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21 Greatest Issues To Do in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Puerto Vallarta is a destination that has been welcoming travellers for many years, and it’s one of our favourite places to visit in Mexico. There are numerous fun things to do in Puerto Vallarta — it has something for everyone. Whether you’re a backpacker on a budget, a digital nomad in Mexico looking to spend […]

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Puerto Vallarta is a vacation spot that has been welcoming travellers for a few years, and it's one in every of our favorite places to visit in Mexico. There are quite a few enjoyable issues to do in Puerto Vallarta — it has one thing for everybody.

Whether or not you're a backpacker on a funds, a digital nomad in Mexico trying to spend a month, a pair wanting a week-long trip, or an expat trying to quiet down, you'll discover actions in Puerto Vallarta to maintain you busy. 

The town is cut up up into neighbourhoods (zones), with the infinite issues to do in Puerto Vallarta unfold out alongside Banderas Bay and past. In actuality, it doesn't actually matter which part of the city you keep in, as getting round is straightforward.

You'll, nonetheless, wish to select your zone rigorously primarily based on the vibe you're after and the funds you've gotten.

things to do in puerto vallarta visit the beach

Right here's my listing of the highest 21 issues to do in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico!

Right here's a fast rundown of the zones in Puerto Vallarta beginning on the airport and going south:

  • Marina – extra upscale than the resort zone, with the Marriott Resort, Westin & extra.
  • Resort Zone – just some minutes drive from the airport, this space has many lodges, eating places, malls, a Walmart & Sams Membership.
  • Centro (Previous PV) – smaller houses, residential space, the Malecon (oceanfront promenade) runs alongside right here, many eating places and bars. This space is on the north aspect of the River Cuale and provides reasonably priced lodging.
  • Centro (Romantic Zone) – positioned on the south aspect of the River Cuale, you'll discover quite a few bars, cafes, eating places and Playa Los Muertos Seashore. It is a common space with a big LGBTQ group. The lodging ranges from funds to high finish.
  • Conchas Chinas – which means “Chinese language Shells” primarily based on the seashells discovered right here, this can be a extra prosperous/posh space of Puerto Vallarta with gated communities and high-end condos.

Be taught extra about the place to remain in Puerto Vallarta with our accommodation and neighbourhood guide. And, for a whole rundown on travelling to town of PV, take a look at our detailed guide here.

Observe, this publish has been up to date in 2022 to incorporate the newest finest issues to do in Puerto Vallarta, the present costs and addresses and extra. Take pleasure in your journey.

1. Stroll…In all places!

I've to place strolling as #1 on the listing of issues to do in Puerto Vallarta. Exploring on foot is the easiest way to get a really feel for town, and most areas of PV are reachable by strolling.

Mexico is already one of many cheapest countries to travel, however when you are able to do issues at no cost, like strolling and sightseeing, it can save you much more cash.

walking the streets is the best thing to do in puerto vallarta
Strolling the streets of Puerto Vallarta is the easiest way to see all of it

It is a nice approach to see what the distributors are promoting, to folks watch, and to get a lay of the land. You by no means know what you'll stumble throughout when discovering town on foot — simply make certain to put on good footwear because the sidewalks and roads are very uneven. 

Observe: the best time to travel to Mexico if you wish to stroll round cities can be within the winter months, or within the shoulder season. In any other case, it may be unbearably scorching and also you'll almost definitely wish to be on the seaside all day.

2. Be part of a Meals Tour

Do you know that Mexico's delicacies has made the listing of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO? This award hasn't been granted to another nationwide meals group.

Mexican food is a lot greater than tacos and quesadillas and the easiest way to be taught extra concerning the tasty delicacies is to affix a tour. It is a should do in Puerto Vallarta for foodies.

We've completed meals excursions all world wide, and our favourite ones are in Mexico.

In Puerto Vallarta, take a look at Vallarta Meals Excursions. This firm provides a mixture of tradition, strolling, and meals excursions, making it a good way to be taught concerning the metropolis of PV whereas concurrently feasting and dealing off the energy.

food tours in puerto vallarta visiting the taco stands
Visiting the taco stands is a spotlight of a meals tour in Puerto Vallarta!

