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					Puerto Rico : Enchanted Island

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        in YOUR country.                                       PUERTO RICO : ENCHANTED ISLAND
                                                               by Lulu Basuil
           Place Your Banner Ad on
        our Site for Huge Traffic                              Overview
        Volume! Click here to find out                         Puerto Rico is also popularly known as "La Isla del Encanto", which translated
        how we can help you sell your                          means "The Island of Enchantment." And indeed it is, as everyone from
        property, business,                                    Columbus to its current visitors will attest. Of the four largest Caribbean islands,
        opportunity, ebook or idea.                            Puerto Rico is the only one under US jurisdiction. Nevertheless, Puerto Rico is
                                                               more Caribbean, Spanish, Latino, tropical and colorful than anything Stateside.
           Full-Length Articles                                This article attempts to explain the history, political system and the island’s
        Featuring YOUR Home or                                 affiliation with the United States of America.
        Business! Tell YOUR story and
                                                               As befits a Catholic country, the island has quite a selection of monasteries,
        get exposure! Sell your                                convents and shrines where the Virgin Mary is said to have made appearances
        property or business (or                               before the faithful. Head for the centuries-old San Juan convent authorized by
        business opportunity) through                          Spain's King Philip V. During the building's long history, it has gone from nunnery
        editorials and feature articles!                       to ruin to grand hotel and even a short-lived casino. The ex-convent's neighbor is
                                                               San Juan Cathedral, dating to 1521 and therefore the Western Hemisphere's
          Need Exposure for your                               oldest such structure. Nearby is the New World's oldest continually occupied
        Large Real Estate                                      governor's mansion, and the home of first governor Juan Ponce de Leon.
        Development? Advertise your
        project, your resort, your spa,                        MYTH HAS IT THAT PONCE DE LEON SET OUT TO FIND THE FOUNTAIN OF
        your condo's, your timeshare...                        YOUTH AND ‘DISCOVERED’ FLORIDA…ACTUALLY, THE OLD MAN NEEDED
        whatever you're promoting - in                         GOLD, NOT YOUTH!
                                                               A popular myth has it that Ponce de Leon set out to find the legendary Fountain
                                                               of Youth and "discovered" Florida instead. Actually, the old man needed gold, not
                                                               youth! He had a passel of unwed daughters in need of dowries so that they could
                                                               marry well.

                                                               The crown jewel of Puerto Rican eco-tourism treasures is El Yunque Rainforest. El
                                                               Yunque - the Anvil, in English - is a movie-set jungle ensconced in mist and rain
                                                               over trees as high as 100 feet. You will hear many a squawk of the indigenous
                                                               Puerto Rican Parrot, along with the croaks of millions of coqui, tiny tree frogs
                                                               that are a national symbol. Some drink from the forest's two waterfalls, but you
          Subscribe FREE! Click here                           are advised to stick with the purified and bottled stuff, just to be on the safe
        and subscribe to Caribbean                             side.
        Property ezine monthly - FREE!
                                                               The dry southwestern corner of the island is noted for its beaches and
        We value your privacy
                                                               picturesque fishing villages with easy-going attitude. Here you can savor fresh
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                                                               clams and oysters in between sips of coconut water and the enchanting company
                                                               of sea, sun and sand. (2 of 12) [06/04/2009 23:11:05]
Puerto Rico : Enchanted Island

          Visit our Archives! Click                            The island's second city, Ponce, may have been named for the aforementioned
        here to explore our archived                           Ponce de Leon. Local residents call their city La Perla del Su - the Pearl of the
        articles.                                              South. It resembles provincial Spain in the daytime when locals gather in the
                                                               cool shade of the Plaza Central. During the evenings, people re-group to
             Download Latest Issue                             socialize.
        as a PDF: Click here to
                                                               Delightful country inns known as paradores are a little-known aspect of Puerto
        download the latest Edition of
                                                               Rican tourism. These government-promoted inns, patterned after those of Spain,
        Caribbean Property Magazine
                                                               are ideal for inexpensive family vacations, usually in a rustic setting.
        in PDF format, March 2009.
        Most computers will open PDF                           Since the US military stopped using the out island of Vieques for target practice,
        documents automatically, but                           the island is fast developing into one of the world's newest best travel and beach
        you may need to download                               Mecca. The main town and ferry point is Isabel Segunda, boasting a bust of
        Adobe Reader.                                          South American Liberator Simon Bolivar, one of the island's first tourists, having
        Download the reader here.                              come to the island in 1816.

