Favorite thing: There is so much to do and see in Puerto Vallarta that you should never get bored. If this is your first time here, don't try to do too many tours...you'll be back for more. But do attempt to take at least one of them...we've done the Tequila Tour as well as the Jungle Tour and had a blast.
We drive from Guadalajara to Puerto vallarta, the road to get there is a little dangerous because has lots of curves and there's just one road line in each direction, so if you plan on driving to Puerto Vallarta avoid doing this at night, because it's harder to look any incoming danger as car accidents in the road or cars going in opposite direction using you road, etc.
At day light the view in the road is nice like a little a small jungle, I really enjoyed during the day.
I really liked the City Bus Tour from the Cruise Ship. It took a nice tour up the Coast and came back to downtown to the City Hall and also a Tequila tasting restaurant.
This was a great way to see Puerto Vallarta for a morning.
Fondest memory: I liked the Tequila tasting room. I liked the Margarita which was included. It was a good idea to take the City Tour. I was on a Cruise Ship (Princess) and was part of a Singles Group.
This was absolutely a top experience. Recommanded by lady-friend Viola I went for El Nogalito in the jungle, and found that very sacred spot. Even the lonely Indian guide was surprised, amazed, and started to pray. Set in a natural habitat watched over by huge mountains covered with vegetation. With that very sacred spot of Mother Earth...
Fondest memory: These kind of "sacred holy spots" you would find all over the world, well-known out of Turkey, Asia, Australia and Africa. Most of them are well-known, however I never heard of this one in Puerto Vallarta. This will be always a best memory of my visit to Mexico ...
Here in this picture we were at the market area in PV. It was really busy with plenty of great shopping opportunities, nice people browsing, some playing a guitar and it was heavily wooded in this part of the city.
So this cool looking tree prompted some spontaneous tree climbing.
It was fun, what can I say :-)
Did you know that before PV was a major tourist attraction it was known for two things.
The first was for fishing, even today the mercados are flush with various different types of fish and shrimp.
The second was for its mangos when you go into Old Town area look at the HUGE trees that you can see behind some of the shops. Vallarta was a HUGE mango orchard before the tourist explosion.
PV has 4 different types of mangos, so when you go and visit PV please please please go to the local fruit market and try a mango... or two...
Fondest memory: On the occasional corner there are vendors that sell various fruits and vegetable, I highly recomend visiting them and getting a taste of the local flavor.
If you want to go on an excursion get a ride to the marina. There is a bank there and search around for the best deal.
You'll see in this picture that there are plenty of operators just waiting to take you and you can probably negotiate.
We bought one straight from a guy back at the beach where he got a commission and we didn't get the best deal.
There is also a bank right at the marina so getting extra pesos is no problem and you are close to downtown then as well.
Fondest memory: Along the beachfront in downtown PV, there are several sculptures and statues. We saw these spiffy chairs and decided that is was the perfect photo op. Not really a must see, but they are very neat, and you might see some unusual creations.
Fondest memory: When we visited downtown PV to go shopping, we happened upon some sand art that the locals were doing at one of the downtown beaches. For some this might not seem to spectacular, but there isn't much in the way of sand where I come from, so it was pretty neat to see!
I really enjoyed my "Tropical Tour" with a very nice tour guide named Gabriel.
During the tour in a minibus we stopped briefly at a marina, and then we went into Puerta Vallarta and walked around, saw Liz Taylor's house, then on to an residentual area with a beautiful view of the city, then to Mismaloya Beach where "Night of the Iguana" was filmed. Then we drove up a muddy dirt road into the jungle a couple miles, driving past rambleshack houses with pigs and chickens running around (that seemed real) to a little tourist spot created in the jungle. A pretty waterfall with pool, a thached restaurant, a shop with Mexican gifts (I think that's where I bought a maracha). The seafood lunch was one of the best meals of my trip.
Fondest memory: Gabriel invited me to return on the tour the next day. It occurred to me only later that maybe he was asking me to come without paying (just for my company??) I never did know for sure, though he did take my photo with the pet iguanas and asked me to send him a copy. I was flattered since I hadn't exactly been overwhelmed with male attention since arriving at my more "mature" years; surely I couldn't be mistaken for a rich American?
Anyway though it was just a brief incident, it has stuck in my memory.
The tour -- my first venture away from the confines of Paradise Village -- and the chance to see more of Puerta Vallarta was great. The tropical tour lasted from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
(Later in the week I took a bus on my own into the city, and wandering around. However, I suffered from the language barrier, couldn't find the bus stop back, and had to take a taxi back to the hotel.)
The tour: Agencia De Viajes Pueblito Paraiso.
Take the public bus who looks like an old american schoolbus from the Simpsons towards Boca de Tomatlan . Once there look for Pedro Lopez a native guide mexican cowboy who takes you for a cheap price horseriding in the jungle towards "El Eden " where you have a nice waterfall. His horses are very good animals and he is charming here you have his e-mail if you want to contact him to make reservations . firstname.lastname@example.org and phone number 22 8 09 43
Fondest memory: My fondest memory are the peace and nice landscapes I found back in Playas " Las Animas" a nice secluded beach that you can only reach by boat.
Favorite thing: Get off the main streets in downtown Puerto Vallarta and explore the tiny side streets and alleys. The architecture is amazing, and each road has its own unique character. More often then not, you'll come across some amazing restaurants and shops by doing this. Sometimes you'll even discover secret gardens. You'll never know!
A favourite location nearby is Mismaloya Beach. It's located a 10 minute drive south of Puerto Vallarta at the foot of the rainforest-covered mountains. This is the famous off-the-beaten-track town in which the 1963 movie "Night of the Iguana", starring Elizabeth Taylor, was filmed. Despite the one or two large resort hotels at Mismaloya, Mismaloya wasn't a large area. There were several little restaurants, all located under thatched-rooved huts, where roosters, hens, pelicans and dogs would scramble around and take shelter from the monsoon rains. It was quite the unique atmosphere - something that we didn't get in Puerto Vallarta itself.
Fondest memory: A fond memory of mine at Mismaloya was walking through a trail in the rainforest, and being surrounded by a cloud of colourful butterflies. They were fluttering from plant, to plant... in every colour of the rainbow.
Fondest memory: While walking along the old part of Puerto Vallarta, my sister and I were asked if we wanted our picture taken with an iguana named Iggy Pop. For a few pesos, we decided it was worth it. In the end, this picture still makes me smile. I'm the girl on the right holding Iggy Pop. My sister is the girl who looks like a Mexican.
I always recommend doing one activity in the bay and one in the mountains. You will be located on the second largest bay in North America, the Bahia de Banderas (Bay of Flags) home to dolphins, whales and a multitude of tropical fish. True, it is not the Carribean but still, it is gorgeous. The backdrop are the towering Sierra Madres, lush and jungle filled. Choose from whale watching, dolphins in the wild, horseback riding, jungle safari, diving, day cruises, sunset cruises, golfing, private guides...basically whatever you might be looking to do. If you have the time, seriously consider a trip up to San Sebastian - located high in the Sierra Madres you will, only there, experience a true, Mexican village.
NOTE! THE WHALES HAVE PRETTY MUCH LEFT THE BAY AND MARCH 30 IS THE LAST DAY LEGALLY, FOR WHALE WATCHING.