Puerto Rico in the Caribbean

Monday, 17 August 2015 - 01:00 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General
Reading Time:  8 minutes

Coast Guard Barque Eagle in front of the 16th century Fort San Felipe de Morro in San Juan © United States Coast Guard

Coast Guard Barque Eagle in front of the 16th century Fort San Felipe de Morro in San Juan © United States Coast Guard

Puerto Rico, officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico (Spanish: Estado Libre Asociado de Puerto Rico, literally the “Free Associated State of Puerto Rico”), is a United States territory located in the northeastern Caribbean. Puerto Rico is an archipelago that includes the main island of Puerto Rico and a number of smaller islands, including Vieques, Culebra, Mona, Desecheo, and Caja de Muertos. Of these last five, only Culebra and Vieques are inhabited year-round. Culebra, which is only 18 miles away from the mainland, is home to Flamenco Beach, one of the top ten beaches in the world. Mona is uninhabited most of the year except for employees of the Puerto Rico Department of Natural Resources. There are also many other smaller islands, including Monito and “La Isleta de San Juan,” which includes Old San Juan and Puerta de Tierra, and is connected to the main island by bridges. The capital and largest city is San Juan. Its official languages are Spanish, which is predominant, and English. Puerto Ricans “were collectively made U.S. citizens” in 1917 as a result of the Jones-Shafroth Act. U.S. citizens residing in Puerto Rico cannot vote for the U.S. president, though both major parties, Republican and Democrat, run primary elections in Puerto Rico to send delegates to vote on a presidential candidate. Since Puerto Rico is an unincorporated territory and not a U.S. state, the United States Constitution does not fully enfranchise US citizens residing in Puerto Rico (“Voting rights in Puerto Rico“).

Puerto Rico’s rich history, warm tropical climate, diverse natural scenery, renowned traditional cuisine and attractive tax incentives make it a popular destination for tourists, academics, and business visitors. Because of its location in the Caribbean and history of colonization, Puerto Rico’s culture is a melting pot of Taíno, Spanish, African and North American influences.

Old San Juan aerial view © U.S. National Park Service Patillas © flickr.com - Oquendo/cc-by-2.0 Flying into San Juan © flickr com - Breezy Baldwin/cc-by-2.0 Capitol of Puerto Rico in Puerta de Tierra © Mtmelendez/cc-by-sa-3.0 Ponce © Jose Oquendo/cc-by-sa-3.0 Coast Guard Barque Eagle in front of the 16th century Fort San Felipe de Morro in San Juan © United States Coast Guard
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Coast Guard Barque Eagle in front of the 16th century Fort San Felipe de Morro in San Juan © United States Coast Guard
Modern Puerto Rican culture is a unique mix of cultural antecedents: including Taíno (Amerindians), Spanish, African, European and, more recently, North American. The architecture of Puerto Rico demonstrates a broad variety of traditions, styles and national influences accumulated over four centuries of Spanish rule, and a century of American rule. Spanish colonial architecture, Moorish, art deco, post-modern, and many other architectural forms are visible throughout the island. From town to town, there are also many regional distinctions. Puerto Rican art reflects many influences, much from its ethnically diverse background. A form of folk art, called santos evolved from the Catholic Church’s use of sculptures to convert indigenous Puerto Ricans to Christianity.

Tourism in Puerto Rico attracted 4.2 million visitors in 2013 and 4 million visitors in 2011, a notable increase over 2010 at 3.68 million, tourism has been a money revenue industry for Puerto Rico for a number of decades given it is host to diverse natural wonders, cultural and historical buildings, concerts and sporting events. The fact that visitors from the United States do not need a passport to enter Puerto Rico attracts a large number of tourists from the mainland United States each year. Other groups of tourists that visit Puerto Rico in significant numbers include French, German, Spaniards, Mexicans, Venezuelan, Brazilians and Asian tourists.

Read more on Puerto Rico, TravelAndLeisure.com – Puerto Rico Guide, PuertoRico.com, SeePuertoRico.com, ToPuertoRico.org, Wikivoyage Puerto Rico and Wikipedia Puerto Rico. Learn more about the use of photos. To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facebook pages/Twitter accounts. In addition more and more destinations, tourist organizations and cultural institutions offer Apps for your Smart Phone or Tablet, to provide you with a mobile tourist guide (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Johns Hopkins University & Medicine - Coronavirus Resource Center - Global Passport Power Rank - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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