Thursday, August 14, 2014

Old San Juan Never Gets Old

On Saturday, we went to Old San Juan again for a few hours. This time we decided to ride the ferry over from Catano. Catano is about 20 minutes from our house, and the ferry ride takes about 15 minutes and costs 50 cents.

This is the view from Catano waiting for the ferry. The cruise ship isn't really as close as it appears because I zoomed in.

I love how the buildings are brightly painted.

This one is pretty, too.

The blue cobblestones streets. I read that the cobblestones were used as ballast for the ships traveling to Puerto Rico.
One of the places I wanted to visit was La Casa Blanca, one of the oldest homes in San Juan. It was built by Ponce de Leon's family, but he never lived there. It was added onto over the years, but the original home was built in 1521 and was the first fortification in the area. Now it is a museum that visitors can walk through.

The main living area.

Outside on a terrace.
The kitchen.

A garden courtyard.
Going through Casa Blanca didn't take very long so we walked around and looked at some other buildings. Many of them are built with an open courtyard in the center. This one had some shops and a museum.
I really don't know what is behind all of these doors.

A particularly colorful street. La Fortelaza, the Governor's Mansion, is at the end of the street.

La Fortelaza. This building was closed on Saturday, but we will go back during the week when it is open for tours.
This beautiful church had a sign on it that said hospital. I thought that seemed strange so I peeked my head in the door. A lady said we could come on in. By the door were some nuns there dressed in long white robes. They showed us the beautiful chapel and then took us around the corner to a room that looked like an old time hospital room. I think they said the hospital is for the sisters.

Outside the beautiful church. When I saw the sign saying hospital, I thought maybe it was a really fancy nursing home.
The view from the church/hospital terrace.

Another pretty building. I think it is some sort of government office building. I like how all the doors open to the outside.

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