Top 9 Destinations To Purchase a Vacation Home In Puerto Rico

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Puerto Rico is a paradise for vacationers, boasting approximately 300 miles of coastline with pristine beaches, lush rainforests, delicious Caribbean cuisine, and year-round warm weather. Its fascinating history, carefree lifestyle, and friendly locals are additional perks that attract waves of tourists to the country.

According to Tourism Economics, the island experienced a staggering surge in revenue from travel and tourism in 2022, reaching a remarkable $8.9 billion. This figure represents a 39% increase compared to the previous record set in 2019.

If you’re a second-home buyer curious about Puerto Rico, know that investing here has simpler processes and paperwork than anywhere else in the Caribbean, thanks to its status as an unincorporated U.S. territory.

Whether you’re looking for an oceanfront single-family home to use as a relaxing beach retreat or a bustling condo surrounded by city lights, La Isla has options at every cardinal point. In this guide, we’ll explore the top nine destinations to purchase a vacation home in Puerto Rico. So sit back, relax, and let us guide you through the process of owning a piece of paradise.

The Puerto Rico Real Estate Market

Puerto Rico stands as a premier vacation and second home spot for U.S. citizens due to its status as a U.S. territory. The island’s enticing tax incentives provide another compelling reason to invest in property in Puerto Rico.

In fact, the implementation of Puerto Rico’s Act 60 in 2019 – which offers tax exemptions to businesses and investors who choose to relocate or establish themselves on the island, requires the purchase of property within two years of receiving a decree.

The real estate market in Puerto Rico is currently favoring sellers, characterized by high demand but limited inventory for buyers seeking primary residences. However, buying vacation homes or investing in real estate for rental profit is relatively easy and has become an attractive prospect for U.S. citizens due to the popularity of short rentals on the island.

As stated by a local agent, “the short-term rental market is flourishing in both the coastal areas and the countryside.” Currently, the Puerto Rico real estate market boasts an average price of $150K. However, whether you prefer upscale or budget-friendly options, a wide range of properties are available to cater to diverse budgets.

Benefits of Buying a Vacation Home in Puerto Rico

  • Tax Benefits: Incentives such as Act 20 and Act 22 offer reduced corporate and individual tax rates, making Puerto Rico an attractive location for entrepreneurs, investors, and retirees.
  • Lower Cost of Living than the Mainland: Puerto Rico offers a lower cost of living than many parts of the U.S. mainland, making it an appealing destination for those looking to stretch their dollar a bit further during vacation.
  • Year-round Beautiful Weather: Weather is one of the top perks of owning a vacation home in Puerto Rico. The island boasts year-round sunshine allowing visitors and residents to enjoy its offerings.
  • Access to Some of the Best Beaches in the Caribbean: Picture yourself lounging on pristine white sand, watching the turquoise blue waves gently lure you in for a swim. The island has award-winning beaches like Flamenco Beach. With a second home in Puerto Rico, this dream can be a short plane ride away.
  • Rich Culture and History: Puerto Rico has a Caribbean and Latin American identity, a rich past filled with pirates and rebels, and a culture defined by vibrant festivities, colorful traditions, salsa music, traditional cuisine, art, literature, architecture, and more.
  • A Caribbean Lifestyle with American Advantages:  As an American Commonwealth, Puerto Rico enjoys the same currency, language, and government as the mainland, making it an ideal destination for homebuyers and investors who may not feel comfortable acquiring property in other countries.
  • Opportunity to Explore the Whole Island: With 5,325 square miles of territory and abundant beaches, mountains, and natural beauty, Puerto Rico is a small island you can explore with your car from the comfort of your vacation home.

Top 9 Destinations To Purchase a Vacation Home In Puerto Rico


Vieques, officially known as La Isla de Vieques, is one of the five smaller islands surrounding Puerto Rico. It is situated only eight miles off the eastern coast of the main island, a 30-minute ferry ride. The island is a haven for nature enthusiasts and a paradise for tourists seeking a genuine escape from it all.

Renowned for its unspoiled beauty, Vieques beckons with endless stretches of pristine white-sand beaches, inviting visitors and residents to wander and discover. Here, you can immerse yourself in the Caribbean waters, perfect for swimming, scuba diving, or snorkeling. Ecotourism enthusiasts can explore the wildlife preserves.

