Kayaking Around Monkey Island, Puerto Rico

On the East Coast of Puerto Rico, close to our home in Palmas del Mar, Puerto Rico is an adorably named place of Monkey Island.  The island is easily visible from the shore, and looks nothing like a monkey, perhaps from overhead.  Nope.  Cayo Santiago, also known as Monkey Island, is shaped like a lower case r, and is a research colony/habitat to a bunch of Rhesus Monkeys.  And you can kayak out to the island for up close viewing of the Monkeys!

Monkey Island Kayaking TourPuerto Rico
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12 Surprising Facts that I Learned After Living in Puerto Rico for Six Months

After extensive Preparation (read about it here), we are loving living in Puerto Rico! After six months we are still considered “new”residents and everyday we learn new things about this beautiful island.

Here are 12 surprising facts about Puerto Rico:

12 Surprising Facts Puerto Rico(I only knew the first five before we moved to the Island!)

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Spa Time at the El Conquistador Resort, Puerto Rico

Girls’ weekend seems incomplete without a little spa time.  Our adventures included exploring Old San Juan, dining, shopping, scuba/snorkel trip, and plenty of beach time. We headed off to the Waldorf Astoria Spa, located in the lovely El Conquistador Resort in Fajardo, Puerto Rico.

Waldorf Astoria Spa

My first visit to the El Conquistador resort was last year, but this was my first time for spa treatments.  Each previous resort visit included a scuba dive, how had I not thought to follow up with a massage?  Hmm.

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How Growing up in Phoenix Prepared Me for Living in Puerto Rico

We recently moved to the beautiful island of Puerto Rico.  I was a little nervous about the culture shock of leaving our hot, dry desert city and adjusting to small town, island life.  It sounds weird, but it turns out growing up in Phoenix has actually prepared me for living in Puerto Rico.  GrowingupPHX

Here are 10 ways growing up in Phoenix, Arizona prepared me for living in Puerto Rico:

Close connection to foreign countries. 

It is faster to drive to Mexico from Phoenix than any state in the US, Mexico is Arizona’s neighbor to the South.  Likewise, Puerto Rico’s closest neighbors are definitely not the US mainland (Hello Dominican Republic and British Virgin Islands)

Everyone is (a little) Bilingual

Anyone who grew up in Arizona speaks at least a little Spanish. I even attended a bilingual elementary school for English as Second Language (ESL program).  Everyone speaks a little English in Puerto Rico.  Many people are fully bilingual in both Arizona and Puerto Rico.   Admittedly, Arizona Spanglish is a different dialect that the Puerto Rican Spanish, but it is a good foundation to build upon.  Plus I was always really good at charades, so I can act out many difficult phrases.

There are more Snowbirds than Local Residents half the year

Winters in Phoenix are overrun by people from the Mid-west desperately trying to escape the cold and warm up.  Since arriving in January, we have seen the population dwindle as the snowbirds leave the island for summer.  I just cannot escape snowbirds!

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First Visit to El Yunque Rainforest | Hiking La Mina Falls | Travel Puerto Rico

Travel tips for visiting El Yunque rainforest, perfect guide for your first visit! Updated to include new reservation system implemented in July 2020.

After Living in Puerto Rico for 3 months, we finally went to El Yunque rain forest on the Northeast corner of the island. The lush tropical rainforest is consistently one of the top recommended destinations in Puerto Rico, for good reasons. The unique landscape and sweeping views will take your breath away!

Everything you need to know about visiting El Yunque Rainforest in Puerto Rico
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