An immigration appointment brought us to Puerto Rico on Friday, and the zest for exploring kept us there.
Friday night, after our plane was delayed over an hour and I had well and truly missed my appointment with Immigration (while no-one in the office was answering the phone!), we arrived at San Juan International Airport aroud 8pm. I raced over to the office (located in the airport) and luckily was still allowed to be seen for a quick interview and fingerprints.
Being that it was so late, we made a beeline for a restaurant in Old San Juan we still had vouchers too and after dealing with parking, tourists etc. we finished off our dinner around 11pm.
Marriott hotels had a deal that Geoff picked up on which we took advantage of this weekend - stay at a Marriott hotel for one night, get one night free (at a different Marriott hotel) Sweet! Even more of an excuse to explore the untapped areas of our former home a little more.
After a rather comfortable sleep at the Courtyard in Miramar, we jumped into our little rental car and headed West, towards Aguadilla, Rincon and Mayaguez. (Our second night was booked at the Courtyard in Aguadilla). Not before breakfast at our favorite breakfast spot though - Kasalta...home of the gigantic pressed sandwiches and super strong espresso. This time instead of my usual hamon, huevo y queso (ham, cheese and egg), I went for traditional Puerto-Rican Style "Avena" (oatmeal). This type of oatmeal made with condensed milk, cream and cinnamon is the ultimate comfort food and blows typical American-style oatmeal out of the water!
Our bellies full and we hit the road. At the turnoff to Dorado (just 15 miles/24 km west of San Juan), we came across a very local's looking beach among all the highrises and golf courses. Wanting to stretch our legs a little before starting the longer drive out west, we came across an abandoned, yet beautiful campground with an even more beautiful cliffs lining it. Why didnt we know about this when we lived here?
Look, even the tiling is Spanish style!
Can you spot the iguana?
With lots of little stops here and there along the way, we finally reached Aquadilla around sunset. Geoff and his Dad went to play golf at a course directly next to this beach (pictures below), which provided one of the most spectacular sunsets ever.
Old ruins made for some beautiful photos at this deserted beach
After a full day of driving, sightseeing and snacking, nothing seemed more appealing than......iceskating! Yes, the Caribbeans' only ice rink was located here in Aguadilla. Luckily we both had long pants and long sleeves with us (thanks to the locals knowledge we have of St. Croix loving to freeze out their patrons at the airport), all that was needed was a quick stop at K-mart for some socks and then it was off for an hour on the rink! Geoff tried to teach me to skate backwards but I ended up with my butt on the ice more times than I actually made an inch on the ice, so I decided the pro skating can be left to him...which is absolutely awesome at.
A hearty, steaming bowl of Caldo Gallego (Spanish soup made with Chorizo, white beans and wilted greens) warmed us up after being on the ice for an hour!
Part 2 (Sunday) to come soon...