elopement & Wedding
I’m so STOKED
you’re considering getting married in Puerto Rico!!!
I'm a full time wedding and elopement photographer based in Puerto Rico and NYC. I'm constantly flying between both places with the occasional stop Florida. Hanging out with madly in love couples and documenting their story is my thang!
I'm also a father of 3 cats, a lover to my gorgeous gf, a DJ in my living room, and a sing-a-long champion. Read more about me here and why I love what I do!!
Why Puerto Rico?
For starters, Puerto Rico is incredible!! An enchanted island with more than 300 miles of beaches, including the out-islands and cays, a tropical rainforest, mountains that stretch from the west coast to the east, caves, historical sites. It’s an amazing place to come and relax or to find an adventure. It has locations that feel remote and completely off the grid but no more than a 2-hour drive from luxury resorts, A+ restaurants, and nightlife.
Puerto Rico is stunning anytime of year. While the summer months can get as extremely warm as expected in the Caribbean, there’s almost always a breeze, especially in the mountains where the temperature can get in the low 50’s. November – February is my recommendation for best of the best time to get married there. But the weather is beach-vibes all year round. Just the ocassional rainstorm here and there.
If you’ve been dreaming of getting married with the most incredible views, you’ve come to the right place!
Selecting a Ceremony Location
This decision might be the most challenging. Puerto Rico is roughly 100 x 35 miles of gorgeous scenery that ranges from beaches, forests, caves, mountains, and even some southwest desert vibes. But not everything is accessible. Some beaches are privately owned by resorts, some mountain trails aren’t easy to find. So the decision of where to get married in Puerto Rico ultimately lies in personal preference of what kind of scenery you want, and then knowing where you can and cannot have your ceremony at.
After photographing many love stories in Puerto Rico, I realize I have a lot of say on this subject and in order to keep this section short, I’ve put together a list of all the locations I know about into a little guide. It’s organized based on what the scenery is like and what is nearby for accommodations and lodging. I included designated venues as well as public beaches, state parks and off the beaten path trails perfect for elopements. The great thing about Puerto Rico is that you have plenty of options, but you do want to plan ahead. And with so many stunning locations in PR, this list does not cover all of them, but I hope it’s a great starting off point!
THINGS TO DO
Playa Escambron – Little beach just outside of Old San Juan and Condado. Calm waters due to the coral reef a short distance from the beach. Family-friendly with plenty of palm trees for shade make this public beach a perfect break from the hotels of Condado without having to go far.
Mar Chiquita – One of my favorite beaches, it’s a public beach in Manati, about 40 minutes from San Juan. A small cove of a beach protected from the rough Atlantic by a rocky wall, making it a perfect little getaway beach worthy of Instagram.
Luquillo Beach – The town of Luquillo has miles of golden sand beaches lined with palm trees for shade and beautiful blue water. It’s perfect for beach hopping. Great way to spend a day and find the perfect beach. Make sure to also visit Kioskos de Luquillo for a post-beach-day snack or dinner.
Puerto Nuevo Beach – Another must-visit beach! It has two sides for two different types of water fun. One half of the beach is protected from northern swells by huge limestone rocks which act as a wave break while offering a stunning view and amazing photo opportunities for those adventurous enough to climb them. These rocks create a natural pool that’s constantly being filled and flushed with wave action but the pool area is almost always calm. The second half of the beach is connected to the ocean which offers more wave action.
Rincon – Another town with miles of beaches, each one different and catering to all the different types of beachgoers. The beaches of Rincon are mostly known for surfing, drawing in surf enthusiasts from all over the world. But there are also plenty of unspoiled sandy beaches for those that are looking to chill on the sand with some drinks, swim in the salty waters, and enjoy the west coast sunset views. The town of Rincon is super cute and very very unique compared to the rest of Puerto Rico due to the surfing lifestyle, which draws a lot of people from all over the world to not just visit here but also move and settle here.
Crash Boat Beach – If I had to pick a favorite, which would be really hard to do, but if I had to, I would pick this beach. It’s in the town of Aguadilla which is on the north-west corner of the island. It has two sandy areas divided by a colorful pier that was at one time used by the US Air Force and now is perfect for gorgeous Instagram-worthy pictures. Every time I’ve come here, the waters are calm and perfect for laying or standing in. Between the colorful pier, the small fishing boats that are sometimes in the short distance, and the west coast sunset over calm waters, you will experience a perfect beach day here.