          Tell Your Story! We want                             About Puerto Rico
        your articles, your stories, your
        experiences, your knowledge                            Puerto Rico, officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, is a self governing
        and your advice! Tell our                              unincorporated territory of the United States with Commonwealth status located
        readers what you've learned,                           in the northeastern Caribbean, east of the Dominican Republic and west of the
        what you love and what you                             Virgin Islands; approximately 1,280 miles off the coast of Florida. The
        think other people need to                             archipelago of Puerto Rico includes the main island of Puerto Rico, the smallest of
        know about living, working,                            the Greater Antilles, and a number of smaller islands and keys, the largest of
        buying, selling, relocating and                        which are Mona, Vieques, and Culebra. The Capital of Puerto Rico is San Juan,
        retiring in the Caribbean.                             founded in 1508, by Juan Ponce de León.

                                                               Puerto Rico has one of the most dynamic economies in the Caribbean region.
          Contact Us/Feedback                                  Tourism has traditionally been an important source of income for the island. The
        Want to contact us? Make a                             currency of Puerto Rico is the United States dollar (US$).
        comment? Want more info?
        Different info? We want you to                         Language
        be satisfied, so tell us what
        you think...                                           Spanish and English are the official languages, but Spanish is without a doubt the
                                                               dominant language. English is spoken by about 1/4 of the population-with limited
                                                               capabilities. English is taught as a second language in public and private schools
                                                               from elementary levels to high school and in universities English is required in all
                                                               federal matters. English is spoken in all major tourist areas. Puerto Rico has
                                                               developed a unique version of Spanish. The language was greatly influenced by
                                                               Puerto Rico's history. Puerto Ricans integrated thousands of Taíno words,
                                                               adopted some pronunciation habits from African dialects, and incorporated
                                                               English words or phrases (known as "Spanglish") into the language.
        A comprehensive list of
        downloadable ebooks
        available from Caribpro. Titles

         Costa Rica: Living There
        The Golden Door to Retirement (3 of 12) [06/04/2009 23:11:05]
Puerto Rico : Enchanted Island

         Retirement Planning For                               Puerto Ricans can understand Spanish speakers from other countries, while there
        Offshore Living: Maintain and                          may be some differences; such differences are not excessive and does not
        Enhance your lifestyles                                obstruct communication.
        spending less than 25% of
                                                               Language has been a central issue in Puerto Rican education and culture since
        your monthly budget.
                                                               1898. Until 1930 U.S. authorities insisted upon making English the language of
                                                               instruction in the schools, the intent being to produce English-speaking persons
          Retire In Mexico: Live
                                                               of American culture in the same way this is done in the United States public
        Better For Less. Live in                               schools. But strong resistance to the policy finally brought a change to the use of
        Mexico and join the many                               Spanish as the basic school language, English becoming a second language
        other retires who have done                            studied by all.
        their homework, which
        resulted in mexico where you                           In 1991 the Puerto Rican legislature, following the lead of the pro-commonwealth
        can live better for less.                              Popular Democratic Party and the governor, Rafael Hernández Colon, endorsed a
                                                               bill that made Spanish the island's official language, thus reversing a 1902 law
          Escape The Corporation:                              that gave both Spanish and English official recognition. In 1993 the pro-
        How to live the life you've                            statehood governor, Pedro J. Rossello, signed legislation restoring equal status to
        always dreamed of - free from                          Spanish and English.
        the corporate slog.
                                                               PUERTO RICAN CULTURE IS SOMEWHAT COMPLEX – OTHERS WILL CALL
          Belize: Living There How to                          IT COLORFUL.
        Live, Retire, Work of Invest in                        Culture
                                                               Puerto Rican culture is somewhat complex - others will call it colorful. Culture is a
          Nicaragua: Real Estate                               series of visual manifestations and interactions with the environment that make a
        Property and land bargain                              region and/or a group of people different from the rest of the world. Puerto Rico,
        amidst colonial splendour.                             without a doubt has several unique characteristics that distinguish their culture
                                                               from any other.
         Plastic Surgery in The
                                                               Let’s consider that the people of Puerto Rico represent a cultural and racial mix.
        Caribbean: Inexpensive, High
                                                               During the early 18-century, the Spaniard in order to populate the country took
        Quality Cosmetic Surgery.                              Taino Indian women as brides. Later on as labor was needed to maintain crops
                                                               and build roads, African slaves were imported, followed by the importation of
          Living & Investing: In                               Chinese immigrants, then continued with the arrival of Italians, French, German,
        Panama Find your dream in                              and even Lebanese people. American expatriates came to the island after 1898.
        panama by enjoying an
        affordable and comfortable                             Long after Spain had lost control of Puerto Rico, Spanish immigrants continued to
        setting.                                               arrive on the island. The most significant new immigrant population arrived in
                                                               the 1960s, when thousands of Cubans fled from Fidel Castro's Communist state.
          The Portable Professional:                           The latest arrivals to Puerto Rico have come from the economically depressed
        Using technology, log in from                          Dominican Republic. Amazingly, Puerto Rico exists practically without racial
        anywhere and earn a living.                            problems (very close to but not completely).
        please yourself and make
                                                               Due to the mix of the four cultures - African (from the slaves), Taíno
        money doing it.
                                                               (Amerindians), Spanish, and more recently, North American Puerto Rico has a
                                                               strong music base to its culture. From Africans, the Puerto Ricans have obtained
         For a complete list of                                the "bomba and plena", a type of music and dance including percussions and
        Caribbean e-books, click                               maracas. From the Amerindians (Taínos), they kept many names for their
        here                                                   municipalities, foods, musical instruments like the güiro and maracas.

