Pride Journey Summer Getaway: Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico is still the LGBTQ+ Capital of the Caribbean, and this gorgeous Island is finally ready to welcome back responsible queer travelers. Here are some of the best reasons to explore the exotic Island this summer.
If you’re looking for a tropical beach getaway, escape to Cabo Rojo — a sleepy southwestern city with a dynamic LGBTQ+ following. This laid-back yet charming municipality is home to Boquerón, a popular beachside ‘hood featuring cafes and eateries, quirky shops and loads of art. The town hosts an LGBTQ+ Pride March every year (although because of COVID-19, the 2021 march is still under consideration. Please check their Facebook group for the latest updates.) With its unblemished beaches and dramatic coastal landscape, Cabo Rojo is a piece of paradise hiding in plain sight.
LGBTQ+ nature lovers will also love PR’s bucolic parks. About an hour’s drive east of San Juan you’ll find El Yunque National Forest, the only tropical rainforest in the U.S. National Forest Service.
El Yunque is a lush paradise and the most popular attraction in all of Puerto Rico, with more than a million annual visitors. Within the 28,000 acres of rainforest, travelers can hike to the top of the iconic Yokahu Tower, zipline over a canopy of tropical green foliage, camp among the singing coqui tree frogs, or explore 240 species of trees. There are also currently about a dozen hiking trails ranging from novice to expert which you can explore. And it's an easy day trip from San Juan. If you’re outdoorsy, hiking one of the trails here is one of Puerto Rico’s most idyllic eco-dates.
(Pro Tip: El Yunque National Forest requires reservations and we strongly encourage you book your tickets well in advance of your trip.)
Two hours northwest of El Yunque (and just 90-minutes from San Juan!) you’ll find a true hidden gem: the Rio Camuy Cave Park — the largest cave network in the Western Hemisphere with over 200 caves and caverns. Be sure to reserve your tickets ahead of time and give yourself plenty of time to explore ten miles of limestone caves, natural springs, and breathtaking views.
(Rio Camuy Cave Park also requires reservations well in advance as they are only allowing up to 120 spots per day. You must call the department of Natural and Environmental Resources to make a reservation at +1 787 999-2200.
You can also explore the island’s laid-back west coast with a stop in Isabela for a day trip to the historical Guajataca Tunnel. Every weekend, the tunnel area is bustling with local artisan craft and food kiosks. Queer parents should bring the kids for a day of pony rides, tunnel tours and great local food.