If you want to purchase a vacation home in Puerto Rico, Vieques is a more private, simple living option. Here, you will trade large malls and department stores for charming farmers’ markets and little “colmados.” Also, be ready to see roaming horses and chickens, and to have beach wear and snorkeling gear stashed in your car, ready for a spontaneous adventure.

Vieques presents an enticing market for individuals looking for beachfront properties, whether as a primary residence, a vacation retreat, or a lucrative business venture. The Vieques real estate market is experiencing high demand, especially from foreign investors, while the supply of properties remains limited. As a result, the prices have soared, with a median price of $324K.

The waterfront properties and land for sale in Vieques are highly coveted and regarded as perfect vacation retreats or lucrative investments. These properties will be utilized as summer hideaways for snowbirds and families or as beachside short-term rentals. Given that Vieques lacks large resorts, any dwelling can be easily converted into a cute motel or B&B, presenting a profitable business prospect.

  • Attractions & Landmarks: Puerto Mosquito, Vieques National Wildlife Refuge, Crab Island Rum Distillery, La Chiva Beach, Caracas Beach, Playa Negra.
  • Median sale price: $324K
  • Zip code: 00765


Safe, paradisiac, and filled with luxurious real estate options by the water, Dorado is a desirable enclave to buy a second home close to San Juan’s action. The town, located just 15 miles (24 km) west of Puerto Rico’s capital, is considered a San Juan suburb, and has been praised for its quiet atmosphere, water-centered recreation, and day-to-day amenities.

The allure of Dorado is that, even though it is a well-known tourist destination for both locals and foreigners, it doesn’t feel crowded at all. It is actually pretty quiet and laid-back. Most of the activity and services are concentrated in the northern portion of town, while the south is more sparsely populated and peaceful.

Dorado encompasses five neighborhoods and Dorado Pueblo, but the Dorado del Mar community is one of the top living options for second-home buyers. This luxurious coastal area offers a variety of vacation homes, ranging from cozy bungalows to sprawling estates near the sea. Dorado del Mar provides access to breathtaking beaches and views, small restaurants with live music/karaoke, shopping, and entertainment.

Dorado real estate is in a thriving market where second-home purchasers can acquire a variety of condos in waterfront golf course communities. The single-family homes for sale are also in high demand, with prices ranging between $685K and $36M. The best listings are new custom-built mansions of up to seven bedrooms and lots of over 9,000 square feet.

Foreign investors prefer to buy Dorado real estate that is new construction and located in top communities within resort properties, like Dorado Country Estates and Villa Dorado Estates. This ensures 24-hour security, top-notch maintenance of the property, and access to world-renowned amenities such as golf courses, a beach club, a spa, a fitness center, water sports facilities, private beaches, and more.

  • Attractions & Landmarks: Dorado Beach East Golf Course, Playa del Dorado, El Ojo del Buey Trail,  Kikita Surf Beach, Gran Parque Agroturístico Ecológico Recreativo El Dorado.
  • Median sale price: $1.3M
  • Zip code: 00646


Nestled on the island’s northern coast, Isabela is a charming town and municipality where real estate is affordable, and life moves at a different pace. If you’ve decided to purchase a vacation home in Puerto Rico, Isabela has beautiful beaches, lush greenery, and an inviting atmosphere.

Isabela is the quintessential beach town, perfect for a weekend escape or a long vacation from the hustle and bustle of city life. Its beaches cater to surfers, swimmers, and snorkelers alike, offering a delightful retreat for all water enthusiasts.

For hikers and campers, Isabela is home to a state forest, and for those seeking a touch of luxury, indulge in exceptional cocktails at the local luxury resorts. No matter your preference, this town is the perfect destination to unwind.

Looking for second homes in Isabela? The top areas to invest in are those in the northern portion of town, where investors can buy renovated two-bed condos for $485K or properties with short-term rental potential, like an eco-friendly 10-bedroom single-family home on Bajuras Beach with a swimming pool and 4,900 square feet lot. More affordable dwellings await in southern Isabela, with fixer-uppers selling for around $100K.

