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Puerto Rico Quotes that Honor a Proud Legacy

Take a look at these Puerto Rico quotes inspired by one of the most robust and complex nations of the Caribbean.

Nestled in the warm waters of the Caribbean Sea, The Antilles are a collection of some of the earth’s most stunning islands.

The Island of Borinquen, commonly known as Puerto Rico, has a very rich history and has produced world-renowned thinkers, artists, and agents of change.

Today in the capital of San Juan you see a different world with an airport and resorts. An old map would show the villages of the native Taino tribe, the initial inhabitants; A group of people with a highly developed culture, a deep connection to the planet, known for fine art and peaceful sustainable living.

Today, Puerto Rico is a mix of different ethnic and cultural legacies, still standing tall as a group with a deeply rooted history, and these quotes honor that legacy.

Let us know which of these quotes about Puerto resonate with you.

Don’t forget to also check out these vacation quotes to inspire your travel spirit.

Puerto Rico quotes that will make you want to visit the island

1. “Puerto Rico is a powerful island.” – Fat Joe

2. “You know, you may not be born in Puerto Rico, but Puerto Rican is definitely born in you.” –Rosie Perez

3. “Nothing is better for your soul than to visit Puerto Rico.” ― Lin-Manuel Miranda

4. “He wished he were back in Puerto Rico, where life was simpler for him. Ah, those were the good old days.” ― Jason Medina

5. “Puerto Ricans, it doesn’t matter where they live, it doesn’t matter how long it’s been since they visited the island, their hearts are there.” – Anibal Acevedo Vila

6. “I live in Puerto Rico, my family lives in Puerto Rico, my friends. What happens in Puerto Rico matters to me.”- Bad Bunny

7. “When I left Chicago, people said, ‘Careful with that Texas heat’. I’m like, ‘I’m from Puerto Rico. I know heat.”- Amaury Nolasco

8. “When I was 11, I went to Puerto Rico for a month to stay with my grandmother. To see the way people lived there and experience my own culture was wonderful.”- Andrea Navedo

9. “I don’t think it’s fair that you can say I’m not a Puerto Rican fighter because I wasn’t born in Puerto Rico, when my blood is Puerto Rican”- Danny Garcia

10. “In Puerto Rico, we have a lot of traditions. We eat a very typical thing that’s called ‘pasteles’ – it’s almost like a tamale made of bananas, and we make it all together. Like, all the women of the family unite, and it’s a very big deal, a very big thing.”- Joyce Giraud

11. “Immediately after hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, I was extremely concerned about my family, friends and all the people in Puerto Rico.” – Yadier Molina

12. “I was very skinny and very lanky and kind of awkward. In Puerto Rico, everybody is a little more voluptuous, with these beautiful bodies, and there I was, the skinny, lanky girl.” – Joyce Giraud

13. “In Puerto Rico, we have a lot of traditions. We eat a very typical thing that’s called ‘pasteles’ – it’s almost like a tamale made of bananas, and we make it all together. Like, all the women of the family unite, and it’s a very big deal, a very big thing.” – Joyce Giraud

14. “I was actually born and raised in Puerto Rico. I moved to the States when I was 19. I was very impressed early on by being around people who spoke my language and ate the same food and listened to the same music, dressed the same. But then you look around and, you know, you’re not in Puerto Rico.” – Miguel Zenon

Pride in Puerto Rico quotes

15. “I’ll live in Puerto Rico until the day I die.” – Bad Bunny

16. “I’m proud of who I am, and I’m proud I grew up in Puerto Rico.” – Raul Labrador

17. “We must all work together to bring the best to Puerto Rico.” – Anibal Acevedo Vila

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18. “I don’t see it as pressure at all. I see it as such an honor to just in some sort of way represent Puerto Rico and Hispanics and all the girls out there.” – Laurie Hernandez

19. “I think it’s amazing that I can go out there and be myself, and the fact that I’m carrying Puerto Rico on my back a little bit is such an honor.”- Laurie Hernandez

20. “My grandfather was extremely dark and from Puerto Rico, but his brother had blond hair and blue eyes. There are so many different shades, and I think Hollywood has yet to realize that.” – La La Anthony

21. “I never thought anything was strange in Puerto Rico other than the big mosquitos; because I was born there, nothing was really foreign to me. I think what I saw strange coming to L.A. was that a lot of people are a little bit two-faced. In Puerto Rico, you don’t get that.”-Joyce Giraud

Puerto Rico quotes about the island’s impact

22. “What I can tell you is that for Puerto Rico being such a small island, it has culturally impacted the entire world.”- Fat Joe

