Mask Requirement (updated 18 Apr 2022)
😷 Masks are not required, neither indoors (with some execptions) nor outdoors. Masks are recommended in indoor situations where you cannot be certain of the vaccination status of other people
😷 Masks are required inside airports, per Federal/CDC mandates
😷 Masks are required at events/activities where 1000 or more people are gathered, effective 18 Apr 2022
😷 Masks are required indoors in places like hospitals, emergency rooms, nursing homes, medical offices, health centers, clinics, labs, pharmacies, and on public transportation (including taxis and buses). The Department of Health may make masks mandetory in other situations where their use is deemed necessary.
😷 Owners and operators of public and private establishments may, at their discretion, implement health measures that they deem necessary - including requiring the use of masks.
📄 These changes go into effect 10 Mar 2022, per Executive Order EO-2022-019
Restaurants, Bars & other Food Establishments (updated 08 Mar 2022)
👪 The capacity limit has been removed, as has the requirment to check for vaccination card or negative test result
😷 Owners and operators of public and private establishments may, at their discretion, implement health measures that they deem necessary - including requiring the use of masks, and screening for vaccination status or negative test results
📄 These changes go into effect 10 Mar 2022, per Executive Order EO-2022-019
Hotels, Resorts & other Lodging (updated 08 Mar 2022)
👪 The requirment to check for vaccination card or negative test result has been eliminated
😷 Owners and operators of public and private establishments may, at their discretion, implement health measures that they deem necessary - including requiring the use of masks, and screening for vaccination status or negative test results
📄 These changes go into effect 10 Mar 2022, per Executive Order EO-2022-019
Tours & Excursions (updated 08 Mar 2022)
⛵ Tour operators may require proof of vaccination or negative test results to participate. Check with the operator to make sure you have what they require.
Events, Stadiums & Theaters (updated 18 Apr 2022)
👪 The capacity limit has been removed, as has the requirement to wear a mask (if less than 1000 people are gathered)
😷 Masks are required at events/activities where 1000 or more people are gathered, effective 18 Apr 2022
🏟️ All attendees at group activities of 1000 or more people at facilities that encourage crowding — indoor or outdoor — must show proof of vaccination with booster (if eligible), OR negative test (molecular or antigen) results of test administered by an authorized health provider no more than 72 hours prior to arrival at the event. Facilities include theaters, amphitheaters, stadiums, conference and activity centers, and any other place where events are held. Effective 10 Mar 2022, per executive order EO-2022-019 and administrative order OA-2022-533
😷 Owners and operators of public and private establishments may, at their discretion, implement health measures that they deem necessary - including requiring the use of masks, and screening for vaccination status or negative test results
📄 These changes go into effect 10 Mar 2022, per Executive Order EO-2022-019
Cruise Ship Passengers (updated 08 Mar 2022)
🚢 All cruise ship passengers and crew who wish to disembark in Puerto Rico must be fully vaccinated, OR must have a negative molecular or antigen COVID test performed within 48 hours before disembarking in PR. All passengers and crew who test positive, or have been in close contact to someone who has tested positive, will not be permitted to disembark in Puerto Rico, regarless of vaccination status.
Air Travelers Arriving in Puerto Rico (updated 08 Mar 2022)
📄 The requirement to complete the travel declaration has been eliminated for ALL travelers arriving in Puerto Rico
✈️ DOMESTIC TRAVELERS (effective 10 Mar 2022, per EO-2022-019)
• The requirement to present a vaccination card or negative test results has been eliminated for DOMESTIC travelers
✈️ INTERNATIONAL TRAVELERS (effective 06 Dec 2021, per CDC)
• All INTERNATIONAL air passengers, regardless of vaccination status, must show (before boarding flight to the US) a negative COVID-19 test taken no more than 1 day before travel to the US. This applies to all travelers, 2 years old and up, flying from INTERNATIONAL (outside of the US) destinations. Flights between Puerto Rico and the States are domestic flights, so this does not apply to travelers arriving in Puerto Rico from the States.

San Antonio de la Tuna – The Original Town of Isabela

Ermita San Antonio de Padua de la Tuna

While in Isabela enjoying the beaches and scenery, you may want to make a stop to see the remains of the first Spanish settlement in the northwest region of Puerto Rico. I know that I enjoy exploring what is left of the past, so the ruins of the Ermita San Antonio de Padua de la Tuna was a stop that we had to make on a trip through Isabela.

Some History

Before the first quarter of the 1700, only the native people (Tainos) lived in the northwest region of Puerto Rico. However, around 1725 the first Spanish settlers moved into the Isabela area, which they originally called La Tuna. Between 1725-1750, they built a church (hermitage in English or ermita in Spanish) called “San Antonio de Padua”, and a community near the Guajataca river. Over time, it was decided to abandon the town and move closer to the ocean, where the town of Isabela is located today.

The ruins of the original church have been preserved for future generations with help from the Mabodamaca Corporation, and it is listed on the US National Register of Historic Places.

Our Visit

Ermita San Antonio de Padua de la Tuna

I know that this is not a must see nor huge tourist attraction, so I was surprised to see signs leading to the ruins from Route 2. With the signs, it was easier to find then I thought it would be.

The first time we went, I didn’t know anything about the place, so we just showed up. There is a “Casa Tuna” and large parking area, but nothing was open and no one was around. The ruins are behind locked gates. But we were able to see the ruins from outside the fence and take some photos.

Fast forward a year … After much searching, I found out that “Casa Tuna” is the office for the non-profit volunteer organization Corporación Mabodamaca. The corporation was created to study and preserve the ruins, and to educate everyone on the area and its long history. The corporations name was in honor of great Taino chieftain named Mabodamaca. You need to call and make an appointment for your visit, so they can have someone there to open the gates and the office, and to talk to you about the place.

For our most recent visit, we did just that, and we got to go inside the ruins and office.

Ermita San Antonio de Padua de la Tuna

Inside the office there are just a few cases with archaeological findings from the area from the Taino times — cemis and tools, even a pre-historic shark tooth! — and the La Tuna town “heyday” (some metal objects). They also have information (all in Spanish) that tells you about what they found while excavating the area — In front of the church was a cemetery, where original inhabitants of the town were (and still are) buried.

The volunteer can answer any questions you have. They also have information and comparisons on the design of the Ermita and the other early churches in Puerto Rico. This time we could get better photos of the ruins from inside the fence.

Details

Ermita San Antonio de Padua de la Tuna

Admission is free. Donations accepted in box.

The “museum” and ruins “should be” open Sat/Sun 10a-3:30pm, but it is best to call. Even if they are not open, you can get a good enough look at the ruins through the fence. Check out Facebook page for up to date info. or email them at corpmabodamaca@gmail.com

Allow 30 minutes, max.

Call /text 787-306-3724 for info and hours.

From Route 2 in Isabela, turn onto Road 113 South, and follow the signs.

Click on a placename below to view the location on Google Maps ...

PuertoRicoDayTrips.com assumes no responsibility regarding your safety when participating in the activities described in this article. Please use common sense! If your mother or that little voice in your head tells you that you are about to do something stupid … then don't do it! Read more about Safety →

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