neighbors. PR beaches are still nicer than any US beach I have ever been to (including Miami), but you will not find in PR the pristine waters to be found in St. John, Anguilla, St. Barths or St. Marteen (at least, not in the main tourist resorts). You can still find cristal clear secluded beaches, but that requires plenty driving, which you will not want to do with a baby. PR is a very nice island vacation for those looking for a combination of beach time and other pursuits (such as the rainforest, the caves, and great restaurants - PR fine dining is about the best of all the islands), but if you are primarily looking for beach time only, you may want to consider other options.

3. Also, you may want to consider splitting your time between the Westin and another hotel in the San Juan area. I think the Westin was renovated since I was there, but I do not think the property is that big, so unless you only want to lounge and relax for 7 days, you may be a little bored. The Westin is close to major PR attractions such as the Luquillo Beach (about a 10 minute drive and beautiful) and the El Yunque Rainforest (about a 15-10 drive from the Westin), but every other place you'd want to visit as a tourist in around the San Juan area, including the Old San Juan, the shopping areas and the best restaurants. You can drive back and forth, but it is around an hour drive each way.

4. As for nightlife, no, you will not find any entertainment options near the Westin except for whatever your hotel is offering each evening. For this reason, splitting your time between the Westin and another hotel in San Juan may be a better option. There's a lot of nightlife in San Juan, from nice restaurants to bars to live music.

Hope this helps
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Feb 7th, 2007, 02:12 PM
  #5
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This is EXACTLY what I was looking for. Thanks SOOO much for the information. I think splitting our time would be the best bet. Any recommendations for a hotel in San Juan area??
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Feb 7th, 2007, 04:45 PM
  #6
 
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I highly recommend the Caribe Hilton or the San Juan Marriott. Both are very child friendly and the only hotels in San Juan with a kiddie pool. I've been traveling w/ my children who are now 3 and 4 since they were born. Either hotel is great. FYI, the Caribe Hilton does not have a casino, if that is important to you.
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