Partners in Preservation
San Juan National Historic Site
The iconic garitas, or sentry posts, at the historic Castillo San Felipe del Morro at San Juan National Historic Site—printed on stamps, pressed on coins, and immortalized in art—immediately symbolize the island of Puerto Rico. They represent the quick rise of Spain in the 16th century as a major world power, assisted by the strategic location of its colony of Puerto Rico.
For more than 250 years, Spain worked on fortifying the citadel of San Juan, constructing the largest fortress in the Caribbean. The garitas were the eyes of the fortress, eventually becoming a model for observation and defense.
Today, as part of the most visited monument in Puerto Rico, the garitas draw the gaze of close to two million visitors a year.
San Juan National Historic Site participated in Partners in Preservation: National Parks.
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