Old San Juan Is For Walking


walking in old san juanI’ll never understand how there are people who jump in their cars and waste hours driving around Old San Juan.  That’s the idiot’s way to see the Old City!  But there doesn’t seem to be a shortage of those.  Just visit Old San Juan any Sunday afternoon and you’ll see the long line of cars going from Fort San Cristobal to Fort San Felipe del Morro on Norzagaray Street.

Old San Juan was built by people who had no cars.  Hence, the city streets are narrow, there’s hardly any parking space and the Caribbean sun is so blistering hot that even the best air conditioners can hardly keep up.

The Old San Juan Walking Tour

The Old San Juan Walking Tour. Click on image to see it larger.

Besides, the devil is in the details.  You need to be standing on your own two feet to read the placards on historical landmarks, visit interesting shops, talk to the people, visit the many museums and parks, and stop for a refreshment (adult or otherwise) at one of the city’s many bars and cafeterias.  You just can’t do any of that while sitting in a car.

Then there’s the element of time.  Many tourists arrive on cruise ships and hardly have 8 hours to enjoy the city.  That’s barely enough to explore the Spanish forts, grab a quick lunch or souvenir and rush back to your ship.

Others arrive by plane and have fewer time constraints.  But if they don’t know what to look for they’re prone to wander through the Old City without really getting to know it.

Guía del Caminante del Viejo San Juan

Guía del Caminante del Viejo San Juan. Click on image to see it larger.

Of course, there are trained guides that you can pay to show you around, but they’re expensive and often you’ll be competing for attention with fellow tourists in your party.  If you like feeling like you’re part of a herd, by all means go for it!.

That’s brings us to “The Old San Juan Walking Tour”“The Old San Juan Walking Tour” is an illustrated e-book for your Amazon Kindle that takes you on a step-by-step imaginary tour of Puerto Rico’s most beautiful city.  And it leaves nothing out.  You’ll explore the Spanish forts, the statues, the plazas and every other popular landmark in a virtual walk (complete with 66 stunning photos) that starts right next to Pier #1 and returns you to the same place 8 hours later; just in time to catch your ship!

And the best thing is that you can read “The Old San Juan Walking Tour” in the comfort of your own home, determine exactly what you’d prefer to see and hit the ground running when you arrive!  All for less than the price of a sandwich.

Oh, and did I forget to tell you that it’s also available in Spanish?  That’s right!!!  It’s called “Guía Del Caminante Del Viejo San Juan” and it’s just as useful if “español” happens to be your native tongue.


So if you’re coming to Old San Juan, and you really want to get to know this city in a very short amount of time, do yourself a favor.  Leave the car at any of the city’s many parking garages, jump into your sneakers and hit the cobblestones on foot.  Then you’ll really be able to say “I visited Old San Juan”.

©2015,Orlando Mergal, MA

Bilingual Content Creator, Blogger, Podcaster,
Author, Photographer and New Media Expert
Tel. 787-750-0000, Mobile 787-306-1590