Isabela’s economy thrives on tourism, so there are services and comforts available for vacationers and residents alike. If you visit you’ll find several lodging options, from hotels and guesthouses to luxurious resorts. There are also restaurants, cafés, bars, shopping centers with options ranging from small boutiques to brand-name stores, farmacies, and supermarkets.

  • Attractions & Landmarks: Playa Jobos, Guajataca State Forest, Montones Beach, Pozo Teodoro, Castillo Labadie.
  • Median sale price: $170K
  • Zip code: 00662

Rio Grande

Considered a suburb of San Juan, Rio Grande is a nice area to own property in La Isla del Encanto based on safety, cost of living, real estate prices, and access to amenities and ocean-focused recreation. Famous for being home to El Yunque National Forest and many scenic beaches, Rio Grande offers diverse housing options in northeast Puerto Rico.

If you’re planning to purchase a second home in this area, you can keep yourself busy in El Yunque, the only tropical rainforest in the U.S. National Forest System. You can hike to one of its many natural pools, or practice wildlife viewing, ziplining, ATV riding, or horseback riding. For beach relaxation, the coastline of Rio Grande houses Las Picuas Beach, with tan sands and sapphire waters in the shade of palm trees.

With tourism as its main economic sector, Rio Grande has many hospitality businesses, from little hotels to luxury beach resorts, including St. Regis Bahía Beach Resort, and Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Puerto Rico Golf & Beach Resort. There are also many restaurants and eateries, as well as shopping and entertainment spots serving the area.

The real estate market in Rio Grande shows healthy trends with rising prices and a high volume of foreign sales, particularly in resort communities and upscale areas. The property supply consists mostly of condos and single-family homes, with prices ranging between $85K for undeveloped real estate and $8M for a four-bedroom, fully-furnished condo in resort property with access to luxurious amenities.

As one of the largest municipalities east of San Juan, there’s no limit to what the Rio Grande real estate market offers homebuyers. However, if it’s a vacation home you want, the top alternatives are in the northwestern portion of town. Gated communities like Las Casas at Coco Beach and condo complexes with golf courses and ocean views, like Las Verandas at Bahia Beach Resort, will not disappoint. Still, you may have to pay top dollar for properties there.

  • Attractions & Landmarks: Coco Beach, El Yunque, Indio Cave, Las Picúas Beach, The Saint Regis Bahia Golf Course, Carabalí Rainforest Park.
  • Median sale price: $480K
  • Zip code: 00745

San Juan

Looking for Puerto Rico vacation homes? You’ll want to buy yours in San Juan, the country’s capital. San Juan presents prospective residents with the opportunity to relish an authentic Caribbean lifestyle, paired with the added advantage of American amenities and privileges.

Living in San Juan, Puerto Rico, even if it’s for a few weeks or months every year, can be a life-changing experience. This vibrant city is home to breathtaking beaches, colorful architecture, and a rich history. The city is a melting pot of different cultures, in which Spanish and Caribbean influences are predominant, creating a unique, inviting atmosphere.

The real estate market in San Juan is the most dynamic and high-valued of the island, and you’ll find literally any dwelling type you desire here. For urbanites looking for upscale amenities, entertainment, recreational activities, and waterfront views, condos in San Juan have a typical value of $400K.

The best neighborhoods for condo investors include Old San Juan and Condado, both offering existing units and new construction. As premier locations to live in the city, these condos (commonly on mid or high-rises) can be priced in the millions and offer upscale amenities, walkability, and access to a top-notch quality of life.

If it’s a single-family home in San Juan you’re after, some of the safest and most well-established communities to buy are Santurce, Quebrada Arenas, Hato Rey, and Universidad. When it comes to home styles in San Juan, the options are diverse. From elegant Spanish-style villas to expansive eight-bedroom estates just a stone’s throw away from the ocean, there is something to suit every taste.

  • Attractions & Landmarks: Old San Juan (El Viejo San Juan), Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico, Ocean Park Beach,  Museo de Las Américas, The University of Puerto Rico Botanical Garden, San Juan National Historic Site, El Yunque National Forest, Castillo de San Felipe del Morro, Casa Bacardí Distillery, La Placita de Santurce.
  • Median sale price: $234K
  • Zip codes: 00901, 00907, 00911, 00913, 00924, and 00926.

