Brought to you by Pilot Productions - producers of addictive travel and adventure TV shows that take you to unforgettable destinations around the planet. Globe Trekker is the ultimate intrepid traveller's guide to exploring our wonderful world.

Presenter : Zay Harding

Puerto Rico

Globe Trekker Puerto Rico

Located at the heart of the Caribbean, Puerto Rico is around 100 miles long by 30 miles wide, with a population of some 4 million. Part of the U.S. Commonwealth, it’s known as the island of enchantment, boasting sun-kissed beaches, dramatic mountains, a rich colonial history, and great music.

Starting his journey in Puerto Rico’s vibrant capital, San Juan, host Zay Harding looks around the beautifully preserved old city, dating back to the Spanish conquest in the 16th century.Zay Harding, San JuanSampling the local cuisine and the fabulous national drink, the piña colada, he salsas the night away before getting to meet the man who rolled the world’s longest cigar.

From San Juan, Zay heads east to El Yunque National Forest, one of the best preserved rainforests in the Caribbean. Home to over 240 species of trees, and a lot of rare wildlife, it’s the last refuge of the endangered Puerto Rican Parrot. Checking out the breeding project that aims to save these beautiful birds, Zay is reassured that the future of the species is in good hands.

From El Yunque, Zay leaves the main island of Puerto Rico to catch a ferry to the small island of Vieques, which is blessed with a spectacular coastline. During WWII, the US military used the island as a weapons test site, and Zay discovers how the island’s glorious beaches are now being decontaminated and opened to public access for the first time since the war.

 Zay Harding salsas the night awayAfter enjoying a fabulous horse-ride along the coast of Vieques, Zay takes the ferry back to the main island of Puerto Rico, before heading west to explore the Camuy River Caves National Park. Having eroded through the region’s soft limestone over millions of years to create huge sinkholes and caves, the Camuy is the third largest underground river system in the world. Zay rappels down a 250 foot deep sinkhole, before plunging through the dramatic underground river caverns.

Nearby the Camuy caves, Zay visits Puerto Rico’s most famous scientific installation, the world’s largest radio-telescope, at Arecibo. He’s amazed to learn how the dish is being used to track asteroids that might threaten a catastrophic collision with planet Earth, as well as to search for radio signals from outer space that might just possibly reveal the existence of advanced and intelligent alien life elsewhere in the universe.

Globe Trekker Zay HardingFinally, Zay heads up into Puerto Rico’s central highlands. The region is known for producing some of the world’s best coffee, and Zay enjoys a colourful coffee festival in the town of Maricao, before heading on to another festival in the nearby town of Jayuya. During the Spanish conquest 500 years ago, the highlands provided a last refuge for Puerto Rico’s native Taino people as they fled from the conquistadores – Jayuya’s festival celebrates the fascinating culture and traditions of the Taino, and it’s a perfect way for Zay to end his trip to this fascinating island.

Places Mentioned - Puerto Rico

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Central America and the Caribbean

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Puerto Rico

Central America and the Caribbean

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