You can take out a boat and snorkle. Lots of marine life that is beautiful and rare birds. If you take the group I did you float a cooler and swim under a natural arch that opens up to an enclosed tiny beach. Lots of birds with their babies there and you can have a picnic, take photos and relax.
You can get too close to reef without knowing it ... watch that as a first time snorkler!
Since the undertow is so dangerous on the beach, you really don't want to swim in the ocean at San Pancho. We were lucky enough to have a pool at our vacation rental. My kids loved it! Here is a picture of my son practicing his Olympic-bound style. Not sure what stroke he's demonstrating, but they add new stuff to the Olympics all the time - whatever it was, I'm sure we'll see it within the next decade.
Water was a bit cool in January - the owners didn't heat their pool, but it was definitely swimmable. And check out that infinity pool over the Pacific! Any wonder why I want to get out of cold Northern California right now and head back to Mexico?
For a swimming beach where you won't get sucked under by riptides, head north to Playa Chacala. This beach is popular with locals - we didn't see another American tourist there (thank God). The water is safe, although the surf isn't big enough for surfing. Go to Sayalita or up to San Blas for that. Supposedly there is snorkeling in the area, but if there was, the location wasn't obvious. Playa Chacala is more crowded and not as pretty as the San Pancho beach, but on the other hand you won't fear for your life here if you want to swim a few laps.
On the beach, we came across a woman under a palapa selling fruit. She created plates of mangoes, papayas, and pineapple, laced with a delicious sauce. In the US, you get cotton candy on a stick on the boardwalk. Here you get a tropical fruit plate on the beach.
San Pancho will make you want to be a beach bum for the rest of your life. Look at this beach. Wide, uncrowded, clean, with that soft silky sand that feels so good between your toes. In January the temperature wasn't too hot or too cold. I could hang out on the beach and forget about all my cares and responsibilities I left behind in California.
You'll never guess, so I'll tell you. This was taken from my shower. Yes, we had an outdoor shower that was perched on a cliff overlooking the Pacific. And it was private enough. Only a fishing boat with a high powered telescope could have seen anything, and even there, they'd probably move on.
Having an outdoor shower with a view like this made taking a shower a Thing to Do activity.
Sure they do. Right on the beach. Horseback rides can be arranged at the Costa Azul resort, even if you are not a guest. Costa Azul is located on the north end of San Pancho, right on the beach. We opted for the shorter one hour ride along the beach. The beach is very uncrowded, and we were allowed to canter, if we wished. I wished, but sometimes my horse did not wish.
Most of the ranches in Nayarit are open to all visitors. I visited a ranch that actually had bull fighting! Extremely interesting to watch...highly recommend. There was no charge whatsoever
Lote H-4, Cond Maestro Ramal, Carr. Federal 200, km 19.5, Punta de Mita, Nayarit, 63734, Mexico
Good for: Couples
Sayulita, Nayarit, Mexico
Good for: Business
A very good complex with very good and helpful personnel working there. They seemed to want to go...more