Thursday, April 30, 2009

Puerto Rico Tourism Up as More Travel Agencies Re-Book Mexico Trips to Jamaica and Puerto Rico

The outbreak of swine flu across Mexico, the U.S. and many countries around the globe has had one positive twist - more and more travel agencies are canceling their Mexico travel arrangements for clients and re-booking them to Jamaica and Puerto Rico.

One travel agency, Apple Vacation, has nearly half of their tourism business booked to Mexico this year - however in light of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advisory against non-essential travel to Mexico, the tour operator joins a long list of agencies that have responded to the precautionary measures. So, Apple, along with many other agencies, is canceling travel plans to Mexico and creating fun vacation jaunts in equally exotic locations of Puerto Rico and Jamaica.

Several cruise lines, including Holland America, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, Carnival and Princess, have also pulled their ships from five Mexican ports, namely, Alcapulco, Cabo San Lucas, Cozumel, Ensenada and Mazatlan, a report from cruisecal.com said. Yesterday, some 14 calls were cancelled.

It said, however, the region was taking a proactive effort related to this virus, stating that member countries have already begun adopting measures for greater surveillance to prevent the virus from spreading to the regions where tourists are being diverted.

A few flu prevention measures that are being adopted globally:
  • Wash hands frequently to lessen the spread of respiratory illness.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are coughing or appear ill.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes, sneezing into the crook of your elbow will help lessen the spread of germs.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth.
You don't have to cancel your travel plans for this spring/summer vacation season - just do a little research on the areas in Puerto Rico you'd like to visit and take precautions against illness and you should have a marvelous time!

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Saturday, April 25, 2009

Need a Copy of Your Puerto Rico Birth Certificate?

Puerto Rico is a well kept secret as an exotic tourism destination. Puerto Rico is fast becoming more and more of a destination wedding and honeymoon locale as more and more brides are choosing to have their weddings in an exotic setting without spending an arm and a leg on their nuptials.

If we were lucky enough to be born in Puerto Rico you know how beautiful the country is. From the gorgeous mountain views to the highly rated Blue Flag beaches that are dotted throughout the coastlines of Puerto Rico.

However, if you want to travel back to Puerto Rico for your wedding, pleasure or other reason, you will need a copy of your birth certificate and you may have thought it would be difficult.

That's where we come in. We have streamlined the process for getting a legal, certified copy of your Puertorican birth certificate so it's a fast and painless process.

If you're ready to visit the place of your birth and you need a birth certificate from Puerto Rico to start your travel plans, contact us today - we'll get you back to Puerto Rico with a copy of your birth certificate and passport in hand!

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Puerto Rico - Wreck Diving

Most people get the diving bug simply from snorkeling. Then comes the lessons for SCUBA diving and then after the sport diving begins inevitably the truly adventurous begin looking for more diving challenges such as tri-mix air for deeper dives, cave diving or wreck diving.

Puerto Rico has a few cool wrecks to dive and every diver should make a mark on their diving dance card to check these out:

The reef life around Puerto Rico is amazingly diverse. With brightly colored fishes, eagle rays, morays, groupers, and the occasional nurse shark. There are numerous shipwrecks that are still hidden in the shallow water surrounding Puerto Rico waiting to be discovered and occasionally gold doubloons are still found.

Here are a few more wreck diving destinations in Puerto Rico:

The Airplane wreck is the remains of a six passenger Piper Cherokee monoplane. The Piper, which was built in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania, is now resting in 50 feet of water. Much of the aircraft is covered by sponge and coral and the reef life is usually very active for both day and night dives.

There is an old, decommissioned Navy destroyer sunk off the east end of Vieques Island. The ship was once used for target practice and is now very broken up and scattered in 35 to 40 feet of water. The Destroyer wreck is resting on a sandy bottom and holds a good amount of marine life.

This wreck is an 80 foot long, ocean going tug that ran aground on Culebrita Reef. The wreck is sitting upright and intact in very shallow water of only 40 feet and is ideal for divers just learning to explore wrecks because of it's shallow placement. Coral, sponge and a good assortment of marine creatures can be found all over this wreck.

An old sugar cane barge of unknown origin lies about one mile off the shore of Cayo Santiago off Humacao. This wreck lies intact and upright in forty feet of water on a sand and grass bottom. The marine life is fairly sparse but there is almost no current and is easy for new divers to navigate.

If you are ready to visit Puerto Rico, get a copy of your birth certificate and get your passport ready and visit soon. The diving is good almost all year round and it's the best from May through October.

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Friday, April 17, 2009

Blue Flag Beach Lover? Puerto Rico Has Them!

Blue Flag Beaches are among the best beaches in the world and definitely worth boasting about for any country and Puerto Rico has a large number of them.

The criteria that goes into giving the "Blue Flag" to a beach isn't a small undertaking. Many people aren't aware that there is actually a certain level of quality and criteria that must be met in order to deserve a Blue Flag Beach Rating.

The first criteria that has to be met is the ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION AND INFORMATION standard. This includes having information relating to coastal zone ecosystems and natural, sensitive areas in the coastal zone must be displayed for visitors. Bathing water quality must be displayed. Information about the Blue Flag Program itself must be displayed. There must be an established Code of Conduct for the beach area that must be displayed and the laws governing beach use must be easily available to the public upon request. Another requirement is that a minimum of 5 environmental education activities must be offered.

WATER QUALITY is another standard that must be met for a Blue Flag Beach rating. Compliance with the requirements and standards for excellent bathing water quality
No industrial or sewage related discharges may affect the beach area and monitoring on the health of coral reefs located in the vicinity of the beach. Compliance of the community with requirements for sewage treatment. Algae or other vegetation should be left to decay on the beach in a natural manner unless it constitutes a nuisance.

ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT includes creating a beach management committee that is in charge of instituting environmental management systems and conduct regular environmental audits of the beach facility.

SAFETY AND SERVICES must also be carefully crafted to included an adequate number of lifeguards at all times along with regular safety checks to maintain the safety standard.

The beach must comply with all regulations set forth above and the criteria must be maintained at the highest standards in order to obtain as well as maintain a Blue Flag Beach rating.

If you're ready to experience the Blue Flag Beaches that Puerto Rico has to offer, grab your passport and other travel docs and come see the Blue Flag Beach difference.

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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Lesser Known Puerto Rico Beaches

So, you love the warm sun, beautiful ocean waters and sandy beaches, who doesn’t? And that in itself may present a problem, especially if everywhere you have gone for that relaxing vacation has turned out to be a little over-crowded for your tastes. And, quite possibly every place that you are considering and have talked with people about seems like it will be more of the same.

Have you considered Puerto Rico? Not the widely advertised tourist type of Puerto Rico, but the more secluded laid-back areas made just for you. It’s true there are many beautiful beaches where you can watch the sun rise and set over the ocean. However, there are some beaches that are not part of Puerto Rico’s mainland; instead they can be found on islands off the coast. Most often these will provide a scarcely populated beach that oozes with that traditional tropical paradise that you have always envisioned.

One such area is Mona Island, which has been compared to Galapagos Island and there are some very interesting species of animals that call it home and as a result it is closed to tourists during hunting season (January – April). To make it even more alluring tours are only offered from May through November and in order to even visit the island you will need a permit from the Natural Resources and Environmental Department.

You may also want to consider Shacks Beach, or Bajuras, of Isabela Island known for the best snorkeling water in the area. You will also notice the wonderful sleepy looking coconut palms that line the beach and they seem to call out to you to come for a little siesta under their fronds.

There are some really great, scarcely populated beaches that await you off the mainland of Puerto Rico so get your travel papers together and start planning your next vacation now.

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