                                                               Many words and other objects have originated from their localized language.
                                                               From the Spanish they received the Spanish language, the Catholic religion and
                                                               the vast majority of their cultural and moral values and traditions. From the
                                                               United States they received the English language, the university system and a (4 of 12) [06/04/2009 23:11:05]
Puerto Rico : Enchanted Island

                                                               variety of hybrid cultural forms that developed between the U.S. mainland and
                                                               the island of Puerto Rico.


                                                               Puerto Rico consists of the main island of Puerto Rico and various smaller islands,
                                                               including Vieques, Culebra, Mona, Desecheo, and Caja de Muertos. Of these last
                                                               five, only Culebra and Vieques are inhabited year-round. Mona is uninhabited
                                                               most of the year except for employees of the Puerto Rico Department of Natural
                                                               Resources. There are also many other even smaller islands including Monito and
                                                               "La Isleta de San Juan" which includes Old San Juan and Puerta de Tierra.

                                                               The maximum length of the main island from east to west is 110 miles and the
                                                               maximum width from north to south is 40 miles. Comparing land areas, Puerto
                                                               Rico is 8/10 the size of Jamaica and 8/100 the size of Cuba, the next smallest
                                                               and the largest countries in the Greater Antilles, respectively. An important peak
                                                               is El Yunque, one of the highest in the Sierra de Luquillo at the El Yunque
                                                               National Forest, with an elevation of 3,494 feet.

                                                               Puerto Rico has 17 lakes, all man-made,
                                                               and more than 50 rivers, most
                                                               originating in the Cordillera Central.
                                                               Rivers in the northern region of the
                                                               island are typically longer and of higher
                                                               water flow rates than those of the south,
                                                               since the south receives less rain than
                                                               the central and northern regions.

                                                               The most recognizable endemic species
                                                               and a symbol of Puerto Rican pride is the
                                                               Coquí, a small frog easily identified by
                                                               the sound of its call, and from which it gets its name. Most Coquí species (13 of
                                                               17) live in the El Yunque National Forest, a tropical rainforest in the northeast of
                                                               the island previously known as the Caribbean National Forest. El Yunque is home
                                                               to more than 240 plants, 26 of which are endemic to the island.

