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Monday, December 9, 2013

5-Star Vacations on a Budget in Puerto Rico

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Puerto Rico, The All-Star Island. All opinions are 100% mine.

As a budget traveler, I love to get a fantastic deal, especially on a luxury travel experience. I also love my trip to be stress-free. It's not always easy to get both of those things in on vacation, but you can if you travel to Puerto Rico. You get to visit a foreign country without a passport or exchanging money or learning another language (though if you speak some Spanish or want to work on it, it's probably appreciated).

With the temperatures dropping, you're probably wishing you were somewhere warm and sunny. It's summertime in Puerto Rico, which is enough to make anyone start packing their shorts and swimsuits. You can't go wrong with 270 miles of coastline and some of the world's best beaches. Enjoy them even at night with bioluminescent bays that are full of plankton that light up when the water is disturbed, so you look like you're glowing when you are out for a swim or kayaking at night. These bays are very rare and amazing. Three of the only five in the world are located in Puerto Rico! That seems like a reason to visit alone.

You don't have to be a beach lover to head to island though. There is so much to do, you might find yourself thinking there ins't enough time to do it all in one trip. There's:
  • hiking, rock climbing and ziplining for the adventurous. 
  • fishing, horseback riding and biking for the sports and outdoor enthusiast. 
  • haute cuisine and coffee for the foodie.
  • art, music and historical sites for culture buffs.
  • casinos, dance clubs and bars for for the night owls.
If you can't find it in Puerto Rico, you probably haven't left your hotel room! I mean, you can even visit the only rainforest of the U.S. National Parks. This is your chance to see some unique species of flora and fauna in their beautiful natural habitat. The country gets top ratings from travelers and, to show you how much people love it, SeePuertoRico.com has teamed up with TripAdvisor to bring life to travel reviews. See just how awesome a trip can be with short films inspired by these reviews, like the one below:

If you don't think you can afford a vacation this holiday season, think again, because you can start planning an affordable trip right now. In fact, you can plan a mid-January arrival and get in on the San Sebastián Street Festival. It's four days of culture, music and art. Fun, right? If I were planning a trip, I'd want to stay at the Casa Condada Hotel in the historical San Juan, because it's just one block away from the beach, has a terrace where one can just laze away in a hammock and is convenient to nightlife and restaurants. Under $100 per night for a plush room in a boutique hotel with less than 25 rooms is almost impossible to find nowadays. Here are some of the things I would have on my itinerary:
  • Rum tasting! What happened to all the rum? If it's good, I probably drank it. You won't fined better premium rums that in PR.
  • Snorkeling! My husband, Eric, loves the water. Though I have had mixed emotions about getting in the deep end, I'm willing to give it another shot because he likes it and to get a glimpse of some of their local marine life, including an abundant sea turtle population.
  • Agrotourism! Have you ever heard of this? Me either, but I want to go to a plantation and taste coffee and learning about eco-conscious and fair trade growing processes.
  • Ziplining! I'm definitely not afraid of heights and soaring through the canopy and over the Tanama River sounds like a great way to spend an afternoon.
  • Boat tour! I'm really into seeing those bioluminescent bays, and taking a nighttime tour sounds like the perfect way to see them. I'm especially interested in seeing them from the comfort of a dry boat.
  • Food, food, food! Yup, you know how much I adore trying new foods when I go on vacation. With local delicacies like mofongo, asopao and lechón, my taste buds are going to be working overtime.
All these things and more can make you turn any budget adventure into a 5-star experience! So, what are you waiting for? Are you adding Puerto Rico to your travel list? Live your own 5-star vacation story in Puerto Rico.

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