Read more about our entire road trip to Utuado, Puerto Rico in this outlined "Puerto Rico Road Trip" blog post, HERE!
Taylor arranged our rental through Enterprise Rent-A-Car. She booked us for an SUV, but it was a little unfortunate that we couldn’t select exactly which car we wanted. It also was crazy how much more expensive off road and 4WD drive vehicle got!
See more of what it was like to drive around, watch our YouTube video below!
The first drive in the Rogue was from Old San Juan to La Plaza del Mercado de Santurce. The city streets were narrow, but not confusing or difficult to navigate.
Check out where all we stayed in San Juan and Utuado in our "Where to Stay In Puerto Rico" blog post, HERE!
Once we got through Utuado the roads got narrow and started winding with a consistent, steep grade.
While driving through the mountains we learned it is common to hear horns honking to notify anyone around the curve that a car is coming. It’s also common to turn a curve to find a relaxing dog in the middle of the road or a group of people gathered near the roadside!
The views of Puerto Rico’s mountain ranges are stunning, but I couldn’t afford to take my eyes off the road for any amount of time.
For two days, Taylor and I explored the mountain roads on either side of Utuado. It was exhilarating to drive up and down these steep and lush roadways. When researching routes around the Utuado Area, I had read that some mountain roads in Puerto Rico are impassable and that GPS directions are not to be trusted.
Read more about all of the planning we did before arriving in Puerto Rico, please read our detailed post - coming soon!
Even though I had gone as far as drawing certain intersections and sections of road map in my notebook, Taylor and I forgot the warnings about GPS.
We accidentally hit this trail pretty hard, and to make matters worse, something in the grass punctured our passenger’s side front tire.
After a speedy tire change, the Rouge sported an emergency spare as Taylor and I limped it back to a tire shop.
No matter what day or time we were on the highway, traffic never seemed to slow. Commercial trucks and older vehicles kept a slow pace, some vehicles cruised at just above the 55 mile per hour speed limit, and a few zipped by everyone. This remained true in a steady downpour.
The last piece of driving the Rogue in Puerto Rico consisted of dangerous water pockets and flooded interchanges. As we neared San Juan, the edge lanes of the highway became more and more likely to hold water pockets that would jerk the steering wheel. The streets of San Juan were flooded, but Taylor and I returned the car safely to Enterprise.
All things considered, driving in Puerto Rico was a great experience, but a little bit more Spanish and familiarity with certain routes would have helped tremendously.
It is not a task for the faint of heart, and constant diligence is required, but the exhilaration while speeding around a mountainous curve kept me in a state of bliss while driving in Puerto Rico’s mountains, and the suspense of never knowing when an oncoming vehicle would appear, made those mountains one of my favorite places to drive.
See what it was really like in our YouTube video below, and see more on our entire channel HERE!
More from our road trip in Puerto Rico:
Talkin' 'bout Tacos:
I'm Taylor, aka Tacos! I am sharing my journeys and experiences from across the world hoping to inspire travel and adventure in all who read!