Dorado, Puerto Rico (2022 Guide) – All You Need To Know

Dorado is a beautiful coastal town in the north of Puerto Rico.

It’s where all the VIPs and artists like to stay when visiting Puerto Rico.

I’ve been to Dorado many times, and I used to swim a lot from its beaches as a kid.

In this article, I will go over everything you need to know before visiting Dorado:

What is Dorado?
Where is Dorado located?
How far is Dorado from the airport?
What is the best way to get to Dorado from San Juan?
How do you get around Dorado?
What is Dorado Puerto Rico known for?
Can you swim in Dorado Beach Puerto Rico?
Is Dorado worth visiting?

 

What is Dorado?

Dorado is a town in the north of Puerto Rico popular for being home to many wealthy residents, ex-pats, artists, and even influencers.

image of Dorado Beach's aerialview
Aerial view of Dorado Beach, located on Puerto Rico’s north shore.

It’s also home to some of the best beaches in Puerto Rico, including Dorado Public Beach and Kikita’s Beach.

Dorado also hosts one of the best hotels in Puerto Rico, Dorado Beach, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve. 

Below is a video that shows the highlights of Dorado:

 

Where is Dorado located?

Dorado is located on the north coast of Puerto Rico.

Dorado-map
A map showing Dorado’s location in relation to San Juan, Puerto Rico.

It is surrounded by Toa Alta, Vega Alta, and Toa Baja. 

Below is a Google Map that shows the location of Dorado:

 

How far is Dorado from the airport?

Dorados is 33 minutes by car from the Luis Munoz Marin International Airport in San Juan without traffic. 

dorado-beach
Dorado Beach is a beautiful area that is 30 minutes from San Juan.

The drive is beautiful and gives you the opportunity to see other parts of Puerto Rico outside the metro area.

Below is a Google Map that shows the route from the airport to Dorado:

 

What is the best way to get to Dorado from San Juan?

The best way to get to Dorado from San Juan is by renting a car and driving to the town.

A drive in a rental car from the San Juan International Airport to downtown Dorado should take around 33 minutes without any traffic.

image of Dorado's beachfront
Dorado’s beachfront is a popular area for celebrities to visit on their trip to Puerto Rico.

However, if you’re not feeling like driving, you can also take a shuttle/taxi from the airport to Dorado. 

Since Dorado is frequented by tourists and ex-pats, many shuttles do the route between the airport and the town.

Here’s where you can book a shuttle between San Juan and Dorado

 

How do you get around Dorado?

How you get around in Dorado will depend on your budget for transportation and how much flexibility you want when visiting Dorado. 

The easiest, cheapest, and most convenient way to get around in Dorado is by renting a car

image of Dorado Beach's aerialview
An aerial view of the drive down Dorado’s beautiful coastline.

If you have a higher budget, you can choose to move around in a taxi/shuttle. You can book private shuttles with Dorado Luxury Transportation and Tours.

Public transportation to Dorado requires multiple transfers and stops on the Tren Urbano to reach the Bayamón Train Station. 

From there you would need to take the E20 bus to Dorado. Within Dorado itself, you will find a trolley that runs through the city during daylight hours.

Here’s where you can see the bus routes.

 

What is Dorado Puerto Rico known for?

Dorado Puerto Rico is known for being the home to wealthy residents and ex-pats.

Famous figures like Logan Paul, Jake Paul, Ricky Martin, and Adam Sandler are said to have properties in the town.

Below is a video that shows Dorado:

Dorado is also known to have the most luxurious resort in Puerto Rico, Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve.

It’s so exclusive and luxurious, hundreds of artists and important figures stay in it every year. 

It also has a club exclusively for its members, where they have access to golf courses, water parks, spas, wellness centers, and even water sports classes.

Below is a video that shows Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve:

If you want to stay the night, you can book your stay at Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve

Dorado is also known for its beautiful beaches for surfing, sunbathing, and swimming.

Kikita’s Beach is one of the top beaches in Dorado and it’s known for its strong tides perfect for surfing in the winter.

Below is a video that shows surfers at Kikita’s Beach:

 

Can you swim in Dorado Beach Puerto Rico?

Visitors can swim in Dorado’s Public Beach. This beach is the best for swimming, as it has facilities and the tide is usually calmer. 

image of Dorado's beachfront
A rocky section of Dorado’s beachfront.

It’s recommended for families looking for a place to spend a beach day.

Other beaches in Dorado are great for visiting, but not all of them are swimming-friendly, particularly if you’re visiting during the winter. 

Always make sure to check the weather and ocean conditions are safe during your visit before entering the water.

 

Is Dorado worth visiting?

Dorado is one of the best cities to visit in Puerto Rico if you’re looking for both a luxurious stay and a beach vacation in a non-crowded town in Puerto Rico.