23. Nobody can doubt Puerto Rico, sociologically, linguistically, culturally, and historically, is a nation.” – Anibal Acevedo Vila

24. “Culturally, musically, historically Cuba and Puerto Rico are like two wings of one bird.”-Pedro Capo

25. “I was very surprised to see people who recognize me in Puerto Rico.” – Gong Yoo

26. “We have our own rich culture, thousand years of history, unique territory, and almost everyone’s first language is Spanish, not English” – Anibal Acevedo Vila

27. “I tried to give the world a bit of creativity, lyrics. And for me, I will always represent music from Puerto Rico, reggaeton, Latin music.” – Bad Bunny

28. “In Puerto Rico, I played in all kinds of bands that played salsa and merengue. That’s how I saved the money to come to the U.S..” – Miguel Zenon

29. “I see myself like what Drake did in the game. I came with melodies and different lyrics, from a different place – reggaeton is from Puerto Rico; Drake is from Canada.” – J Balvin

30. “My grandfather came over from Puerto Rico and raised his kids speaking English so that it would be easier for them to assimilate.” – Aubrey Plaza

31. “Puerto Rico is complicated. The people are complicated. The history is complicated. The story of the United States’ relationship to Puerto Rico is complicated.”- W. Kamau Bell

32. “I’ve been there a few times, and I’d like to learn more about the various cultures in Africa. But that’s the basis point of where all of the music that I love is based upon, from Africa to Cuba to Puerto Rico to South America.” – Chick Corea

Puerto Rican quotes about freedom and sovereignty

33. “In Puerto Rico, we continue to see the perpetuation of second-class citizenship in the United States.” – Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

34. “Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens, but by their own choice, Puerto Rico is not a state. The relationship has worked well for Puerto Rico – which has strengthened its culture, language and economy – and for the United States, which has helped create in Puerto Rico a showcase of democracy and prosperity for all of Latin America.” – Anibal Acevedo Vila

35. “We can’t be ambassadors because we don’t have a country. Puerto Rico is not a country with any power in the world, I won’t be considered a great poet. Spain created great poets with its empire and made them known around the world through its empire. Great poetry has always stemmed from the economic prosperity of a people. That is why we have Quevedo and Gongora.” ― Giannina Braschi

36. “I know that the loss of life people on the island suffered from Hurricane Maria was not simply the result of an extreme weather event. The casualties are also the result of the colonial legacy that includes racism and years of neglect.” ― Roberto Mukaro Borrero

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37. “Grant us more powers, not less; grant us more democracy, not less; grant us the tools to move forward because, I can assure you, Puerto Rico will move forward. We did it in the past; we will do it again.”- Anibal Acevedo Vila

Puerto Rico quotes about Taino Legacy

38. “I have a real problem when those people preferring to affirm an African or even a Spanish side to their history say that I can’t affirm who I am as an indigenous person, as though everybody else is entitled to be who they are on our ancestral homeland, except us.” ― Roberto Mukaro Borrero

39. “To remain silent is to be complicit in the face of the increasing injustice, racism, xenophobia, and intolerance we are currently witnessing today.” ― Roberto Mukaro Borrero

Puerto Rico quotes from Christopher Columbus

(These quotes all come directly from the Diary of Christopher Columbus, a primary document that authentically captures the mindset and intentions of Columbus and Spain’s colonial forces toward what would become Puerto Rico, while demonstrating some of the virtuous qualities of the Taino people.)

40. “They brought us parrots and balls of cotton and spears and many other things, which they exchanged for the glass beads and hawks’ bells.” – Christopher Columbus

41. “They willingly traded everything they owned.” “They were well-built, with good bodies and handsome features.” – Christopher Columbus

42. “They do not bear arms, and do not know them, for I showed them a sword, they took it by the edge and cut themselves out of ignorance.” – Christopher Columbus

43. “They have no iron. Their spears are made of cane… . They would make fine servants.” – Christopher Columbus

44. “With fifty men we could subjugate them all and make them do whatever we want.” – Christopher Columbus

45. “As soon as I arrived in the Indies, in the first island which I found, I took some of the natives by force, in order that they might learn and might give me information of whatever there is in these parts.” – Christopher Columbus

46. “And so it was that they soon understood us, and we them, either by speech or by signs, and they have been very serviceable.” – Christopher Columbus

47. “While I was in the boat, I captured a very beautiful Carib woman, whom the said Lord Admiral gave to me.” – Christopher Columbus

48. “When I had taken her to my cabin she was naked—as was their custom. I was filled with a desire to take my pleasure with her and attempted to satisfy my desire.” – Christopher Columbus

49. “She was unwilling, and so treated me with her nails that I wished I had never begun.” – Christopher Columbus

