- I Mexico Coronavirus Report
- II Get in
- III Get around
- IV Sightseeing in Cabo San Lucas
- V What to do in Cabo San Lucas
- VI Shopping in Cabo San Lucas
- VII Where to eat in Cabo San Lucas
- VIII Drink
- IX San Lucas/ Where to stay in Cabo San Lucas
- X Stay safe due to the Coronavirus situation in Cabo San Lucas
- XI Go next
Cabo is a varied destination that captures the essence of Baja Peninsula in its many resorts, hotels, golf courses, dining and amazing outdoor activities.
Cabo San Lucas is a bustling hub for sport fishermen, cruise ships, handicraft vendors, water sport aficionados and nightlife seekers. The area is considered the second fastest growing resort destination in all of Mexico and particularly busy with visitors during the winter high season, November to February. With some of the best all-around sport fishing in the world and every water sport imaginable, Cabo is the ultimate destination for travelers looking for outdoor adventure.
There are three districts in “Cabo”:
- San Jose del Cabo, the “Old Town”, which is nearest to the airport. San Jose has old Mexico charm and some shining new resorts.
- Cabo San Lucas, the “Main Town”, which is 20-some miles form the airport, and the entertainment hub of Cabo. The famous arch is in Cabo San Lucas.
- The Corridor, the highway which connects San Jose and Cabo San Lucas, which is now lined with golf courses, condos and resorts situated along the coastline.
By night, Cabo San Lucas is one of the hottest party towns in Mexico with a glittering nightlife and a plethora of dining options that make energetic Cabo San Lucas an all-time favorite. Also called Cabo San “Loco” or just plain “Cabo”, the town’s reputation as the wild party center of the Baja Peninsula has brought fame and infamy to its many bars and nightclubs.
Fly to Cabo San Lucas
If you’ll be staying for more than a day (e.g., not as a passenger on a cruise ship), flying is the preferred means of travel to Cabo. The regional airport, Los Cabos International Airport , (624) 146-5111, is located outside of San José del Cabo and will take approximately 30–45 minutes to travel to Cabo San Lucas.
For general aviation or private jets, Terminal 2 is used. It has 14 gates: 7-20. Air taxi and air charter companies such as Jetset Charter fly a variety of private charter aircraft and jets, from charter luxury Gulfstreams down to economical piston twins for small groups and individuals.
All the major American airlines fly to the airport, as well as, Aereo Calafia, Aeromexico, Alaska Airlines, Frontier Airlines, Interjet, Volaris and the Canadian Air Transat & WestJet.
If you plan on arriving to Cabo by plane, a transfer bus is the cheapest method to get to your hotel if you do not plan on renting a car. A reservation for a transfer can be made before arrival and is significantly cheaper than a taxi. There are buses at the airport charging per person for a ride to the resorts of Cabo which can be had without prior reservation. Public bus Ruta Del Desierto is the cheapest means to get to Cabo San Lucas, boarding the bus will be from Terminal 1 (domestic). Bus will stop at Puerto Paraiso Plaza (mall) in Cabo San Lucas. It also services the opposite direction. Boarding is at Puerto Paraiso Mall, the difference is that the bus will stop at both Terminal 1 and 2 (domestic and international passengers, respectively). Cost is M$80 (pesos) per person from Puerto Paraiso to the airport.
Travel by boat to Cabo San Lucas
Cruise ships call very frequently. All must anchor/moor offshore, so passengers must be ferried to shore. Those who plan to arrange independent tours need to consider the time that ferrying takes for tour start, and for tour end to ensure they can return to ship on time.
Regional bus service is provided by Autotransportes Aguila with frequent departures from La Paz, San José del Cabo and several other nearby cities. 1 Cabo San Lucas Bus Terminal is on Carr. Todos Santos, north of the city centre.
Taxis are readily available and rates are negotiable.
One of the best and most exciting ways to travel around Cabo is to rent a BMW motorcycle. Cabo BMW Rentals rents BMW motorcycles as well as scooters and they will provide helmets. You can ride north out of the tropics to Los Barriles which is a great stop for a bite to eat or walk on the beach. It’s called the “Cabo Loop” which consists of a 320-km (200-mile) paved ride, starting in Cabo San Lucas and going through the larger cities of San José del Cabo, Los Barriles, Todos Santos and returns to Cabo San Lucas.
There are many car rental agencies in Los Cabos, most of which have names familiar to travelers in the Americas. If you are staying in a villa or plan on many day-trips that are not covered by a resort or timeshare shuttle, then a rental will likely be the most cost effective.
Sightseeing in Cabo San Lucas
Filled with natural landmarks and a number of prominent monuments, the city of Cabo San Lucas has plenty of character, particularly around its coastline. From January to March, a must see is the whales, they come to Cabo during this period of time and many boats can take you out to sea to watch them. In early March, they are particularly abundant.
- Land’s End— Known for its exceptional views and photo taking opportunities, this area is comprised of a large cluster of rock formations that were carved into fantastic shapes by wind and sea. During low tide, many visitors like to walk here along Playa del Amor (Lover’s Beach) because it allows for a better view of an eroded passageway called the Arch of Poseidon. You can also observe Los Frailes, two rock islets that are frequented by sea lions.
- Church of San Lucas (Iglesia de San Lucas). Boasting many original features, this church, almost 300 years old, has been well maintained.
- Cultural Center (Casa de la Cultura). Features a tall mirador tower and is surrounded by beautiful gardens and overlooks all of Cabo.
What to do in Cabo San Lucas
Scuba Diving & Watersports
Scuba diving Is especially good in Cabo, because you can watch the sandfalls under the water. It is an amazing spectacle provided by nature. If you are looking for something more relaxed perhaps you want to go to Lover’s Beach or to one of the multiple romantic restaurants in Cabo. Cabo is also a good surfing destination, since many of the beaches on the east cape road pick up the southern swells. The beaches are accessible through the coastal road on the way to cabo pulmo. Particularly, shipwrecks beach is a favorite spot during the summer months.
- Cabo Submarine. This is an easy way to see the fish and aquarium world without getting wet. The office is in the marina, and they have special pricing for contacting them directly from the website. The Semi Submersible is 18 m (60 feet) long and air conditioned.
- Picante Bluewater Sports, Puerto Paraiso Local 39-A Cabo San Lucas, , ✉ email@example.com. American-owned with English-speaking crews; yachts ranging in size from 24′ to 68′. Prices start from US$325-3850.
- Cabo Surf Safari, . Lessons available courtesy of professional surfing instructors. Surf tours are arranged with hotel pick-up and lunch included.
- JT Watersports. They offer parasailing, wave runners, kayaks and snorkeling. They also have a sunset cruise that will take you out to explore Lovers Beach or “El Arco”. They have new top of the line equipment and they are completely mobile, so they can cater to your needs anywhere in the East Cape area of Baja California Sur. They are on Playa Medano in Cabo San Lucas.
Cabo is known around the world as a top fishing destination. The meeting of the waters of the Pacific ocean and the Sea of Cortez creates a nutrient rich environment where sport fish thrive. Marlin, sailfish, tuna, dorado and wahoo are the most commonly targeted species. Cabo boasts one of the largest sport fishing charter fleets in Mexico. Charters range from pangas, open “semi-dorry” type skiffs, to 18 m (60 foot) or more luxury sport fishing yachts. Prices for a day of fishing start around US$175 for 5-hour panga trips, from US$450 for 8-hour trips on 26-30 footers and into the US$1,000 to $5,000 per day for boats from 34–60 feet.
- Minerva’s Baja Tackle and Charters, toll-free: (from US & Canada), ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. English speaking crews, boats ranging in size from 31′ to 40′ with bare boat or all-inclusive rates. Charter prices run from US$600 to $900.
- Checkmate Sportfishing, . 31′ Bertram. Charter rates from US$475. English-speaking crew.
- Slippery Lizzard Sportfishing, , ✉ email@example.com. Upscale charter boats and sportfishing yachts from 28′ – 68′. Full service charters with everything included (licenses, bait, drinks, beer, ice, lunches, tackle and equipment) with rates from US$550 for a full 8 hr day. English speaking crews and American guides.
- Reggae Jungle Cruise, ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Continental breakfast, snorkeling, lunch and whale watching while cruising along two different reefs that are astoundingly beautiful. Children under 10 go free.
- Jazz and Wine Tour aboard the Tropicat, , ✉ email@example.com. Sail the Pacific on a large sailing catamaran. Enjoy a breathtaking sunset while listening to the contemporary jazz music. International bar serves premium wines and hor d’ouvres.
- ATV offroad adventures, , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. One of the more popular ways to see and explore Cabo. Discover the sights from the seat of an ATV or a mountain bike, on a guided tour through sand dunes, desert, mountain and beach. Half-day trip costs US$85 and includes an ATV or mountain bike, rappelling gear, expert tour guide, rappel instructor, energy bars, all beverages and round trip transportation in an air conditioned van.