There are also plenty of things to do in Dorado. Let’s break them down:

Beaches

Dorado is home to paradisiacal beaches with golden sand, turquoise waters, and palm trees. You can find over ten beaches for surfing, hiking, and swimming.

image of Kikita’s Beach
Kikita’s Beach, located in Dorado, is popular place for surfing in the winter.

Kikita’s Beach is a local favorite during the winter for surfing. 

But, even those that don’t know how to surf, can walk and dip their feet in the natural pool to the west of the beach. 

Dorado Public Beach is the most popular as it has facilities like bathrooms, showers, and parking. 

Below is a video that shows Dorado’s Public Beach:

You can easily spend weeks exploring Dorado’s beaches. 

Below is a Google Map that shows the location of the most popular beaches in Dorado:

 

Restaurants

If you’re a foodie, you will not run out of eating options in Dorado.

image of Grappa Restaurant in Dorado
Interior view at Grappa Restaurant in Dorado.

You will find everything from Puerto Rican cuisine to International cuisine restaurants in the city.

Below is a Google Map that shows the location of the most popular restaurants in Dorado:

 

Museums and Culture

If you’re interested in culture, Dorado boasts multiple museums and galleries that will help you immerse yourself in Puerto Rico’s culture. 

The Art and History Museum of Dorado displays Taino artifacts found near the beach Ojo del Buey.

image of Casa del Rey Museum
Street view of the Casa del Rey Museum.

Another historical site worth visiting is the Casa del Rey Museum. This building’s structure dates back to 1823 when Puerto Rico was still part of the Spanish Empire. Now it’s a museum that showcases Puerto Rico’s history and exhibits some of the island’s best-preserved relics.

Close to downtown, you’ll also find the Salvador Rivera Cardona Gallery, also known as Sala de Exposiciones La Plata. 

If you’re more into contemporary art, this art gallery exhibits pieces from local and international artists.

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Sala de Exposiciones del Plata (@sala_exposiciones_del_plata)

Photo Credit: @sala_exposiciones_del_plata

 

Outdoors

Dorado is also home to multiple parks where families, couples, and even solo travelers can unwind and relax. 

The Gran Parque Agroturístico Ecológico Recreativo El Dorado is the most popular park in the area. It’s often home to festivals, fairs, and concerts. 

Below is a video that shows The Gran Parque Agroturístico Ecológico Recreativo El Dorado:

But, even on ordinary days, it has murals, playgrounds, and farm animals for recreation.

You can find more information here if you’d like to become a member.

Below is a Google Map that shows the location of Dorado’s Parks:

 

The Watermill

The Watermill is an aquatic park located in Dorado. This peculiar park is inspired by a Puerto Rican sugar mill. 

the watermill,dorado
The Watermill is a water park in Dorado.

However, to visit, you have to be a member of the Dorado Beach Resort. 

The membership to the Dorado Beach Resort also includes access to a golf course, a clubhouse, a spa, and art exhibitions.

Below is a video that shows The Watermill:

 

Watersports

You already know you can swim and surf in Dorado, but watersports fans will find that Dorado’s beaches are ideal for so much more! 

image of a guy kitesurfing in Dorado
Kitesurfing in Dorado.

Snorkeling, kitesurfing, windsurfing, paddleboarding, and sailing are all possible in Dorado.

GoodWinds Water Sports Center & Surf Boutique is the most popular water sports school in the area, but it’s also limited to Dorado Beach Resort members and guests. 

And if you have your own equipment, Dorado’s beaches are public, so feel free to practice on your preferred beach.

Below is a video that shows guests windsurfing in Dorado:

 

 

FAQ section

Can you walk around Dorado?

Dorado is not an entirely walkable city, so you can’t really walk around Dorado. However, some areas like the downtown, the Ritz Carlton Reserve, and some neighborhoods are optimal for walking.

Is Dorado Puerto Rico nice?

Dorado is nice for visiting and it has many attractions. Dorado has beaches, outdoor parks and museums. It’s also home to the most luxurious resort in Puerto Rico.

 

Final thoughts

If you’re planning a trip to Puerto Rico, then Dorado is worth visiting.

Dorado is a coastal town that is home to Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, which is considered to be the top resort in Puerto Rico.

But even if you aren’t staying at this hotel, you will still enjoy Dorado’s beaches, restaurants and downtown cultural sites.

If you are still deciding where to stay, then I recommend that you check out our article about the 13 best places & areas to stay in Puerto Rico.

Also, check out our article about the 45 best things to do in Puerto Rico.

Article by

Vanessa Ramos

Writer at PuertoRico.com. I’m an avid traveler and freelance writer from Puerto Rico. I love the outdoors, coffee, hiking, and letters. When I’m not inside typing letters on my laptop, I’m out exploring the hidden treasures that Puerto Rico has to offer!

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