Palmas del Mar

Palmas del Mar is a coveted resort community located south of Humacao, PR, on the eastern coast of Puerto Rico. For many, this is the best vacation spot in the whole country, and a premier destination for foreign buyers in search of a vacation dwelling in a gorgeous setting.

Palmas del Mar prioritizes a community-focused way of living that incorporates the housing of its 1,400 permanent residents (about 3,400 houses) intertwined with modern amenities such as top-class restaurants, shopping options, a bank, and recreational facilities. Activities residents enjoy on a regular basis include swimming at the beach club, tennis courts, a golf club, boating at the yacht club, an equestrian center for horse owners, and over 10 miles of trails around the community serving hiking enthusiasts.

By owning vacation property here, you’ll be surrounded by like-minded individuals, which makes it easier to make friends and have your social calendar permanently full. Palmas del Mar residents are a unique blend of the local culture with people from all the corners of the globe, and, of course, United States citizens.

Real estate is always in high demand in Palmas del Mar, so if you’re seriously considering this community, contact a local real estate agent to start making the arrangements right away. The median sale price is around $775K, but what you’ll pay will depend on the property type you choose and other factors like location and square footage.

The Palmas del Mar real estate market offers low-maintenance living in the form of lovely condos with open ocean vistas, perfect for retirees and singles. There are also townhouses and single-family homes for families and couples seeking more space. Some detached dwellings can boast up to 4,000 square feet, gorgeous panoramic views, a pool, and much more.

  • Attractions & Landmarks: The Yacht Club Marina at Palmas del Mar, Palmas del Mar Beach, Beach Village Golf Course, Secret Beach, The Pterocarpus Forest.
  • Median sale price: $750K
  • Zip code: 00791


Tiny, secluded, and sparsely populated, Culebra is an exotic place to own vacation property in Puerto Rico. Here, you’ll move around by bike or golf cart, spend your days fishing, swimming in award-winning beaches like Flamenco Beach, and exploring the abundant nature preserves filled with lush forests packed with wildlife.

You’ll enjoy activities like hiking, biking, paddleboarding, kayaking, and bird-watching from your vacation home in Culebra. If you like underwater adventures, you can do snorkeling or scuba diving. All recreation in Culebra comes with the backdrop of gorgeous views and beautiful weather all year long. Summers bring heat, with temperatures ranging from 75°F to 87°F. As for winters, they are practically non-existent, leaving the chill far away.

For a small town, Culebra has a wealth of culture and history. Explore the island’s charming neighborhoods and immerse yourself in unique cultural and architectural treasures that will leave you in awe.

Explore the rich history of Culebra at the Museum Fort Count Mirasol and Culebra Historical Museum. After learning the local way of life, treat your taste buds to delectable dishes at the eateries and restaurants that offer everything from comida criolla (creole food) to classic tacos, pizzas, and burgers.

With limited inventory due to its small size and high demand from investors and homebuyers attracted to the abundant natural beauty and recreational options, Culebra has a strong real estate market with soaring housing prices. The island offers diverse properties, from beachfront villas to mountaintop retreats.

  • Attractions & Landmarks: Flamenco Beach, Tamarindo Beach, Playa Carlos Rosario, Culebra National Wildlife Refuge, Playa Resaca, Playa Sardinas.
  • Median sale price: $565K
  • Zip code: 00775


The beach town of Rincón lies in the northwestern corner of the island of Puerto Rico and it’s widely known for its laid-back atmosphere, friendly locals, and vibrant surf culture. Rincón is the type of place where you get around on a bike or a four-wheeler, wear flip-flops everywhere, and know everyone by name.

As a tiny seaside village, Rincón has limited amenities, like small boutiques and markets, community health centers, and family-owned, informal eateries. The local economy revolves around tourism, with many hotels and other forms of lodging leading the main source of revenue. With its numerous local surfing schools, Rincón lures water sports enthusiasts from both nearby and distant locations.