- Sierra Buggies (Road Runner Tour), Calle Nopal 19 Colonia Magisterial, . 9AM and 2PM. Buggy rides in the Boca de la sierra mountain range along mountain trails lined with all kinds of cacti and rocky dry river beds that will test your driving skills, and onto to one of the few UNESCO protected biosphere reserves in México and a swim in one of the Sierra’s hidden freshwater pools. US$230 double and US$150 single.
- The Cabo San Lucas Glass Factory. A really fun place for the entire family to visit. Touring the glass factory, you get to witness a first hand glimpse into the centuries-old art of glass blowing.
Shopping in Cabo San Lucas
With boutiques as easy to come by in Cabo as restaurants, its a shoppers delight.
The plazas of Puerto Paraiso Shopping and Entertainment Plaza and the adjacent Marina Cabo San Lucas offer a variety of shops and goods with an affable ambiance.
Shoppes At Palmilla offer a selection of high-end boutiques. The stores here include day spas, art galleries, fine restaurants, coffee shops, an amazing bakery and homemade crafts.
- San Jose del Cabo features traditional Mexican speciality stores which offer furniture, hand blown glass, ceramics, artwork, cigars and local souvenirs.
- Die Trying, Plaza Naútica, Loc. # A7, tel 143-5388. For something other than your standard tourist t-shirt, try Die Trying for fun, quirky line of men’s, women’s and children’s t-shirts and casual wear.
- Golden Cactus Gallery, Hidalgo street (corner Zapata, one block from Wyndham Tesoro Hotel), , ✉ celyne@GoldenCactusGallery.com. M – F: 12-7PM. The Golden Cactus Gallery opened in 1997 as a fine art gallery and artist studio. The gallery showcases hundreds of works of art from artists from Baja, Mexico, USA and Canada. In 2009, the gallery was acquired by long-time resident Marie Celyne Poupart.
Where to eat in Cabo San Lucas
- 1 Alexander’s Restaurant, Blvd. Marina s/n (On the Cabo San Lucas Marina at the Plaza Bonita Mall), . It’s hard to miss this lively restaurant that is always packed and upon dining here, you’ll understand why it has maintained its popularlity for so long. With the chef combining French-influenced cuisine of Swiss origin with hints of the tropics and Mediterranean, the menu offers something for just about any palate and craving. Be sure to try the shrimp tempura with a Thai coconut-chile sauce, its taste and freshness will satisfy.
- La Casa del Dorado, . Charming family run Mexican and seafood restaurant.
- Peacocks restaurat (grupo Mi Casa). Peacock’s Restaurant – a European restaurant in Cabo, the food is just delicious!
- Brasil Brazilian Steak house. A buffet style steak house. Good for large groups.
- La Dolce. Italian restaurant and pizzeria serving authentic Italian cuisine in the heart of Cabo. Open for dinner only and contains standard Italian fare. Also located in San Jose del Cabo.
- Amarone. With a variety of Italian apertifs on offer, Amarone offers a traditional Italian vibe, complete with the Italian chef at the helm. All pastas are hand-made as are bread and all desserts. Expect to spend about US$35 per person.
- 2 Restaurante Mi Casa, Av. Cabo San Lucas s/n, . Popular Mi Casa is well-known for its Mexican dining experience and provides a taste of old Mexico. The atmosphere is friendly and funky and the staff are efficient and quick. The restaurant does allow street vendors to peddle their fares at your table though.
- El Patio. Mexican food located at Presidente Intercontinental in San Jose Cabo.
- El Coral. Mexican and seafood. Oldest restaurant in Cabo. On the west end of the main street. Good prices and good food.
- La Casa Country. Mexican food. The best fajitas in town. Line dancing show included.
- Mariscos de Mazatlan (on the right (west), south bound, between the airport and Cabo on the main highway). Very good seafood with good value pricing. It has an open-air palapa at least in part.
- Tacqueria Marissa. Tasty steak tacos and the best condiments to accompany them, including whole roasted jalapenos, caramelized onions, guacamole, and every color and variety of salsa imaginable. Great to meet the locals as well.
- Nikk San. Some of the freshest sushi in the area. Make sure to sit at the sushi bar and ask the sushi chef what is good that night.
- Brown´s Private Services, , ✉ email@example.com. Butler and Chef Services bring great dining to you in the privacy and luxury of your vacation villa or condo in Los Cabos.
- Poncho’s, Hidalgo & Emiliano Zapata (downtown Cabo), . Great Mexican/Sea food and the largest collection of Tequilas in the world with over 500 labels.
- Nikki Beach, . Poolside dining featuring international cuisine. Live DJs on weekends.
- No Worrys Bar & Grill, Blvd. Marina, E/V. Guerrero and Madero, . Located inside the 27-m (90-foot) lighthouse at Cabo San Lucas Marina, it offers a single VIP table at the top of the lighthouse tower. Well known for their relaxed attitude, sizzling sauces, awesome food, outdoor grill and deck seating. The second floor lava lounge provides private window seating and marina views.
- Mango Deck Beach Club. If you’re looking for a “Spring Break” type atmosphere with bass-thumping music and bikini clad girls dancing on stage for a bucket of beer, then the Mango Deck is your spot. However, be mindful that the drinking age in Mexico is 18 and most of those girls on stage (especially in the summer) are pre-college high schoolers either on spring break or celebrating graduation. Adults may find The Office more appropriate.
- The Office. Located right next door to the Mango Deck, The Office is a more adult setting offering big blue umbrellas to shield you from the sun and an assortment of appetizers to accompany your margarita or Modelo Especial. With tables and chairs right in the sand, the office has become a famous watering hole in Cabo. The Office does not allow beach vendors to solicit you at your table.
- Slim’s Elbo Room, Just down the street from the Giggling Marlin. Hole in the wall so it’s easy to miss. Size does matter at this bar, which claims to be the world’s smallest bar with four seats only and standing room for two. Drinks are served straight up as well as beer. Visitors like to tack a dollar to the wall with a stamp that says ‘I was here’.
- The Giggling Marlin. Gotta check it out. They hang you upside down by your ankles and you drink a shot. Great lunch and dinner menu. Try the fish tacos and house-made salsa!
- El Squid Roe. The best bar in the town. Loud, obnoxious, but thats why it’s fun. Very touristy; people of all ages get up on tables and dance. Cocktail waitresses walk around with a whistle in their mouth to get your attention while they sell jello shots. This bar is multi-level and plays a variety of music. Very popular bar; if others are not hoppin’ this one will be!
- Cabo Wabo. Owned by Sammy Hagar, who performs occasionally, Cabo Wabo is famed for consistently providing patrons with a good time. They play the rock loud, and with attitude, but thankfully the staff are friendly and quick to serve.
- Pink Kitty. Way too similar to a metro US city club scene. Go somewhere with more character.
- Poncho’s, Hidalgo & Emiliano Zapata (downtown Cabo), . Great Mexican and seafood and the largest collection of Tequilas in the world with over 500 labels.
- Two For The Road (Live Jazz Spot), Hotel Tesoro ~ Cabo San Lucas (On the Marina Facing M-O Dock), , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. 8PM to Midnight. A Jazz Night Spot for the over 30 crowd and for those searching for a place to go in Cabo, either before or after dinner to enjoy great cocktails, wine and Jazz Martinis with sophisticated live entertainment and pleasant conversation. Unique ambience and intimate Jazz Night Spot like no other in Cabo San Lucas located on the Marina side of The Hotel Tesoro Monday through Saturday, 8PM to midnight. Live music nightly, 9PM to midnight. It is located between Solomon’s Landing & “No Worry’s” Lighthouse Restaurant. Validated one hour free parking in Hotel Tesoro parking lot.
- Happy Ending Cantina (Rated the Best Bar in Cabo), Marina Blvd 22 (Between Cabo Wabo & Hard Rock), . 10AM-3AM. Happy Ending is located on the “50 yard line” in the middle of Cabo’s action. Cheap drinks. Three bars, stripper poles, beer pong tables, pool tables, dancing, music, satellite TV for sporting events, delicious food all day and all night, cleanest bathrooms in Mexico, handicap access. ATM on the premises. Opens at 10:00 and closes at 3AM everyday. Best in Cabo.
- Flavor, Marina Blvd s/n Las Cardenas (In front of Burger King, Between Las Quesadillas and Pink Kitty), . 11AM-mdnight. International cuisine with global influence. Beautiful ambience and design. Great venue for dinner with family, friends, or dates. Kids under 10 not recommended.
- The Usual Suspects, Main Street across Puerto Paraiso Mall, . The Usual Suspects is the only bar with a High Definition 100 inch screen in Cabo showing every NFL, NHL game, PPV, etc. Its oval shaped bar invites everybody to meet everybody, friendly and English speaking bartenders, clean bathrooms and a dance floor under the stars will make your Cabo nights unforgettable.
- UNOMAS. The best margaritias in Cabo. The drinks are US$3.50 each and beers are US$2. The beers are cold and the company is warm and friendly. This place is hard to find but a great place to hang out. Owned by Fernando and Gina, also the bar tenders, these two ensure the success of the bar by tasting, with their own straw of course, every drink prior to serving them. This ensures that their mix is always right.
