Puerto Rico is a Caribbean island that’s rich in culture and history. The island has something for everyone, from pristine beaches to rainforests to historic sites. Puerto Rico is also a great place to visit if you’re looking for affordable travel. Travel costs can be high during peak season (December through April), but there are ways to save money on your trip. If you’re thinking about visiting Puerto Rico, here are some things you should know about the best time to visit, what to expect weather-wise, and some helpful travel tips.
So without further delay, let’s explore the best time to visit Puerto Rico!
What makes Puerto Rico an amazing destination?
Puerto Rico is a fantastic destination to visit because it has great weather, breathtaking scenery, a rich cultural history, and thrilling activities. You’ll be able to explore the beautiful mountains and waterfalls, immerse yourself in the native culture, and experience some of the best cuisines around the world.
Puerto Rico is located in the Caribbean Sea and has stunning beaches as well as lush forests full of wildlife. The island also offers plenty of exciting activities, such as surfing, kayaking, hiking, horseback riding, and more. Additionally, you can take advantage of its rich cuisine by eating delicious slow-roasted pork sandwiches and drinking piña coladas on your trip!
What are the different seasons in Puerto Rico?
1. Dry Season
Puerto Rico is a Caribbean island located just off the coast of North America. Being a tropical island, it’s always warm, but the weather varies a lot between seasons and even within them. The dry season generally lasts from December to April. It’s a great time to visit because it’s not as hot as it usually is during the summer months, but it’s still warm enough to go swimming in the ocean.
The holiday months are also known for their beautiful sunsets and breathtaking beaches, but it is also the busy season, so you will see more crowds.
2. Rainy Season
The rainy season in Puerto Rico occurs during the summer months, between May and August. During this period, you will find a combination of heat and rain, with August being the rainiest month. Puerto Rico is located in the Caribbean Sea and experiences a tropical summer climate with high humidity levels.
The average daytime temperature during the rainy season is 89 degrees Fahrenheit (31° C), making water activities like swimming and snorkeling even more enjoyable due to the warmer water.
3. Hurricane Season
The hurricane season in Puerto Rico generally runs from August to November. But this does not mean that you should avoid visiting during this time period. We enjoy traveling in this season because you can find better deals, fewer crowds, and empty beaches.
If you plan on visiting during hurricane season, then be sure to check weather reports before traveling so that you can plan accordingly if there is going to be any inclement weather. With modern weather radars, they can see an approaching hurricane weeks in advance, so there is nothing to fear.
What is the best time to visit Puerto Rico in 2023?
In my opinion, the best time to visit Puerto Rico in 2023 is during March and July, as these months offer a great balance between reasonable prices and good weather. The winter holiday months bring with them large crowds and high prices, but my March, everything starts to settle down. You can find great deals during this period, but make sure to book in advance both your flights and accommodations.
When are the major events in Puerto Rico?
Puerto Rico has many exciting events throughout the year. Here are the most important ones so you can plan your trip around them:
- Fiesta de los Reyes Magos – January 6 – Juana Díaz, Isabela,
- Fiestas de la Calle San Sebastián – Third weekend of January – Old San Juan
- Festival de la Novilla – Third weekend of January – San Sebastián
- Festival del Frío – Late February – Adjuntas
- La Campechada – May or November
- Carnaval Ponceño – February or March – Ponce
- Festival de Teatro Puertorriqueño e Internacional – May to June – Santurce, San Juan
- Festival de la Piña Paradisíaca – May or June – La Parguera, Lajas
- Noche de San Juan – June 23 – San Juan
- Festival de Santiago Apóstol – Last weekend of July – Loíza
- Festival Nacional Indígena – End of November – Jayuya
- Nochebuena – December 24 – all over the Island
- Festival de las Máscaras de Hatillo – December 28 – Hatillo
Tips for making the most of your trip to Puerto Rico
1. Research the local culture and customs
If you want to make your trip more memorable, a little bit of research will go a long way. Research the history and culture of Puerto Rico and learn a few words in Spanish. Once you arrive, you can find information on local culture and customs by visiting museums or cultural centers located around Puerto Rico’s cities or tourist destinations like San Juan and El Yunque National Park.
2. Plan ahead and find accommodation
- Research potential hotels or guest houses to find the best deal. Websites such as Expedia and TripAdvisor can be very useful.
- Book your travel in advance to take advantage of lower rates.
- When booking accommodation, make sure that it has all of the amenities you need, such as Wi-Fi access, air conditioning, kitchen facilities, etc.
- Make use of any special offers or discounts available from local tourism boards or hotel websites before finalizing your reservation.
