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One-Day Itinerary for Puerto Rico: Top Sights and Experiences

April 22, 2024 4 min read

While a week or more is ideal for exploring San Juan, Puerto Rico, if you only have 24 hours in this beautiful place, this one-day itinerary for Puerto Rico will ensure you have an action-packed day full of top sights to see and experiences.

Full of delicious cuisine, culture, and natural beauty, Puerto Rico has plenty to offer visitors. So if you’re there for a day or more, you’ll have plenty to do. Of course, if you happen to be coming off a cruise for your one-day visit, this itinerary will help you get the most out of your day.

One-day itinerary for Puerto Rico

When I first went to Puerto Rico, it was because of the cruise I was on. I had taken a 5-day cruise that took us to different islands, one of them being Puerto Rico.

My friend and I had a whole day to explore Puerto Rico, so when we disembarked the ship in San Juan we ended up going on an adventure. With no list, this is what our one-day itinerary looked like for Puerto Rico.

itinerary for Puerto Rico

Disclaimer: Some of the links below are affiliate links meaning I will earn a commission. However, all opinions are my own and will not change anything on your end.

Explore Plaza Colón

This was one of the first things we did when we disembarked the ship. In this very plaza, we took photos with an iguana and we also got to see the Christopher Columbus statue at the center. There wasn’t much to do in the plaza except take photos and admire some of the monuments in the area. From here, my friend and I decided to hop on one of the free trolleys.

As of now, the trolleys are not running, but I did hear that there are garritas (golf cars) that will take you where you need. There are also buses that can take you around the city, but this will cost you.

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Castillo San Cristóbal 

One of the first things we noticed, while moving around in the trolley was Castillo San Cristobal. There is no way you can miss this enormous castle, so we decided to go visit. When we got there, we found out that we could get into both the Castillo San Cristobal and El Morro for $10! Which is a deal.

Once we got our ticket, we spent about two hours exploring the castle.

Things to know: They do have free entrance days on select dates. You can find out more about the dates, here.

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Castillo San Felipe del Morro

When you buy a ticket to Castillo San Cristobal, you also get entrance to Castillo San Felipe del Morro. The ticket is also quite affordable and allows you to explore Puerto Rico’s history. If you happen to be coming from a cruise, it is a bit of a walk from the port, which is why it is recommended to take a ride to the forts.

It is, however, worth visiting both forts, but do keep in mind that there is a lot of walking around el Morro and a lot of steps.

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Eat Mofongo

After spending most of our day exploring the different areas in San Juan, we decided to stop by a restaurant called Barrachina to eat Puerto Rican food. I didn’t know much about the Puerto Rican dishes except for one called Mofongo. My co-workers had recommended I try Mofongo and that is what I did! There are different kinds of Mofongo, but I ended up getting the chicken Mofongo, which was so good!

If you’re ever looking for a good Mofongo, this spot has it!

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La Fortaleza

Set in Old San Juan, La Fortaleza was the first fort constructed to defend San Juan. It mostly served as an official residence of the governor in the 16th Century. Unfortunately, at the time of my visit, we could not go in as they did not allow tours. From the looks of it, this still stands true, but you can see it as you wander around Old San Juan.

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Wander around Old San Juan

Old San Juan is an absolutely charming area to wander around. Here you will find restaurants, shops, and even places to stay in. This is the oldest city in the U.S. and one you should check out when you are in San Juan. I didn’t really stop at any of the shops in Old San Juan as I took a tour on the free trolley the city had at the time, but if you are looking to do a tour around Old San Juan, here are a few options.

While this itinerary for Puerto Rico is smaller than my other itineraries, there is plenty to do in this beautiful place. San Juan, Puerto Rico is full of charm and history, and you should definitely check out all the marvelous things Puerto Rico has to offer.

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About Me

About Me


Hola! I'm Hanny and I have been traveling since the age of three. Although, I grew up traveling, it wasn't until 2013, when I decided to start a blog. Read More

xoxo Hanny

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