Puerto Rico General Information
Estado Libre Asociado de Puerto Rico
Puerto Rican Flag
Coat of Arms
Latin: Joannes Est Nomen Eius
Spanish: Juan es su nombre
English: John is his name
Puerto Rico is an island located in the Caribbean between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean. More specifically it is east of the Dominican Republic, west of the Virgin Islands and southeast of Miami, Florida.
Originally called the island Borinquen, from it’s indigenous Taino name Borikén, Puerto Rico is composed of an archipelago that includes the main island of Puerto Rico with a number of smaller islands. The largest of these islands are Vieques, Culebra, and Mona. Puerto Rico is also known as “La Isla Del Encanto” which means “The Island of Enchantment.”
Puerto Rico is under U.S. customs jurisdiction and although both Spanish and English are the official languages of P.R., Spanish is the dominant language spoken on the island. The capital of P.R. is San Juan, which was founded in 1508 by Spanish conquistador Juan Ponce de León. Juan Ponce de León was the first governor to take office. Other major cities include Ponce, Caguas, Mayagüez, Bayamón, Carolina, Arecibo, Guaynabo, Cayey, Aguadilla, and Fajardo.
National Holiday: November 19 – The Discovery of Puerto Rico
Christopher Columbus discovered Puerto Rico during his second voyage on November 19th, 1493. When he arrived the island was inhabited by a group of Arawak Indians known as Taínos.
La tierra de Borinquén
donde he nacido yo,
es un jardín florido
de mágico primor.
Un cielo siempre nítido
Cuando a sus playas llegó Colón;
Es Borinquén la hija,
Majestad Quartet from Puerto Rico singing the Puerto Rican National Anthem
The land of Borinquen
where I have been born.
It is a florid garden
of magical beauty.
A sky always clean
When at her beaches Columbus arrived,
It is Borinquen the daughter,
Stripe-headed Tanager also known as “Reina mora” (Spindalis zena)
Puerto Rican Hibiscus also known as “Flor de maga” (Thespesia grandiflora)
The Puerto Rican Flag
The official flag of Puerto Rico was originally designed in 1892 and was proclaimed to be the official flag of Puerto Rico in 1952 by Governor Luis Muñoz Marín. There were some differences between the original 1892 flag and the one of 1952 and the meaning of the colors were officially changed. The two white stripes now stand for the republican form of the government rather than the original meaning of victory and peace that Puerto Ricans were supposed to have after gaining independence. The three red stripes represent the blood from the brave warriors, the white star represents Puerto Rico and the blue represents the sky and blue coastal waters. The triangle represents the three branches of government.