In addition to catching a wave, there are countless activities to enjoy here. Explore the underwater world through snorkeling, glide across the water on a kayak, embark on a horseback riding adventure, or pedal along scenic mountain biking trails. Whale watching and fishing are also popular options. And if you simply want to unwind, bask in the sun on the beach while admiring Rincón’s breathtaking pink sunsets.

Ready to invest in a vacation home in Rincón? The Rincón real estate market remains competitive with a median sale price of $300K, up 7.5% since the previous year, which shows appreciation but also certain affordability. Properties remain for approximately 36 days in the market before closing.

Most coveted dwellings on the market are located along the coast to take advantage of the ocean views and beach proximity. Prospective second-home buyers can still find a large variety of properties in Rincón, including condos with luxurious on-site amenities, single-family homes, and land for sale.

  • Attractions & Landmarks: Faro Punta Higueras, Domes Beach, Reserva Marina Tres Palmas, Balneario Público Rincon, Dona Lala Beach, El Último Brinco, Playa Los Almendros.
  • Median sale price: $300K
  • Zip code: 00677


Located directly east of San Juan, on Puerto Rico’s northeast coast, Carolina is the country’s third-largest city and boasts 203K residents. Known for being the hometown of baseball hall-of-famer Roberto Clemente and other local heroes, one of Carolina’s major drawings for potential homebuyers is the presence of the island’s main airport, Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (SJU), making the area perfect for frequent travelers.

The town boasts stunning beaches, delicious food, and colorful cultural events where you can integrate with the community and maybe learn some Spanish. Moreover, owning a second home in Carolina, PR, will allow you to experience the island’s relaxed atmosphere while enjoying all the comforts of home.

Things to do for vacationers in Carolina include the two main beaches: Isla Verde Beach and the Balneario de Carolina. Both beaches are great for swimming and relaxing under a palm tree or for practicing windsurfing and kitesurfing if you’re adventurous. Renting wave runners, banana boats, or a catamaran tour are popular plans for families.

The Carolina beaches are located within walking distance from restaurants, eateries, and stores if you need a snack after the fun. The city also boasts museums, like El Museo del Niño or the Galería de los Gigantes Museum, where you can have an interactive experience and immerse in the local culture and history.

Its own attributes and proximity to the capital, San Juan, make Carolina a fantastic place to own a second home either for yourself or to use as a business venture. Carolina real estate has a diverse market with condos, townhouses, and single-family homes priced between $120K and $2M. However, the properties with the highest demand are oceanfront in neighborhoods like El Palmar, Villas de Lago Mar, Villa Marina, and Parque Isla Verde.

Attractions & Landmarks: Hacienda Campo Rico, Pine Grove Surfing Beach, Playa Isla Verde, Isla Verde Park, Carolina Public Beach, Parque Julia de Burgos.
Median sale price: $460.9K
Zip code: 00979, 00983, 00985, 00987,

Buying Vacation Homes in Puerto Rico

Owning a vacation home in Puerto Rico is a dream come true for many. However, embarking on this complex transaction in a different country, even if it’s a US territory, can seem like a daunting task. Here are some of the steps you need to take before you can call yourself a proud Puerto Rican property owner:

Step 1.  Securing Funding

Unless you plan to buy a home with cash, you’ll need a loan to finance the purchase of your desired home. The pre-qualification process in Puerto Rico is similar to the U.S. process; it includes a good credit score and preparing a downpayment of 20% of the price (unless it’s an FHA loan that allows a 3.5% downpayment).

You’ll also need a bilingual mortgage broker to deal with all the paperwork. Based on the intended use of your new Puerto Rico home, you can qualify for a loan ranging from 75% to 100%.

Step 2. Search for the Dream Property

If you already have a location in mind, it’s time to start your home searching process. This process includes the following:

Hire a real estate agent and lawyer: Since you’re trying to buy property in a different country, we recommend enlisting a buyer’s agent to assist you, even if they charge a hunter’s fee. A certified Resort and Second-Home Property Specialist could be even more beneficial for your Puerto Rico home search. Finding the right home or condo can be very different from the house-hunting process on the mainland and you’ll benefit from their guidance.

