Long Weekend Romantic Escapes: Puerto Rico

The beautiful, Caribbean island of Puerto Rico is a top vacation destination that’s tropical and timeless. Pristine beaches, exciting outdoor adventures, and scenic mountains are all matched by a vibrant history and culture that can be seen in everything from the cuisine to the friendly. Welcoming inhabitants that make the island such a special place to visit.

Often referred to as ‘The Heart and Soul of the Caribbean,’ Puerto Rico is bustling and beautiful, a true paradise that honors Old World traditions and new, exciting attractions in an atmosphere full of fun and adventure.

But Puerto Rico is for lovers, too—a romantic getaway that’s perfect for a pair who wants to escape the hubbub of everyday life in a relaxed and captivating setting. In the place known as the heart and soul of the region is a myriad of treasures that await anyone looking for some one-on-one time with someone special.

The Gateway To PR Style Romance

The metropolitan area of Puerto Rico consists of seven towns that create the island’s ‘downtown’ area—including the bustling capital city, San Juan. Indeed a place where contemporary urban life intersects with PR’s vibrant history and culture; there are plenty of chances for romance among the busy city streets and the surrounding area.

Isla Verde Beach, San Juan, Puerto Rico

Get a taste of Puerto Rico’s vibrant past in Old Town San Juan—500 years of history; this centuries-old spot is brimming with the island’s colorful stories, landmarks, and attractions that continue to enchant visitors to this day. The oldest city in the United States is packed with local flavor and adventure, set against a backdrop that’s seemingly frozen in time—complete with fortifications; soaring walls; and cobblestone streets that are worth exploring plaza by beautiful plaza. Lovebirds can while away the day simply strolling through this historic city, scoping out its famous landmarks, distinctive architecture, and bustling street life. El Paseo de la Princesa (the Princess Promenade) is a can’t miss in Old San Juan—located just outside the city’s walls, this colorful pedestrian pathway is chock full of artisans and street vendors showcasing their wares under the warm PR sun.  The Promenade is also a great spot to scope some of the best views of San Juan Bay—a truly magical (and romantic) sight. While you’re there, don’t forget to have an intimate meal at Princess Gastrobar, a magical spot serving up cuisine inspired by authentic recipes from the 1800s; a true taste of San Juan culture and history in a cozy, warm atmosphere. Another stellar landmark and a must-see in old San Juan is the 16th-century colonial fortress Castillo San Felipe del Morro. An iconic spot representing Puerto Rico’s historical legacy in the Caribbean, the fortification is a magical place overlooking the beautiful San Juan Bay stretching out into the vast Atlantic Ocean. To explore more of Old San Juan’s historic sites and attractions, take a look here.

The Condado oceanfront is another great place for lovebirds to explore while visiting magical San Juan. Known as San Juan’s most luxurious district, Condado is elegance, charm, and bustling activity all rolled into a scenic waterfront experience where visitors can enjoy the vibrant nightlife, exciting outdoor activities, and intimate accommodations perfect for a romantic getaway.

Paseo de la Princesa, San Juan, Puerto Rico

There’s nothing more romantic than taking a cruise around the island, and Sailing Dreams Yacht Charters offers several customizable packages for couples to plan the cruise of their dreams. Perfect for any special occasion or simply a way to enjoy some one-on-one time out on the water, the Romantic Sunset Experiences and Nighttime Cruises are sure to make any getaway unforgettably romantic and memorable. Finish the evening with an overnight stay at one of Old San Juan’s romantic accommodations—more intimate than larger, more cookie-cutter resort experiences, the lodging options are colorful, vibrant, and private extensions of the city itself. With such an astounding array of wonderful places to stay we just could not include them all, so check out places to stay in Old San Juan.

Condado’s Ashford Avenue is also known as the Puerto Rican “Fifth Avenue”—bustling shops and dynamic eateries dominate this stretch that’s perfect for strolling arm and arm. And that’s not all—in the evenings, Ashford Avenue turns into a haven for vibrant dining and nightlife that make it an idyllic date night retreat. Begin the evening with a rooftop cocktail and enjoy the stunning views and lit-up San Juan skyline. The AC Rooftop Bar is just one such place—serving up signature drinks and delicious dishes, along with spectacular views of the Caribbean; the AC Rooftop Bar is the ideal place for catching a truly romantic PR sunset. The Avenue is also full of exciting spots to dance the night away—salsa bars and lounges that are as exciting and fun as the city itself. Couples can swing their hips and enjoy live music at places such as The Red Coral Lounge, offering up cocktails and unforgettable swinging salsa and meringue vibes all night long. Where To Dine And Dance In Condado

Olive Boutique Hotel, Condado, San Juan, Puerto Rico. Photo Courtesy of Olive Boutique Hotel

For those who want to make a night of it in Condado, there are plenty of lodging options that are both luxurious and filled with romance. The Olive Boutique is an incredibly intimate hotel experience perfect for couples seeking isolation and privacy near the Condado lagoon. Its intimate, scenic location and luxe amenities offer one of the best romantic retreats in all of Puerto Rico. From dinner under the stars to luxe bath experiences on your private veranda, Olive has a plethora of customizable experiences to plan an unforgettable couple’s getaway. The hotel also offers a chic and romantic restaurant dubbed the Sage Steak Loft—the perfect dinner to complete the perfect evening. Be sure to head to the rooftop afterward for even more stunning views overlooking the Condado Lagoon. Where To Stay In Condado

Romantic Experiences Outside The City

There’s more to Puerto Rico than its capital city—though couples could spend an entire vacation here soaking up the historic vibes, epic nightlife, and exciting cultural attractions that make the city so unique. The best way to truly embrace the romance of this Caribbean island is to branch out and explore some of Puerto Rico’s smaller, more secluded towns and cities—themselves a treasure trove of scintillating sights and exceptional opportunities for real romance.

