Small Town Travel Log: Rincon, Puerto Rico

While New York and New England small towns are the stuff of our dreams, they are far too cold in the winter. Sometimes for an escape, we need to look further south. For the last five years, Puerto Rico has been the destination of choice.

But when most people think of country living, Puerto Rico probably isn’t the first location that comes to mind.  Most tourists flock to Old San Juan and the nearby urban offerings, but Rincon on the west coast of the island couldn’t be more different.  The town, of approximately 15,000 people, attracts ex-pats and beachbums who transition from tourist to local. It’s easy to see why they never leave – even the cows in Rincon spend their days at the beach:

Don’t expect to find large luxury resorts.  Rincon is best seen from one of the many guest houses/inns or by renting a house (VRBO, Home Away, and Vacation Rentals have offerings to fit nearly any sized group).  Casa Islena is a small inn located on Sandy Beach, one of the many surfing beaches.

A relaxing way to spend the day is combing the beach in Anasco, just south of Rincon, where seaglass is plentiful.  It also matched my beach-themed dress perfectly:

For a romantic and delicious dinner, head over to La Copa Llena at The Black Eagle.  They offer large-portion tapas and new American style entrees.  During our visit, we shared zucchini fritters and roasted cauliflower tapas, which I followed with a seared duck breast served over lentil puree and sauteed kale.  The lentil puree was unexpected, and I’m looking forward to recreating it at home!  We arrived after a quick tropical rain, which gave us the opportunity make new friends while eating at the bar:

Another must-see is the sunset from the Rincon Lighthouse followed by the scene, often with live music, at Calypso down the hill from the lighthouse park entrance.

Finally, enjoy some long walks on the beach at sunset:

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