A Travellerspoint blog

Puerto Rico

The Many Facets of El Moro


View Summer, 9-11-2001 - and then the 2nd time down the ICW & 2011 Back to Back Enchantment of the Seas and Lighthousing Driving South & Bermuda on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

Saturday 22 January 2011

I woke up at 6 without the alarm and got dressed and went out on deck about 6:40 After I got up to deck 5, I realized that I'd used the camera a LOT yesterday and might have battery problems, but it was too far to go back down and get extra batteries.
Almost full moon

Almost full moon


There was an almost full moon.
Sunrise

Sunrise


I saw the pilot boat drop the pilot off and a couple minutes later I started taking photos of El Moro.
San Moro in the early morning light

San Moro in the early morning light


Sure enough, if I zoomed, it showed low battery. I rationed my photos a bit, but took about 30 pictures of the fort and lighthouse. I could see the light in the lighthouse flashing
El Moro

El Moro

El Moro at sunrise

El Moro at sunrise

100_7626.JPGEl Moro

El Moro

City wall

City wall


Sun risen

Sun risen

Green buoy

Green buoy

100_7637.JPGCity wall early in the morning

City wall early in the morning

Fisherman starting out in the morning?

Fisherman starting out in the morning?


Boat wake

Boat wake

Coming around the corner

Coming around the corner


I went down and put my camera battery to charge and got another one. I had a cheese omelet for breakfast.
Cheese omelet

Cheese omelet

People getting off the ship

People getting off the ship


Then we went out to see if I could go to the cemetery by El Moro. Since they do not allow the ship wheelchairs off the ship anymore (maybe someone reported my spill yesterday), I didn't think I could walk all the way to the fort, but I thought I might do the cemetery.

Bob was arguing with the cab drivers who all wanted to give us a tour or charge us $25 to take us up to the fort.
Taxi rates

Taxi rates


Eventually one of them pointed out where the free trolley stopped.
Trolley stop 1

Trolley stop 1


So we went over there and got a good map of San Juan and Puerto Rico. Then Bob said he had to go to the bathroom and was going back to the terminal, but I wanted to stay there so he gave me $30 in case I needed a cab and left.
Free trolley

Free trolley


I got on the next bus, and got off at the Santa María Magdalena de Pazzis Cemetery
large_61918487686233-Santa_Maria_..s_Cemetery.jpg
Sandwiched between La Perla Barrio and San Cristobal this cemetery is considered one of the most picturesque of burial grounds anywhere. The cemetery is particularly noteworthy for its elaborate tombstones and the circular red domed neoclassical chapel dedicated to Mary Magdalen, which dates back to the late 19th century.
Santa María Magdalena de Pazzis Cemetery

Santa María Magdalena de Pazzis Cemetery


This is the burial place of several important political and literary figures such as: Harvard-educated social reformer, Pedro Albizu Campos, who fought against colonialism; José Celso Barbosa, known as the father of the “Statehood for Puerto Rico” movement; and renowned poet and patriot, José de Diego.
576757704420047-Santa_Maria_..s_Cemetery.jpg830178837686234-San_Juan_Nat..e_San_Juan.jpg
I did not go down into it (although I wanted to) because I was not sure that I would have enough energy to climb back up the hill
100_7662.JPGFlying kites

Flying kites


People were flying kites all over the field in front of the fort - it is good for that as there's no electric lines or anything there.
A kite above El Moro

A kite above El Moro


No contaminants

No contaminants


I got on the next trolley and lo and behold it went all the way up to the fort gate.
Along the wall of El Moro

Along the wall of El Moro


Moro means 'promontory' or 'headland'. The original actual name (Castillo de San Felipe del Morro) is for of King Philip II of Spain. Construction began in 1539. El Morro's last active fight occurred during a naval bombardment by the United States Navy during the 1898 Spanish-American War.
Close-up of El Moro from the trolley

Close-up of El Moro from the trolley


In 1843, the first lighthouse in Puerto Rico constructed atop El Morro. A second one replaced it in 1876. The second lighthouse took a direct hit during the 1898 bombardment of El Morro by Sampson's U.S. fleet, but the brick foundation was salvaged and reused in 1906-1908 when the present lighthouse seen atop El Morro was built by US Navy.
Ranger giving a tour

Ranger giving a tour


In 1961, the United States Army officially retired from El Morro. The forts became a part of the National Park Service to be preserved as museums. In 1983, the Fort was declared a World Heritage Site by the United Nations.
People flying kites

People flying kites


In honor of the Quincentennial of the voyages of Columbus in 1992 the exterior esplanade was cleared of palm trees that had been planted by the U.S. Army in the Fort Brooke era, and restored to the open appearance this "field-of-fire" for El Morro's cannon would have had in colonial Spanish times. Parking lots and paved roads were also removed, and the El Morro lighthouse repaired and restored to its original appearance.

I got some reasonably good pictures. It looks like the lighthouse is now painted pink.
Lighthouse with the old grey paint showing through the new pinkish paint

Lighthouse with the old grey paint showing through the new pinkish paint


In the 50s it was white, and last time we were here it was grey with white trim.

I stayed on the trolley
Red dome

Red dome

Fountain that kids can run through

Fountain that kids can run through

Theater

Theater

For rent

For rent


Trolley stop 14

Trolley stop 14

Schooner Amazing Grace - home port San Juan

Schooner Amazing Grace - home port San Juan


until it got back to the port at the stop where I started and then tried to get back on the ship.
Back at the dock

Back at the dock


There was an escalator and the sign pointed to boarding but when I got up there it was just for cruises that started in San Juan and no one was up there.

So I had to find my way down. Eventually I got through security and back to the room although I did wear a blister on my foot. I can't wear regular shoes because my feet have swollen. Every older lady I have talked to has said her feet have swollen too. There's so much salt in the food....
Lunch

Lunch

View from the Windjammer

View from the Windjammer

Serenade of the Seas

Serenade of the Seas

Running track

Running track

Fort San Cristobal from the ship

Fort San Cristobal from the ship

McDonalds sign

McDonalds sign


I downloaded photos and then took a nap and dressed for dinner.
Puerto Rico in the late afternoon

Puerto Rico in the late afternoon


We went out on deck to get some more pictures of El Moro when we left at 5:00.
Pilot boat

Pilot boat


Bob at the rail

Bob at the rail


In the meantime, we watched the planes landing at the little airport across the way
100_7729.JPGLittle airport hangers

Little airport hangers


Landing strip

Landing strip


There was a vicious cross wind, and some of them had a hard time.
Planes landing at the airport

Planes landing at the airport


I took about 30 more photos
Serenade of the Seas and a Celebrity ship

Serenade of the Seas and a Celebrity ship


Coast Guard base

Coast Guard base


100_7747.JPGCity walls

City walls


Red gate - where sailors used to enter the old city

Red gate - where sailors used to enter the old city

Sailing in to San Juan

Sailing in to San Juan

Red dome

Red dome

100_7764.JPGAfternoon light

Afternoon light

Lighthouse

Lighthouse


Cemetery de Santa Maria de Magdelana from the water

Cemetery de Santa Maria de Magdelana from the water

Leaving San Juan

Leaving San Juan


and then we went down to dinner.

Tiger shrimp

Tiger shrimp

Steak, potato and asparagus

Steak, potato and asparagus

Dessert

Dessert


Our towel animal was a monkey which the steward attached to the shelf on the mirror
2 monkeys

2 monkeys


Tomorrow is St. Thomas or rather we have an excursion to St. John

Posted by greatgrandmaR 11:07 Archived in Puerto Rico Tagged cemetery lighthouse san_juan trolley Comments (0)

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