When someone recently asked me why I was heading to Puerto Rico for a long weekend, I responded, “Why not?” Perhaps the snapshots below are an even better response, though. Put simply, because sunshine, because time with people I love, and because tacos. That’s all.
My journey started at one of my very (least) favorite places, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. In just three hours, though, I was up, up, and away above the ocean blue…
…and within about seven minutes of arriving at my hotel, I’d ordered veggie tacos, piled high with meaty sautéed mushrooms, pickled onions, baby arugula, smashed avocado, goat cheese, and crunchy walnuts. It was at this moment that I realized a lounge chair and towel are my preferred dining table / cloth. I guess you learn something new every day.
With time to kill before my parents arrived to meet me, I briefly scoped out the hotel…
…and then promptly returned to the pool.
The rest of the trip was packed with eats both traditional and tourist-friendly. The traditional included a quickie brunch at Pinky’s, a local hole-in-the-wall discovered and recommended by my sister, who’d been in PR just weeks before us. My parents each ordered the monstrosity featured below, which consisted of ham, cheese, and fried eggs on mallorca, a classic Puerto Rican sweet bread. The breakfast burrito I opted for was less photogenic but similarly colossal, packed with six eggs and a block’s worth of oozing cheddar. Needless to say, I finished the burrito feeling like I was well into my third trimester.
Less food coma-inducing breakfasts and lunches included this granola parfait with vibrant tropical fruits + shrimp-topped avocado toast at the hotel:
All other meals out were what I’d call upscale local — aka fancy takes on Puerto Rican classics, including duck mofongo, bruléed plantains, and mashed malanga (a local tuber) from hotspots Oceano and Cocina Abierta.
Though our days were predominantly spent parked at the pool, we managed to make our way to the beach…
…as well as to Old San Juan, where I snapped away at colorful surroundings.
We also made sure to stay in town for sunset, where crowds sat along rocks to watch the water swallow dusk.
And with that + some more pool time, we left PRadise. I returned to Atlanta just three days later, sand lingering in the bottom of my backpack and photos like this one to nostalgically scroll through on my phone:
As always, ’til next time.