Fall in love with Puerto Rico's country side!
Splendid mountains and a peaceful breeze set the backdrop for Ciales, a highland town nestled in the Central Mountain Range of Puerto Rico. Known as the “town of the brave,” the appeal of Ciales includes coffee plantations, cave systems, and mesmerizing views.
Located a little over an hour from SJU airport, enjoy the rustic serenity that going isla adentro (inland) provides, and discover the charm and adventures of the inner regions of the island.
Things to Do
For those feeling adventurous, Ciales has cave systems where you can practice rappelling and canyoneering. Known for their numerous corridors and beautiful waterfalls, the Yuyú and Archillas caverns have impressive rock formations and fascinating ancient petroglyphs.
If your adventurous spirit is waning, you can also enjoy the scenery in a more laid-back setting at the Paseo Lineal Juan Antonio Corretjer, a recreational space fit for riding bikes, walking, and just gazing at the horizon. It has a beautiful view of the Río Grande de Manatí, with shaded sitting areas to rest.
The Museum of Coffee
Ciales provides a unique opportunity for those coffee lovers who want to know the history of the plantations in Puerto Rico. The Museum of Coffee is an intimate place where you can experience some of the best brews on the island, learn about the evolution of coffee roasting, and relax with the panoramic views of the mountains. Spend part of a day appreciating the process coffee beans go through from tree to cup while you bask in delightful aromas. The museum also offers barista classes.
Places to Eat
With some of the best cuts of meat you will try in Puerto Rico, ASAO Smokehouse in Ciales highlights the quality of products for which the mountain region is known. The restaurant’s specialty is its 15-spice rubbed ribs. Other popular dishes include roasted chicken and spit-roasted pork.
Casa Vieja is a roadside restaurant that boasts breathtaking views and traditional plates like longaniza (a chorizo-like local sausage), carne guisada al caldero (beef stew), pasteles, and much more. Besides their exquisite food, what’s most special about this place is the setting: a quiet, open-air terrace decorated like an old-fashioned Puerto Rican jíbaro house.
There is also Fussion Restaurant, a place that honors its name in the merging of local cuisine with other international influences, including Mexican, Italian, Asian, and others. The restaurant is known for its assortment of stuffed skirt steaks and chicken. Plates like prosciutto ham and manchego cheese-stuffed steaks, or longaniza and smoked pork-stuffed chicken breasts wrapped in pancetta and topped in guava sauce, are part of their everyday menu. Come for the food, stay for the view.