What kidn of people vacation in Puerto Rico?

Old Nov 21st, 2002, 08:02 AM
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What kidn of people vacation in Puerto Rico?

This is a strange question, but I am curious. Whenever I ask for places to visit and give some options, and Puerto Rico is one of them, no one usually recommends Puerto Rico...and actually frown upon it.

To me, it looks like a beautiful island, with alot of activities.

I guess my question is, do people go to Puerto Rico to party? What about relaxation? Beaches? Why would someone go here over other island destinations?
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 08:03 AM
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Oops, I meant to say "What kind of people vacation in Puerto Rico?" I spelled "kind" wrong. So please don't beat me up.

: - )
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 08:55 AM
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It maybe because it is a U.S. Terrotory that people do not speak of it as often. They feel like they are still in the U.S. It has nice beaches, but there are others that people seem to like much better. The color of the water is not as intense. It is a beautiful Island, rich with history, friendly warm people. I have visited many Islands and PR is one of my favorites. It is also a very expensive Island since it is a major hub for other destinations in the Caribbean. That could also be a contributing factor. There are 2 other Islands close by that are gorgeous. Culebra and Vie---s.(?) There is an abundant of nightlife, great restaurants and you will also see Wal-mart, Sam's. Much like in the U.S. Maybe people do not care to see this when on vacation.
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 09:02 AM
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In my opinion, Puerto Rico's biggest drawback is that the beaches aren't all that great. Most have fairly big waves and the water isn't extremely clear.

There's also sort of a gap between very expensive places to stay and very cheap places that won't meet the standards of many tourists. A lot of the beachfront hotels are in San Juan, which is very urban; decent beachfront resorts outside of San Juan are very expensive.

On the plus side, it's a relatively large island and it's safer to explore on your own than Jamaica or the Dominican Republic. Lots of nice scenery. Many people enjoy the casinos, fine restaurants, nightlife, historic sites, art galleries, etc. in San Juan. The city is very hospitable to gay visitors.

The consensus is that Puerto Rico's best beaches aren't even on the island - they're on Culebra and Vieques (and Vieques is the controversial location for military bombing practice). There are a few decent beaches scattered around the main island.

I think a person whose top priority is a great beach probably will choose a different island.

Old Nov 21st, 2002, 09:19 AM
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You say that there is a big gap between upscale places to stay @ cheap places.

Have you seen the Wyndham El San Juan? We were thinking about staying there, but do not want to be disapointed.

We usually stay @ the Marriott in Aruba, which we love, but isn't so called luxury as compared so some other places.
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 10:51 AM
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The aspect of the Wyndhan El San Juan that is most often mentioned is the lobby - some people describe it as spectacular. The grounds are also something to see. The hotel itsself is basically a 10 story rectanglar shaped structure. One of the more popular hotels on the island that caters to an upscale visitor. Good beach and a nice pool area - actually there are two separate pool areas. The casino is the most popular on the island.
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 01:38 PM
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Another thing to realize is PR is not an export/import Island. They rely soley on Tourism. Some of the major hotels are anywhere from 250-500 a night in high season. I have also seen people mention they were glad there were Micky D's or Wendy's cause the food was expensive in restaurants. I have ate there and I didn't find it to be overly higher than anywhere else to be honest. My husband and I have air tickets for Feb. I decided upon leaving there on a cruise. Again we paid for a weeks hotel, rental car, eating out, it was far more cost efficient to go on a cruise for 7 days. We will still spend 2 nights there post cruise. Some of the little hotels are very quaint, and not so bad. If you are interested you need to read reviews on where2stay.com or trip advisor.
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 02:06 PM
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OK, I'll give this question a shot:

- The vistor or family that is interested in a vast array of facilities at the resort. They want to go to the beach, and play golf, and play tennis, and go to a spa. They want to have multiple restaurants on-site, go horseback-riding, do watersports, etc. They may come with a family and the big resorts do provide something for everyone, including childcare facilties and "camps" that keep the kids entertained.

- The tourist that comes stays for 1-2 nights pre/post cruise or on the way to other islands. They tend to stay near the airport and do not get to see the island. They eat somewhere near their facilities. Many people claim to have visited Puerto Rico, but many are only passing by. Beware of any recommendations from this group!