- The Sandbar (Next to the Office). Very nice place to spend a day on the beach drinking cold Pacificos (sold in an ice filled bucket) People are very nice and the service is great.
San Lucas/ Where to stay in Cabo San Lucas
- Cabo Inn, 20 de Noviembre and Leona Vicario, Cabo San Lucas 23410 – A charming, bohemian and clean hotel with communal kitchen, BBQ, and a small rooftop pool. The management are friendly and helpful, and the guests tend to be as well. It is a few blocks from the beach, marina, and many of the drinking establishments. The two “honeymoon suites” are double the price of the average room here but still a bargain. There are large open air palapas, one of which has a private jacuzzi.
- Seven Crown Hotel, Blvd. Lazaro Cardenas y 16 de Septiembre | Col. Centro – Nestled in between a gas station, a liquor store, and a strip club. Across the street is the hospital. Has four locations. A great deal, its the closest hotel to all the bars, and you can just walk to the Riu Resort and get free drinks every day.
- Casa Piedra, . Within the Cabo Pulmo Marine Park. An all native stone house with a palm frond (palapa) roof, located with the Cabo Pulmo Marine Park, directly on a white sand beach. It has 2100 sq ft of living space with an equal amount of outdoor patios.
- El Nido Hacienda Escondida, Road towards Sunset Beach | Blvd. Miguel Angel Herrera & Callejon el Dorado, Cabo San Lucas 23450 – Located on a quiet cul-de-sac, three blocks away from the original town square and five blocks away from the marina. Six spacious decorated rooms, each with its own bathroom, are located around a central courtyard. Full breakfast, jacuzzi, gardens, roof-top sun deck, barbecue facilities, and a spectacular sunrise-sunset vista. There is also a beauty salon on premises.
- Royal Solaris Los Cabos, Boulevard San Jose Mz. 22 Lote 10, Zona Hotelera, 23400 San José del Cabo, B.C.S., . Blvd San Jose Lote #10 Campo de Golf, Z.H. . 390 rooms Mexican hacienda-style resort a five-story building in a U-shaped enclosing gardens and pools. Unlimited meal and beverages in 5 restaurants. Dinner shows and theme nights. 3 pools with heather system (including relaxes & kids pools). Spa and beauty salon. Beach front and indoor jacuzzi. Fitness center. Tennis and basketball courts, also beach volleyball court. Scuba diving demo at the diving pool. Kids club & Mini Water park. Weekly activities program for all ages. $ 150 USD Double occupancy.
- Marina Sol, , ✉ email@example.com. One block from Medano Beach and the Marina and just two blocks from Downtown Cabo. Marina Sol offers one to five bedroom condos with partial ocean, pool &courtyard, and town & sunset views. Family oriented condominium resort.
- RIU Palace Cabo San Lucas, Camino Viejo a San Jose, Cabo San Lucas 23410 – Has impressive architecture and 642 deluxe rooms are set in a spectacular enclave facing one of Los Cabo’s famous landmarks. Amenities include mini-bar and liquor dispenser, while some suites boast hydro-massage bathtubs and a jacuzzi on the terrace. This resort includes all-inclusive holidays, with facilities and a full range of sports and leisure alternatives, and on-site dining. The hotel was just certified an AAA Four-diamond hotel.
- Tesoro Resorts Los Cabos, Marina Lotes 9Y10, Col Centro, Telephone: US/Canada: 1 866 998 3767 or Mexico:1 800 837 6767. All inclusive Mexico resort hotel. Looks onto the marina, lighthouse or the Sea of Cortés from your balcony. No airport shuttle service. Internet, fitness center, spa, activities desk, large pool, parking, air conditioning. All inclusive packages are offered.
- Fiesta Americana Grand Los Cabos Golf & Spa, Carretera Transpeninsular, km 10.3, . 249 rooms and suites with private balconies overlooking the hotel’s private beach and the Sea of Cortez. Guests can enjoy five swimming pools, a fitness center, the SOMMA WineSPA, a variety of on-site restaurants, and a championship golf course.
- Pueblo Bonito Pacifica, Cabo Pacifica S/N, , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. This oceanfront, boutique adults-only resort with minimalist style sits by itself on a rugged 4-km (2.5-mi) stretch of sand beach on the Pacific side of Cabo.
- Marquis Los Cabos, Carretera Transpeninsular Km. 21.5 (In the Corridor between El Dorado and Cabo Real golf courses), , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. Ocean view, contemporary Mexican decor. Junior suite, master suite or cabana (casita) with private pool.
- ME Cabo, Playa El Medano, . ME Cabo steps down to the sea, its 150 rooms and suites arranged in a terraced embrace of free-form pools and gardens, Bali beds and sunshine.
- Dreams Los Cabos Suites Golf Resort & Spa, Carretera Transpeninsular, KM 18.5, Cabo San Lucas. Open-air hacienda-style architecture offers spacious suites in varying sizes, all with ocean views from your private, furnished terrace. Twice daily maid service, premium stocked mini-bar, and satellite TV. Three pools, two with swim up bars, one snack bar, a full-service spa and fitness center, and five restaurants, plus lounges. Nearby, eight championship golf courses.
- Melia Cabo Real. Carretera Transpeninsular km 19.5
- Playa del Sol Los Cabos, Km 29, Carr Tranpeninsular Highway. Playa del Sol Los Cabos is on a white sand beach. Exclusive beach club environment.
- Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort, Carretera Transp. Km. 19.5, . Featuring one of the only swimmer-friendly beaches in town, this resort was designed to reflect the Spanish heritage of Mexico, featuring tiled roofs and a hacienda-style courtyard with a large, elevated cascading pond.
- Marquis Los Cabos, Carr Transpeninsular Km 21.5 (Los Cabos, Baja California Sur), . Hotel and resort overlooking the Sea of Cortes, featuring oceanfront suites, spa, dining, meeting/event facilities, seaside pools.
- Prana del Mar Retreat & Wellness Center, Playas Migriño, Carretera a Todos Santos, KM 105, . This boutique eco-resort focuses primarily on yoga retreats, yoga vacations, and spa holidays. 15 rooms and suites, swimming pool and hot tub, delicious cuisine, solar-powered, very serene.
- The Resort at Pedregal, Camino Del Mar 1, toll-free: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. A five-star resort featuring villas with private plunge pools, restaurants, a full-service spa and elegant beachfront space for weddings and meetings. This resort is set on a private beach near the downtown retail district.
- Las Ventanas Al Paraiso, KM 19.5 Carretera Transpeninsular, San Jose del Cabo, , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. World famous five-star resort that offers expansive suites, spa, meeting and wedding facilities, horseback riding, sailing, surfing, snorkeling, and scuba diving.
- Esperanza, An Auberge Resort Carretera Transpeninsular km 7 Manzana 10, Punta Ballena Cabo San Lucas BCS Mexico 23410 . Five-star Auberge Baja-style resort featuring 50 oceanview casitas and six luxury suites with large outdoor terraces and Sea of Cortez views. Luxurious touches include fine linens, plush robes and over-sized bathrooms.
- One and Only Palmilla .5 carretera Transpeninsular SJC – CSL, San José del Cabo, ☎ +52 624 146-7000. This five-star resort is a splurge, but well worth it with exceptional accommodations all with ocean views, and an exceptional golf course.
Do not beach walk at the water’s edge on the Pacific side. This area is very treacherous, and huge waves can come ashore with little to no notice. This danger does not end at the “El Arco” point, but extends to all south-facing beaches as well, including the Pueblo Bonito and Riu Palace resorts.
As a general note, avoid back alleyways, especially at nighttime. Watch for pick pockets in the nightlife areas. Only accept rides from licensed taxi drivers. Also, the city had the highest murder rate in the world in 2017.
The main beach of Cabo San Lucas, called “El Medano” (Medano Beach) is located near the marina in the bay. On the beach there are some great places to eat and drink including The Office, along with many others most of the places have outdoor tables on the beach. The beach overlooks Lands End. You can also take a ride to Lands End by boat and also Lover’s Beach, one of the best beaches in the world.
Explore small towns surrounding Cabo: San José del Cabo, Todos Santos and La Paz are rich with history and make a great excursion. The nearby town of Todos Santos is a perfect side trip from Cabo. Todos Santos is a small community with approximately 4000 people. The town is filled with art and culture. The town is a tribute to the Eagles ‘Hotel California’, with its old colonial architecture and centuries old monastery one is transported back through time to a land of mystery and adventure. Stop at Elias Calles on your way home and pick a basket of organic strawberries.
La Paz is an old Mexican port with an ‘old Baja’ feel. It features in John Steinbeck’s novel The Pearl based on a Mexican folk tale about the areas most valuable natural resource. Its anthropology museum offers insights into the first inhabitants, 10,000 years ago. You can also see rock paintings dating back to these early settlers.
