Local Places, Puerto Vallarta
This is the place people talk about going to, when in Puerto Vallarta. The area is jungle, way off the beaten path with a rock filled, pitted, steep road that goes on, it seems like forever, till you come to a restaurant area called El Eden. This is where the movie starring Arnold Schwarzeneggar, "Predator" was filmed. The jungle area is dense with trees and foliage that make for a perfect action movie location. There is remnents of the old set, with a burned out shell of a helicopter sitting on one of the giant granite boulders that are plentiful here, as well as a fast flowing river. There is also a canopy ride adventure that takes you over the jungle by cable. This is home to the famous Canopy El Eden.
Yelapa is truly unique. A small village of about 1,500 native residents, now with electricity that arrives by wire and not by solar cell.
There used to be only five phones - one is in the hotel but more are arriving; no roads - no vehicles; 300 resident/semi-resident Gringos; no police force - say no more! Well. that's changed, there's now a very small local police force.
To get there you must take the Boca/Mismaloya bus, to Boca de Tomatlan. When you get off the bus walk down to the beach, there you will find people waiting for a water taxi and a gentleman selling tickets, better to pay on the boat, to Yelapa 60 pesos.. From Boca de Tomatlan, the water taxi leaves about every 2 hours from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
Or you can use The Los Muertos water taxi from downtown PV. It leaves from the pier at 11:00 AM and 4:00pm, 7 days a week. During high season, there is an additional departure at 10:30 AM. 100 pesos one way.
Be aware that the last water taxi back to Puerto Vallarta leaves around 4:30 PM (to Boca at 5pm) - miss it and you stay the night!
Tip: If you want to spend all day and avoid the crowds of tourist who arrive on the large boat aroun noon, leave boca early, 9 AM, and around 11:30 AM - or wait till you see the boat - hike up the river where there's a nice waterfall and swimming pool, all the tourists will go to the little one behind the village. Time your return to 2:30 PM and the boat will have left.
Just past the Malecon as your crossing the bridge into Old Puerto Vallarta your in the Romance Zone. Stop on the bridge and look down. See all those winding paths? The picturesque foilage on either side? Take those steps down and go exploring. Especially at night, for at night this area comes alive. This area is made for lovers strolling along dimly lighted paths. Now, don't pooh pah at this area. For in this Romance Zone if you walk far enough you'll find some very excellant restaurants that are equally romantic all alight with candles on the tables, waiters in black tie willing to serve you the best wine or champagne & while you & your lover are speaking softly to each other you can hear the birds call out to one another. Pure romance! (Unfortunately my camera was unable to pick this area up in the dark, thus you only get pictures of it in the day).
One of three remote beaches south of Puerto Vallarta that is accessible only by boat. Pangas or water taxis leave the mainland several times a day for this out-of-the-way shore. Quimixto is known for its quite waters framed by boulders perfect for scuba diving and snorkeling. There is also a refreshing waterfall to cool off in after a leisurely day of sun worshipping. Dining is available at beachside palapas.
Because Quimixto was like no other little village I had ever visited and was a very different reality from touristic Puerto Vallarta I built a total of four travelogues to show it off and let you explore around some more from you computer.
1. Quimixto Travelogue
2. Next Stop Quimixto
3. More of Quimixto
4. Even more of Quimixto
Be sure to rate this tip and all my others. I love getting your ratings, comments and emails :-)
A quiet, tiny beach inaccessible except by boat where sunbathers can relax in colorful beach chairs and choose from several rustic restaurants for Mexican fare. Snorkeling is popular in the gentle surf of this cozy beach. Rumor has it that Las Animas, The Souls, was named for a pirate who was killed returning to his ship after he had buried his treasure somewhere along the beach. It was never found and legend has it his ghost protects the lost loot.
I have dedicated two travelogues to Las Animas. You can follow them below.
