Puerto Rico is a beautiful Caribbean island off the coast of the Dominican Republic. Surrounded by blue seas and with a landscape of mountains, waterfalls, and even a tropical rain forest, it is home to over 3 million people. Throughout history, the culture was influenced by the indigenous peoples, the Taino, and years of Spanish conquest and colonization. Known also as the “Island of Enchantment,” Puerto Rico has evolved into a marinade of brightly colored buildings, rich flavors, and tropical music. If you have Puerto Rican Heritage, learning more about Puerto Rico can help you find your ancestors.
Life in Puerto Rico Today
A tourist visit to Puerto Rico may not give you an accurate glimpse of life on the enchanted island. Here are some things you should know.
Cost of Living
The cost of living is about 13 percent higher than on the mainland of the United States. Though the sales tax is 11.5 percent, there are no property taxes on a primary residence, which is something to be happy about!
Temperatures are moderate nearly all year round. For this reason, households can save considerably on electricity, and some people live comfortably without the use of furnaces, air conditioners, or water heaters.
Religion in Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico’s most common religion is Roman Catholicism. Some Catholic churches found on the island date back hundreds of years and are the oldest in North America. Other common religions include the Methodist, Presbyterian, Baptist, and Lutheran faiths. Miramar has a Jewish Community Center, and Santurce has a Jewish Reformed Congregation. All faiths are guaranteed by the commonwealth constitution.
Languages Spoken in Puerto Rico
The two most common languages in Puerto Rico are English and Spanish. Both are taught in schools. Though Spanish is spoken in many cultures around the world, Puerto Rico’s version is unique. Puerto Rican Spanish has elements of African languages, Taino words, and of course English phrases.
Those with Puerto Rican ethnicity have an amazing culture and heritage to enliven the pages of their family history. Do your family branches reach back to Puerto Rico? If so, you will want to learn more about Puerto Rico history and your Puerto Rican ethnicity in the engaging articles below.
Source: Family Search