What to Pack For a Trip to Puerto Rico, From Cutout Dresses to Sunhats
Just 1,000 miles away from Miami, Puerto Rico is an island destination that's easy to visit from the US. Since Puerto Rico is a US territory, it's relatively accessible, with no passport needed for US citizens living stateside to access its gorgeous beaches, crystal-blue waters, and lush rainforest landscape. It's why celebrities frequent the Caribbean island, sneaking away for a whirlwind weekend or even buying property there to visit as often as possible. And when it comes to what to wear in Puerto Rico, visitors dress appropriately for the sunny weather, grabbing breezy dresses to tour Old San Juan or glittering minis to party at the Fairmont El San Juan Hotel.
With so much to see and do in Puerto Rico, your wardrobe should run the gamut from festive to effortless with pieces earmarked for all your travel plans. For example, to visit the Catedral Basilica Menor de San Juan Bautista in San Juan where Jennifer Lopez got married, you may want to choose a sweeping maxi that you can pair with flats and a sunblocking Eugenia Kim hat. To enjoy the island's famous nightlife strip, the Bad Bunny-frequented La Placita de Santurce, go for a colorful Bruce Glen slip dress that you can pair with strappy pink sandals. Want to catch a concert while in town? Hit the popular Fairmont El San Juan Hotel, where Will.i.am recently performed at Puerto Rock Steady Fest, and wear an embellished Retrofete mini covered in sequins. And if you'd rather just relax by the pool and spa at, say, the gorgeous St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort, style a Fe Noel swimsuit with the brand's striking ombré sarong.
From night swims among phosphorescent creatures to the charming, vibrant architecture of Old San Juan, keep scrolling for what to wear and what to do in Puerto Rico.
Where to Party in Puerto Rico: Fairmont El San Juan Hotel
If you're looking for entertainment, the Fairmont El San Juan Hotel is your destination of choice. The iconic venue, long considered the entertainment hub of Puerto Rico, has welcomed legends like Frank Sinatra, Liza Minelli, Nat King Cole, and more.
Most recently, rapper and producer Will.i.am DJed a party at the hotel during Puerto Rock Steady Festival, replete with a red carpet, 360 photo booth, and Veuve Clicquot and Dom Pérignon bottle service. The festival, known as "a party with a purpose," supports the Boys & Girls Club of Puerto Rico through empowering programs as well as other initiatives in local communities.
What to Wear in Puerto Rico: Fairmont El San Juan Hotel
This vibrant, sparkly dress from Retrofete is comfortable enough for a night of dancing or enjoying a live performance — and the colorful stripes guarantee that all eyes will be on you.
Retrofete Gabrielle Robe ($655)
Where to Stay in Puerto Rico: The St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort
This celebrity-loved resort is one of the most luxurious places to stay on the island, thanks in part to the secluded beach that stretches on for two miles and the sweeping coastline views of the Atlantic Ocean. The luxe suites boast everything from private terraces overlooking lush garden foliage to marble bathrooms replete with soaking tubs. For a day spent swimming in the heated oasis pool, relaxing in the cabanas, or hitting the 18-hole golf course, the dress code calls for breezy, effortless style.
What to Wear in Puerto Rico: St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort
Whether lounging by the pool or walking along the beach at the St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort, you'll feel at home in a lime-green maxi dress with a sultry front and side cutouts.
What to Do in Puerto Rico: Visit Bioluminescent Bays
One of the great wonders of the world lies right in Puerto Rico's three Bioluminescent Bays: La Parguera in Lajas; Laguna Grande in Fajardo; and Mosquito Bay in Vieques. That famed blue glow, aka bioluminescence, is the magical work of microscopic organisms that light up when agitated. This particular species of phytoplankton — named the dinoflagellate Pyrodinium bahamense — are only found in Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and the Bahamas.
Book a trip to any of the aforementioned bays in Puerto Rico to see this sparkling ecosystem for yourself, with a note that La Parguera is the only bay you can swim in (you can kayak through the others), and Mosquito Bay is the brightest in the world.
What to Wear in Puerto Rico: Bioluminescent Bays
To experience this rare glowing phenomenon, come dressed for both style and functionality. This one-piece swimsuit will provide coverage while also embracing the one-shoulder and cutout trends. For optimum comfort, be sure to pack a pair of water shoes.
Where to Sightsee in Puerto Rico: Old San Juan
The oldest city in the United States, Old San Juan's rich history and culture make it a must-visit in Puerto Rico. While you could simply stand around just taking in the tropical colors and stunning architecture, there's plenty of activities to partake in as well.
Tour the city's five-century-old forts or stop by Caribe Hilton, the birthplace of piña coladas, the island's national drink. For what to wear, comfort is key so you can walk around freely, but add some flair with bright colors that pay tribute to your surroundings.
What to Wear in Puerto Rico: Old San Juan
Mirror the vibrant colors of Old San Juan in a bright-orange mini with dramatic flair. The ruffled sleeves and skirt — alongside the on-trend chest cutout — make this dress a moving work of art.
Where to Relax in Puerto Rico: Iridium Spa
Tucked away in the lush tropical landscape of the St. Regis Bahia Beach, Iridium Spa is exactly the kind of secluded oasis travelers seek when they want to relax. With the scent of ocean air and sound of gentle waves as your backdrop, enjoy any number of pampering services, from a hot-stone massage to an invigorating facial. And when you're done, take advantage of the spa's amenities by lounging under the sun or taking a dip in the private pool.
What to Wear in Puerto Rico: Iridium Spa
Enjoy a day at Iridium Spa in a trendy but comfortable swimsuit from Puerto Rican designer Lisa Thon. The classic silhouette and pretty aqua-blue color create a style you'll reach for again and again.
Keep scrolling for more pieces to shop for a trip to Puerto Rico.
What to Wear in Puerto Rico: Top-Handle Bag
What to Wear in Puerto Rico: Slip Dress
What to Wear in Puerto Rico: Slip Dress
BruceGlen Love Check Slip Dress ($163, originally $325)