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Woman in Bikini at Cabo San Lucas Mexico
Rosarito Coronavirus Covid-19 Travel Update to Baja California Mexico
Please listen to our Travel Guide to Rosarito
First thing, buy liability insurance. This can be purchased online or at numerous agencies at the border in San Ysidro. If you don’t buy it, have fun in jail. Even if the accident is not your fault, you will be held until that’s cleared. Even if you hit livestock on the road, you the driver are at fault. Liability ensures the cow’s owner is compensated. Also, arrive early most check=in times are around eleven and on busy holiday it will be very hard to find a room. The mexican cops prey on american plates so go early.
Rosarito Beach is easily accessed via a toll road that runs along the Pacific Ocean. The drive around Tijuana can be daunting. Follow the signs on the freeway, but be careful the signs usually appear only at the turnoffs. Don’t expect any notices before the turnoffs.
When returning there is an unmarked u-turn in Tijuana you need to take to get back to the United States. It’s at an interchange next to a Pemex station. Look for a line of cars with American plates making a u-turn.
If you don’t want to drive in, there are buses from Tijuana.
For about US$15 you can take a taxi to Rosarito. Some Taxi Drivers may charge more, though.
There are 2 main roads to Rosarito coming from Tijuana/San Diego.
The Toll Road (Mexico 1D – Cuota) is much easier and faster on getting to Rosarito. After crossing the border get into the 3rd lane (counting out from the median), in about 100 meters you’ll be on an overpass and a 4th lane will bring on merging traffic, move over to the 4th lane and an offramp to the right will take you to the Via International/Carretera Mexico 1D. This is the main highway to take you to Rosarito, Ensenada, and the western part of Tijuana (Las Playas). If you keep your eye out for signs that indicate any of these three locations it is easier to drive in Mexico, but remember that the toll (cuota) and free (libre) route often split from the same road so may careful attention to the signs to avoid taking the wrong road. The toll cost will be about M$30 (about US$2.50) each way.
The Free Road (Mexico 1 – Libre) goes through Tijuana and can be harder to follow.
One of the best ways to visit Rosarito Beach is by going on a one day tour from San Diego. You can call Five Star Tours at 619 232 5040.
The whole tourist industry lies on Benito Juarez, the main street in town. There’s plenty of taxis as well. You’re never without friends or drinking buddies as long as you have cash.
- The Rosarito-Ensenada Bike Ride twice a year in April and October, is a “fun ride” 80 km (50 miles) along the coast and a few miles inland. Up to 10,000 riders participate in the ride, which ends with cervezas (beer) in Ensenada.
- California Motorsport Adventours Off-road adventure tours for people of all riding abilities. Everyone welcome: families, couples, friends, single riders, bachelor and corporate groups. Full day excursions or longer tours available also. Ride in the dunes and then enjoy a guided adventure into the surrounding mountain trails. Contact the office for reservations.
If you go to Rosarito for food a must stop is Puerto Nuevo located just 8 minutes south of Rosarito. This small town offers more than 35 restaurants all serving Lobsters. This style of lobster can be found throughout Baja called “Puerto Nuevo Style”
La Flor de Michoacan, on the north side of town on Benito Juarez, has a well-deserved reputation with tourists and locals alike. This restaurant is known for its carnitas (simmered and fried pork) dinners served family style with rice, beans, pico de gallo, fresh guacamole, and steaming, fresh tortillas wrapped in cloth and served in a basket. The restaurant also has a full bar and serves margaritas made with real strawberries. Carnitas plates are served two different ways. Mixed pork includes tripe and other pieces many do not find appetizing. If this is you, shell out the extra couple dollars and get the solid pork. You’ll be hard-pressed to spend more than US$10 a person, even with a pitcher or two of margaritas. The building is hard to miss, an imposing brick structure on a corner with a stop sign. Look for the word “CARNITAS” on top.
- Cha Cha Cafe, Km.31 Blvd. Popotla, La Barca, Rosarito Beach. (2 miles south of the Rosarito Beach Hotel.), . 7am-4pm. Rosarito’s place to enjoy Food, Coffee, Desserts, People and Music. Take out and Delivery Available. Monday -Sunday.
Fresh sea food right off the boat, head south on the old road, at the Fox studios, there is a fishing village on the south side of the complex, about twenty restaurants, lots of locals and traffic on Sundays! Park on the main road and walk in. Food is very good, but if you expect American restaurant standards be aware, you are in Mexico. Walk around, don’t go in the first one, lots of English-speaking deported Mexicans trying to get you into their restaurant.
- The Mongolian Grill, Carretera Libre Tij-Ens Km.30 (2 miles south of Rosarito Beach Hotel), . 11:30AM-8:30PM. Mongolian BBQ (select your meats, fresh veggies and seasonings). Weekly specials like Korean tacos and Thai coconut curry with chicken, shrimp, and bamboo shoots. US$6.75 + tax.
- Nonnies Italian Restaurant, Km. 31.5 Blvd. Popotla, La Barca, Popotla (2.5 miles south of Rosarito Beach Hotel), . 11 am – 8 pm. Delicious, reasonably priced! Spaghetti & meatballs, fettucine, pizza, salads, and a great view! Call ahead for to go orders – your food will be ready when you arrive. Open Tuesday through Sunday. Open for “Spring Break fast” Fri, Sat, Sun at 7AM economical.
The history of Puerto Nuevo – in the 1950s and early 1960s this was a little fishing village where Americans would meet local guides at the billboard off the road. That billboard was for Newport Cigaretts – Puerto Nuevo is Newport in Spanish. This is the likely derivation of the name. One day the wife of a fisherman starting cooking the fish her husband and his clients caught… and the restaurant business was born. That original restaurant is known as #2 (this has to do with the lot numbering system); #1 was the second restaurant in town. Also, there are 8 restaurants in town with the name Ortegas. They are related and the competition is not all that friendly. Puerto Nuevo is a fun stop – the lobster is good – and you have plenty of choices for food, shopping and people watching!
The Beachcomber lies in the central part of town in a resort village. The resort village is gated, so you’ll have to park in the lot outside of the gate and take a small walk. If the guard asks at the gate where you’re going, just say you’re getting drinks at the bar, you don’t have to have a house there to drink. The bar has a patio right next to the beach, making it the perfect place to drink a beer or margarita and watch the sunset. There is also access to the beach here as well. While the drinks aren’t the cheapest in town, they aren’t overpriced, and you’re not going to pay a cover.
For a big club experience, check out Papas & Beer . Papas & Beer is a large club in the heart of Rosarito. Although the drinks are overpriced for the area they are cheap compared to US prices. There’s usually a cover, and sometimes a line, but the positive side is that if you are looking to dance, meet new people and have some cervezas, you will find what you are looking for here.
Where to stay in Playas de Rosarito
Rosarito Beach is a fast-growing town. With that growth comes growing pains! For this reason, it is best to avoid all high-rises and accommodations in downtown Rosarito. Loud music coming from the clubs is a persistent problem that tourists face when they try to go to sleep every night. The best bet is for people to go to privately owned Villas or Condos or Houses. Listings of all three types are plentiful and readily found everywhere.
- Rosarito Luxury Penthouse Garden Floor Luxury 2 bedroom, 2 bath penthouse. Large balcony overlooking the beach. There is a circular bar as well as a kitchen, spa and pool nearby.
- Villa Bonita Vista 3 Bd 4.5 bath vacation rental in Bajamar. Villa Bonita Vista is located on the 7th green of the Los Lagos Course with ocean and golf course views. Bajamar is in Ensenada.
- Rosarito Beach Hotel, Blvd. Benito Juarez 31, . Built in 1925, this classic establishment is perfect for younger couples looking to have a great time in Rosarito. It has multiple pools and jacuzzis, and is situated right on the beach. There are numerous restaurants and bars in the hotel, and guests are given vouchers upon check-in so that they may enjoy a certain amount of free meals and drinks. If tranquility and relaxation are what you have in mind, this is not the place for you. Due to the fact that it is centrally located amongst Rosarito’s downtown area on Benito Juarez, the music from the clubs is audible until 4 AM, and the bass will shake the hotel, making it hard for those guests who are not out partying to fall asleep. If you are looking to go clubbin, let loose, and catch some sun during the day, however, this is the place for you.
- SeaSide Reservations Rosarito Beach. A great selection of Baja California vacation rentals to fit every group size and budget, with properties in Brisas del Mar, Calafia Resort, La Elegancia, Pacifica at Ensenada Bay, Playas de Tijuana, Ricamar, Rosarito Shores, San Antonio Del Mar, Santa Barabara at Baja Mar, The Park At Malibu, and Villa Serena Condos.
- Casa El Jardin (Bed & Breakfast), Emiliano Zapata St. #600, Rosarito Beach, BC (Col. Reforma. A Few blocks down from Wal-mart Shopping Center), .
