When you’re travelling to an island like Puerto Rico with its shimmering, blue waters, it seems a shame to waste an opportunity to explore all it has to offer both under and on top of those frothy, white waves. To the north, in San Juan, there are some particularly sweet swells that are perfect for both beginners and senior surfers. Dip below those waves, however, and you’ll be met with a dynamic underwater world. To the southwest, just off La Parguera, is the Wall, which is exactly what it sounds like. This reef, with a sheer drop into the deep, starts at 18 metres below the surface and continues for another 27 metres. While exploring this vibrant submarine metropolis, you might be lucky enough to spot rare black coral or even dolphins.
Follow the trails or go off the beaten path
Hiking in El Yunque National Park, located in the northeast, is a popular choice, since marked trails are most concentrated here. However, this is very much the exception rather than the rule. So, if you’re feeling adventurous, head off the beaten path to discover Puerto Rico for yourself.
When to go
The Puerto Rican high season runs from mid-December to mid-April when winter escapists from the United States (US) descend on the island. Puerto Rico becomes particularly busy over the festive period, and flight costs will reflect this demand with an increase in prices. However, this busy time tends to taper off in March and April
Travelling to Puerto Rico during the shoulder season in mid-April to May offers an excellent chance to make the most the island when the crowds have thinned and the rainy season has not yet begun. Not only will airfares be lower, but temperatures are likely to climb to 28-30 degrees Celsius, perfect for lounging in the sun.
When it comes to diving and other water-based activities, there are ample opportunities available all year. While dive sites may be quieter from June to November, December to May can offer the best experience. There’s even a chance of spotting humpback whales on their migratory path to warmer waters. From January to March, you may even spot mothers playing with their young.
Airports and airlines
To find the best deals on return flights to Puerto Rico, use our calendar feature to compare prices on flights departing across a whole month from your chosen airport. Once you’ve picked your dates, you can then filter your options by departure and arrival times, airline and journey time.
There are no direct Puerto Rico flights from the United Kingdom (UK). As a result, you will have to make a stopover in a US city, such as Miami, Atlanta or New York. The most common arrival destination is San Juan, although some flights to Aguadilla are available from London. Carriers include Delta Airlines, British Airways, American Airlines, United Airlines and Virgin Atlantic.
The best way to save money on your trip is to book your flights around three months in advance of your departure date. Flight prices will rise in July and August, but more budget-friendly options are often available in the spring, sometime around March or April.