7 Patels and a Mistry in Puerto Rico
I love it when my passion for traveling and my love for my family and friends collide, and that's exactly what happened a few weeks ago when me and 7 girlfriends headed off to Puerto Rico for Shama and Reena's bachelorette party! So what do you do when you have 7 Patels and a Mistry in a new city? Adventure, laughs and new memories, that's what! What happens on a bachelorette, stays on a bachelorette but there are a few tidbits I can share with you:
- Bio Bay Kayaking: At first the idea of kayaking at night scared me. And then I realized how cool this really was! Basically we drove out an hour from Condado (where we were staying) to a place called Fajardo to go on our first excursion. FYI: In case you were wondering, driving in PR is definitely more aggressive than driving in the US, but it wasn't too bad (after we got the flat tire on the rental fixed...but that's a whole different story.) Once we got there, we went through a quick lesson on kayaking and safety and into the water we went! I was paired up with the bride, who was a little nervous, but excited! Off we went, kayaking through a mongrove channel before emerging into a big beautiful lagoon. (Note: We weren't in the best shape or the fastest kayak, but the guides were great--and easy on the eyes ;-)--and towed us along.) Once we got into the lagoon, one of the guides gave us a short little talk about the ecosystem and educated us on the natural beauty of our surroundings. And then the cool part: we put our hands in the water and moved them around and the water GLOWED! Overall the excursion took a few hours but was well worth it! Very cool experience! (Oh and if you're afraid of the water, the mongrove channel was 3 ft deep and you're wearing life jackets: it's safe.)
- Ziplining: I've gone ziplining before but it's still a blast no matter how many times you do it! Our trek to the ziplining place in the foothills of El Yunque National Forest was a little more adventurous than we'd expected with some heavy rain and a car (not one of ours) slipping off the road and partially falling into a ditch. While the situations was a little scary, it was also interesting to watch how people handle incidents like this in other parts of the world. In the US, you'd call AAA or another tow truck to help, but here, in outskirts of the forest, on a narrow dirt-road, a tow truck wasn't a good option--let alone an option. So our guides grabbed some rope and one of their SUVs and hauled the car out themselves. Back to the actual ziplining: it was awesome! We trekked through the forest, stopping at different parts for the guides to tell us a little bit about the wildlife, making our way through two ziplines and one rappel. Again, an excursion that was adventurous, exciting and not-to-be-missed!
- Brava: So good--we had to go twice. Brava is a nightclub in the lobby of ESJ Towers and the premier nightclub in San Juan according to friends who had previously been to PR as well as the locals we talked to. Good times, good music, a little pricey on the drinks, but overall a blast! Definitely a little sad we didn't experience the Latin dancing that Puerto Rico has to offer, but you gotta have a reason to go back, right?
And that's all I can share. I loved Puerto Rico and definitely want to return. It was fabulous seeing my friends from home (it's tough living so far away), crossing another destination off my travel list, and nice to escape from Portland in February--except I didn't realize how far it really was! Sure there were some issues (flight delays, flat tires, broken phones), but overall, it was a fabulous trip! Can't wait for the weddings this summer! Congrats Shama and Reena!