La Fortaleza - Palacio de Santa Catalina

La Fortaleza - Palacio de Santa Catalina

La Fortaleza - Palacio de Santa Catalina
4.5
Historic SitesGovernment Buildings
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Monday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Tuesday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Wednesday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Thursday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Friday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Saturday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Sunday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
About
Visitors can take guided tours through this World Heritage Site, a 40-room mansion completed in 1540 that was used to defend against foreign invaders.
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
216 reviews
Excellent
118
Very good
71
Average
18
Poor
4
Terrible
5

Claire M
Charlottesville, VA258 contributions
Jan 2024 • Couples
We had rented an apartment in San Juan, which just happened to be down the block from La Fortaleza. We had read that you can take a tour of the grounds, but we didn’t know how to do this. Since this is the four hundred year old mansion where the governor of Puerto Rico lives, there are always guards stationed at the end of the block. I asked one of the guards, and he was so helpful. He said that we had to call to make a reservation, which we did. The tour is free and takes about a half hour. The mansion is the oldest building used as an executive mansion in the Western Hemisphere. Our guide, Francesca, was charming and engaging. She told us about the history of the building, which started as a fort. It was soon realized that the fort was not large enough to guard the harbor going into San Juan, which, during the Spanish control of the island, was a crucial gateway to safeguard Spain’s holdings in the Caribbean and south. So, the fort was refashioned into a lavish house to accommodate the governor. We were able to visit the chapel, which is used only for worship for the governor and his family. There was a stunning mosaic above the altar of the Holy Trinity, made out of 7500 individual tiles. A fun way to learn more about the history of Puerto Rico.
Written January 24, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

AMsays
Thornhill, Canada4,121 contributions
Mar 2023
UNESCO’s La Fortaleza and its fortifications of Castillo San Felipe del Morro, Castillo San Cristóbal and San Juan de la Cruz and the majority of the San Juan City Wall, were built between the 16th and 20th centuries to protect the city. Characteristic of military architecture over this period, it has served as a fortress, an arsenal and a prison. Today it’s the seat and residence of the Puerto Rico Governor. You could not enter to see this magnificent edifice but we viewed it from the Palomas Park across San Juan Bay. It would certainly have been a presence as it faced the potential enemy. ..
Written March 22, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

BrakiWorldTraveler
Belgrade, Serbia17,756 contributions
Dec 2022
I don't think the TA description of La Fortaleza is accurate any more.
Fortaleza is a historic 16 c forted governor's mansion. It's set right in the very center of the old town. However, you cannot even approach it any more.
The street leading to it is closed and blocked with both - physical obstacles and heavy police presence. You can only see the front gate fence and facade from a distance.
Written February 2, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Laura R
Guttenberg, NJ304 contributions
Apr 2022
La Fortaleza is beautiful. We were able to get a tour (which is free but you must book in advance). The architecture is stunning, and the grounds are serene. The fountain takes you back to Al Hambra. It is a fantastic building. We were very happy to go on the tour.
Written May 2, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Opinion_of_EMS
Kingwood, Texas38 contributions
Mar 2022 • Couples
La Fortaleza did not disappoint! What a privilege to walk past those gates and into the beautiful and well-kept grounds. Our tour guide Sandra de Jesus did a great job of giving us a history lesson and showing us how the governor's mansion is still used today. What a treat!
Written March 20, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

jehenson81
Washington DC, DC22,264 contributions
Nov 2021 • Solo
So because of the protests that have been going on over the last 2+ years, the path to the front of the governors mansion is blocked off and guarded by police officers. The only part you can really see is the front through the gate from over a block away. It was a tad disappointing.
Written November 12, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

TennisStar602
New Jersey616 contributions
Feb 2020 • Solo
I enjoyed the beautiful architecture of this stunning old building. However, as a result of the protests, this site is not currently open to the public. It is gated off, and it has a police barricade.
Written February 4, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Les L
St. Petersburg, FL16,218 contributions
Dec 2019 • Solo
Dominating one end of Fortaleza street, the governor’s mansion is stunning. A must-see when strolling Fortaleza.
Written December 29, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mike G
Godley, TX142 contributions
Aug 2019
Was working in Puerto Rico for a couple of weeks. Was able to go to Old San Juan and walk around. Went by La Fortaleza and loved the architecture and all of the flowers. Very beautiful.
Written November 5, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

elw966
Bronx, NY35 contributions
Aug 2019
It is very important to visit El Morro which is filled with history. This place is beautiful and a must see. The views from the top of the fort are beautiful.
Written August 19, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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La Fortaleza - Palacio de Santa Catalina, San Juan

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