- Las Rocas Resort & Spa, Toll Free Road Tijuana-Ensenada Km 38.5, 1 888 527 7622 or 1 866 445 8909, . 72 ocean front rooms and suites, 2 restaurants, 2 bars, Holistic Spa, Ballroom and Gardens.
- Bobbys Baja by the Sea – One of the nicer places to stay in Rosarito Beach is Bobbys Baja – just North of Puerto Nuevo’s lobster village. Bobbys is a condo resort – so all the units have a kitchen and they are a lot more spacious than a hotel room. There are really nice – which is something one cannot say about some of the local hotels.
Current Covid-19 Infections in Baja California
Please listen to our Travel Guide to Rosarito
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Puerto Penasco Rocky Point Coronavirus Travel After Covid-19 Sonora
Puerto Peñasco is a beach city in the northwestern corner of the state of Sonora in Mexico on the shores of the Sea of Cortez (Gulf of California), about 112 km (70 miles) south of the border with Arizona.
Puerto Peñasco, also known as Rocky Point, is one of the fastest growing tourist centers of northern Mexico; as of 2009 the population is more than 45,000 people, which includes many American and Canadian expats.
The story goes that Al Capone put Puerto Peñasco in the map. During prohibition, he supposedly used the village as a transfer point for liquor to his USA organization. The word in the streets say that he drilled the first water well, constructed a landing strip, and also he frequented the first solid structure building, nowadays known as “Posada La Roca”, the 8 room hotel down at the Old Port.
Puerto Penasco is in the same time zone as Phoenix/Tucson, Arizona, and observes the same rules for Daylight Saving Time as Arizona (that is to say, it is not observed).
The border crossing at Lukeville, Arizona is open from 6 AM to midnight, daily.
The currency of México is the Mexican peso. The local merchants will typically accept US dollars at the going rate. ATMs are available around town that will allow you to use your US-based bank card and receive Mexican pesos, typically at a more favorable rate.
As in the rest of the country, Spanish is the predominant language among the population. The variety of Mexican Spanish spoken in the region distinguish itself from the rest of the country for its strong intonation and contraction of words. Due to its proximity to the United States, it receives a great deal of influence from English. For example, English words such as troca (truck), lonche (lunch) and bai (bye) are of common usage.
English is spoken by most of the vendors and in almost every restaurant in Puerto Peñasco. Earnest attempts by visitors to speak Spanish are always appreciated.
If driving your own vehicle there are many ways to get to Puerto Penasco, the most direct and easy way to get there is from Arizona thru the point of entry in Lukeville, the distance from Phoenix or Tucson is the same just about 350 km (220 miles) which is about 3.5 hrs of driving time.
From Phoenix you will need to take I-10 going west to Los Angeles getting off on exit 112 that connects to State Route 85 going south thru Gila Bend, Ajo, Why and Lukeville, once you go thru the border follow the road over the hill and past the bridge then about a block you will turn right into Mexico highway 8, which will take you straight into Puerto Penasco.
From Tucson you will need to connect from I-10 taking exit 260 to I-19, take exit 99, Ajo Way and go west eventually it will turn into State Route 86, it will go west thru Sells, Quijotoa and Why where it will dead end into State Route 85, turn left going south to Lukeville, once you go thru the border follow the road over the hill and past the bridge then about a block you will turn right into Mexico highway 8, which will take you straight into Puerto Penasco.
It is an easy and safe one hour drive by car from the American/Mexican border at Lukeville, Az at the south end of Organ Pipe National Monument on Arizona Highway 85. If coming from Southern California, the drive is a bit shorter by crossing south of Yuma at San Luis Rio Colorado, but this route requires more driving in Mexico, however the new highway, Mexico Highway 3, from El Golfo de Santa Clara to Puerto Penasco is now open and is a very nice drive, however due to the sand being blown into the highway be careful when coming to sand build up, they could be deadly at high speed, is not recommended to go off road unless you have four wheel drive and are familiar with driving in sand.
All drivers in México are required to have Mexican car insurance. US policies are not acceptable. Be sure to buy Mexican insurance prior to your trip down or at one of the many places along Highway 85 before you cross the border.
From Phoenix you can contact Head Out to Rocky Point at (602)971-0166, e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
From Tucson contact Rocky Point Rides at (520)207-0532, e-mail at email@example.com
From Puerto Penasco there are two shuttle companies with offices in Phoenix and Tucson:
Transportes Nena’s +52 638-388-7089 or (602)442-6802
Transportes Superior +52 638-388-3640 or (602)455-9522 .
There are direct bus services to Hermosillo and other points statewide (Nogales and along Mexican Highway 15 & 2, Caborca, Santa Ana, Guaymas, Empalme, Huatabampo, Navojoa) to/from Puerto Penasco with Albatros Bus Company on Benito Juarez. This bus does not pass through Sonoyta or Rio Colorado or Baja California, to do that you must board another bus company.
If you did not drive in to Puerto Peñasco (as most visitors do) you can get around town via taxi. You can either have the hotel call them for you or go to the nearest major street and flag one down, fares vary however you should not pay more than US$2 or $3 per person, in the touristic area of Sandy Beach you will find the “taxi turistico” or “tourist taxi” their prices will be higher than those of regular taxis.
There are also microbuses that take people around town (mostly workers) for a minimal fee.
If you will be staying for a longer period, there are two places that you can rent a car:
- The Point Rent-a-car, On Blvd Benito Juarez across from Latitud 31 Restaurant and bar, tel. 388-5823
Puerto Peñasco has a few different areas:
- Fish Market – with the Malecon Kino overlooking the Sea of Cortes, many curio shops, restaurants, bars, ice cream parlors, remember thrifty ice creams?
- Playa Mirador – one of the oldest beach areas of Rocky Point, location was once famous as the “Spring Break” party street Avenida Matamoros, in a matter of 2 blocks you will find yourself in what seems to be a huge open bar, where college students from many universities concentrated during the 2 week vacation period. Now the street consists of many closed bars.
- Calle 13 – Another well known area for its numerous restaurants and bars, here you will find ATV and Rhino rentals almost in every block. To reach Calle 13, turn right off the main road (Benito Juarez). Calle 13 dead ends at the Penasco Del Sol hotel and the city beach; just before that is the turn for Seaside Reservations and the Las Gaviotas condominiums. The city beach is the hub of Mexican beach life, with numerous vendors and food trucks setting up shop on the sand.
- Sandy Beach – this is the location where most of the new developments are taking place, resorts, spas, 18-hole golf courses, condos and houses, restaurants as well as bars and of course a couple of miles of sandy beach and the future home port site for the cruise ships.
- Cholla Bay – located about 8 km (5 miles) out of town and home of famous JJ’s Cantina, it is just northwest of Sandy Beach.
- Las Conchas – the oldest American enclave in Rocky point exclusively residential with many available beachfront rental homes.
- Mayan Palace – One of the most, if not the most luxurious Mexican resort/timeshare, with its Jack Nicolaus 18-hole golf course, spa and many amenities to keep anybody, kids or adult busy. Open to members only. The general public cannot get day passes or use the restaurants. The golf course clubhouse restaurant, however, is open to the public.
And there are others like Playa Diamante, Playa Encanto, Playa San Jorge, etc. all located outside of town along the shores of the Sea of Cortez and are residential only.
- The Links at Las Palomas (Golf), Blvd. Costero 150, Sandy Beach, Puerto Peñasco, Sonora, Mexico 83550 (For directions, see Las Palomas Beach and Golf Resort in the ‘Sleep’ section, below.), . The Links at Las Palomas is an 18-hole, par 72, championship golf course that offers a classic links-style golf experience. The Links offers a club house, a fully-stocked pro shop, a restaurant, a driving range, practice greens and cart rentals. US$45.
- Boating, Fishing, Cruises. Santiagos Ocean Services has boats for Fishing trips, Bird Island Eco tours, Snorkeling Excursions, Dolphin and Whale watching, Dinner or Margarita Sunset Cruises, and for some real excitement they offer Parasail Rides that will give you a birds eye view of Rocky Point.
- Ultralight Flying Adventures, US$40 for a 15-minute flight over any part of Puerto Peñasco that you’d like to see from the air.
- Dancing, Puerto Peñasco has lots of nightlife, and there are many great places to go dancing: Manny’s Beach Club, Pink Cadillac, Baja Cantina, The Reef Club, Playa Bonita Happy Hour at Puesta Del Sol, Margarita Villa, and Bumaya (with the famous Foam Party)
- Beach, Puerto Peñasco have basically to distinctive beaches separated by Whale Hill, the rocky hill where the Malecon and the fish market are located, to the north you have Sandy Beach, which starts at Playa Hermosa at the end of Calle 13, where Hotel Penasco del Sol is located and goes to Pelican Hill/Cholla Bay, this beach is about 8 km (5 miles) of white sand and full of the new developments which includes condos for rent, resorts and hotels, this is the new touristic section of Puerto Penasco/Rocky Point which started developing around 2000. The other beach area is located to the south east of Whale Hill which starts with Playa Mirador, the oldest developed beach in Rocky Point, known by the great tide pools where many different sealife can be found when the tide is low in the shore reefs, however when the tide is high the beach is of sand and the rocks are not visible. After playa Mirador going along the coast you have the American enclave of “Las Conchas” where many beautiful homes of mediterranean style are and ends at the entrance to the Morua estuary. To continue down the coast, you must take the highway to Caborca which will take you to many of the other residential developments like Playa Encanto, Playa Dorada, playa Miramar ending at the Mayan Palace and the entrance to La Pinta Estuary.