It is also important to hire a real estate lawyer since you’ll be navigating an unknown market in a foreign language. Engage your lawyer to assist in incorporating provisions into the purchase agreement, allowing your buying decision to be contingent upon repairs identified during a home inspection or the property appraisal.

Do a title search: Numerous properties in Puerto Rico may be unsellable due to intricate inheritance law complications, so make sure to do a title search or title study to your desired property. The property should cost around $100.

Be Careful with Listing Databases: While Puerto Rico has an MLS database, it is not widely used. The primary source for agent-represented listings on the island is However, be ready to encounter the same house listed by multiple agents, each with different prices.

There can be low data quality, including missing or outdated information. Simply put: Did you find an incredible condo by the ocean with an unbelievable price? You may find out it was sold six months ago.

Getting reliable, comparable sales data in a place with limited MLS participation can be challenging, so what is there to do? Puerto Rico has a third-party data service called TasaMax that bank lenders, mortgage brokers, and real estate agents use for this purpose.

If you come across a property that catches your interest and you’re considering making an offer, seek the assistance of one of these professionals to generate a comparative sales report for you.

Step. 3 Closing on the Home

Property purchase transactions are typically finalized at the lending bank’s office, usually 15 to 45 days in advance. Unlike in the United States, the physical presence of all parties involved is required. This ensures a smooth and secure process, guaranteeing that all necessary parties are present to complete the transaction. Take into account that closing in Puerto Rico may not be as smooth as in the mainland and the process can last for several hours.

FAQs: Destinations To Purchase a Vacation Home In Puerto Rico

Is buying property in Puerto Rico a good idea for Americans?

Investing in Puerto Rico real estate presents a remarkable opportunity for American citizens. As a U.S. Commonwealth, the island imposes no restrictions on ownership, making it an enticing prospect.

The influx of cryptocurrency millionaires and media personalities choosing to relocate has sparked a surge in American and international investors flocking to Puerto Rico. This trend can be largely attributed to the enticing tax benefits offered by Act 60-20-22, which slashes tax rates to a mere 4%.

Do I need an agent to purchase property in Puerto Rico?

When buying real estate in Puerto Rico, working with a certified and bilingual agent with extensive experience is crucial. Keep in mind that conditions and specific details can differ based on the location where you’re purchasing property, so it’s crucial to choose an agent who possesses expertise in your particular area of interest. A person who speaks Spanish and knows the country’s culture and ways will be a great asset to your transaction.

Prior to embarking on the purchase of that dream vacation home or condo, research the local market thoroughly. Compare prices of various homes for sale and meticulously examine any potential additional fees, such as security deposits, maintenance costs, or insurance premiums. Also, ​​consider hiring a home inspector and scheduling an in-person visit to your property if you haven’t done it yet.

What is the law 20 and 22 in Puerto Rico?

In 2012, the Government of Puerto Rico introduced two acts as part of a comprehensive plan to enhance the island’s economy. These acts, namely Act 20 (Export Services Act) and Act 22 (Individual Investors Act), aimed to attract high-net-worth individuals and businesses to Puerto Rico by offering a range of tax benefits. Let’s learn a bit more about each:

  • The Act 20 program was designed to provide eligible businesses based in Puerto Rico, with clients outside of Puerto Rico, the opportunity to take advantage of various tax exemptions. These exempt businesses enjoy the benefits of a minimal corporate tax rate of only 4%, a complete exemption from taxes on dividend distributions, and other tax advantages, which we will delve into further below.
  • Act 22 sought to encourage investment in Puerto Rico by providing substantial tax incentives to legitimate residents. Investors who fulfill the residency requirements can enjoy tax exemption on dividends, interests, capital gains, and even crypto assets, resulting in significant financial benefits.

What are the potential drawbacks of buying property in Puerto Rico?

It is no secret that Puerto Rico has faced financial difficulties. The country filed for bankruptcy in 2019 but successfully emerged from it due to a remarkable surge in the local real estate market. Aside from the potential economic issues, homebuyers looking to invest in the island should be made aware of the risks associated with extreme weather.

In Puerto Rico, properties and residents are vulnerable to the increasing severity of hurricanes in tropical regions. Before making a purchase, it is crucial to carefully consider the risks and benefits associated with owning a vacation home in this Caribbean location.

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