                                                               THE PUERTO RICO TRENCH, THE LARGEST AND DEEPEST TRENCH IN THE


                                                               Puerto Rico is located to the west by Haití and the Dominican Republic (La
                                                               Hispañola), separated by the Mona Passage ("Mona Canal"), to the east by the
                                                               Virgin Islands, to the north by the Atlantic Ocean, and to the south by the
                                                               Caribbean Sea.

                                                               Click Here to see Related Articles (5 of 12) [06/04/2009 23:11:05]
Puerto Rico : Enchanted Island

                                                                                   There is a new and special place where the land and
                                                                                   sea merge gently beneath the tropical sun. It is from
                                                                                   this magnificent natural setting that Seaside Mariana
                                                                                   Spa & Golf Resort is rising and creating the new
                                                                                   standard of excellence for exclusive luxury
                                                                                   destinations in Latin America.

                                                                                   Nestled on the Pacific Coast of Nicaragua, the
                                                                                   resort’s 923 acres rise smoothly from over a mile of
                                                                                   unspoiled beach to the Tecolapa River’s tree-lined
                                                                                   banks, framed by distant rolling mountains. It is a
                                                                                   place of the heart and soul, a quiet refuge dedicated
                                                                                   to relaxation and revitalization.

                                                                                   Seaside Mariana is the jewel of the New Nicaragua, a
                                                                                   country that understands the past and embraces the
                                                                                   future. Residents and visitors will discover the
                                                                                   country’s special charms and the warmth of its
                                                                                   people, which complement the variety of amenities
                                                                                   and recreational opportunities found within the
                                                                                   resort. Serving as the centerpiece of Seaside
                                                                                   Mariana is a Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course,
                                                                                   while a spa and wellness center will pamper the
                                                                                   discriminating individuals who choose to own
                                                                                   property here in this tropical paradise.

                                                                                   The resort offers a selection of wonderful beachfront
                                                                                   and golf course residences built to stringent North
                                                                                   American standards, and featuring exquisite details
                                                                                   and finishes wrapped in the patina of old-world

                                                                                                           For more information:
                                                                                                                CLICK HERE (6 of 12) [06/04/2009 23:11:05]
Puerto Rico : Enchanted Island

                                                               Interestingly, Puerto Rico is close to the deepest submarine depression in the
                                                               North Atlantic Ocean. The Puerto Rico Trench, roughly parallel to the northern
                                                               coast of the island of Puerto Rico and lying about 75 miles (120 km) to the north.
                                                               The Puerto Rico Trench is about 1,090 miles (1,750 km) long and 60 miles (100
                                                               km) wide.

                                                               The deepest point in the Atlantic Ocean, the Milwaukee Depth lies within the
                                                               Puerto Rico Trench, at a depth of 27,493 feet (8,380 meters) in the western end
                                                               of the trench, about 100 miles (160 km) northwest of Puerto Rico. The origin of
                                                               the trench can be traced back to the beginning of the Tertiary period. The Puerto
                                                               Rico Trench appears to be part of a complex system of sinistral strike-slip faults
                                                               in the north Caribbean; the trench seems to have been opened continuously for
                                                               about 70 million years. It is partially filled with sediments.

                                                               The Caribbean's greatest known depth is Cayman Trench (Bartlett Deep)
                                                               between Cuba and Jamaica, at approximately 25,216 feet (7,686 meters) below
                                                               sea level. Mona and Monito Islands are located between Puerto Rico and the
                                                               Dominican Republic. These small islands are considered the Galápagos Islands of
                                                               the Caribbean Sea.

                                                               No other reef and offshore island habitat within U.S. jurisdiction possesses such
                                                               ecological uniqueness, invaluable habitat, and biological diversity within such a
                                                               reduced surface area. For these reasons, Mona and Monito Islands have been
                                                               recognized by the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico as a Natural Reserve. The
                                                               islands are a critical habitat of endangered marine turtles, sea birds and
                                                               occasional migratory marine mammals.