- Off road vehicle rentals, There are lots of quad rental shops for easy access to the sand dunes outside of town near Cholla Bay.
- Health Club/ Club Playa Fitness Center (Realty Network), 281 Blvd. Fremont (1 mile east of city hall on Blvd. Fremont). 6AM – 9PM. This is a great place to get a workout in while in Puerto Peñasco. Memberships available, walk-ins welcome at US$5 per visit. Air conditioned, state of the art equipment, cardio, free-weights, universal machine, flat screen/HD TV/ Music. US$5.
- CET-MAR Aquarium, 43 Las Conchas Road (To get there go east on Fremont and turn right on Camino a las Conchas after the gas station on the left. It is on the bend as the road approaches the beach.), . Monday through Friday from 10AM to 2:30PM and Saturday and Sunday from 10AM to 5PM. Aquarium exhibit at the university, Centro de Estudios Technologicos del Puerto Penasco. Actual research is being done there, and the animal tours are mostly self-guided thru the tanks, barrels, and pools. The entry fee is about US$3. US$3 adult, $1 child.
- Shopping, The malecón (mah-lay-CONE), or “beach walk” in the Old Port part of town is alive with shops that sell everything from tourist souvenirs to fine art. While in Puerto Peñasco, most visitors stay in one of the hundreds of privately owned condos that offer fully stocked kitchens. For this reason, the fish market at the malecón is a popular stop for the fresh catch of the day, especially during the shrimp season, September to March. There are also many good restaurants to be found along the malecón, some of which provide stunning sunset views of the Sea of Cortéz.
- The Cholla Mall (also known as Rodeo Drive), has many shops with pottery, jewelry, clothing, and a variety of knick knacks. Two large pottery shops, across the street from each other, have a massive selection of artwork, rough pottery, and Talavera-style pottery. Planters of every size and shape, plates, platters, and bowls, candle holders and water coolers – you can find pretty much everything in these stores. While you can buy cigars at a few of the shops, they tend to be older and/or more stale than the shops on the Malecon. Fabulous Mexican restaurant on the street – beautifully decorated.
- Capone’s Restaurant and Bar, Located in Sinaloa Avenue in the Mirador beach area, Very casual drinking and dining. US$8-$15
- Delfin Amigable (Friendly Dolphin), Ave. Alcantar #44 (the main street out of the Old Port), +1 52 (638) 383-2608. S-Th 10AM-11PM, F-Sa 11AM-11PM. Traditional Mexican dishes, and a very creative seafood menu. Casual dining, and appropriate for the whole family. US$8-$22.
- JJ’s Cantina, 12 Coahuila Ave (Cholla Bay), . A historic, casual restaurant and bar in Cholla Bay, popular with many of the local American and Canadian ex-pats.
- La Casa del Capitan, on top of “Whale Hill”, A restaurant with a great view. Mexican and American dishes served indoors or outside on the large patio.
- La Maria Fine Bistro & Cuisine (Las Palomas Beach & Golf Resort), Blvd. Costero 150, Sandy Beach, , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. La Maria offers refined “cocina Mexicana” and world fusion dishes. A place for a special evening, or just to stop in for a late-night dessert.
- Lolitas Seafood Restaurant, located in Ave Cuahutemoc in Mirador Beach area
- Sapporo Sushi Restaurant, in Sinaloa Ave. one block west from Cappone’s restaurant in the Mirador beach area
- Kaffee Haus, located on your way to the Old Port. The Coffee Haus is a breakfast and lunch bistro tucked on a hillside just south of the old port. Established by German pastry chef Uwe Holtze and his wife Lily in 2005, the Coffee Haus was named after Uwe’s dog “Coffee”. Uwe, originally from Germany, lived in Canada and Boston before settling in Puerto Penasco. He brought with him a taste of Europe, combined with American, Canadian and Mexican fare. website, www.coffeeshaus.com Phone, 638-38 81065. Please be ready to wait for few minutes, normally during long weekends expect queues. Please give your name with counter, they will call you in order.
There are many casual clubs/bars in town and at the Old Port, including Pink Cadillac, Baja Cantina, Wrecked at the Reef, Playa Bonita Happy Hour at Puesta Del Sol, Luxor.
Where to stay in Puerto Peñasco
- FMI Rentals, Blvd Freemont s/n 103 Placita Aviana, Benito Juárez, , ✉ email@example.com. FMI rentals offers about 79 short-term vacation condominium rentals ranging from 1 – 6 bedrooms in a few of the area’s resorts: Marina Pinacate, Princesa de Peñassco, Tessoro, Corona del Mar, Corona del Sol and Casa Blanca. Rental features and amenities vary by property and location, but can be seen via FMI’s site or the resort of the property you wish to stay in.
- Las Palomas Golf and Seaside Resort, Blvd. Costero 150, (As you begin to enter Puerto Peñasco, turn right at the second traffic light onto the street named “Calle 26” or “No Reeleccion.” Continue straight on this street and after crossing the railroad tracks. A short distance farther, the street will curve to the right. Continue straight on this street along the sand dunes to a traffic circle where exiting to the left leads to the security gate of the main entrance of Las Palomas Resort), , toll-free: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Las Palomas Beach & Golf Resort includes condominiums where you can stay. Each condominium (1BR -5BR) in this full-service resort has a stunning ocean view. The resort also offers fine and casual dining, “infinity” pools, swim-up bar, lazy river, room service, full spa services, WiFi and a 18-hole PGA gold course.
Unlike most small communities, Rocky Point has not experienced an increase in crime. It is important wherever you are to stay alert to your surroundings. It was noted recently in an article about crime in the USA that you are 17 times more likely to have violent crime affect you in Flint, Michigan than in Rocky Point.
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Lack of Protective Gear Leaves Mexican Nurses Battling Covid-19 in Fear
MEXICO CITY – As a nurse on the front lines of Mexico’s coronavirus battle, Gisela Hernandez has stayed away from her children for nearly two months, sleeping in a hotel and even her car to avoid infecting them because she feels inadequately protected at work.
At night, she video calls Santiago, 5, and Renata, 9, who are both asthmatic, to hear about what they’ve done during the day and remind them how much she misses them.
While Hernandez says she loves her work, and considers the National Institute of Respiratory Diseases (INER) in Mexico City her second home, she is also afraid of contracting the novel coronavirus. COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, has killed 9,415 people in Mexico.
“I don’t regret becoming a nurse, because I like to help my patients,” said Hernandez, 40, whose hospital is one of the city’s main treatment centers for COVID-19.
But she said she is “scared of getting sick … scared of never seeing my kids again.”
Health workers account for about a quarter of all of Mexico’s coronavirus infections, government data shows, one of the highest rates in the world. The risks are made worse by shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE).
COVID-19 cases are surging in Latin America, which along with the United States is now an epicenter of the global pandemic. Frontline workers in Mexico City’s hospitals, including Hernandez, have taken to the streets to complain about the conditions. A national march is planned for Monday.
INER, which has been at full capacity over the past week, said 49 of its workers have been infected at the hospital and another 54 have contracted the virus in the community, of which two have died.
In a May 8 memo seen by Reuters, INER’s Biosafety Committee said a global PPE shortage would require workers to don reusable surgical uniforms and cloth hospital gowns, instead of disposable gear. The letter also told workers to use their N95 masks for full shifts.
In response to requests for comment, the hospital shared with Reuters a statement it sent workers this week in which it said the measure regarding usage of masks was in line with World Health Organization advice. It also confirmed that workers were instructed to use non-disposable gowns and uniforms.
“To date, no sterilized N95 masks have been reused.”
However, a video seen by Reuters shows an official at INER telling staff to reuse sterilized N95 masks.
“We exploded when we were told we were going to recycle the N95s,” said Alejandro Cabrera, an INER nurse with two decades of experience.
Cabrera said workers are required to put their names on masks so the gear can be sent off for sterilization. “It’s terrible!” he said.
Mexico ranks eighth in the world in COVID-19 deaths, with Mexico City and a neighboring state accounting for some 40 percent of the country’s fatalities.
The Mexican government says it needs another 6,600 doctors and 23,000 nurses to battle the crisis, a shortage exacerbated by the high infection rate among medical staff — 11,394 health workers had contracted the virus and 149 had died as of May 17.
Medical professionals had accounted for 23 percent of all of the country’s infections as of that date. That compares to 3.7 percent in the United States, according to data released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week.
Despite the danger, Hernandez is doing her part to combat the disease.
She points to a box of chocolates and a yellow note from the family of one of her patients thanking and encouraging her to keep “working to save lives.”