There are just a few foodie excursions on provide with Vallarta Meals Excursions, however we went on the “Original Downtown Tour“, which took us by means of the middle of PV on each side of the river. We ate quite a few dishes and tried some drinks as nicely. You too can be part of their evening taco tour.

We extremely advocate this tour! Click here to be taught extra and examine out the video we made:

3. See Rhythms Of The Evening (probably the greatest issues to do in Puerto Vallarta)

In case you're on the lookout for a mini Cirque de Soleil-type cultural present and dinner expertise, then Rhythms of The Night will likely be one thing you gained't wish to miss!

We noticed this efficiency and though we're not massive followers of huge group excursions, this present was spectacular and price each penny. This is likely one of the high tours in Puerto Vallarta.

The night begins with a sundown cruise (together with open bar) throughout Banderas Bay to Las Caletas, which is a fantastic personal cove. Whenever you arrive, you'll be greeted by a fantastically lit space with tiki torches and candles.

You'll then be proven to your seat within the out of doors auditorium, which is surrounded by palm timber. The seats are all staggered, so regardless that there are folks sitting in entrance of you, you'll haven't any points seeing the present.

rhythms of the night puerto vallarta mexico
Watching Rhythms of The Evening – we don't normally love touristy exhibits, however this one was nice!

The present depicts varied tales of the traditional Hispanic civilization and Mexican folklore. Throughout the efficiency, there's reside music, dancing, contortionists, fire-twirlers, and extra.

Following the present, you'll take pleasure in a big buffet dinner earlier than returning to Puerto Vallarta by boat.

In case you're questioning what to do in Puerto Vallarta at night time, that is it. Don't miss this present! Click here to learn more about the tour and to book tickets.

things to do in puerto vallarta see the rhythms of the night show

⇒ See Additionally: Things To Do in Mazatlan – 21 Experiences You Don't Want to Miss

4. Watch Sundown

There's simply one thing concerning the sunsets on the Pacific Coast, and particularly, Puerto Vallarta. Among the finest sunsets we've ever seen have been from right here. Seize a drink and benefit from the present.

Nice viewing locations embrace wherever alongside the Malecon, up the hill behind the Church of Our Girl of Guadalupe, or from El Barracuda which is our favorite seaside bar.

As soon as the solar goes down, the occasion begins in PV — there are such a lot of bars and golf equipment, the nightlife in Puerto Vallarta is famous.

watching sunset in puerto vallarta mexico is one of the best things to do
The sunsets in Puerto Vallarta are spectacular

*Observe: Puerto Escondido is one other epic Pacific Coast vacation spot for sunsets in Mexico. When you have an opportunity, attempt to go to there as nicely.

5. Chill out on Playa las Gemelas

Surprisingly, nearly 20 minutes' drive south of Puerto Vallarta, you'll discover seashores that appear to be they need to be Cancun or Playa del Carmen fairly than the Pacific. I feel this is likely one of the best beaches in Mexico.

Playa las Gemelas has turquoise water and whitish sand. Once we visited, there have been fairly just a few waves, however no riptides or undertow, and the waves have been enjoyable to swim in.

Different guests have skilled fully calm water right here, so it actually simply is determined by the climate and the time of 12 months.

best things to do in puerto vallarta

There are simply 2 condominium complexes on the seaside and nothing else…not even any bogs. Carry a cooler stuffed with beer, water, and snacks, and spend the day.

The stroll to the seaside is pretty steep and down some uneven steps, but it surely's price it once you see the view.

To achieve right here, you'll wish to park at Condominios Girasol Sur (in entrance alongside the street). There isn't any precise parking for the seaside, so that you'll want to search out some on the road, or within the few roadside spots in entrance of Girasol Sur Condos.

Alternatively, you possibly can take a neighborhood bus and get dropped off right here. That is by far our favorite beach in Puerto Vallarta. Don't miss it! Click here for directions.

playa las gemelas beach in puerto vallarta mexico
Mountain climbing down the steps to Playa las Gemelas

6. Be part of a Booze Tour (with a aspect of meals)

For these of you who prefer to drink tequila – it's Mexico, who doesn't?! – this tour is for you.

