Saturday, November 12, 2011

Walking Through the Walled City of San Juan

Castillo De San Cristobal
Castillo San Felipe Del Morro

This is a recovery day here in Old San Juan, we walked through the streets and spent some time in Paseo de la Princesa.     This is just below the wall of the city on the Southside.      Old San Juan is known as the walled city, because there are stone walls on three sides of the city that protected it from attack from the sea.     The two major fortresses are San Felipe El Morro Castle and San Cristobal Castle at East and West ends of the city.     These 16th century fortresses have protected San Juan proudly since their construction.    Today nearly 2 million visitors a year visit these “Castles”.     If you ever come to San Juan you will be remiss if you don’t take the time to see these magnificent structures.

     The Walled city itself is a pleasure to walk through the blue cobble stone streets and enjoy the colorful buildings.     The restaurants, and bars here in Old San Juan are as unique as the city itself.       Many of the bars have historical significance to the rum world, like Barrachina where it is claimed in 1965 that the Pina Colada was first created, even though there is a lot of controversy about that, because it is also claimed that it was created at the Caribe Hilton also in San Juan in 1954.    As we wandered through these narrow streets, we found ourselves just enjoying the walk and seeing all of the unique architecture and colors of the city.

     Our stay in Old San Juan is a short on, because tomorrow we have a couple of welcome parties, then it is boarding of the cruise ship for the Rum Cruise.    I wish I had a little more time here in San Juan to get over to the Barrilito and Bacardi Distilleries here  in San Juan, but that can be saved for another visit when there is more time.     We will have to just see what tomorrow has to offer, with Rums of Puerto Rico and Don Q welcome parties.     ;o)