“That’s one of the reasons I love my job so much, and despite the risks I still enjoy taking care of my patients,” she said.
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Ensenada Coronavirus Covid-19 Travel Update
In the Bahía de Todos Santos — an inlet of the Pacific Ocean — Ensenada is an important commercial and fishing port as well as a cruise ship port of call. There is also a navy base, an army base and a military airfield, which functions as an airport of entry into Mexico.
The city is backed by small mountain ranges. Due to its location on the Pacific Ocean and Mediterranean latitude, the weather tends to be mild year-round. Although the winter rainy season is short and the area is prone to prolonged droughts, Ensenada sits in the heart of a wine country that is widely regarded as the best in Mexico and the Americas with the Napa Valley in California. It is said that the first vitis vinifera made it to the peninsula (specifically to the San Ignacio Mission) in 1703, when Jesuit Padre Juan de Ugarte planted the first vineyards there.
Ensenada is the only deep-water port in the state of Baja California and is part of standard shipping routes that directly link it with the Mexican cities of La Paz, Manzanillo, Mazatlan, Acapulco and Lázaro Cárdenas, and with the U.S. cities of San Diego, Long Beach and Los Angeles, the Guatemalan city of Puerto Quetzal, the Chilean city of Valparaíso, the Japanese city of Yokohama and the Chinese city of Hong Kong.
Ensenada boasts overall very pleasant weather with the sea bringing cold air in hot days and not much cold on the winters. It is also very fickle and you are advised to bring a sweater and pants along with your shorts and shirts.
- Take the bus from Tijuana for roughly US$15 or 185 pesos.
- Drive across the border from San Ysidro. Go in the morning and you will be going the opposite direction of the nightmare traffic trying to get into the U.S.. Once in Tijuana, follow the signs to Rosarito and Ensenada on route 1. There will be three toll stops en route to Ensenada. These tolls cost 31 pesos, less than US$2, each. You can pay with US dollars or pesos, but no mixed currency. The scenic highway (“carretera escenica”) is well maintained and is an enjoyable ride along the beautiful Baja coastline. If you go in spring and early summer, the wildflowers on the hillsides are gorgeous. The ride from Tijuana to Ensenada takes approximately 1-1.5 hours. Stop in Puerto Nuevo for a Mexican lobster dinner. There are many rest areas and vista points along the way. AAA and other travel magazines recommend that you only drive in Mexico during the day for safety reasons. The toll road (scenic highway) is somewhat winding compared to divided highways in the United States or Europe, but a great improvement over two-lane roads south of Ensenada.
- Cruise ships: Ensenada has become a regular stop for several lines of cruise ships since the 1980s. Although this is certainly the most expensive means to travel to Ensenada, it is also most enjoyable.
- Carnival shuttles. Carnival Cruises has the Misioneros Tour company run shuttle buses between the port and Ensenada every 10min. It’s US$2 to Ensenada and US$2 to get back to the ship. US$4 round-trip.
- By foot Most of Ensenada’s downtown tourist attractions can be accessed by foot. Others, like La Bufadora and Wineries are too far away to walk to, but tours will take you there for a fee. If your espanol is “malo” you could take local buses inexpensively out and back to La Bufadora.
- By bicycle Most of the Boulevard Costero and the scenic highway can be traveled by bike. Take precautions for the scenic highway north of Costero is a freeway and trucks and cars travel at high speeds. Ensenada’s South is not very bike friendly.
- By car The city is extremely easy to navigate by car and parking is free and available everywhere. Keep in mind that on highways, the left lane is just for passing and local drivers will tailgate you if you coast on the left lane. You can hire a car at the Rosarito Hotel.
- Taxis and buses Radio taxis are available and will take you anywhere. Route taxis and buses serve mostly suburban routes and are not very useful for tourists, although are very cheap (US$0.75, M$8).
- La Bufadora (blow-hole). is in a small village about nineteen miles southwest of town. The road from Ensenada, especially in the area close to the Bufadora, offers beautiful views over the sea and cliffs. The narrow main street leading to the viewing area is crowded with tourist-trap shops selling curios, take-away food, and prescription medicines, but the Bufadora is a rather remarkable natural sea vent. However, it is not possible to see the actual blow hole from most parts of the viewing area due to the angle of the cliff face; the impressive columns of water that shoot up are visible. On busy days, local Mexican tourists in the hundreds cram the viewing area. The local cove offers camping, swimming, kayaking and scuba, including a small dive shop with rentals; the cove is especially cold water. Locals report that sea lions are sometimes seen swimming about. Locals eat at Celia’s, also available are the Bufadora, Pancho’s, and Habana Banana restaurants.
- Carnival Tours. Bufadora tours from Carnival Cruise lines cost more than anywhere else, but will pick you up and drop you off from the cruise ship port. US$36.
- Misioneros Tours. This tour company runs the shuttle buses between the Carnival cruise ships and Ensenada. The stop in Ensenada is right by their tour booth where you can buy a discounted Bufadora tour. They prefer USD. US$15.
- Ensenada Wineries Many wineries exist on the outskirts of Ensenada in the Valle de Guadalupe and an hour south at Santo Thomas. The wineries are located along highway 3 to Tecate (exit just south of last toll gate, north of town). Most offer tours and tastings, however some wineries require that you make an appointment before.
What to do in Ensenada
Ensenada is a city best experienced by car. The greatest experiences in Ensenada involve going out early to Bufadora, having ceviche at 1st street, drink at Hussong’s, then go to a beach and end back in a club or bar. All of these require independent transportation so it would be wise to hire a car, and have a designated driver.
- Fox Studios Rosarito was the location for much of the at-sea filming of James Cameron’s “Titanic”, which gave this studio location its start. Since then, many other films have been shot in this location, including “Master and Commander”. The ship of this film remains on site. They offer tours.
Beaches and Surfing
- Beaches. The city of Ensenada is on the Ensenada Harbor, so you’ll have to drive south or north to get to a local beach. Private beaches like Estero Beach and Mona Lisa have resort accommodations and facilities, but public ones like San Miguel and El Punto are free for anyone who wishes to walk by the sea.
Ensenada area has several celebrated surfing spots, such as San Miguel Beach, California Trailer Park, Stacks and 3 M’s (Spanish:Tres Emes), which are located in the north coast of the city. Todos Santos Island a small island located west of Ensenada (about 2 hours by boat), and a world-famous surfing spot. The Billabong XXL surfing contest has been held at Todos Santos Island several times. Wave faces can reach above 18 m (60) feet on the island. Brad Gerlach, 2006 winner of Big XXL, surfed a wave of 20 m (68 feet) in December 2006.
- San Miguel Beach, San Miguel Beach (Near Ensenad’s highway toll, ask a taxi). A small rocky beach that offers a great night view of the city. Great for camping and drinking, locals favor it for it’s relaxed nature and private nature which means you won’t be disturbed unless you make a lot of noise. Free entrance, US$12 camping.
Hiking, Nature and Off-Road
Hiking can be done on the nearby Canon de Dona Petra, and on the nearby Laguna Hanson. Arrangements with local eco tour companies are needed.
- El Salto. Its a beautiful canyon, excellent for rock climbing, rappel and hiking; and in rain season you can view a spectacular waterfall that is over 30 m (100 ft). You can find it at KM 76 in the Tijuana – Ensenada Libre Highway. Camping Facilities. US$2.
- Canon de Dona Petra Hike (Ask a taxi to get you to the starting point). Every first Sunday of the month, locals hike through this 10km hike. It’s free and you can find many people. It takes about 3 1/2 hours at good pace and it’s of moderate difficulty. At the end of the hike, you can take the bus back to Ensenada for about US$1. free.
- San Carlos Hot Springs (Aguas Termales) (Head five miles south of town ( just past Chapultepec )on the road to San Quintin, turn East at the golf course and follow the signs – or ask the locals). Features pipe-fed hot pools, cold pool, and mud pool as well as cabins, showers and camping, is popular with the locals, despite a 10-mile rocky dirt road with 13 (or so) shallow water crossings; medium-clearance vehicles are recommended.
- California Motorsport Adventures. Off-road adventure tours for people of all riding abilities. Everyone welcome: families, couples, friends, single riders, bachelor and corporate groups. Full day excursions or longer tours available also. Ride in the dunes and then enjoy a guided adventure into the surrounding mountain trails. Contact the office for reservations.
- Whale Pursuing (Whale Watching). The gray whale’s annual migration from Alaska to the lagoons of Baja California Sur between the months of December and March, and back in the months of April and May, can be seen from the coast of Ensenada. Sightseeing tours are available every day during migration season. Whale watching not guaranteed
- La Bufadora (The Blowhole), Punta Banda. La Bufadora is a marine geyser and the largest blowhole in the world, often shooting upwards more than 30 m (100 feet) above sea level. The exhibit hall roof top is approximately 25 m (80 feet) above sea level and the blowhole frequently sprays above it. Free.
