Not packed in a bus. Not herded with a group. Self guided walk is the SAFEST way to sightsee while observing SOCIAL DISTANCING!
El Castillo San Felipe del Morro, San Juan

El Castillo San Felipe del Morro, San Juan (must see)

Fort San Felipe del Morro, aka El Morro, is a 16th century citadel on the northwestern-most point of San Juan, named in honor of King Philip II of Spain. It was the second military installation, after La Fortaleza, built on the islet of what is now Old San Juan and Puerta de Tierra.

The construction commenced in 1539, authorized by King Charles V, and was finished in 1790, during which period El Morro had gone from a promontory mounted with a cannon to a six-level fortress designed to guard the entrance to San Juan bay from seaborne invaders. Many more structures were added to the complex over the next 400 years; the outer walls, originally built 6 feet (1.8 m) thick, were augmented to 18 feet (5.5 m) by the end of the 18th century.

Thanks to El Morro, the Spanish were able to defend Puerto Rico from invasions by the British and Dutch, as well as pirates. In 1898, following the Spanish-American War, the island changed hands from Spain to the United States. El Morro was actively used as a military installation during the First and Second World Wars.

In 1961, the US Army retired El Morro, passing it on to the National Park Service to establish as a museum. In 1983, El Morro and the walled-city of Old San Juan were declared UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Why You Should Visit:
To appreciate the importance of Puerto Rico as a strategic entry point to the Americas and the evolution of El Morro over the last five centuries.

Tips:
On hot sunny days, shorts, loose, light-colored clothing, and sunscreen are highly recommended. Also, drink plenty of water!
On rainy days, the ramps can be slippery. Best to wear sturdy footwear with good traction. The fort is also very windy, so skirts and dresses are not recommended, and you'll want to hang on to your hats.
Free admission for kids under 15. Free for all visitors on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, National Park Week in April, and Veterans’ Day. The receipt also allows to visit the Castillo San Cristóbal without having to pay a separate entrance fee (and vice versa).
For impressive photos, visit the lowest level which nearly reaches the water. From the higher levels you'll enjoy a view of the Atlantic Ocean and Old San Juan panorama.

Operating Hours:
Seven days a week from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm.
Sight description based on wikipedia

This sight is featured in a self-guided walking tour of San Juan, Puerto Rico within the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" which can be downloaded from iTunes App Store or Google Play. Please download the app to your mobile phone or tablet for travel directions for visiting this sight. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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El Castillo San Felipe del Morro on Map

Sight Name: El Castillo San Felipe del Morro
Sight Location: San Juan, Puerto Rico
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in San Juan, Puerto Rico

Create Your Own Walk in San Juan

Create Your Own Walk in San Juan

Creating your own self-guided walk in San Juan is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Souvenir Shopping

Souvenir Shopping

It would be a pity to leave San Juan without having explored its specialty shops and bringing home something truly original. We've compiled a list of gifts and souvenirs, which are unique to San Juan, that a visitor might like to purchase to reflect their visit.

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.9 Km or 0.6 Miles
Old San Juan Walking Tour

Old San Juan Walking Tour

The old town of San Juan, capital of Puerto Rico, is a lovely historic area with a wealth of colorful Spanish colonial architecture. The most notable landmarks include 16th-century El Morro and La Fortaleza fortresses, towering over the Atlantic, and the Paseo de la Princesa bayside promenade, to mention but a few. To explore Old San Juan's most prominent sights, follow this self-guided walk.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.1 Km or 1.9 Miles
Old San Juan East Side Walking Tour

Old San Juan East Side Walking Tour

The east side of Old San Juan is home to several interesting historical sites, including Castillo de San Cristóbal, El Capitolio, Casa De España and Monumento de la Recordación. Take the following tour to discover the fascinating attractions located in Old San Juan’s east side!

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.1 Km or 0.7 Miles
San Juan Historic Buildings

San Juan Historic Buildings

San Juan proudly features the country’s oldest quarters and historic buildings. In addition to having the oldest occupied residence in the Western Hemisphere, visitors can also admire the old City Hall, the Cristo Chapel, the historic El Arsenal and many other fascinating attractions. Take this self guided tour to see the most popular and famous historic buildings in San Juan!

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.4 Km or 1.5 Miles
Old San Juan Squares

Old San Juan Squares

A distinctive feature of Old San Juan is the number of quaint historic squares. Many of them are adorned with beautiful fountains, prominent monuments and intricate sculptures recounting rich history of this amazing city. Check out San Juan’s most popular squares on this self-guided tour!

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 Km or 1.1 Miles
San Juan Art Museums And Galleries Tour

San Juan Art Museums And Galleries Tour

San Juan is a great place to learn more about Caribbean, Latin American and Puerto Rican art. It has many interesting museums and excellent galleries, featuring fine works by talented international and local artists. Check out San Juan’s most popular art museums and galleries on this self walking tour!

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.2 Km or 1.4 Miles

Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip


13 Distinctively Puerto Rican Goods to Bring Home from San Juan

13 Distinctively Puerto Rican Goods to Bring Home from San Juan

The uniqueness of Puerto Rico is partially associated with its political status - part of the United States yet with a Latin twist. Other than their widely-acknowledged musical talents, e.g. Carlos Santana and Ricky Martin, Puerto Rico is just as rich in many other good things. When you're in...