Entertainment

Puerto Rico’s Airbnbs And Experienced Will Take Your Vacation To The Next Level

Aside from just straight donating to charities, visiting Puerto Rico is one of the best ways to help the island continue its recovery from the damages of Hurricane Maria. The island has a long history of relying on tourism to boost its economy, and it’s for good reason: es bellísima. 

Learn to rappel down a waterfall | $135

Diego / Airbnb

If you came to Puerto Rico for the waterfalls, then climbing several small waterfalls with Diego to reach the top of El Salta Waterfall is for you. He’ll teach you how to rappel down the 80 foot waterfall and then zipline out of the forest. Plus, reviewers say that Diego’s family accommodated their vegan dietary needs for a home-cooked meal afterward!

Tree House | $62 p/night

Enrique / Airbnb

I see you outdoorsy people. Enjoy a stay in a five star rated modest treehouse in Utuado, close to rivers, lakes beaches and caves. One reviewer raves, “A magic, romantic and private place for anyone who like wilderness and peace. Much better than i expected. Crazy for going back there. And centric for whoever visit and is planning to adventure the whole island.”

Culebra Snorkeling Getaway | $115

East Island / Airbnb

This sold out experience gets you six hours of Caribbean Sea views, both above board and under water. Enjoy Culebra’s beautiful beaches and coral reefs at your leisure, along with a lunch buffet and all snorkeling gear included.

Pool House with Underground Jacuzzi Grotto | $850 p/night

Max / Airbnb

If you’re swimming in dough or have a big group of friends, you’ll enjoy this 8-bedroom mansion complete with an underground jacuzzi. The home itself is a piece of history, complete with private pools and unique features.

Rainforest Water Slide Tour | $89

Chris / Airbnb

This is Airbnb’s #1 adventure tour in Puerto Rico for a reason. You’ll get to go to remote giant rainforest water slides and jump off of 30 foot cliffs into crystal clear water.

Body Rafting™ & Caving ∙Nature Reserve | $110

Mimi / Airbnb

Mimi is a scientist who has spent 7 years surveying the geo hydrology of Tanamá caves. She takes adventurers in life vests to float downstream and get a nature tour of the caves she studies so intimately.

Horseback Ride on Luquillo Beach | $99

Alejandro / Airbnb

You guys. Bring your boo to “traverse the crystal clear waters of the Mameyes River to finally reach Luquillo’s Gold Coast” on horseback. Then, relax on the beach, have a drink and enjoy the breeze.

Casablanca | $79

CasaBlanca / Airbnb

Rent out your own air conditioned space just blocks from Ocean Park beach in San Juan. When you’re not taking in San Juan, you can relax on your own hammock in a tropical private garden.

Condado City Lights – LED Night Paddle | $49

mark / Airbnb

If your idea of enjoying San Juan’s nightlife is from an LED lit paddle board, then Mark has you covered. The glow face paint is included. ; )

Sail San Juan Bay | $75

Ivan / Airbnb

Spend a couple hours with Ivan on a romantic sunset sail on San Juan Bay. His complimentary drinks really hit home with reviewers, along with his excellent photography skills. Get that couples’ shot with flying manta rays. This is your vacay.

Mofongos! Mofongos! Mofongos! | $29

cristian / Airbnb

You haven’t been to Puerto Rico until you’ve drooled while eating its famous mofongo. Join Cristian and his family in learning how to make the dish, offered to meet your dietary needs.

Entire Condominium in San Juan | $115 p/night

Annet and Andrés / Airbnb

A recent guest says it all about this gem: “A rare piece of history and beauty. An incredible opportunity to see, hear, and experience Old San Juan from the most premier location. The Victorian doors and windows were stunning. The open balconies on the interior was fascinating and incredible – facilitating a constant warm ocean breeze when the louvers and shutters were open. A roof porch in the center of town. Great views of the lively colors of the city. Thanks to Lourdes for her kindness, recommendations, and welcomeness. Kind neighbors downstairs. Muchas gracias!”