50. “But—to cut a long story short—I then took a piece of rope and whipped her soundly, and she let forth such incredible screams that you would not have believed your ears.” – Christopher Columbus

Quotes by Puerto Ricans, Celebrities and Politicians about Puerto Rico

51. “They (the people of Puerto Rico) are truly the sweetest people on earth.” Johnny Depp

52. “However, the sovereignty of the states is constitutionally defined and recognized, while the powers of the local government in Puerto Rico are defined by, and subject to alteration under, federal statutory law.” — Dick Thornburgh

53. “I’m very used to hurricanes. I’m from Puerto Rico and we have 3 or 4 a year. When you have no power, no light, no email, no place to go, you realize who your loved ones are and where you are in your life at that moment.” — Luis D. Ortiz

54. “How about a geography lesson? My father’s from Puerto Rico. My mother’s from El Salvador. And neither one of those is Mexico.” — Jennifer Esposito

55. “I hope I will live to see a final meeting of the minds between Puerto Rico and statehood. But if I don’t live that long, I am certain it will happen.” Luis A. Ferre

56. “If Congress does its job in this regard, the residents of Puerto Rico will be empowered to act in their own self-interest and express their future political status aspirations accordingly.” — Dick Thornburgh

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57. “Javy [Baez] grew up in Puerto Rico, played a lot of baseball as a youth, played a lot of winter ball. He’s been taught properly and well.” — Joe Maddon

58. “I didn’t know I had this many fans in Puerto Rico. I’m going to carry this memory to my grave.” Allen Iverson

59. “Federal program and services outlay in Puerto Rico is approximately $10 billion per year.” — Dick Thornburgh

60. “Without question, so many people, throughout my life, never think of Puerto Rico as part of the United States.” Sonia Sotomayor

Quotes about Puerto Rico’s Beauty

61. “I did not feel ‘evil’ when I wrote advertisements for Puerto Rico. They helped attract industry and tourists to a country which had been living on the edge of starvation for 400 years.” David Ogilvy

62. “Puerto Rico has a stray dog problem. Tens of thousands of homeless canines – hundreds of thousands, by some estimates – live and die on the streets and beaches all over this Caribbean island of almost four million people.” – Juliana Hatfield

63. “I was ballet dancing at four, playing piano by six, and doing commercials by 12. When I was 21, I was on the number one live comedy show in Puerto Rico. I told my parents, ‘I’m going to New York to become a performer.’ And I left.” – Roselyn Sanchez

64. “The most important thing is to find the balance between city and nature. I have that ‘hippie quality’ – my husband is a super-hippie Los Angeles boy – so we’ll have to make time to go to Puerto Rico, and upstate New York, and be sure we get to do outdoorsy stuff like that.” Ana Ortiz

65. “American imperialism is often traced to the takeover of Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Hawaii in 1898.” – Noam Chomsky

66. “When I married Wilnelia, one of the first things I wanted to know about Puerto Rico was the quality of the golf courses.” Bruce Forsyth

67. “Puerto Rico has two divergent paths forward. After a reasonable transition period, it could become a state. Or it can become a sovereign nation.” – Pedro Pierluisi

68. “In historical and constitutional terms, the recent political status vote in Puerto Rico was a necessary but obviously not decisive step on the road of self-determination leading to full self-government.” – Dick Thornburgh

69.”Puerto Rico is one of those places you can be as quiet or as crazy as you want, because there’s so much nightlife. I have to take the craziness carefully.” Bruce Forsyth

70. “My parents always talk about Puerto Rico. My dad’s whole family lives in Puerto Rico. My great grandma lives in Puerto Rico and I got to meet her a couple years ago.” – Danny Garcia

What did you learn from these Puerto Rico quotes?

Some of the planet’s most successful musicians and performers are Puerto Rican. Actors like Joaquin Phoenix, or musical artists like Marc Anthony, Tito Puente, and Jennifer Lopez are internationally recognized. This makes sense, however, if you look at the powerful role art and music have played in the history of Puerto Rico.

For many generations, the Taino people mastered a variety of flutes and drums. In fact, music was so deeply entrenched in their culture, it was used to connect with nature, bring rain and guide hunters to find food.

It is said, “their music had such a large importance that one of the most valuable gifts that a Taíno could offer to another was a song.”

While the nation of Puerto Rico continues to deal with the challenges of globalization, there is still a strong connection amongst the people who continue to strive to continue adding to an already very proud legacy.

What’s your biggest takeaway from these Puerto Rico quotes and sayings? Do you have any other favorite quotes to add? Let us know in the comment section below.

Clifton Sankofa
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