Throughout our current journey to Puerto Vallarta, we joined the extremely rated Mex-ology tour and loved a late afternoon of Mezcal, Tequila, Raicilla, craft beer, Kahlua espresso and different handcrafted cocktails.

To go together with the booze, you'll get some tasty meals to assist absorb the alcohol.

The dishes we had have been full parts of fish tacos, meat tacos, seafood “enchiladas”, onion rings, crickets (sure, crickets!) and delectable dessert.

Not solely will you be having enjoyable, and feeling a bit tipsy by the tip of it, however you'll be taught quite a bit concerning the traditions and creation of those alcoholic drinks.

food and drink tour in puerto vallarta. try tequila and food with vallarta food tours
Tasting Mezcal, with a aspect of crickets on our meals & booze tour

We had an excellent day with our information. A lot enjoyable actually, that she took us out for some late-night shenanigans the place the expats and locals prefer to hangout.

Click here to be taught extra concerning the Mex-ology Tequila, Tacos & Cocktails Tour on Get Your Information, or when you choose, you possibly can be taught extra and e-book by means of Viator.

7. Eat Recent Oysters

Whereas Mexico is one in every of the best countries in the world for food and there's positively a Puerto Vallarta restaurant for everybody, typically it's good to eat road (seaside) meals. In case you're an oyster lover, you'll be completely happy to know you could get recent oysters on the seaside.

Just below the bridge that crosses the River Cuale, you'll see many distributors promoting these tasty morsels.

Plastic tables and chairs are arrange so you possibly can sit and luxuriate in your plate of meals by the water, or you possibly can take them to go. Squeeze some lime juice on, sprinkle with some salt and add some scorching sauce when you like. Take pleasure in!

☞ SEE ALSO: Playa del Carmen Mexico: The Ultimate Travel Guide

8. Go to San Pancho

About an hour's drive from Puerto Vallarta is the seaside city of San Pancho (San Francisco), which is likely one of the finest day journeys from Puerto Vallarta.

This small city isn't as quiet because it as soon as was, but it surely's nonetheless a pleasant place to go to. What's stunning is that regardless that it's not a really massive place, there are many things to do in San Pancho.

You'll be able to go {golfing} for the morning (or late afternoon), eat some actually good worldwide meals, take Spanish classes, do yoga, go online, watch the newborn turtles be launched and extra.

It's a cool place to spend the afternoon because it's simply an hour away from Puerto Vallarta. Replace 2022: sadly, the golf course in San Pancho is closed now.

To get from Puerto Vallarta to San Pancho, you possibly can hire a automotive, take the bus for round 50 pesos, or join a day tour of San Pancho and close by Sayulita.

Observe: the ocean right here is sort of tough and isn't an excellent place for swimming. You might take a look at Bucerias for swimming.

day trip from puerto vallarta visit san pancho

9. Stroll The Malecon

One of many many nice issues about Puerto Vallarta is the lengthy Malecon (oceanfront promenade) which runs for about 1.5 kilometers (1 mile). That is the right spot to take pleasure in a stroll, with out having to take care of the busy site visitors that whizzes alongside the slender streets.

Alongside the Malecon, you've gotten the attractive ocean on one aspect, and plenty of outlets, eating places, and bars on the opposite (promoting $1 margaritas and Coronas). There are additionally quite a few artwork installations and road performances right here.

The Malecon is the hot-spot, particularly within the late afternoon and evenings when it's a cooler temperature. And truly, wandering alongside the Malecon is likely one of the hottest things to do in La Paz as nicely.

street art on the malecon in puerto vallarta
The Malecon at all times has one thing happening

The place to Keep in Puerto Vallarta

There are quite a few resorts, lodges, boutiques, hostels, Airbnbs, and flats for hire in Puerto Vallarta. There actually is one thing for everybody, with Airbnb and Booking.com being the most well-liked methods to e-book. 