Salinas, South of San Juan on Hwy 52

Rincón: A Romantic Seaside Retreat

The sleepy seaside town of Rincón is a secluded spot perfect for lovers looking to escape the busy hubbub of the San Juan. Situated on the island’s western tip, it’s a great place to spend a night (or two!) soaking up the sun and reveling in the intimately idyllic atmosphere.

Distance From San Juan: 92.1 miles (2 hours, 27 minutes)

How To Get There: Drive, fly, or take a shuttle

Rincón is famous for its amazing sunsets—but that’s just one reason to plan a getaway to this laidback, low-key corner of Puerto Rico. While Rincón is known as an excellent spot for water sports like surfing, paddleboarding, snorkeling, and swimming, it’s also a wonderful place just to kick back and soak up the sun on one of the beaches located along the beach town’s eight miles of coastline. There are also a number of romantic activities perfect for couples looking for intimate, beachy vibes in a scenic island setting far away from bustling crowds.

Sandy Beach is just one such place—a local favorite within walking distance of many of the town’s bars and restaurants. Though a popular hangout spot, couples can find a bit of privacy on one of the secluded spots along the Sandy Beach trail or in one of the area’s cozy vacation rentals. Domes Beach is another local fave—and a bit quieter than Sandy Beach, especially in the summer. Domes is perfect for whale watching and surfing in the winter and is also home to the historic Punta Higüera Lighthouse. With a park of its own, the lighthouse is another superb place to soak up Rincón’s romantic vibes—the perfect spot for a magical sunset picnic. Cap off a magical day in Rincón with a private horseback ride—one of Puerto Rico’s most romantic couple’s activities; the trip is an intimate, two-hour ride along the secluded beach at sunset. What could be better?

Domes Beach, Rincón, Puerto Rico

Culebra: Isolated And Intimate

Located about 20 miles east of mainland Puerto Rico, Culebra is a tiny island that is a picturesque paradise. Dominated by private beaches and a natural coral reef barrier, Culebra is the perfect retreat for those looking for a relaxing haven of privacy and romance.

Distance From San Juan: 20 nautical miles

How To Get There: Ferry from Fajardo or flight from San Juan

Known for its clear, turquoise waters and abundance of scenic natural areas, Culebra is the perfect spot to go exploring—snorkeling is an especially popular activity on the tropical island due to its highly swimmable waters near the coral reef. However, those looking to relax will find plenty of places to simply relax on the beach while soaking up the amazing sights and warm, tranquil vibes of this quiet PR gem.

Flamenco Beach, Culebra Island, Puerto Rico

Flamenco Beach is Culebra’s most visited beach—and with good reason. Consistently recognized as one of the most beautiful beaches in the entire world, Flamenco is a peaceful haven dominated by pristine sand and calm waters that beckon both swimmers and snorkelers alike. Surrounded by the island’s green, rolling hills, visitors will find this splendid beach both lively and relaxing.

For those wishing to go off the beaten track while in Culebra, a visit to Isla Culebrita certainly fits the bill. Part of the island’s famed Culebra National Wildlife Refuge, this small, uninhabited gem is only accessible via water taxi—and the short trip is definitely worth it. With six small beaches of its own, Isla Culebrita is another excellent place to spend some downtime away from the crowds. While you’re there, check out the old lighthouse, the only manmade structure on the island. And don’t forget to keep your eyes peeled for plenty of wildlife; after all, the refuge is known for its bird-watching and unique opportunities for spotting local species. Where To Stay In Culebra

Waterfall Wonders At El Yunque National Forest

Nature-loving couples will love the awe-inspiring surroundings of El Yunque National Forest—lush, forested scenery surrounded by miles of hiking trails and romantic waterfalls. While El Yunque is a popular tourist attraction and one of the most famed natural wonders on the entire island, couples also have plenty of opportunities to share quiet, relaxing moments embracing the tropical rainforest’s distinctive beauty.

Distance From San Juan: 29 miles (42 minutes)

How To Get There: Rent a car, or book a tour with your hotel

Hiking is one of the most popular activities in El Yunque—full of breathtaking views and plenty of spots to take a dip; everyone from casual strollers to expert hikers will find something unique to do here. The area is dominated by distinctive flora and fauna as well as natural wonders galore in the form of cascading rivers and epic waterfalls—including La Mina Falls, a 35-foot cascade that plummets into a fabulous, refreshing pool where hikers can take a swim or merely relax and take in the area’s scenic beauty.

Puerto Rico, El Yunque National Forest.
El Yunque National Forest, Puerto Rico

Those looking for more of a challenge will also want to try the Mount Britton Trail—though labeled ‘challenging’ by the park service, much of the 0.8-mile trail is paved—but can also be steep and slippery in places. However, the trek is well worth the effort for stunning panoramic views in the over 2,000-feet tower high above the surrounding area; the perfect partner photo op

The magical island of Puerto Rico is the perfect romantic retreat for couples—from honeymoon-worthy getaways to intimate escapes that are an idyllic way to reconnect and relax. From the bustling streets of historic San Juan that run the gamut from top cultural attractions to beautiful beaches; to faraway escapes that contain multitudes, this Caribbean island is truly the place to be for partners looking to spend some quality time soaking up the sun and scintillating sights that dominate this spectacular island.


El Yunque National Forest.
Waterfalls in the El Yunque National Forest.

Read next: El Yunque National Forest in Puerto Rico: Waterfalls, Wildlife, and Mountain Hikes.

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