Photos: Picturesque Puerto Rico

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  1. Eye on the word

    The Castillo de San Felipe del Morro in San Juan is a 16th century citadel. It was designed to keep seaborne enemies of out San Juan (thus the gun turret pictured). In 1983, the United Nations declared "El Morro" a World Heritage site. Today, it is Puerto Rico's best known fortress, with more than two million visitors a year. (Francisco Turnes / FeaturePics.com) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Hidden beauty

    Isabela is a coastal city in Puerto Rico whose main industries include tourism due to it's classic and secluded surfing beaches, panoramic views, rainforest, rivers, caves archaeological sites and more. (ervphotos / FeaturePics.com) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. A beacon of the times

    The Punta Higuero Lighthouse in Ricon, situated on POint Juguero, was built in 1892 by the Spanish and rebuilt in 1922 by the U.S. Coast Guard after a 1918 tsunami hit the coast of Puerto Rico that also damaged the structure. The lighthouse still works and employs an unmanned 26,000-candlepower rotatintg beacon. The beaches around the Punta Higuero Lighthouse are also popular surfing destinations, and visitors converge in the area to see the annual migration of humpback whales. (fotoamateur / FeaturePics.com) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Buried in history

    The Cementerio de San Juan (San Juan Cemetery), located between El Morro and the cliffs above the Atlantic of Old San Juan, is known for being one of the most picturesque burial grounds. The cemetery is also noted for its elaborate tombstones and the neoclassical chapel dedicated to Mary Magdalene, which dates to the 19th century. Many of Puerto Rico's earliest colonists are buried here. (tank bmb / FeaturePics.com) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. Staying afloat

    Tourism is a big component of Puerto Rico's economy, and supplies about $1.8 billion annually, with millions of visitors visiting the island. It is estimated that about a third of the tourists come on cruise ships. (Ritu / FeaturePics.com) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Traveling back in time

    A church stands on the grounds of La Fortaleza in Old San Juan, the original capital city of San Juan, Puerto Rico. The old city is a historic district of seven square blocks made up of ancient buildings and colonial homes, massive stone walls and vast fortifications, sunny parks and cobblestoned streets. (Joe Raedle / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Withstanding time

    Old San Juan in Puerto Rico is the oldest settlement within the territory of the U.S., and spans just seven square blocks. Here, the La Fortaleza (the governor's mansion), a part of the old city wall and a gate are pictured. (tank bmb / FeaturePics.com) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Historical colors

    Colorful homes line the cobblestoned streets in Old San Juan, the original capital city of San Juan, Puerto Rico. (Joe Raedle / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Popular pastime

    Locals often gather at the many plazas of Old San Juan to chat and play dominoes. (Joe Raedle / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. Room with a view

    In Old San Juan, one of the oldest cities in the Americas, embellished balcony doors, such as the one pictured, are not unusual in the city that dates back to 1521. Most buildings are more than 150 years old and are evidence of the Spanish architectural heritage. (capricornis / FeaturePics.com) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Natural beauty

    The El Yunque National Forest is the sole rain forest in the U.S. National Forest System, according to the park's Web site, and is relatively small at 28,000 acres. It features a year-round tropical climate and immense biodiversity. About 600,000 tourists each year enjoy all that the forest has to offer, including wildlife, waterfalls, hiking and camping opportunities, and more. (ervphotos / FeaturePics.com) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. Guiding light

    A 19th century lighthouse -- called the Los Morrillos -- sits atop a towering cliff that overlooks the waters of Cabo Rojo, located at the southwestern tip of Puerto Rico. The cliffs around the lighthouse drop more than 200 feet into the ocean. The lighthouse was originally built in 1882 to guide ships from the Caribbean Sea to the Atlantic Ocean. Today, the lighthouse is completely automated, and a renovation cleared the interior of everything of historical significance. (ervphotos / FeaturePics.com) Back to slideshow navigation
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updated 5/19/2008 12:28:55 PM ET 2008-05-19T16:28:55

San Juan
Condado Plaza, from $139 per room per night

When you book the Summer Escape package at Condado Plaza, you can lounge in the three pools or in the gaming rooms. The hotel has one of San Juan's largest casinos and is located along the Condado beach strip, west of Isla Verde. Celebrate your winnings at the Strip House, a restaurant with an all-red interior that specializes in steaks. You'll get a $50 resort credit per room, good toward anything except the package rate or gambling. Rates start at $139 per night, or $278 for the required two-night stay, for a room with a private balcony and high-speed Internet access.

When: Through Sept. 1, 2008.

Details: Does not include a hotel tax of 14 percent, a government tax of 11 percent, or a $5 per person per night municipal tax. Based on single or double occupancy. Requires a two-night minimum stay.

Contact: 787/721-1000, condadoplaza.com.

Hotel El Convento, from $285 per room per night
In the heart of Old San Juan, this restored 350-year-old luxury hotel has 58 rooms; you'll stay in one that overlooks San Juan Bay. Two welcome glasses of sangria, a complimentary afternoon sampling of wine and hors d'oeuvres, a 15 percent discount at Old San Juan's shopping outlets, and a 10 percent discount at Secrets of Eden Spa are included. You'll also have the option of taking a walking tour of Old San Juan that includes a stop at the Bacardi distillery. Rates start at $285 per night, or $570 for the required two-night stay.

When: Through Nov. 30, 2008.

Details: Based on double occupancy. Taxes are included. Requires a two-night minimum stay.

Contact: 787/723-9020, elconvento.com.

Porta Del Sol

Holiday Inn & Tropical Casino Mayagüez, from $167 per room per night

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The port town of Mayagüez, the island's third-largest city, is in the western region of Porta del Sol. Book the Holiday Inn's family package, and you'll receive breakfast daily for two adults and two children, two welcome drinks, two admission tickets to the Mayagüez Zoo (the only zoo in Puerto Rico), two tickets to the movies, one family-size pizza, and free parking. The hotel is a short drive away from a golf course, a water park, and a beach. Rates start at $167 per night, or $334 for the required two-night stay, for a room with two beds.

When: Through Dec. 15, 2008.

Details: Does not include a hotel tax of 11 percent. Based on double occupancy; no single bookings. Requires a two-night minimum stay. Kids under 18 stay for free.

Contact: 787/833-1100, holidayinn.com/mayaguezpr.

Getting there: A recent Kayak search for round-trip flights to San Juan in mid-June yielded fares of $299 from Atlanta (Delta), $303 from New York City (JetBlue), $393 from D.C. (American), $461 from Houston (AirTran), and $693 from Seattle (American). Round-trip flights into Mayagüez were $575 from Dallas (American), $599 from New York City (Delta), $614 from Atlanta (Delta), and $755 from Chicago (American).

For tips on what to do and for more special offers at hotels throughout the island, visit gotopuertorico.com.

Copyright © 2012 Newsweek Budget Travel, Inc.

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