10. Be part of a Chocolate Making Class

The Choco Museum is likely one of the many free issues to do in Puerto Vallarta. In case you're inquisitive about studying the historical past behind cocoa, plus discovering out how chocolate is made (from harvest to manufacturing), then the museum is for you.

If you wish to get your fingers soiled and EAT some scrumptious chocolate, then make certain to affix one of many courses on the Choco Museo.

Learn to make conventional mole sauce, scorching chocolate truffles, or particular person goodies. Click here to be taught extra about workshops and courses.

☞ SEE ALSO: Things To Do in Cabo San Lucas – A Listing of The Prime 21

11. Mountain Biking Journey

Though lounging by the seaside and devouring tacos is at all times a good suggestion when travelling to Mexico, it may be a good suggestion to get some train each occasionally! This is likely one of the Puerto Vallarta actions you don't wish to miss.

Eco Experience is an eco-conscious firm in Puerto Vallarta that gives mountain biking and mountain climbing journeys within the surrounding jungle trails of the Occidental Sierra Madre.

In case you're into journey and being lively, this is likely one of the issues to do in Puerto Vallarta that needs to be on the high of your listing. 

They've biking excursions for novices and superior riders, plus they provide completely different size journeys as nicely — from 15 to 48 kilometers (9.3 – 30 miles).

The routes move by means of villages, waterfalls, rivers, pine timber, and extra. Click here to be taught extra about Eco Experience and the biking and mountain climbing journeys they provide.

*Observe: when you'd fairly mix train with consuming, Vallarta Meals Excursions has a brand new tour known as Bikes & Bites…test it out.

Not into biking, however nonetheless wish to be within the mountains? 

Though we've by no means completed this in Mexico, zip-lining by means of the attractive cover is likely one of the hottest issues to do in Puerto Vallarta. You'll be on the foothills of the Sierra Madre Mountains and might journey by means of the jungle over 2 miles (3.2kms) of zipline. This highly-rated ziplining experience is a superb exercise in Puerto Vallarta. And, if you end up within the Yucatan, ziplining is likely one of the finest things to do in Cancun as nicely.

12. Chill Out on Los Muertos Seashore

That is the seaside south of the Los Muertos Pier. And, as with the stretch of sand north of the pier, there are loads of actions happening — from swimming and browsing to parasailing and boating. Plus, you'll discover quite a few seaside eating places and bars right here.

things to do in puerto vallarta visit los muertos beach

There are distributors wandering up and down the seaside as nicely, however they aren't too pushy. Close to the south aspect of the pier, you'll discover a lot of native households spending the day (particularly on weekends), whereas additional south from there may be thought-about the LGBTQ space, which is at all times busy and loads of enjoyable.

We've visited this seaside just a few instances now. Throughout December, the waves have been extremely massive and the surf and undertow have been unbelievably sturdy. The tough water began from the pier and went north to the La Langosta Loca restaurant.

Nevertheless, on the south aspect of the pier, the water was calm and youngsters have been swimming. Once we hungout at Los Muertos seaside in the summertime, the water was calm all over the place — and we even noticed a lot of small Manta Rays!

At all times be aware of the ocean and when doubtful, at all times ask a neighborhood if it's protected to swim.

☞ SEE ALSO: 51 Awesome Things To Do in Mexico

13. Wander The Previous City

Puerto Vallarta has a fantastic previous city with cobbled streets and vibrant houses climbing up the hill. From close to the Church of Our Girl of Guadalupe, you'll see rock/cement steps heading up the hill.

Take the steps and proceed strolling alongside the again roads in direction of the Romantic Zone. As most individuals take the Malecon or the primary streets, you'll have the quiet “higher” roads principally to your self.

walking around the romantic zone in puerto vallarta mexico
We advocate strolling across the quieter streets behind the Romantic Zone!

You'll come throughout houses draped in vines, cats sleeping on steps and fairly wrought-iron balconies. After you've completed exploring and having fun with the peace and quiet, you possibly can come out close to the Rio River.

For an incredible view, you possibly can hike as much as the Mirador Cerro de La Cruz. It takes about half-hour and is a bit strenuous, however the view is spectacular. Carry a lot of water and put on good footwear.

