The largest city in western Puerto Rico was twice destroyed and twice rebuilt. Mayagüez was destroyed by fire in 1841 and hit by a tsunami in 1918. In 2010, this historical city held the Central American and Caribbean Games. Mayagüez is famous for its world class Engineering School at UPR Mayagüez, its brewery, its central Plaza and its Zoo.
Corporations and institutions from all over the USA come down to Mayagüez to recruit engineering graduates who rank among the world’s best. Perhaps those same students who spend years in the city have somewhat helped the local brewery to stay in business when all other major local beer producers have disappeared. At present, the beer made with the “aguas puras” (pure waters) of Mayagüez is the best selling brand in Puerto Rico.
The biggest attraction in Mayagüez is without a doubt the city’s Juan A. Rivero Zoo. In its 14 acres, you will find very impressive and well kept Caribbean and African exhibits.
South of Mayagüez lies the town of San Germán. Founded in 1512, it is Puerto Rico second oldest town, after San Juan. In many ways, this historical enclave is really the oldest town in Puerto Rico if you take into account that at the time of its founding San Juan was more a military post than a civilian town. Some of Puerto Rico’s most prominent historical figures come from San Germán. The first Puerto Rican who represented the Island in Spain came from this town. The first battles the Spanish settlers had with invading pirates were fought in San Germán. The Porta Coeli Church, a Romanesque style building in San Germán dates from 1606. It is one of the oldest churches in the New World.
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