1. More Scenes from Las Animas
2. More of Las Animas
The name means "Place of the Divers." Its 5-mile stretch of white sand beaches is the longest along the Bay of Banderas. This beautiful beach comes alive on Sundays when locals bring their families for a day at the shore. Its long shallow shoreline is perfect for body surfing, boogie boarding, surfing and shell collecting. Located 12 miles north of the airport, Bucerias is popular with Canadian and North American visitors. This old-fashioned Mexican town has plenty of local color with its many shops and town square market. Literally dozens of open air restaurants line the beach on one of the four main streets that run parallel to the water for miles.
Sierra Madres Tour- This tour is definelty one to do. It is throgh a company called Vallarta Adventures, Everyone meets at the V-Adventures building ( located in Marina Vallarta ) and they take everyone up to the Sierra Madre Mountains in Army trucks, on the way to the mountains you see different little towns ( which you also stop in ) as well as you learn many interesting things along the way. once you are in the mountains you all go for a hike ( Make sure to wear socks and running shoes) Dont wear Sandals!!! Bring llots of bug spray as well. After the Hike, everyone is taken to a private Beach where they have a BBQ for everyone. This is a whole day trip....well worth it.
I love finding a beach like this...quiet, untouched...all to myself!! I only saw one other person!! I don't remember exactly how to get to it though. When I was visiting in 2002, my aunt and uncle and I found it one day when we were just driving around exploring. If you drive south of Puerto Vallarta on the 200, for about an hour, you come to the town of El Tuito. We drove west out of the town, on little back roads for about another hour till we came to the ocean. Just the other day when I was checking out websites on the surrounding areas around Puerto Vallarta, I found a map and the name of the area where this beach is located. It's called Tehualmixtle. It is definitely worth checking out!! The link for the map is below.
Also near El Tuito, is the restaurant Altamira, which is great place to eat.
be sure to go to BOTH sides of the river (the "rio cuale") and UNDER the two overpasses that cross the river on opposite sides of downtown. a sidewalk between the overpasses has stalls and some things that you may not be able to find elsewhere.
This church is so beautiful. It was sad though to look upon this place. It was so beautiful & open for everyone to see. It was sad, because if this was a church in the United States, it would be robbed blind. There is an increadible unspoken respect for God and His house in Mexico. This is how all churches should be allowed to be in america; open to help everyone without the worry of being attacked.
Keep in mind this is a place of worship when entering. Try to be a fly on the wall, there will be people praying.
off of Hidalgo and Zaragoza streets.
About 40 Minutes to the north is a sleepy surf town called Salulita, I've been going there for over six years and while it has grown alot, it still contains the same small town charm.
By Taxi: about $35
By Bus: It takes a little longer but it only costs $2.00 USD. Just head to the main street and look for the bus with salulita written on the left front window.
Travel south of town and get off the bus at playa Mismolaya. Cross the street and travel up the middle road back into the jungle. I would suggest hitching a ride since it is a healthy walk. I forget the name of this swimming hole/restuarant but it is in all the travel books. It is very peaceful and beautiful.
Ok. maybe corny but beautiful. This spot is in the jungle about 35 minutes south of Puerto Vallarta. Why corny? Well, this is the area where the movie "Predator" starring the now standing governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger, was filmed. The movie is a cult classic, now with the "GOVENATOR" in office. Why beautiful? Wow, the tropical lushness and the river make you realize that this is not your ordinary outing. The turnoff is at Mismaloya Bay and a very rocky dirt road takes you into the jungle.
This is a gorgeous beach located north of Nuevo Vallarta. Don't know exactly how many miles out of town it is, but it should say on a map. It is a very quiet beach, as the only road going down to it is extremely steep and rocky. Don't try it unless you have a 4X4 vehicle. There are some amazing seashells and rock cliffs here. So nice to have a beach to yourself!!
Boca-De-Tomatlan is a nice quiet place to get away from all of the tourist. It's not to far from town, and you can ride the bus. You can get a bite to eat-have a drink, or just chill out and people watch.