14. Go Scuba Diving

Getting out on the water is at all times a good suggestion when travelling, however so is getting below it. The diving in Mexico is subsequent stage. 

Whether or not you're scuba licensed or not, take a look at Banderas Scuba Republic. This firm is PADI acknowledged and the crew is PADI licensed.

At this scuba store, you possibly can take courses and classes to get your certification, or if you have already got your Open Water, you possibly can go for some dives. Whereas scuba diving in Puerto Vallarta isn't the most effective in Mexico, it's at all times good to get out for a dive.

Anticipate to see turtles, rays, eels, and extra. Banderas Scuba Republic is positioned within the Romantic Zone, cease by and examine them out.

Observe: We didn't personally dive with Banderas Scuba Republic, they have been simply extremely reviewed on TripAdvisor. At all times do your individual unbiased analysis when selecting a scuba diving firm.

scuba diving in puerto vallarta

15. Be part of a Free Strolling Tour

Strolling by yourself is nice, however if you wish to be taught a bit extra concerning the metropolis of Puerto Vallarta, together with its tradition, historical past, and structure, then it's finest to affix a strolling tour with a educated information.

That is the most effective factor to do in Puerto Vallarta in your first day within the metropolis so you will get your bearings.

Each Tuesday (9:00am and midday), Wednesday (9:00am and midday) and Saturday (9:00am), there are free excursions placed on by the Municipal Tourism Workplace.

The assembly level is on the Municipal Tourism Workplace, which is within the Previous Metropolis Corridor Constructing. The tour is about 2 hours lengthy and no reservation is required. Click here for particulars.

On the lookout for extra Mexico posts? See Additionally:

Things To Do in San Pancho – A Listing of The Prime 15

Things To Do in Playa del Carmen – A Listing of The Prime 21

Things To Do in Guanajuato – A Listing of The Prime 10

Places To Visit in Mexico – Prime 33 Spots

Backpacking Mexico – Prime Causes To Journey Right here Now

16. Be part of the Free Artwork Stroll

Puerto Vallarta has probably the most artwork galleries of any Mexican coastal metropolis. On Wednesday evenings, lots of the artwork outlets open their doorways and permit guests inside to view the items.

All mediums of artwork are on show, together with work, sculptures, pottery and people artwork. A go to right here is unquestionably one of many extra distinctive issues to do in Puerto Vallarta.

Entrance is free, there is no such thing as a information, however there may be normally wine and tequila given to guests…at no cost. The “artwork stroll” runs from the tip of October to the tip of Might, from 6:00pm to 10:00pm, each Wednesday. It is a yearly occasion. Click here to be taught extra concerning the Artwork Stroll.

17. Go to the Church Of Our Girl Of Guadalupe

You'll be able to't miss the Church Of Our Lady Of Guadalupe once you go to. Towering over the middle of Puerto Vallarta is that this stunning piece of structure. In case you're questioning what to do in Puerto Vallarta when it's raining, a visit to this church is a good suggestion.

Whether or not you're non secular or not, I like to recommend taking a peek inside, and naturally, taking a great deal of photographs of the ornate exterior. This church is likely one of the finest locations to go to in Puerto Vallarta.

If you end up within the metropolis from December 1 – 12, you'll be capable to benefit from the celebrations for the Our Girl of Guadalupe Competition, which incorporates candlelight processions, vibrant parades, and naturally, meals.

lady of guadalupe church in puerto vallarta mexico

18. Go to Mismaloya

Positioned on the southern a part of Banderas Bay, you'll discover the fishing village of Mismaloya. That is the place tourism within the Puerto Vallarta space all began, again in 1963 with the filming of Evening Of The Iguana. 

Lately, Puerto Vallarta has extra tourism, whereas the bay at Mismaloya continues to be comparatively quiet. That is one other nice day journey from Puerto Vallarta.

The beautiful bay is backed by thick jungle, there are eating places lining the seaside and also you'll have views of the Los Arcos Marine Park. There's, nonetheless, the Barcelo Resort which takes up a lot of the bay, but it surely's nonetheless a pleasant place to go to.

los arcos and mismaloya beach

☞ SEE ALSO: Things To Do in La Paz, Mexico – A Listing of the Prime 21

19. Examine Out The Markets

Visiting the markets in Mexico is at all times a deal with. In Puerto Vallarta, you'll discover meals, fish, clothes, and memento markets.

