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El Morro, San Juan, Puerto Rico

If you are going to San Juan, you can’t miss El Morro. It’s the historical building that started the whole city! I had not heard of this icon before my trip, but by the time I left it was a key reference point when I was trying to find my way around town. Going to El Morro also helped me appreciate the history of this amazing city. 

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What is El Morro?

Castillo San Felipe del Morro (nicknamed El Morro) is a fort used to protect Puerto Rico during several wars. The construction started in 1539 and it was officially completed in 1787. It has been attacked by the English, Dutch, and was used as a base for the U.S. navy. There is a neighboring base called Castillo San Cristóbal that has also been involved in battles. When you visit, you will learn a lot more about the history of El Morro. 

What to Expect on Your Visit

The cost to visit is $7 for adults and free for anyone 15 and younger. Tickets from El Morro will get you into Castillo San Felipe del Morro as well. Both forts are open from 9:00am to 6:00pm. As El Morro is on the edge of the island, it can get quite windy so dress accordingly. 

Of course you will want to explore the entire fort and all it’s intricacies. However, you will want to start by watching the informational video about the location before you begin. Of course you always have the option to visit the gift shop as well. Read to the end to find out one surprising hidden gem you really can’t miss!

Movie Room

There is not an official name for this room, so I am just calling it the “movie room”. This is a great place to start your visit as the movie gives an overview of the history of the fort. I always appreciate where I am more when I know the history behind it, and that may apply to you too. If you’re traveling with kids, I think a little history lesson is always a good idea when you can fit it in! After you watch the movie, explore the fort!

Gift Shop

Can you really visit a monument and not go to the gift shop? Maybe other people can, but I always take a look. I like to have a little memento of wherever I go, whether it be a keychain or a magnet. You’re only there once, so why not look?


Ok, this can seem weird, but trust me. I don’t know about the men’s bathroom, but the women’s bathroom has an amazing little balcony on the side of the cliff (pictured above). I’ve really never seen anything like it before! It’s a beautiful spot, and something you really can’t leave without seeing!

Have you been to El Morro? Tell me about your experience in the comments!

Anna’s Pick of the Week

Everyone need a lightweight little travel bag! Zaful had a great one you can check out! Small and waterproof, this is the perfect thing for your island adventure! Learn more about it here!

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