4 star rating: Recommended 2 Reviews

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  • Location: San Juan, Puerto Rico
  • Duration:  6 hours (approx.)
If you’re interested in learning about Puerto Rico’s cultural history, this day trip to the city of Caguas will delight you! Just 20 miles (32 km) south of San Juan, Caguas is home to two unique cultural activities that you’ll experience with a guide. At the Caguas Botanical and Cultural Garden, learn about Puerto Rican industry and indigenous culture with a walking tour of a sugar mill and an exhibit on the Taino people. Then walk the Route of the Creole Heart in the center of town to see several historical landmarks and visit three small cultural museums.

Highlights

  • Day trip from San Juan to Caguas
  • Visit the Caguas Botanical and Cultural Garden to see native flowers and other plantlife
  • Learn about Puerto Rico’s sugar cane industry and its Taino indigenous group through fascinating re-creations and displays
  • Enjoy an alfresco Puerto Rican lunch at the garden
  • Follow your guide along the Route of the Creole Heart in central Caguas
  • Pass by landmarks like City Hall and Sweet Name of Jesus Cathedral
  • Visit three small museums dedicated to history, popular arts and tobacco

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Caguas Cultural Day Trip from San Juan Including Botanical Garden and Lunch

Learn about the Taino culture!

After pickup in San Juan, your day trip starts with the 30-minute drive south to Caguas by comfortable van or minibus. Head straight to the Caguas Botanical and Cultural Garden (Jardín Botánico y Cultural de Caguas), your first stop of the day.

More than just a space for flowers and other vegetation, the garden is home to an array of displays and exhibits that promote Puerto Rico’s natural and cultural history. With your guide, take a walking tour of an old sugar mill and re-created hacienda to learn about one of the Caribbean’s most important industries, and explore the Taino Ancestral Grove, which depicts the life of Puerto Rico’s indigenous group through art and artifacts. Plus, as this is a garden, you will admire the many varieties of native flora that make up the lush property.

Stay at the garden to enjoy lunch at El Guariquitén, an on-site restaurant where your food — a typical Puerto Rican meal of rice, beans and meat — is cooked on an open-air wood stove. Sit down at one of the picnic tables to enjoy your lunch alfresco, and then head to your vehicle with your guide to continue your day trip.

Your next stop is Caguas’ main square, known as Palmer Plaza, where you begin walking the Route of the Creole Heart (Ruta del Corazón Criollo), a route through central Caguas that takes you past several cultural and historical attractions, introducing you to the city’s historical and present-day culture. Pass by landmarks like City Hall (built in 1887) and Sweet Name of Jesus Cathedral (built in 1930), and visit three small museums along the way — the History Museum, Popular Arts Museum and Tobacco Museum.

Your day trip ends with return to your original pickup location.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2014

Loved this tour! Took my Spanish students and they enjoyed it as well. They enjoyed the museums because the tour was done in Spanish and English. Lunch at the Botanical gardens was very authentic. They cooked chicken, rices, beans, and fried plantains over fire. The kids really enjoyed watching the iguanas walking around as they were eating lunch. We were able to tour the botanical gardens on golf carts. You have to get coffee from the vendor in the plaza beside the merry go round.

3 star rating: Worth doing July 2014

If you can't get to Caguas on your own, then this tour is perfect for exploring some of the museums in Caguas. I would have preferred more time in the Botanical Garden, and, as vegans, we were promised there would be plantains along with the rice and beans for our lunch, but they ran out of patacones before we got there. Our guide was excellent.

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Tour code: 5229CAGUAS

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