Latte at Cafe Lareño

After our experience trying to visit a coffee hacienda on our last trip to Puerto Rico, we still wanted to have the experience but were nervous about what road conditions we might find along the way. I did a lot of research before this trip into coffee haciendas around the island and compared them to our schedule. We ended up deciding to visit Cafe Lareño in Lares because it seemed like it was close to the main roads and was only an hour and 15-minute drive from Rincon.

Of course, Google took us off the main roads and through some twisty mountain roads, but the views were breathtaking and none of them seemed to disappear out from in front of us. We made it to Lares and the coffee shop and it seemed to be nestled in the rainforest. I don’t think I have ever enjoyed coffee with a better view before in my life (left). And it was some of the best coffee I had ever had in my life. Of course, we brought some home, but it wasn’t as good when you weren’t watching them sorting the beans below you (below).

Sorting beans at Cafe Lareño

While we didn’t get a tour of the coffee plantation, honestly, I was entirely happy with our decision to visit Cafe Lareño. If you are visiting Puerto Rico and are loooking for good coffee in a beautiful setting, look no further than Cafe Lareño.

Ice cream choices at Heladaria Lares

After our afternoon pick-me-up, we discovered that there is a famous ice cream shop (heladeria) in Lares that is known for its unique flavor options. It was tricky driving into town because all of the roads seemed to be closed, but eventually, we made it. The line was out of the door on a weekday so we knew that was a good sign. Once we got in the shop and saw all the flavors, it was hard to choose. I ended up with Maiz (corn) and Piña (pineapple). Chris was a little braver and got Batata (sweet potato) and Arroz con salchichas (rice with sausage). The ice cream was very good and unlike anything I had ever had before. Chris said his was good but sausages in ice cream are strange and he wouldn’t order it again.

Ice cream at Heladeria LaresOverall, we had a fun culinary adventure in Lares, Puerto Rico. One thing to note is that Spanish was spoken almost exclusively in both the coffee shop and the ice cream shop. Most places in tourist areas of Puerto Rico have menus in Spanish and English and servers typically speak English. That was not the case in Lares or in many of the little towns we visited.  If you do not have basic Spanish, Google Translate will help you a lot, especially when deciding on your ice cream flavor (Maiz y Piña, por favor)! You can prepare for your trip by practicing Spanish with apps like Duolingo as well.

Thanks for stopping by! To read more about our time in Puerto Rico, check out my Circle Tour of the Island. To read about some of our previous trips, visit my Trips Page. To read campground reviews check out my Michigan Campground Reviews page. If you like my photos be sure to “like” my Facebook Page and follow me on Instagram! For my list of gadgets to make your travels easier, click here. To see inside my camera bag, check out my Gear Page.