Guide to Puerto Rico's Neighborhoods
Puerto Rico is made up of six different regions on the main island with 78 municipalities, including the smaller islands of Vieques and Culebra. Each area has its own unique characteristics and neighborhoods. Let’s break it down.
The pricing on real estate property for rent or sale will vary depending on the size of the unit and location. A well-known local resource to research pricing is Clasificados Online.
The metro includes ten towns surrounding Puerto Rico’s capital of San Juan: San Juan, Guaynabo, Bayamón, Dorado, Caguas, Carolina, Cataño, Toa Alta, Toa Baja, and Trujillo Alto. This is considered the urban downtown of Puerto Rico where history and culture intersect with energetic city life. It is also home to SJU airport.
POI (points of interest)
- San Felipe del Morro
- Casa Bacardí
- Plaza Las Américas
- San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino
- Sheraton Puerto Rico Hotel & Casino
⭐ Piloto’s top pick neighborhoods:
- Old San Juan Old San Juan is rich in Spanish arquitecture. On any given day you can find visitors and locals strolling its cobblestone streets, flying kites in El Morro, cruises disembarking on the port, a festival or mercado… It’s known for its historic buildings, government agencies, La Fortaleza (the governor’s home), and it’s also home to Piloto151’s coworking space. Home buyers with different budgets have several options available to rent, buy, or airbnb.
- Condado (apartment living) Condado is San Juan’s most luxurious district, sitting oceanfront to hotels, a busy nightlife, beachside restaurants, and world-renowned, upscale brand boutiques. You can find everything within walking distance and much to do. Go paddle boarding in the Condado’s lagoon, play beach tennis in Ocean Park, visit the monthly mercado agrícola, walk your kids to bilingual private schools (Robinson’s, Saint John’), shop for groceries in Freshmart, bar hop in the swanky hotels.
- Miramar Sitting across from Condado, Miramar is an affluent neighborhood of San Juan. It is a good mix of restaurants and residential community. It is relatively quiet, close to everything, and distinguished by its many Spanish-style homes. Order pastries from Lucia Patisserie, eat and shop for groceries at La Hacienda Meat Center, get tickets to an event at the Puerto Rico Convention Center, or visit Distrito T-mobile, an event’s venue with restaurants, music, and entertainment.
- Santurce The more eclectic and arty neighborhood of San Juan is Santurce. It has many hotspots for nightlife, culture, and entertainment with several renowned fine arts institutions including the Puerto Rican Museum of Art and the Museum of Contemporary Art (MAC). Another hotspot is La Placita de Santurce, an outdoor mercado or plaza that transforms at night as a hotspot for drinks, eating, . Further, Santurce is known for its distinguished private schools, which are scattered all over the neighborhood. The 20 private schools located in Santurce offer a variety of excellent educational opportunities.
- Hato Rey Hato Rey is home to Puerto Rico’s financial district. Tucked away in Hato Rey are many residential apartment buildings, the Coliseo de Puerto Rico where most concerts are hosted, and train stations.
- Guaynabo Guaynabo is another well-known residential suburb with private communities and houses with yards.
- Caguas A little farther away from Guaynabo, Caguas is another suburb with lower pricing housing and spacious residential communities. Traffic is not ideal though.
El norte (The north)
There are nine towns in the north of Puerto Rico: Arecibo, Barceloneta, Camuy, Dorado, Hatillo, Manatí, Toa Alta, Vega Alta, and Vega Baja. Here you can explore splendid caves, beautiful beaches, and exceptional resorts.
- Mar Chiquita
- Puerto Rico Premium Outlets
- Río Camuy Cave Park
⭐ Piloto’s top pick town: Dorado
Dorado, a quiet town for people looking into bigger housing and beach life. Although traffic during rush hour is not ideal, Dorado Beach Resort is high in demand and has one of the highest purchase prices on the real estate market.
El sur (The south)
The south of Puerto Rico is comprised of 11 towns: Ponce, Coamo, Salinas, Arroyo, Guayama, Guayanilla, Juana Díaz, Patillas, Peñuelas, Santa Isabel, and Villalba. If you are looking to immerse yourself in colorful architecture, historic art, and stunning natural beauty, this is the ideal area for you.
- Museo de Arte de Ponce
- Castillo Serrallés
- Parque de Bombas
- Cruceta del Vigía
- Caja de Muertos
- Hot Springs of Coamo
⭐ Piloto’s top pick town: Ponce
El este (The east)
Taking it to the east! Puerto Rico’s eastern region consists of 15 towns where you get to enjoy of secluded beaches, a legendary rainforest, museums, gardens, and island excursions. The towns that make up this region include: Loíza, Gurabo, Juncos, Las Piedras, San Lorenzo, Caguas, Canóvanas, Rio Grande, Luquillo, Fajardo, Ceiba, Naguabo, Maunabo, Humacao, and Yabucoa.
- El Yunque
- Balneario La Monserrate
- Carabali Rainforest Park
- Jardín Botánico y Cultural de Caguas
- Criollo Heart Trail
⭐ Piloto’s top pick neighborhoods: Rio Grande, especially St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort and Rio Mar near el Yunque
El oeste (The westside)
Let’s talk about the west aka the surfing capital of Puerto Rico. This region is the opposite of the metropolitan area. Some consider the western side to be a very relaxing area. The towns of Aguada, Aguadilla, Añasco, Cabo Rojo, Gunica, Hormigueros, Isabela, Lajas, Las Marías, Maricao, Mayagüez, Moca, Quebradillas, Rincón, Sabana Grande, San Germán, San Sebastián, Lares, and Yauco offer the best sunsets and surfer vibes.
- Los Morrillos Lighthouse
- Salt flats
- Cabo Rojo National Wildlife Refuge
- La Parguera
⭐ Piloto’s top pick towns: Rincón and Mayagüez
Área central (The center of the island)
Let’s move in to the Cordillera Central, the interior mountain region of Puerto Rico. History and culture in this region are rooted in agriculture running from east to west through 15 municipalities. Most of the island’s coffee is produced here. There is diverse vegetation and several haciendas that you can visit in Adjuntas, Aguas Buenas, Aibonito, Barranquitas, Cayey, Ciales, Cidra, Comerío, Corozal, Florida, Jayuya, Morovis, Naranjito, Orocovis, and Utuado. to get fully immersed in the coffee experience.
- Toro Verde Nature Adventure Park
- Tanamá River
- Hacienda Tres Ángeles
⭐ Piloto’s top pick town: Utuado
Boat rides, anyone? Meet us at Vieques & Culebra! These enchanting islands are a short boat ride away from Puerto Rico. You will find some of the world-renowned beaches and the world’s brightest bioluminescent bay here. It’s Puerto Rico’s best-kept secret!
- Mosquito Bay
- Bioluminescent Bay
- Flamenco Beach
- Vieques National Wildlife Refuge
- Cayo Luis Peña Natural Reserve
⭐ Piloto’s top pick island: Culebra