3. Explore the island, including the mainland and the surrounding islands
Puerto Rico is an entire archipelago, so don’t plan on only visiting the mainland, there are dozens of small islands around waiting to be explored. It is also full of mountains throughout the main island’s center, and there are many natural pools filled with freshwater that provide a welcome contrast to the beaches. The capital city of San Juan has historical significance, and there are also many other historical sites throughout the territory.
4. Take advantage of the many outdoor activities
Outdoor activities in Puerto Rico include kayaking in bioluminescent bays, caving in the Río Camuy Cave Park, hiking through tropical rainforests and mountainous centers, ziplining through mountainous areas, paddle boarding in Condado Lagoon and snorkeling in Tres Palmas Marine Reserve. Scuba diving is also an excellent option for those who want to explore underwater environments.
5. Experience the local cuisine and drinks
Visit any restaurant that serves local cuisine and drinks in Puerto Rico to experience the delicious flavors they have to offer! You can find these restaurants all across the island nation.
- The most famous local dish is called Mofongo. Try it at multiple locations on the island, as each one has a slightly different recipe.
- Puerto Rico is one of the largest producers of Rom, and their national drink is naturally Rom based – the famous Pina Coladas. Try one on the beach at sunset.
- You can also try a variety of local beers like Medalla or Cerveza Borinquen.
6. Explore the island’s beaches and towns
The beaches offer stunning views of crystal clear water and white sand everywhere you go. There are also plenty of activities, such as snorkeling, kayaking, or paddle boarding around the islands surrounding Puerto Rico’s coastlines. The towns offer plenty of local cultures as well as delicious food and drink options to explore during your stay!
Some popular locations include Old San Juan, Ponce, Charco Azuls, Charco del Hippie, and Las Paylas/Las Tinajas rock slides.
Hair Tools Travel Bag
7. Spend some time relaxing and letting go of stress
Puerto Rico offers a variety of locations for visitors to relax and let go of stress, such as secluded beaches, private tours, fine dining experiences, top-rated spas, and lavish accommodations. Depending on your budget, these activities can be completely free, such as relaxing on the beach, to more pricy, like swimming with dolphins or turtles on Vieques Island.
For nature lovers, take part in an eco-tour around El Yunque National Forest, nothing better than nature therapy.
Top tip: try bird-watching activities, they can be remarkably relaxing and satisfying.
8. Experience the arts and culture scene
Puerto Rico has a rich arts and culture scene. Research the museums and attractions that interest you, and make sure to schedule enough time to visit them all.
Looking for free activities? Explore the vibrant art scene in San Juan, as well as other cities such as Ponce de Leon and Mayaguez.
Experience Puerto Rico like the locals: go off the beaten path! Venture off the main streets to find hidden gems like street art murals or traditional crafts such as woven baskets or ceramic pots in rural villages around Puerto Rico’s islands.
And be sure to support local artists: Buy some artwork from the locals or attend cultural events that showcase their talents for a more immersive experience of Puerto Rico’s art scene!
9. Spend some time in nature, hiking and exploring
If nature hiking is a the top of your to-do list in Puerto Rico, reserve a place to stay that is near one of the island’s many hiking trails, such as El Yunque Rainforest or Toro Verde Trail. Remember to pack suitable clothing for any type of weather conditions that may arise during your trip, as well as any necessary gear like hiking boots or water bottles.
For a detailed packing guide, check out my article on Things to bring to Puerto Rico.
Once you are there, prepare for adventure! Before heading out on the trail, study up on safety tips and etiquette so you can make the most out of your experience without impacting nature or other visitors, and always keep safety in mind. Also, bring some bug spray, the mosquitoes can get very annoying.
What is the cheapest time to go to Puerto Rico?
The cheapest time to go to Puerto Rico is during the offseason, which is May through November. Make sure to book accommodations and flights way in advance in order to get the best deals available. Just be sure to keep an eye on the weather, as it can turn bad really quickly.
I also wrote this article on the Best Free Things to do in San Juan, you will like it!
What attractions can I visit in Puerto Rico?
Puerto Rico is home to numerous attractions, including Old San Juan, the Bacardi Rum Tour, and the gigantic Arecibo radio telescope. Sadly, the beloved telescope partially collapsed in Dec on 2020, but visitors still arrive to see the educational facilities on site.
Beach lovers can explore the 300+ miles of coastline or take a ferry to Vieques’ Mosquito Bay for an unforgettable experience.
The are also many guided tours that show you the history and culture of the island, walking tours, beach and rainforest tours, and plenty of tasty food and drinks to enjoy.
What kind of weather can I expect while visiting Puerto Rico?
Puerto Rico sports warm and humid tropical weather, with an average annual temperature of between the mid-80s and 90s degrees Fahrenheit (29-35 C). The weather in Puerto Rico is affected by its location in the Atlantic Ocean. During the dry season, there is almost no rain, and warm temperatures. If you visit during the rainy and hurricane seasons, take precautions and bring an umbrella and a rain poncho.
