Despite a stream of abysmal reports dispatched from the island after Hurricane Maria made landfall in September, Puerto Rico has announced that it's now ready to welcome visitors, officially kicking off its winter season on December 20.
That means the Isle of Enchantment's beautiful beaches, breathtaking historical sites and stunning coastal towns — all available to American travelers without a passport — are starting 2018 on the right foot.
In a press release, the Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC) said that more than 100 hotels are open and operating, with more rooms made available to travelers as first responders depart. All in all, more than 75% of hotels in Puerto Rico are open and ready to take reservations.
Restoration and clean-up efforts have allowed a number of attractions throughout the island to reopen. The PRTC reports that 107 tourist attractions across the U.S. territory are operating, including the Castillo San Felipe del Morro, Cueva Ventana and Old San Juan. The annual Fiestas de la Calle San Sebastian, a Carnival-style celebration marking the end of the Christmas season, will be held as planned at the end of January.
More than 4,000 restaurants are ready to serve, including more than 1,500 in the San Juan area alone.
And getting to Puerto Rico is no longer a problem — all airports are fully operational, serving 27 major commercial airlines. Taxis and public transportation are available, as are the services of 24 major car rental companies.
"Tourism is a vital contributor to the Island's economy, so reaching these milestones not only will help build a stronger, better Puerto Rico, but showcases the resiliency in our people and destination," said José Izquierdo, executive director of the PRTC.
For more details on hotels, restaurants and attractions now open, visit SeePuertoRico.com.