Walking down the cobblestoned streets of Old San Juan, right across from Hotel El Convento on Cristo Street, you will find my favorite dive bar: El Batey.
Its graffiti covered walls and lampshades made of business cards will immediately catch your eye. No fancy decor, no air conditioning or big screen television, just a low key vibe and the best jukebox in all of Old San Juan. Where else can you listen to Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, the Rolling Stones, The Doors, Janis Joplin, among other greats while drinking an ice cold beer or sipping on a barrilito cuba libre? Want to smoke? That’s okay. El Batey is one of the few places in Puerto Rico where you can still smoke indoors.
So, if you love an unpretentious bar with a rich history (it’s over 40 years old), cheap drinks, and an amazing selection of music, then El Batey is for you. Be warned: the bathrooms are what you would typically expect out of a dive bar.