See Old San Juan from the Water Side

Sept 2020, I don’t think this boat trip is operating at this time.

Old San Juan is an amazing place. There is always something happening, something new, or something that you just haven’t seen before. It is a must-see place for anyone visiting, or living in, Puerto Rico. And viewing Old San Juan from the water adds a new dimension to the experience — it kind of gives you an idea of what the original visitors saw and experienced some 500 years ago.

La Paseadora offers tours of San Juan Bay via boat. They depart from the Bahía Urbana, at Pier 1, along the bay in Old San Juan. Being just a couple-minute walk from the cruise ship piers, it is easy and convenient for anyone visiting Old San Juan. Being out on the water gives you great photo opportunities, too.

San Juan Water Tours

“La Paseadora” is the name of their company and the boat. It is a locally made boat, which has benches along the sides and front of the boat, so everyone is close to the water and has an unobstructed view. The boat is also covered, so you are comfortably out of the sun, or any rain that may pass. They offer one tour a day- a 1 hr Sunset Tour in the San Juan Bay.

San Juan Water Tours

The boat motors slowly around the bay, passing a number of sites along the way. Being on the water provides probably one of the best perspectives to see the massive wall and the Gate of San Juan. It is a relaxing trip and, since the bay is calm, there are no waves to bother you.

Some of the things that can be seen from the water include the old Customs Building, La Fortaleza, La Rogitiva, the Raices statue, Paseo la Princesa, Casa Blanca, the San Juan Wall, the Gate of San Juan, and El Morro. On the other side of the bay you can see the Bacardi Distillary and Cabras Island with el Cañuelo fort.

San Juan Water Tours

Going out on the bay at sunset can be magical with the colors in the sky. As you motor around in the bay, the sun was putting on its colorful display. And as you are coming in, you can see the lights come on in Old San Juan and on the ships. Some of them are lit up dramatically after dark, so it adds another dimension to the trip.

Seeing Old San Juan from the water is a great perspective that not everyone has seen before, and it makes for some great photos.

San Juan Water Tours


The price for the 60-minute Eco-Historic Bay sunset tour is $44.50/person. Check their Facebook page for current info and special offers. On Weekends (F-Sun) they will have a 30 min just for fun trip day time trip for only $10pp (less for kids and seniors). All price are subject to sales tax.

If you're happy, let them know it — Don't forget to tip your your bartender, tour guide or trip operator if you enjoyed yourself. Gratuities are appreciated and typically aren't included in the price they charge you.

They run the Eco-Historic tour 5 days per week, with the 60-minute tour at 5:30pm or so on Monday- Friday. Check the website reservation page for exact times- it varies by season. You can make a reservation, or you can just show up and they see if they can fit you onto a tour. On week ends, they run a 30 min just for fun boat trip. No reservations, just show up and enjoy!

There are no age nor weight restrictions to take a tour. But you do need to be able to step down (1 step) from the dock to get into the boat, and then back up again at the end (but they assist you).

The 1 hr eco-historic Tours are live-narrated by a guide, and are offered bilingually in both English and Spanish.

You can give them a call at 787-930-1036 for more information.

You can visit the La Paseadora Tours website for more information or to make a reservation.

at the OSJ bay waterfront area, just steps from the cruise ship piers.

The photo of La Pasadora II in front of the San Juan Gate was provided by San Juan Water Tours, and is used with their permission.

We are in the process of updating the maps we use on our web site. While we're working on that, you can click on the GPS coordinates below to view the location on Google Maps ... 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 →

Comments & Discussion Leave a Comment »

There are 3 comments on this article. Add to the Discussion »

My wife and I did it in June, and pulled up ready to pay $28, and it turned out to be $20. I don't know if it was a temporary change, or they were just having a slow day and were trying to increase traffic, but I felt like I got it on sale. To make it even better, the other people that were planning on going on the same trip were no shows, so it ended up being a private little ride for the wife and I. We went on what I would call the sunset tour, and even went past the end of El Morro. We left when it was light, and came back when it was dark. Very nice, interesting, and different views. We pretty much had seen the views from a cruise ship, but it was still enjoyable with the sunset, and light and dark views. We enjoyed talking with the captain, and made sure and told him about, which he didn't know anything about.

Comment by Josh on 12 Aug 2013

We enjoyed it also! It is true on earlier trips they had a general audio of OSJ sites, but they have changed it to be more about the sites you can see from the boat.

Comment by Gwenn on 16 Jan 2013

My wife and I took this tour, We thoroughly enjoyed it. I believe taking it at night was the better choice. The lights of the cruise ships and Old San Juan made the trip very memorable.The recorded narrative was informative, but I felt it didn't track with our tour. A re-editing is in order.

Comment by NYC-John on 13 Jan 2013

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