Puerto Rico Information
DID YOU KNOW...Puerto Rico is a Commonwealth of the United States (U.S. territory) and since 1917 all Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens.
Both Spanish and English are the official languages of the island; however, Spanish is commonly used.
The U.S. dollar is the official currency, though it is commonly referred to as “peso” by the locals.
Puerto Ricans are a blend of Spanish, Taino Indian and African cultures. Puerto Ricans consider themselves Americans, although they don’t usually call themselves Americans. They call themselves Puertorriqueños or Boricuas, and when they say ‘my country’, they are actually referring to Puerto Rico.
The climate on the island is fairly stable throughout the year and averages 82°F. The average temperature is 80-85°F during the day and 70-75°F at night.
Puerto Rico possesses its own Olympic team and competes as an independent nation in the Miss Universe pageant.
Puerto Rico has won the Miss Universe title five times: Marisol Malaret (1970), Deborah Carthy-Deu (1985), Dayanara Torres (1993), Denisse Quiñones (2001), and Zuleyka Rivera (2006). It hosted the Miss Universe pageant in 1972, becoming the first Latin American country to host this competition.
The island comprises 270 miles of beachfront. The variety of beaches is simply overwhelming. From power-like sand beaches to dark sand streches of shoreline.
Puerto Ricans generally greet their family and close friends with a kiss on the cheek. They also consider it respectful to stand very close to someone during a conversation. Hand gestures are an important component of communication to them.
The unofficial mascot of the island is a tiny tree frog called ‘coqui’, that is found only in Puerto Rico. This frog is a cute and popularly loved symbol of the island. Its powerful melodic voice and high-pitched, chirpy song can be heard for miles.
Puerto Rico was discovered by Christopher Columbus, who claimed it for Spain in 1493 during his second voyage to the new world. In 1898, with the end of the Spanish-American War, Puerto Rico became a part of the United States.
Fifty-Five of the Fortune 100 companies and 178 of the Fortune 500 companies operate in Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rico houses the world’s largest single-dish radio telescope in the world, measuring one thousand feet in diameter and spanning almost 20 acres. It is also the most sensitive radio telescope in the world. It has the capability of probing objects 10 billion light years away and is the only radio telescope in the world that can accurately predict when and where an asteroid would hit the Earth!
Fifty percent of all pacemakers and defibrillators in the U.S. are made in Puerto Rico.