Got a few hours to kill in the San Juan, Puerto Rico airport? Here’s what to do:
Over the years, I have flown through the San Juan, Puerto Rico airport a number of times. Frequently I have had 3-5 hours between my connecting flights. If you find yourself in this situation I would like to make a couple of suggestions.
First of all, go outside of security. If you try to stay in the gate area you will either drive yourself crazy or have the opportunity to eat some of the worst airport food in the world!
In the main lobby of the airport there are at least a few interesting shops to visit. There is also a fair selection of fast food restaurants. If you are a gambler, there is a casino right across from the American Airlines ticket counter inside the airport lobby.
If you walk outside the airport there are two more restaurants in the parking garage(no kidding!) right across the street . One is a Buffalo Wild Wings and the other is a Wendy’s.
However, my favorite thing to do is to go downstairs to the baggage claim area, grab a taxi and head to the Metropol Café in the Isla Verde area. It is a $12–10 minute taxi ride to this great Cuban restaurant. If you have a Guayabera shirt, put it on! Here is the front of the restaurant:
Metropol Cafe in San Juan, Puerto Rico
If you have never eaten Cuban food then this is your big chance. Bring an appetite and pig out!
After you have eaten plenty of food with lots of garlic and onions, you will want to walk it off. Go outside, turn left, walk two blocks to the famed Hotel El San Juan. If you don’t want to do the Metropol gig first then just go straight to the Hotel El San Juan from the airport. The hotel has a beautiful lobby, interesting lobby bar, and a good size casino. For the shoppers, they have some really nice shops in the hotel where you can spend what little vacation money you may have.
The beautiful lobby of the Hotel El San Juan
If you didn’t eat at the Metropol then treat yourself to a meal at poolside at the hotel.
Pool area of the Hotel El San Juan in Puerto Rico
Make sure you leave yourself enough time to get back the airport and re-clear security.
If you don’t want to do any of the above between flights, then just stay in the gate area, drive yourself crazy and eat some of the worst airport food in the world. Bon Appetit!