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Transportation from San Juan

by grandmaR Online Now Sep 8, 2005 at 12:45 PM

I'm starting (probably not before time) to research our stops on our
October cruise.

We get to San Juan on Friday arriving at 1300 (1 p.m.) and leaving at 2100 (9 p.m.). There are two things that I want to see - El Yunque Rainforest, and El Moro fort in town.

The tours that are available that I might be interested in are
a) A 5 hour Rainforest Tour31 @ starting at 1330.
b) Old and New San Juan City Tour for 3 hours39 @ also starting at
1330.

Obviously I can't do both tours. The rainforest hours are 7:30 am to 6 pm. If I took the Old San Juan tour first which ends at 1630 (4:30 pm) would it be too late to get to the rainforest afterwards?

The websites and Frommer's "Caribbean 2005" say it is about 28 miles from Old San Juan (14 miles of that on an expressway) and takes about 45 minutes to drive. Someone else has told me that it will take an hour and a half on twisty ill marked roads to get there.

The Insight Guide to Caribbean Cruises says that this is normally a
half day organized tour including a photo stop at El Luquillo Beach,
but that "it is a relatively easy place to reach independently by taxi
or even by bus."

Is there a good way to negotiate a taxi for a tour to El Yunque?

If I take a taxi out there how will I get back or will I need to
pay for the taxi to wait? About how much will that cost?

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  • grandmaR's Profile Photo

    RE: Transportation from San Juan

    by grandmaR Online Now Sep 11, 2005 at 6:41 AM

    I got some private answers from a PR resident so I'm posting them FYI

    Question
    >The websites and Frommer's "Caribbean 2005" say it is about 28 miles from
    Old San Juan (14 miles of that on an expressway) and takes about 45 minutes to
    drive. Someone else has told me that it will take an hour and a half on twisty
    ill marked roads to get there. Which is correct?

    Answer: The only twisty road to El Yunque is once you get there and start going
    uphill. The route to/from San Juan could not be more straight. It has many
    stoplights, although, and that makes an otherwise short trip too long. Who told you about ill-marked roads is not right. It is very easy to follow its road signs.

    Question:
    >The Insight Guide to Caribbean Cruises says that this is normally a half day
    organized tour including a photo stop at El Luquillo Beach, but that "it is a
    relatively easy place to reach independently by taxi or even by bus." Is
    there a good way to negotiate a taxi for a tour to El Yunque?

    >If I take a taxi out there how will I get back or will I need to pay for the
    taxi to wait? About how much will that cost?

    Answer: What seems that guide does not tell is that tours must stop at the Portal del Yunque, which is a kind of visitor center. That will take even more time of your tour. You do not have to stop at the Portal if you go on your own. The portal is good if you want to enjoy El Yunque in a museum-type way.

    A taxi is too expensive. You might want to rent a car instead. You can go
    to El Yunque after 6:00 and manage to see something up to how dark it gets that
    day. However, there will be no services and you will not be able to drive as
    far up as you would in daylight.

    >If I took the Rainforest Tour we wouldn't get back until after 6. Would the
    Fort still be open?

    Closed.

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