                                                               Spanish Colony

                                                               When Christopher Columbus arrived in Puerto Rico during his second voyage on
                                                               November 19, 1493, the island was inhabited by a group of Arawak Indians
                                                               known as Taínos. Columbus named the island San Juan Bautista, in honor of
                                                               Saint John the Baptist. Later the island took the name of Puerto Rico (Spanish for
                                                               "Rich Port") while the capital was named San Juan. In 1508, Spanish
                                                               conquistador Juan Ponce de León became the island's first governor to take

                                                               The Spanish soon colonized the island. Taínos were forced into slavery and were
                                                               decimated by the harsh conditions of work and by diseases brought by the
                                                               Spaniards. In 1511, the Taínos revolted against the Spanish but the revolt was
                                                               easily crushed by Ponce de León and within a few decades much of the native
                                                               population had been decimated by disease, violence, and a high occurrence of
                                                               suicide. African slaves were introduced to replace the Taíno. (7 of 12) [06/04/2009 23:11:05]
Puerto Rico : Enchanted Island

                                                               Puerto Rico soon became an important stronghold and port for the Spanish
                                                               Empire. Various forts and walls, such as La Fortaleza, El Castillo San Felipe del
                                                               Morro and El Castillo de San Cristóbal, were built to protect the port of San Juan
                                                               from European enemies. France, The Netherlands and England made several
                                                               attempts to capture Puerto Rico but failed to wrest long-term occupancy.

                                                               United States Colony

                                                               On July 25, 1898, during the Spanish-American War, Puerto Rico was invaded by
                                                               the United States with a landing at Guánica. As an outcome of the war, Spain
                                                               ceded Puerto Rico, along with Cuba, the Philippines, and Guam to the U.S. under
                                                               the Treaty of Paris.
                                                               The United States and Puerto Rico thus began a long-standing relationship.
                                                               Puerto Rico began the 20th century under the military rule of the U.S. with
                                                               officials, including the governor, appointed by the President of the United States.
                                                               In 1917, the Jones-Shafroth Act granted Puerto Ricans U.S. citizenship and
                                                               provided for a popularly-elected Senate to complete a bicameral Legislative


                                                               In 1947, the U.S. granted Puerto Ricans the right to democratically elect their
                                                               own governor. Luis Muñoz Marín was elected during the 1948 general elections,
                                                               becoming the first popularly-elected governor of Puerto Rico. In 1950, the
                                                               Truman Administration allowed for a democratic referendum in Puerto Rico to
                                                               determine whether Puerto Ricans desired to draft their own local constitution.

                                                               A local constitution was approved by a Constitutional Convention on February 6,
                                                               1952, ratified by the U.S. Congress, approved by President Truman on July 3 of
                                                               that year, and proclaimed by Gov. Muñoz Marín on July 25, 1952, the (8 of 12) [06/04/2009 23:11:05]
Puerto Rico : Enchanted Island

                                                               anniversary of the 1898 arrival of U.S. troops. Puerto Rico adopted the name of
                                                               Estado Libre Asociado (literally translated as "Free Associated State"), officially
                                                               translated into English as Commonwealth, for its body politic.

                                                               Puerto Rico has a republican form of government, subject to U.S. jurisdiction and
                                                               sovereignty. Its current powers are all delegated by the United States Congress
                                                               and lack full protection under the United States Constitution. Puerto Rico's head
                                                               of state is the President of the United States. The government of Puerto Rico,
                                                               based on the formal republican system, is composed of three branches:
                                                               executive, legislative, and judicial. The executive branch is headed by the
                                                               Governor, currently Mr. Luis Fortuño. Puerto Rico is represented in the United
                                                               States Congress by a nonvoting delegate, formally called a Resident

                                                               As Puerto Rico is not an independent country, it hosts no embassies. It is host,
                                                               however, to consulates from 41 countries, mainly from the Americas and Europe.
                                                               Most consulates are located in San Juan.

                                                               Political and Tax Status

                                                               People born in Puerto Rico are U.S. citizens. As such, they are entitled to vote at
                                                               the federal level, but not from the island, as the territory is not yet incorporated.
                                                               The legal restriction to vote at the federal level extends only to the territory, not
                                                               to its citizens. In this fashion, all U.S. citizens can vote at the federal level from
                                                               any part of the world or incorporated territories of the U.S. By the same token,
                                                               no U.S. citizen may vote at the federal level if they reside in Puerto Rico,
                                                               although they can vote at the "state" (local) level. Most Federal level taxes do
                                                               not apply to island residents, as taxation is one of the powers delegated to the
                                                               local authorities.