Playa Escondida (Hidden Beach) – For the adventurous at heart, if you’re willing to park your car and walk about 25 minutes thru a mangrove forest, you will be rewarded with a private, but public, beach that offers gorgeous views of El Yunque and a hill rock worthy of hiking for the photos. It’s in the town of Fajardo, which is a must-visit beach town on it’s own. This beach is only for enjoying the scenery because swimming is not allowed due to the strong currents. But if you’re looking for a beach that most tourists or even local beachgoers don’t visit to lay in the sand, enjoy the views, and take amazing pictures, this is the one. Pro tip – nude sunbathing is not allowed on public beaches in Puerto Rico, but, due to this beach’s remote location, it has been used a clothing-optional beach. Something to be aware of 😉 . Also, nearby (well, another 25-minute walk lol) is another secluded beach you should visit, Playa Colora.
Cerro de Punta – At over 4,000 feet in elevation, this is the highest peak in Puerto Rico. On a clear day, the views are absolutely breathtaking. You can see almost all of the island from coast to coast. It is located in the town of Jayuya in the Toro Negro State Forest along Ruta Panoramica (Scenic Route) which is a network of roads that run through the center of the island’s mountainous region. This route in itself offers stunning views as your drive through the highest ridges of the several mountains that stretch from one side of the island to the other.
Cerro Del Rodadero – Another mountain peak with amazing views make this place a must-visit for any photography hobbyist and casual hiker. It’s located in the town of Yauco and at almost 3,000 feet in elevation, you can see all the way to the coast and everything in between. The drive and hike here are not for the faint of heart, but well worth the effort.
Arbol Solitario – Another popular hiking trail with the reward of stunning views from a mountain peak. A single tree stands here, making for a super surreal place to sit and reflect if you’re lucky enough to be there when there’s no one hiking.
Toro Negro Forest – An alternative to El Yunque, this is almost 7,000 acres of various forest regions that include multiple hiking trails with different kinds of payoffs. There’s a waterfall, the Cerro de Punta, camping facilities, and rivers with natural pools.
Vianda – This joint opened up last year and after just two visits, it’s become my favorite night-out/date-night restaurant on the island. It features a farm-to-table, seasonally-rotating menu with all the best locally grown food that Puerto Rico has to offer. It’s f-ing incredible! It’s located in the Santurce/San Juan area.
Jose Enrique Restaurant – Casual but upscale and traditional Puerto Rican cuisine by celebrated chef Jose Enrique. Another go-to for date night or client meetings 🙂 The food is crazy good, always a hit, never a miss.
Piñones – One of my favorite places in all of Puerto Rico! It’s a strip that runs alongside miles of a beach filled with small food kiosks. Most serve fried seafood snacks, but some are sit-down restaurants. Lots of cold coconuts too! Perfect place to continue the post-beach day vibes.
Bioluminescent Bays – These are incredible to see! You go out into the water in kayaks or canoes and when you splash the water with your paddle, there’s an amazing neon blue-green light show giving a starlight reflection on the water. Only five ecosystems in the world can be considered bioluminescent, and Puerto Rico is home to three of them.
San Sebastian Festival – A cultural multi-day street festival in Old San Juan. It’s in honor of Saint Sebastian, starting with a kick-off parade, music, arts & crafts, and lots of partying. Usually takes place in the second or third week of January.
Emily & Daniel
SAN JUAN, PR
Hector and his girlfriend Tessa did our photography/ videography for our destination wedding in San Juan, PR! I was so excited about their willingness to travel. I fell in love with Hector’s work- his photos were all so authentic and classic looking. When we met Hector and Tessa for the first time we knew we made the right decision, they were so fun to be around and didn’t make anything feel awkward or uncomfortable! The photos we have gotten back so far from Hector are absolutely breath taking. Thank you to Hector for capturing the most amazing day of our lives!
Malen & Antonio
Hector and his team were amazing! They came to Puerto Rico a year before our wedding for our engagement shoot and the results were incredible. We had beautiful pictures for our website and save the date, highly recommended. On our wedding day they were very professional and managed to capture every detail. Their pictures let us relive almost every second of that day. Thank you so much!
Linn Marie & Barge
Hector is AWESOME! He is such a cool guy and super easy to work with. We loved the result and we’re really happy we chose Hector. Thank you!