Are there any festivals or events I should plan my visit around?
Yes, there are a variety of festivals and events taking place throughout the year in Puerto Rico. Some of the most popular events include Fiestas de la Calle San Sebastián in January in San Juan, music festivals in summer, food trucks throughout the year, historical reenactments, fiestas, and carnivals.
Our favorite is the Carnaval Ponceño, which happens in March in Ponce. Huge, colorful puppets take to the streets in a fantastic mix of music, dance and culture.
What type of accommodation is available in Puerto Rico?
Puerto Rico offers a variety of accommodation options for travelers, ranging from luxury resorts to budget-friendly hostels. For those looking for an upscale experience, the island has some of the best hotels in the Caribbean, such as Condado Plaza and El San Juan Resort & Casino.
For those on a budget, there are plenty of hostels around Old San Juan that offer dormitory-style accommodations at affordable rates. Furthermore, many hotels around the island offer special discounts during the off-season (May through November).
Are there any safety or hurricane risks I should consider before visiting Puerto Rico?
As far as Caribbean islands are concerned, Puerto Rico is one of the safest, but that doesn’t mean you should be complacent. As with most places with massive tourism, pickpocketing is one of the most common issues tourists experience. Keep your personal items safe in a zipped pocket or fanny pack. It’s not necessary to bring your passport everywhere when exploring the island, take a picture and photocopy instead and keep the original safe in the hotel safe.
Puerto Rico has had its fair share of hurricanes, so they can be a concern if you are not prepared. Severe storms are tracked days or even weeks in advance, so if you see one heading your way, there is plenty of time to leave the island. The locals have been living with these storms for years, so there is nothing to fear.
Hair Tools Travel Bag
What type of cuisine is available in Puerto Rico?
Puerto Rico’s cuisine is a unique blend of Spanish, American, and Taino influences. It offers a wide variety of dishes, including mofongo (fried or mashed plantain), slow-roasted pork, seafood dishes such as octopus ceviche and shrimp in garlic sauce, burgers topped with mayonnaise and ketchup sauce known as “gringas”, tacos filled with seasoned ground beef called “tacos de carne encebollada”, chicken dishes like pollo guisado (chicken stewed in tomato sauce), pasteles (steamed vegetable turnovers stuffed with meat), arroz con pollo (rice dish made with chicken) and more.
Additionally, island residents are known for their love of piña coladas—a cocktail made from rum, coconut cream, pineapple juice, and ice.
Finally, we cannot forget the delicious locally-grown coffee.
Are there any activities I can do while visiting Puerto Rico?
Puerto Rico is home to over 300 miles of coastline, making it the perfect destination for sun worshippers and urban explorers alike. There are also plenty of activities to enjoy around the island, such as guided tours, surfing lessons, zip line tours through El Yunque rainforest canopy, hiking Cuevo Ventana (Window Cave) situated on cliffs overlooking a scenic valley, or exploring El Morro citadel that overlooks San Juan Bay.
What kind of activities do locals enjoy in Puerto Rico?
Locals in Puerto Rico enjoy a variety of activities, including snorkeling, scuba diving, coffee tasting, tubing, hiking, and more. Guided tours can help visitors explore the island’s history and culture or take advantage of unique opportunities like visiting the bioluminescent shores at Mosquito Bay or zip lining through El Yunque rainforest canopy. There are also many fun beach tours available for those looking to relax on the sunny shores or explore nature up close.
What type of transportation should I use while visiting Puerto Rico?
When visiting Puerto Rico, you have a variety of transportation options. The island has public transportation options such as taxis, buses, and ferries that take passengers from place to place. You can also choose to rent a car, scooter, or bicycle to get around. For those more adventurous, you can find ATV tours to explore the jungles and private boats to explore the neighboring islands or go scuba-diving.
Made by travelers, for travelers, check out the Barefoot Caribou Products below!
The Best Time to Visit Puerto Rico
So, when is the best time to visit Puerto Rico? There is no better time to plan your trip to Puerto Rico than now. But it all depends on what you’re looking for in a vacation. If you want to experience the best of Puerto Rico’s culture and cuisine, book your trip for late spring or early summer.
If you’re more interested in soaking up the sun and spending time at the beach, plan to travel during the winter months. And if you want to avoid the crowds and get the best deals on hotels and flights, visit Puerto Rico from March to August.
No matter when you go, you’re sure to have a memorable trip. Overall, this is about as good as it gets for beach lovers in the Caribbean.
I also prepared this article filled with the Best Puerto Rico Travel Tips.