Don't miss the Municipal Market of Colonia Emiliano Zapata, which is a superb place to buy recent produce. This market runs from 6:00am to three:00pm, three hundred and sixty five days a 12 months. Click here for instructions.

Additionally, if you need produce and fish, take a look at the Municipal Market in December 5. Go early to get the most effective collection of seafood.

Within the strip of distributors, you'll discover meats, greens, tortillas, and different objects. It is a great spot to take meals away, or to create a scrumptious lunch! Visiting a neighborhood market is likely one of the finest issues to do in Puerto Vallarta. Click here for instructions.

eating tacos at the markets in puerto vallarta

20. Do Some Mountain climbing

You gained't actually discover mountain climbing within the metropolis itself. However, when you take a bus, or drive your automotive out to Boca de Tomatlan, you are able to do a extremely nice day hike to Las Animas. The trail winds alongside the ocean, with the jungle on one aspect and the attractive water on the opposite.

You'll hike alongside stone stairs and slender paths, whereas arriving at beautiful secluded bays alongside the way in which. In case you're fortunate, you'll see some whales or dolphins enjoying within the water.

All the hike takes about 2 hours to finish, and when you arrive at Las Animas, all that's left to do is benefit from the seaside, and one of many many eating places on provide.

To get again to Boca, you possibly can take a ship from Las Animas, or hike again the way in which you got here. This is likely one of the finest issues to do in Puerto Vallarta for out of doors lovers. For extra data on how to do that hike, click here

boca de tomatlan

21. Spend A Evening On The City

The Puerto Vallarta nightlife is superior. It doesn't matter what type of a celebration you're on the lookout for, you'll discover it in PV.

From seaside bars and nightclubs to cantinas and breweries, an evening out in Puerto Vallarta is certain to be memorable. Whereas a lot of the happenin' nightlife is across the Romantic Zone, you'll discover bars throughout town.

Dance the night time away at Co-De or one of many many common Malecon nightclubs (Zoo, Mandala or La Vaquita) or watch your favorite sports activities crew on the large display at locations like El Torito Sports Bar & BBQ House, Players and El Soñador

For reside music, you possibly can't go mistaken with Incanto, Roxy Rock House, and La Casa de Hugo. If it's craft beer you search, you've gotten a few choices in Puerto Vallarta. Don't miss Monzon and Los Muertos. For cocktail lovers, take a look at El Colibri, Bar La Playa, and Twisted Palms.

To be taught extra about the most effective locations to sip and dance, take a look at our publish: Puerto Vallarta Nightlife – The Best Places to Drink and Dance.

Bonus! Volunteer With Canine

In case you're an animal lover, why not spend just a few hours of your trip in PV volunteering with animals?

Friends of Puerto Vallarta Animals wants volunteers to spend time with the canines (and cats!) on the shelter. You'll be able to assist out by strolling canines, feeding them and naturally, giving them a lot of love and a spotlight. 

The Acopio shelter is positioned just a bit bit exterior of the middle of town, however ensure you contact Pals of PV Animals first earlier than arriving on the shelter. Be taught extra about how one can make a distinction in a shelter canine's life, here

walking dogs things to do in puerto vallarta
Spend a morning strolling the attractive rescue canines in Puerto Vallarta

Now You Know What To Do in Puerto Vallarta

I hope this listing of issues to do in Puerto Vallarta helps you propose your journey. Whereas town is sort of touristy, it's common for good cause and we actually take pleasure in our visits right here.

Make sure that to pattern the tasty road meals each time you possibly can, discover the native markets, and luxuriate in strolling across the metropolis. Tell us what you'd add to this listing within the feedback under. Joyful travels 😀

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The publish 21 Best Things To Do in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico appeared first on Goats On The Road.

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Support author of this article and visit his post, originally published HERE

This post is originally published at Goats On The Road blog and it's not owned by this site! Respect content authors!
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