- The visitor that has an adventurous spirit. Usually they want to do more than just plop themselves in a beach and tan all day. They want to have a cultural experience on top of a beach vacation. They want to go hiking, spelunking, fishing, etc. Sometimes they may be on a budget and will stay in smaller, motel-type places, rent a car and eat at local restaurants. Less of a posh vacation.
Old Nov 21st, 2002, 02:13 PM
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To xxx, not true that Puerto Rico relies solely on tourism. Tourism is a very important industry, accounting for 7% of PR's GNP and responsible for 60,000 jobs. However, PR's population is 4 million and other industries, such as pharmaceuticals, electronics, textiles, petrochemicals, processed foods, clothing, and textiles are quite important.

Other islands that do not depend on tourism are the BVI's (MANY people work in off-shore banking).
Old Nov 22nd, 2002, 04:11 AM
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Comment on Vieques -- It is true that it is the island where the military has the practice bombing range. However, don't let that stop you from going there. It's a beautiful undeveloped island. The bombing range takes up a tiny plot of land at one end of the island and you would never know that it is there (except for the couple days every few months when you hear what sounds like thunder in the distance). The Navy owns 2/3 of the island, but 90% of the Navy's land is used for cattle grazing.
Re: the PR "mainland" -- The big hotels in San Juan are expensive. However, you can usually get rooms at the El Conquistador 30 miles east of San Juan for under $200/night on Expedia. It's a beautiful resort. The restaurants at the resort are expensive, though so, if you stay there, rent a car and go out to dinner.
Old Nov 22nd, 2002, 05:47 AM
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Presently the rooms at the El Conquistador through expedia are running over $300.00 per night. I have been checking for Feb. Maybe right now, but not in high season.
Old Nov 22nd, 2002, 01:48 PM
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Those people who don't like PR are those who have only been to San Juan. However if you rent a car and explore the island, you will find many lovely sights and interesting attractions. There's El Yunque (the rainforest), the Camuy caves, Phosphorescent bay, plus many fiestas patronales that take place all year round throughout the island. As for affordable accomodations, apparently no one here knows about paradores. These are very nice, affordable places to stay around the island that would certainly meet tourists' standards.
Old Nov 23rd, 2002, 06:08 PM
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Thanks for the truly great responses.

I'm looking forward to our trip there!
Old Nov 26th, 2002, 03:17 AM
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I watched the Regis and Kelly show yesterday and they are in puerto Rico now. Is the hotel they are at the same as mentioned above, the WyndhamEl San Juan? If so it sure looks great!
Old Nov 26th, 2002, 03:24 AM
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Yes it is, and it is a gorgeous place. Just wonderful. Only problem is it is about 45 minutes from San Juan. You have to have a rental car to see anything around the Island. Or the hotel will schedule tours for you.
Old Nov 26th, 2002, 03:55 AM
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Regis & Kelly were @ the Wyndham El Conquistador, NOT El San Juan.

Have fun and enjoy!
Old Dec 8th, 2002, 10:33 AM
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i lived in puerto rico for about 10 years and i loved it. it's true, it might not have the most wonderful beaches, like anguilla's and the like, but they are still nice enough. currently, i am torn btn going to the Wyndham San Juan or El Conquistador and it boils down to whether I want to stay in the city (where I grew up) or Dorado which is secluded. When I lived there, the Conquistador was considered the one for "rich" people; but the one in the city (San Juan) is just as expensive. If you are looking to relax and get away from it all--go to the Conquistador. But if you are looking to go to bars, nightclubs, casinos and hang out in trendy Condado (my hometown), stay in the city and have the hotel's concierge schedule day trips to the Yunque, Camuy Caves, etc. It's truly not that far or expensive and you would have experienced both worlds. In terms of the food being expensive; I certainly don't think so, but I guess it depends where you eat. If you stay in San Juan and you go to a local eatery, the price is a bit lower than that of a NYC restaurant, so I will say that it's standard. I would say to steer away from the restaurants in the hotels- you can get the same food, sometimes even better tasting. Oh, one last thing, the few times I've heard people complain about their visit to pr, it's due to their expectations...if they are looking to "rough" it and feel like they are outside of a big city and they go to san juan; they will be disappointed. most people speak english and are americanized and though they appreciate our business and are certainly nice as they would be to their neighbor, they certainly will not kiss our ass.
Old Feb 18th, 2003, 04:12 AM
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To me Puerto Rico seems like a spot for people who like adventure. There is alot to do and explore on the island.

However, from my understanding, the water is not that tropical crystal clear water.

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