Thursday, June 28, 2007

Puerto Rico, Part 1 of 3


I'm home- finally! After 3 weeks of being on the road, I'm back and ready to share my trip to Puerto Rico with all of you. As usual, there is so much to say, so I'll let the photographs do most of the talking. I'm dividing my Puerto Rico reporting into 3 posts: places and things to see and do, things to eat (of course!), and fun things, people, and creatures to see.


So without further ado, here are some images from my week in Puerto Rico, where I...





...got to relax on the beach and enjoy colorful sunsets on the beach in the Isla Verde neighborhood of San Juan...



...visit the east coast town of Fajardo from where we took a boat to...



...the nearly deserted island of Icacos for some snorkeling and coral reef marveling...



...see children enjoying the waterfall at...



... El Yunque rain forest and national park (my first visit to a rain forest!)...



...then head west and visit the awe-inspiring caves (Las Cavernas del Río Camuy) south of the town of Arecibo...



...where I got to drink from the fresh waters of the fountain of youth (dear god, I hope it is!), and where Daiku and I met an elderly gentleman who told us that no visit to Puerto Rico would be complete without seeing the town of Ponce on the southern coast...



...so we drove through windy mountain roads from north to south (all the while seeing stunning views such as the above photo)...



...stopping along the way to see the Arecibo observatory, home of the biggest single-dish telescope in the world (and part of SETI, for all the astronomy geeks/Carl Sagan fans out there!)...





...to get to beautiful Ponce, centuries-old town filled with grand architecture...



...where we got to see and touch the Caribbean sea for the first time- woo hoo!...





...and then back to Old San Juan, home to more stunning architecture, beautifully colored houses, tons of civic monuments and statues...



...and of course, the remains of the Fort San Felipe del Morro, a nearly 500 year-old reminder of the Spanish conquest of the Americas.

Whew! Tune in tomorrow for a food round-up of Puerto Rico- being vegan turned out to be easier than I thought there, and there were a few surprises along the road.


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23 comments:

aTxVegn said...

Welcome back, Bazu! Puerto Rico is such a beautiful place. The beach looks fabulous.

Emilie said...

looks like the ideal place to unwind after all that grading. beautiful pictures, but of course i'm holding out for the food post!

welcome home.

jenny said...

awesome!! Everything is so beautiful!

Vivacious Vegan said...

Welcome back! That water looks so gorgeous. The turquoise against the bright blue sky is so spectacular. I loved living close to the beack in So. Cal. (at one point I rented a house that was only 1 block from the water) and as nice as it was, never was it as lovely as this. The water was always grey and murky. We're heading to Florida in a couple of weeks and I'm so excited to be able to immerse myself in that same type of beauty and peace.

What a cool tree, with it's twisted and gnarled roots. Amazing how it's survived like that. Hmmm, I could totally see that tree on a motivational poster about "hanging in there."

The colors of the buildings are so much fun. I remember when Johanna posted some like that, I was in awe. I wish people here had the desire to be more colorful.

maybepigscanfly said...

Wow- I'm overwhelmed by the amazing country of Puerto Rico. You must have had a great time. Really, all the pictures are stunning and I can't wait to visit the Island someday. (Hopefully soon, since by older brother's long time girl friend is Puerto Rican and has a lot of family there.)

Looking forward to tomorrows fun post!

-Teresa

Emmie said...

Every single time you wrote Puerto Rico in this post my mind started singing 'aye aye aye aye aye aye aye.... pueeeeeerto riiico'. What can I say, my mother used to play that song ALL the time when I was a kid.

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=1ezoHD_FynQ

Anyway, it looks fantastic. I want to go there! I have a new bathing suit and everything!

runswithdog said...

Thank goodness you are back. You and B are never allowed to go out of town at the same time again!

laura jesser said...

Glad you're back! Though if it had been me, I might never have come home, from the looks of those photos. I've wanted to see a rainforest for a long time now... These pics are so beautiful and you did some really neat things!

Emmy said...

Wow, what fabulous pics from your trip. I can't wait to see your other posts :) The Arecibo observatory is wild! I love that you got to see a rain forest in person. That is so cool!!!

Neva Vegan said...

It looks beautiful! I hope I can go there sometime. It looks like you enjoyed every minute. I need the fountain of youth!

MRS said...

Fantastic photos! Thank you for sharing your experience in Puerto Rico--I can't wait to see where you ate. I just returned from a 3 day trip to Puerto Rico and I can't wait to go back soon. I always find wonderfully whole vegetarian places to eat. Did you find La Buena Mesa de Oscar? A wonderful local flair which is also gluten-free vegan.

Kati said...

I am simply in awe - Puerto Rico is SO beautiful! Your post has totally convinced me that I need to visit. That tree is positively thriving on the beach like that - how incredible. I loved all your architecture shots, too. Can't wait for the food post! Glad to have you back in Blogland...though I bet you're missing those beaches right about now! =)

Jackie said...

Glad to see you back but I am sure you are sad to have left such a beautiful place with such wonderful architecture. I would never want to leave :)

Can't wait to hear about all the wonderful foods you ate.

textual bulldog said...

awesome post and welcome back! i know almost nothing about puerto rico, so this is so fun! it's never occured to me to want to go there but now... well, it's definitely occuring to me :)

Melody Polakow said...

Wow! Stunning!!

I hope you had a wonderful, relaxing time...

Robin Green Eye said...

*sighs* Just gorgeous! I've never been out of the continental 48, Puerto Rico most definitely looks like a great place to go someday!

urban vegan said...

Looks like you had a "muy bueno" time, Bazu. Omniman and I have been meaning to get to PR since we love the music...and your post makes us want to go even more.

I am surprised by how some of the colorful buildings look just like the buildings in Pelhourinho, a neighborhood in Salvador do Bahia, Brazil.

I'm glad you got a chance to relax and experience PR's beauty--and clean water.

KleoPatra said...

WOW! Absolutely stunning - the land, the water, the statues & architecture, the kiddies. Super cool photos and the fountain of youth, too! Woo hoo!!

The rain forest... that must have been such an experience... i especially was drawn to the caves. Super super cool photo. i want to go there now!

Beautiful, Bazu. And beautiful Bazu! Thanks for sharing...

Rachael said...

beautiful pictures! Its awesome that you made it to arecibo...as a "astronomy geeks/Carl Sagan fan", its on my list of "place to see before I die." Is is really as massive and amazing as it looks in pictures?

bazu said...

I'm a major astronomy geek/Carl Sagan fan too! I have to say the observatory is pretty darn massive. The whole thing is an experience, having to walk up a huge hill in 90-degree weather, and then peeking down into the giant telescope.

Vegan_Noodle said...

Beautiful photos, Puerto Rico looks like a magical place!

Vicki's Vegan Vice said...

Totally amazing. I love the colors of the buildings -- mint, pink, yellow, orange!!!!

vko said...

So gorgeous- your trip to Puerto Rico was the actual fountain of youth- going on an amazing trip like that will always keep you young & happy!