Mayagüez is a living time capsule for the early 1900’s, specifically the Art Deco style architecture from the 1920’s. Blending the modern elements of Art Deco and the traditional Spanish architecture makes Mayagüez so uniquely special.
This self guided walking tour of the old city center is the perfect way to explore and enjoy the architectural gems.
Mayagüez, Puerto Rico is an architectural gem and absolutely worth a visit. Beyond the architecture, Mayagüez boasts incredible restaurants, small town charm, and incredible ocean views.
Founded on September 18, 1760, Mayagüez started with humble beginnings first as a simple Spanish town, then elevated to status of villa, and now it is the 8th largest population municipality of Puerto Rico. It is affectionately referred to as the Capital of the West.
While not my first visit, I was able to spend several days in the oldest part of the city. The highlight of this visit for me is touring the various styles of architecture, especially impressive is that most of these buildings are within a 2 block radius. It is fascinating how much there is to see simply walking around.
Casa Roig is more than a museum, it is a glimpse into the life of a wealthy sugar plantation owner, an architectural first in the region, restoration in progress, as well as a lovely exhibit hall for local artists.
Sugar production shaped the Caribbean culture in many ways including wealth distribution and overall agriculture. Casa Roig is a unique Prairie House style architecture build by renowned Czechoslovakian architect Antonin Nechodoma in the Frank Lloyd Wright influenced style of building. This house was unique to the region and would appear modern, futuristic even compared to the local buildings at the time.
The first time I saw Castillo San Felipe del Morro Fort in Old San Juan was by boat. Our cruise ship safely docked and I was mesmerized by the large stone fort. With only one day in Puerto Rico, we toured the smaller fort of San Cristobal, opting to spend more time exploring Old San Juan and dinner at the famous Barrachina restaurant. I loved San Juan immediately, and knew we would be back later to explore El Morro and Puerto Rico.
Almost four years later, we live full-time in beautiful Puerto Rico. When my parents recently came to visit, El Morro was at the top of our itinerary. For their visit, we approached on foot. Our Uber driver dropped us off at the long walk way leading to the entrance. Once again, I was still mesmerized.
The Radio Telescope in Arecibo, Puerto Rico has been on my travel destination wish list for almost 20 years, ever since the Visitor’s Center was built in 1997. The Arecibo Radio Telescope was completed in 1963 after only 3 years of construction. It is a Scientific treasure and an impressive piece of engineering.
I finally was able to explore the World’s Largest Radio Telescope mere weeks after it was no longer the largest – July 2016 China opened a Radio Telescope that is slightly larger, claiming the World’s Largest Title. Arecibo Observatory is well worth a visit for anyone who loves science and engineering.
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