Serafina Beach Hotel is the perfect choice for any traveler eager to explore Puerto Rico’s capital city for photogenic, historically significant, and eye-popping opportunities to grab the attention of friends and followers on Instagram.

 

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A little taste of paradise, courtesy of @justwotravel’s recent visit. ☀️

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Sure, just strolling through San Juan’s diverse, colorful sections and neighborhoods turns up myriad surprising sights you will want to grab for Instagram. You will encounter them all: gorgeous romantic beaches, lush tropical flowers, the Island’s stunning birds, San Juan’s style-conscious locals, and around the next corner, a facade of stunning old-world architecture.

 

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En Puerto Rico se baila en todos lados #PuertoRico #bestplace #PR #OldSanJuan #Dance #baile 🇵🇷

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From Spanish colonial homes to alluring cobblestone byways, the breathtaking surprises are waiting for you in the City of San Juan. For travelers who are on an Instagram “mission” to share their adventures and fun with people back home, here are our choices of San Juan’s five top Instagram-worthy sights:

The Garden of Casa Blanca

Casa Blanca was planned and built for the legendary Spanish explorer, Ponce de Leon, who died on his mission to Florida and never got to live in the magnificent house.  Casa Blanca did become the residence of his family, however, until the mid-seventeenth century.

 

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Hoy se cumple un año desde que la fuerza destructora del huracán María nos arrasó. Por meses no sabíamos lo que era luz hasta que salía el sol, lugares donde solo se podían llegar por aire, carreteras colapsadas, puentes en el piso, sin comunicación… mi familia y yo estuvimos semanas encerrados en casa, porque no podíamos salir a través de los derrumbes. Filas kilométricas para gasolina, bancos, alimentos o simplemente bolsas de hielo. Gracias a María, conocí a todos mis vecinos, aunque nunca me visualicé, trabajé bajo sol con botas y llena de fango abriendo caminos, supe la verdadera definición de lo que es vivir en NECESIDAD. Solo los que vivimos aquí y presenciamos esto, sabemos lo que fue. Pero así, con esa misma fuerza de la naturaleza, somos una isla bendecida, porque somos más los buenos. Vimos la unión de un pueblo que luchó por levantarse. Comprendimos que todos vivimos bajo el mismo cielo, que hoy podemos tener todo y mañana nada. Hoy vemos los resultados de nuestra lucha, y aunque no estemos completamente como antes, reverdece nuestra esperanza y el orgullo de ser puertorriqueño🇵🇷❤️

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Located today in San Juan’s important historical colonial district, the house was first constructed of wood but later rebuilt with stone after it was destroyed in a fire. It became the residence of the first governor when Puerto Rico’s capital was moved to San Juan.

Sitting atop a cliff overlooking the sweeping vista of San Juan inlet, the house has turned into a historical monument and a museum of sixteenth and seventeenth-century artifacts.

The gardens around Casa Blanca are resplendent and photogenic, with numerous perfect nooks for a couple to sit on a bench for a romantic Instagram shot framed by tropical flora. Admission to this beautiful and relaxing spot is free. Since the gardens have not yet been discovered by the majority of tourists to San Juan, let your friends on Instagram know you are sharing a bit of a secret.

 

Paseo de la Princesa

For a picturesque and Instagram-inspiring stroll along the bay, try the Paseo de la Princesa—the Path of the Princess. The walk itself provides gorgeous views at every turn and lots of history, too. You will find little stands selling food and snacks and some boat tours originate here.

 

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Cuando eres tu mismo brillas más que la luz del sol. #CarolinaRosario #beyourself #shinebright

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A striking choice for your Instagram audience is the Raices Fountain, Puerto Rico’s tribute to its indigenous ancestral origins. Or take a selfie in front of the Puerta de San Juan, one of the last remaining doors in the great fortress wall that once surrounded the city.  Sentry boxes along the top of the fortifications are called “garitas,” from which you can pop out of as your friend captures the moment.

 

Caficultura Cafe

This adorable coffee shop is the definition of “Phone eats first”. It’s the perfect spot to grab some great local food while getting photo-worthy content for your story and feed. The extensive breakfast, brunch, and lunch menu is sure to satisfy even the pickiest eaters.

 

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todo es lindo y nada duele

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You’ll even be able to find gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan options. If you’re looking for a boozy brunch, try the watermelon mimosa (they also do bottomless!) or if you’re looking for a pick-me-up, order a café con leche for some impressive latte art. Located centrally on Calle San Francisco, you can stop in without having to go out of your way. Even better, Calle San Francisco is one of the most gorgeous streets in San Juan so you’ll want to make the stop no matter what!

 

Castillo San Felipe del Morro & Castillo San Cristóbal

Old San Juan’s two earliest military forts required more than two centuries to complete after construction began in the 1500s. These were the first fortifications erected by the Spanish to defend the island against invasion by the English or Dutch. Castillo San Felipe is named for King Phillip the Second of Spain, while Castillo San Cristobal is also known as Fort San Cristobal–the single largest Spanish fortification ever constructed in the New World. Note that when complete, this huge fortification essentially enclosed all of San Juan. Entry to the capital was through guarded gates.

 

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wHeRe iS tHe MoRrO?

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Originally built on a hill and named by the Spanish “San Cristobal” in honor of their victories over the English and Dutch, both Castillo San Felipe del Morro and Castillo San Cristóbal are operated today by the U.S. National Park Service. For best views and photo ops, climb to the top level of each edifice to get sweeping views out over the Atlantic Ocean. Or show your Instagram followers the perfect frame you found for a photo of the Atlantic—the glassless windows located in the bathrooms of both forts!

 

Umbrella Street

A high point of your Instagram tour of San Juan should definitely be Umbrella Street, Paseo de Sombrillas, located at the end of Calle Fortaleza and very close to Barrachina. The Caribbean sunlight shining down around the multitude of brightly colored umbrellas makes for dazzling visual images.

 

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Bye bye Puerto Rico…🇵🇷 Nos volveremos a ver. ❤️ . Así cerramos un programa más de Panorama De Las Américas con @copaairlines 🎥⚡️ Disfrutando del Viejo San Juan en el Paseo De Las Sombrillas. ☂️ ☂️☂️ Gracias a la autoridad de turismo de Puerto Rico por todas las atenciones; sin duda alguna, esta isla tiene mucho encanto baby. . . Conversamos mucho sobre lo difícil que fue recuperarse del huracán María; pero quedé gratamente sorprendida de lo rápido que se levantaron. 💪🏽 Eso demuestra la tenacidad del latino para no dejarse vencer y ante las dificultades ponerse de pie con más fuerza. 🔥 . #DiscoverPuertoRico #DestinoCopa #Copa2PuertoRico

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Try to make your visit to Paseo de Sombrillas at an off-hour unless you want to cope with the considerable crowds drawn to this major tourist spot. For just you amid the forest of umbrellas in your Instagram photo, try to arrive at the street early in the morning.

Hey, if you arrive late. you can try for some colorful crowd scenes as Puerto Rican shoppers, as well as lots of tourists, explore this special byway of a unique city.