The National Parks Service is celebrating 100 years in August and the celebrations have already begun. The Centennial year isn’t just a celebration of the past 100 years, but is a celebration of what is to come in the next 100 years. The National Park Service has set out to educate and inspire people of all generations so that future generations can enjoy all that the beautiful parks have to offer for many more years to come.
The second century officially kicks off on August 25, 2016 and features the Find Your Park movement. Find Your Park is intended to inspire all people to enjoy and support America’s 407 national parks. Be a part of the celebration and history by visiting a park or two this year.
In Puerto Rico, it is easy to check one amazing visit off your list. Celebrate the past 100 years by going back into history as many as 500 years at the San Juan National Historic Site. Here you will learn about the history of our tiny island and hear stories of the many battles that ensued over control for centuries. Learn about the generations of soldiers who lived and worked within the forts on this historic site. Feel like you were part of the story as you gaze out over the giant fort walls watching for enemy arrival. Experience the beauty of the amazing Spanish architecture at the site, some of which date backs more than 500 years.
Take a guided tour through El Morro. Created by Spanish engineers over more than 250 years, El Morro is one of the largest forts built by the Spanish in the Caribbean. Its foundation dates back to 1539 but wasn’t considered complete until 1787. El Morro is strategically positioned overlooking the entrance of San Juan Bay and served as island protection from those who came by sea.
El Morro’s sister fort, San Cristóbal was built to guard the island from enemy encounters by land. Walk through the fort constructed in 1634, view the perspective of soldiers who manned the cannons and imagine yourself as a Spanish soldier keeping watch over the island. See where the first shots of the Spanish-American War were fired.
You can visit the San Juan Historic Site every day except Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. So no matter when you visit our Island of Enchantment, you can experience the amazing history that shaped Puerto Rico. For more information, visit the National Park Service website here. San Juan is just a short one hour drive from Fajardo and is completely worth the trip. Be sure to add a trip to the San Juan National Historic Site to your Puerto Rican vacation itinerary.