*Disclosure: I am participating in a sponsored campaign hosted by Puerto Vallarta Tourism Board and I received compensation for this post, however, all opinions expressed are my own.
I had never realized it before, but I have found in the last few months that I have a need to be near water… even though I am not a very good swimmer, I enjoy activities on or near water. Finding a destination that offers amazing beaches as well as incredible gastronomy, great shopping and wonderful eco adventure tours is not always easy. Puerto Vallarta offers all of this, and more.
Voted the friendliest city by Conde Nast in 2001, Puerto Vallarta still lives up to that title today… The culture and the charm of the city and the people make it a magical place.
Located in the state of Jalisco on Mexico’s Pacific coast, it is framed by the majestic Sierra Madre mountains and is located right at the mouth of the Bahía de Banderas (Banderas Bay), considered to be one of the most beautiful bays in the world. It also offers over 40 km of golden beaches, with an abundance of things to do on the beach and in and around town.
The near constant temperatures, location and geographical characteristics make it the ideal place to enjoy an unforgettable beach vacation.
Puerto Vallarta also provides the latest in ecotourism and extreme adventures. The lush jungles and incredible waterfalls offer many opportunities for those that like adventure. You can enjoy zip lining in Mexico’s longest line, to ATV, to swimming with the dolphins or releasing turtles, mountain climbing, boat trips, horseback rides, diving trips and day trips to the interior.
Or you can just relax on one of its many beaches, shop along the historic Malecon or dine in one of its many gourmet restaurants.
I just enjoyed a lovely ride out to Los Arcos on a private yacht, where you can snorkel or swim with the fishes if you like, then stop off at one of its wonderful beaches and dine on the beach or enjoy one of the many activities they have along the beaches… parasailing or even just tubing on the banana as they call it.
I love walking along the Malecon early when the everyone is just starting their day – such a beautiful area, it runs from the Romantic Zone to the start of the Hotel Zone. You’ll find a great collection of bronze sculptures here, including the town’s iconic Seahorse. Or you can head down there before 6pm to catch the catch the VOLADORES DE PAPANTLA (FLYING RITUAL) every night, they are pretty incredible to watch.
One of the things I have yet to try while I am there is the turtle release and conservation program; Puerto Vallarta supports the local sea turtle protection programmes run by many hotels in the area, they have been doing this for over 30 years. These programs run from July to December, I am hoping to participate in this once in a lifetime experience when I am back there in Oct.
Some of the city’s popular beach locations to visit:
Playa Los Muertos (Beach of the Dead)
The city’s largest public beach.
1964 movie The Night of the Iguana in Mismaloya, directed by John Huston was filmed at Playa MIsmayola, 20 min from the Puerto Vallarta town center, at the mouth of the Mismaloya River. The main set was located on hillside to the south of the beach. The beach is now developed with a number of restaurants.
Great place to snorkel, dive and swim in an aquatic wonderland surrounded by volcanic formations and lush tropical jungle. You’ll even get a chance to visit Hidden Beach.
Playa Las Caletas
A secluded beach that is now a wildlife preserve; there is a living natural reef close to shore, which makes the beach a popular destination for snorkelers. It was once the private retreat of film director John Huston.
Puerto Vallarta Awards and achievements
“Friendliest City” by Conde Nast in 2001
“Best place in the world to retire” by AARP (North American Association of Retired Persons), “Best Vacation Destination in Mexico” by USNews.com in 2010
“Most Romantic Place in Mexico”
“Favorite Beach Destination in Mexico” by About.com in 2012
“Top 10 Destinations in Mexico” by TripAdvisor in 2015.
Want to learn more about this amazing destination? Join us on Wed Sept 14th at 9:30 PM ET to learn more about this amazing Destination at the #WeVisitVallarta Chat
Join us on Wed Sept 14th at 9:30 PM ET to learn more about this amazing Destination at the #WeVisitVallarta Chat.
Prizes: 4 x beach bag packs ( approx retail value $100 USD)
One Grand prize of 3 night/ 4 day stay at on of Puerto Vallarta’s resorts for 2, including air from major US/Canada Destinations.
Make sure to follow your hosts @PuertoVallarta, @RossanaWyatt @CammiPham and follow along using #WeVisitVallarta! NO RSVP!