Go Paddleboarding in a scenic lagoon with Julio for $25

Juilo / Airbnb

Check out Puerto Rico’s manatees, sea turtles and sting rays in a beautiful lagoon adjacent to the city of San Juan. His staff are all certified by the American Canoe Association to give you the best experience possible of the Condado Lagoon.

Surfing with Local Brian Ramos! | $70

Brian / Airbnb

Brian promises to take you to uncrowded spots where beginners are able to get 10+ waves in a short two hour lesson. If you’ve never surfed before, trust that this is huge.

Experience Tropical Camping at a Cabin Close to the Ocean | $95 p/night

Francis / Airbnb

Call this glamping, complete with post-modern minimalist decor, AC and a nearby beach. Reviewers truly *rave* about their host: “We loved staying at Francis’ place. It was immaculate and furnished with great attention to detail. There was a nice bottle of red wine and chocolates. Francis was very hospitable and easy to talk to, and he gave us two fresh coconuts and straws to drink from. What makes this Airbnb special is the beach nearby and the local friendliness in the area. The beach is right across the street and through a little trail. It is very private besides a few surfers in the morning. The sand is soft and the waves are beautiful. We spent a lot of time collecting sea shells and swimming. We will definitely be back!”

Exotic Flower Farm Stay | $39 p/night

Britton / Airbnb

Yup. You can stay in a cabana on a tropical fruit and flower farm with ocean views. Grab a mango from the garden and head to the beach for some good surf, all at a very reasonable price.

Barefoot Studio Sanctuary Prime Location Surf Yoga | $50 p/night

Joy / Airbnb

The best part about this studio, complete with a king bed and private garden filled with tropical flowers for your picking, is how integrated other activities are with your stay. You can walk to the beach, take surf and yoga lessons offered by the same company.

Eco-Chalet up in the mountains | $100 p/night

Juan Carlos / Airbnb

Enjoy your stay at the only Puerto Rican eco-lodge listed on Airbnb. The house is on 144 acres of private tropical rainforest. The only electricity in the house comes from solar energy, and you can expect to be completely unplugged from the internet. This place has 100 five star reviews.

Cave Tubing and Ziplining Adventure | $75

Noel / Airbnb

It’s the lazy river for not so lazy people. This trip into the Arecibo area includes a 250 foot biplane, rafting into caves, and hikes through the famous El Yunque rainforest.

El Yunque Rainforest River Trail! | $89

Safuan / Airbnb

Safuan offers transportation to and from the famous El Yunque rainforest. From there, you’ll embark on a short hike to a less traversed swimming hole, complete with a swinging rope, a natural stone slide, and local beach.

READ: 22 Amazing Airbnb Listings For Your Next Trip to Latin America

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Americans Are So Fed Up With The Pandemic They’re Willing To Give Up Sex To Travel

Things That Matter

Americans Are So Fed Up With The Pandemic They’re Willing To Give Up Sex To Travel

What do you miss most about pre-COVID life? Is it eating out at restaurants? Going to the club to perrear? Or is it traveling? For many Americans, it seems like the number one answer would be traveling. In fact, a huge number of Americans miss traveling so much that they would be willing to give up sex just to be able to go on a trip right now. 

So just how many people are willing to give up sex for a trip right now?

According to an informal survey conducted by travel site Trivago, a whopping 38% of Americans say they’d give up sex for an entire year to go on a trip right now. And that’s a poll of 2,000 people! 

“After a year that changed everything, it’s clear that modern travel has been profoundly altered, perhaps forever. As the vaccine rollout continues and restrictions begin to lift in parts of the globe, eager travelers everywhere wait patiently for the clear signal to be able to get away and adventure once again,” Trivago shared in a statement alongside its survey results. “The results reveal significant desires to travel, including what consumers would give up, what they’d like to do and where they’d like to go, as well as why they’d like to get back on the road.”