                                                               All persons born in Puerto Rico after 1941 are considered natural-born citizens of
                                                               the United States, one of the constitutional requirements to be President of the
                                                               United States.

                                                               Puerto Rico is classified by the U.S. government as an independent taxation
                                                               authority by mutual agreement with the U.S. Congress. Contrary to common
                                                               misconception, residents of Puerto Rico pay some U.S. federal taxes: import/
                                                               export taxes, federal commodity taxes, social security taxes, etc. Most residents
                                                               do not pay federal income tax but pay federal payroll taxes (Social Security and
                                                               Medicare), and Puerto Rico income taxes.

                                                               But federal employees, or those who do business with the federal government,
                                                               Puerto Rico-based corporations that intend to send funds to the U.S. and others
                                                               also pay federal income taxes. Because the cutoff point for income taxation is
                                                               lower than that of the U.S. IRS code, and because the per-capita income in
                                                               Puerto Rico is much lower than the average per-capita income on the mainland,
                                                               more Puerto Rico residents pay less income tax (or fewer income taxes) to the
                                                               local taxation authority than if the IRS code were applied to the island. (9 of 12) [06/04/2009 23:11:05]
Puerto Rico : Enchanted Island

                                                               Residents are eligible for Social Security benefits upon retirement. But Puerto
                                                               Rico is excluded from Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and receives less than
                                                               15% of the Medicaid funding it would be allotted as a state, while Medicare
                                                               providers receive only partial state-like reimbursements for services rendered to
                                                               beneficiaries in Puerto Rico (even though the latter paid fully into the system).

                                                               Puerto Ricans may enlist in the U.S. military. Since becoming statutory United
                                                               States citizens in 1917, Puerto Ricans have been included in the compulsory draft
                                                               whenever it has been in effect. Puerto Ricans have participated in all U.S. wars
                                                               since 1898, most notably World War II, the Korean and Vietnam wars, as well as
                                                               the current Middle Eastern conflicts.

                                                               Puerto Rico is considered one of the major tourism playgrounds of the Caribbean
                                                               by both the Americans, Canadians and Europeans and maintains a high visitor
                                                               and airlift status as compared to other nations in the Caribbean Basin.

                                                               Known as the Enchanted Island for its lush green beauty, Old Word delights,
                                                               beaches, culture, and gracious people it has proved to be one of the best visitor
                                                               bargains in the Caribbean.

                                                                         Author : Lulu Basuil is an environmentalist, avid diver, a lover of
                                                                         nature, and an educator by vocation. Born in Portugal, she
                                                                         considers herself a global citizen and spends as much time as
                                                                         possible traveling around the globe and writing of her travels and

                                                                              Email : Lulu Basuil (10 of 12) [06/04/2009 23:11:05]
Puerto Rico : Enchanted Island

                                                                                   The beautiful tropical country of Costa Rica is home to La
                                                                                   Joya de Esperanza, or "Jewel of Esperanza" a development
                                                                                   located in the Nicoya Peninsula in Guanacaste Province,
                                                                                   Costa Rica.

                                                                                   This secure gated community comprises approximately 20-30
                                                                                   luxurious villas containing two, three and four bedrooms on
                                                                                   11.11 acres. This new development is a secure gated
                                                                                   community and is available for sale at the cost of US
                                                                                   $1,000,000.00. Each home has a pool and a back concrete
                                                                                   wall in the direction of the road. La Joya de Esperanza
                                                                                   comprises a tropical park with nature trails and spectacular
                                                                                   view of majestic sunsets.

                                                                                   Local financing is available for prospective investors.
                                                                                   Currently available are the four bedroom villas on lot #2,
                                                                                   three bedroom villas on lot #3 and the two bedroom villas on
                                                                                   lot #4.

                                                                                   The investors dream of owning real estate in a lucrative and
                                                                                   tourist friendly environment can become a reality through
                                                                                   La Joya de Esperanza in Costa Rica.

                                                                                                        For more information:
                                                                                                             CLICK HERE

                                                                          Culebra : Snake Island               The Caribbean's Best Kept Secret (11 of 12) [06/04/2009 23:11:05]
Puerto Rico : Enchanted Island

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