But it wasn’t just sex…Americans are willing to give up a lot that they care about for a trip.

Beyond finding out that more than one-third of Americans would give up sex for a year, Trivago also found that one in five people would give up their partner to travel now, and one in four said they’d give up all their savings. Additionally, nearly 50% of respondents in the U.S. said they’d happily give up their job to hit the road again.

Why are people so willing to give it all up for a few vacations?

“More than 80% of those surveyed somewhat or strongly agree that travel is a part of a well-rounded life,” Trivago added. “The concept of travel as a form of self-care/wellness and to expand one’s perspective is one that continues to grow.”

It noted, in both the U.S. and the UK, a substantial majority of respondents said that being prevented from traveling freely is one of the worst aspects of the pandemic and that because of the pandemic this is the most they’ve ever felt like traveling.

But hopefully we won’t have to wait too much longer. Although international travel is still largely discouraged by governments around the world, some level of travel is starting to return to normal. But until we have the COVID-19 pandemic under control, it’s important we do our part to keep everyone safe. Things like staycations, domestic trips, and even taking a virtual vacation. While it may not be entirely the same thing, at least you won’t have to give up all the good parts of life to get it.

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Today, Puerto Rico Celebrates Emancipation Day–the Day When the Island Officially Abolished Slavery

Things That Matter

Today, Puerto Rico Celebrates Emancipation Day–the Day When the Island Officially Abolished Slavery

Photo via George W. Davis, Public Domain

Today, March 22nd marks Día de la Abolición de Esclavitud in Puerto Rico–the date that marks the emancipation of slaves in Puerto Rico. In Puerto Rico, enslaved peoples were emancipated in 1873–a full decade after the U.S. officially abolished slavery. But unlike the U.S. mainland, Puerto Rico celebrates today as an official holiday, where many businesses are closed.

The emancipation of Puerto Rican slaves was a very different process than the United States’. For one, the emancipation was gradual and over three years.

When the Spanish government abolished slavery in Puerto Rico 1873, enslaved men and women had to buy their freedom. The price was set by their “owners”. The way the emancipated slaves bought their freedom was through a process that was very similar to sharecropping in the post-war American south. Emancipated slaves farmed, sold goods, and worked in different trades to “buy” their freedom.

In the same Spanish edict that abolished slavery, slaves over the age of 60 were automatically freed. Enslaved children who were 5-years-old and under were also automatically freed.

Today, Black and mixed-race Puerto Ricans of Black descent make up a large part of Puerto Rico’s population.

The legacy of enslaved Black Puerto Ricans is a strong one. Unlike the United States, Puerto Rico doesn’t classify race in such black-and-white terms. Puerto Ricans are taught that everyone is a mixture of three groups of people: white Spanish colonizers, Black African slaves, and the indigenous Taíno population.

African influences on Puerto Rican culture is ubiquitous and is present in Puerto Rican music, cuisine, and even in the way that the island’s language evolved. And although experts estimate that up to 60% of Puerto Ricans have significant African ancestry, almost 76% of Puerto Ricans identified as white only in the latest census poll–a phenomenon that many sociologists have blamed on anti-blackness.

On Puerto Rico’s Día de la Abolición de Esclavitud, many people can’t help but notice that the island celebrates a day of freedom and independence when they are not really free themselves.

As the fight for Puerto Rican decolonization rages on, there is a bit of irony in the fact that Puerto Rico is one of the only American territories that officially celebrates the emancipation of slaves, when Puerto Rico is not emancipated from the United States. Yes, many Black Americans recognize Juneteenth (June 19th) as the official day to celebrate emancipation from slavery, but it is not an official government holiday.

Perhaps, Puerto Rico celebrates this historical day of freedom because they understand how important the freedom and independence is on a different level than mainland Americans do.

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