- Sports Fishing. Ensenada Baja California has been known for sport fishing over fifty years. Each year hundreds of anglers head for Ensenada to go fishing and take advantage of the shorter distances needed to travel by sea to get to the big catch. The short range day trips are good for cranking in Bass, Bonita, Barracuda, Cod and Yellowtail, while the long range trips pull in Tuna, Albacore, Dorado. Prices Vary.
- Baja 1000 (The Longest International Off Road Race in the World). This important race held in November as well as the Baja 500 Off-Road race held in June start in Ensenada. While the Baja 500 almost always ends in Ensenada the Baja 1000 ends in Ensenada in even numbered years while in odd numbered years ends at the tip of Baja, usually in Cabo San Lucas. Amenities are extended during the days prior to the start. Race info including course map updated regularly at www.score-international.com.
- Wine Harvest Festival (Fiestas de la Vendimia). Every year, before the end of spring and until the end of August, the wine harvest season is celebrated around the Guadalupe Valley and in the city of Ensenada with a series of events. These events range from private wine tastings and galas, to concerts of classical music and famous pop artists at the wine yards. The end of the harvest season is commemorated by a two-day free event at the Santo Tomas winery in Ensenada with a festival that is preferred by the locals. Be sure to check out the site for there is an event almost daily. Varies.
- . The Ensenada Carnaval is one of the country’s largest, as thousands of people gather in the streets for six days and nights.
- Curios, On 1st street. Many regional art pieces for cheap can be found on 1st Street
- MacroPlaza, Transpeninsular (Ask a taxi or take any Maneadero Bus). Mall with clothing and supermarket options. If you want to see a movie and don’t mind Spanish subtitles, go to a Mexican movie theater. US$5 tickets is a steal compared to USA prices
- Open Air Fish Market (Mercado Negro), Boulevard Costero. Baja’s largest seafood market. Located near the oceanfront. Most of the market’s open air stalls sell catches fresh off the fishing boats that dock nearby. This is also a great place to try a famous fish taco.
- Fish Tacos. – The fish taco is said to have been born in Ensenada (or possibly San Felipe (Mexico)). The local style includes deep-fried seafood, with a white sauce and a shredded-cabbage topping, along with several salsas. Dining at the row of fish and shrimp taco eateries by the pier is an Ensenada must.
- Taqueria El Fenix. is a local favorite and serves delicious tacos, shrimp and fish.
- Caprichos. Incredible fine dining. Located in the heart of Ensenada on the cobblestone street, across the road from Hussongs (whether it is the original or not is unknown). It also serves delicious burgers on a back grill.
- Tortas Michoacan. – really good sandwiches with either pork, ham, carne asada, or all three, very delicious, kind of a little walk away from the tourist area, look for the counter with a big line of people on the main street just 1 block south of a Chinese buffet, it’s about 2 blocks east from the main tourist area and about 10 blocks south on the widest big road with all the shops all the way along it.
- Ceviche La Guerrerense. – Great street ceviche car that serves a huge variety of ceviches for US$1 each. It also has a huge variety of salsas ranging from light to super hot. Be careful with those and ask for assistance. Also serves cocktails. Located on 1st street and Alvarado
- 1 Tacos El Paisa, 10th street and 20 de Noviembre (Ask a taxi to take you here). If you want to have the true Mexican taco experience, go to this place. Favored by locals, it offers US$1 tacos. Carne Asada, Adobada, Tripas and Cabeza are available as quesatacos, tortas, and huaraches. A must taste that will scratch that Tex-Mex flavor you are used to. With everything
- Cantina Hussong’s, Ave Ruiz #113, , ✉ email@example.com. Legendary and historic bar. Established in 1892 Hussongs is the oldest bar in the Californias, Hussong’s began as a stagecoach stop built by its German founder Johan Hussong. Some say that the city of Ensenada was built around this bar. Rumor has it that the Margarita was invented here.
- Papa’s and Beer Ensenada (El Papas), Ruiz y Primera. Another legendary and historic bar right across the street from Hussongs.
- Mango Mango, Primera & Ruiz. 20:00 – 03:00. A place to dance Caribbean and norteno rythms US$5.
- Abel’s Bar, Boulevard Costero 1000-6 between Diamante and Medusas (Easy to find on Costero). Rock oriented bar serves cheap drinks and good music with a metal mood
- La Taberna (Cervecrería Tijuana). Located on 1st Street (half a block away from McDonald’s), the Tijuana Brewery Tavern offers award-winning draft beer in many varietals, ranging from light lagers to dark ales. This is a local favorite hangout for all sorts of people, and happy hour is available at least two nights a week.
Where to stay in Ensenada
- Hotel Coral & Marina, Carretera Tijuana-Ensenada Km.103 #3421, . A beautiful hotel with amazing bathrooms and views. Located on the main road between the end of the toll road and downtown. There’s a marina for your yacht and many amenities. Shuttle service into town (4.8 km or 3 miles away), US$4 for a taxi.
- Playa Saldamando Trailer and campground located 13 km (8 miles) north of Ensenada. Over one mile of coastal property, all fenced and gated to enhance security. Employees are on the property 24 hours/7 days a week providing friendly service. Campsites available on the beach and on the cliffs above. All sites have beautiful ocean views. Large sites available to accommodate large groups. Clean, maintained camping areas and our clean restrooms with flushing toilets and showers.
- Ensenada Backpacker (Hostel), Calle Segunda 1429 (Between Floresta and Guadaluper St), . Check-out: noon. The Ensenada Backpacker is located a few blocks from Ensenada’s most popular attractions. They offer dormitory and private rooms. US$20.
- Ocean View Rental Home. Su Casa is set on a hillside with a spectacular panoramic ocean view of Todos Santos Bay and its islands in the gated secure community of Cibolas del Mar. It is located 15 minutes north of Ensenada, where the toll road ends. This Spanish style home with tile roof has a large flagstone deck and covered outside area. It is in an area of private family homes in a quiet neighborhood. US$200/night.
- Hostel Sauzal feels like more of a bed and breakfast than a hostel with a gracious host, and a sweeping ocean view from the huge flower garden. Just north of Ensenada in El Sauzal, US$15/night. Don’t come here expecting a party. Do come here to relax and recharge.
- Hotel Las Rosas, . By the sea hotel that is a good spot for a wedding. US$80-446.
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Puerto Vallarta Coronavirus Covid-19 Travel Update to Mexico
Puerto Vallarta, colloquially known as Vallarta, is a city on Mexico’s Pacific Coast. While it is established as a modern resort city, the Old towns (the Zona Romantica district) south of the River Cuale is more of a traditional Mexican city.
Around the Bay, beautiful beaches, lush jungles, and sparkling waterfalls offer many opportunities for the adventurous, while five star resorts, world-class shopping, and gourmet restaurants satisfy even the most sophisticated traveler. Stretching from the south end of Old Town to central downtown, a newly extended and refurbished boardwalk along the ocean, called the Malecon, passes by any number of shops, restaurants, and hotels, and often plays host to mimes, breakdancers, clowns and artists.
The residents are friendly and generally willing to help with directions and other requests.
English is widely spoken, and as a tourist, destination prices are higher than many other places in Mexico. Puerto Vallarta is very crowded at holidays, if planning a visit to Mexico that coincides with a major holiday consider opting to visit Mexico City or Guadalajara instead. The cities empty out as Mexicans and tourists alike flood to the beaches.
Protected by the second largest bay in the American continent, Bahía de Banderas, with over 40 km of golden beaches in the center of the Mexican Pacific and surrounded by the majestic mountains of the Sierra Madre Occidental lies Puerto Vallarta, a paradise whose special charm is due to its blend of colonial and cosmopolitan features.
The best way to enjoy Puerto Vallarta is to wander through Viejo Vallarta, with its traditional cobbled streets, white-walled houses, wrought-iron balconies and red tiled roofs; visit the Templo de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, with its unusual dome, a replica of the crown worn by Empress Charlotte in 1860; admire the original murals by the artist Manuel Lepe in the Palacio Municipal.
Walk along the jetty with its esplanade of bronze statures and wide variety of shops with something for everyone; explore the galleries displaying contemporary Mexican art.
Sample the varied gastronomy in one of its open-air restaurants while gazing at a beautiful sunset or enjoy a traditional Mexican evening complete with folkloric ballet.
To the north lies Marina Vallarta, the largest sports port in Mexico that attracts luxurious yachts and sailboats from all over the world and is surrounded by deluxe hotels, shopping malls and golf courses.
Next to it, in the state of Nayarit, is Nuevo Vallarta, the most recent tourist resort in the bay.
In Puerto Vallarta you will find more than one way of recharging your batteries, since there are hundreds of opportunities for recreation.
Particularly water sports such as diving, sailboat regattas, fishing, skiing and Jet Skis as well as gentle boat rides round the bay to watch dolphins, turtles and humpbacked whales, just some of the natural attractions that make this one of the world’s favorite destinations.
- Licenciado Gustavo Diaz Ordaz International Airport, Carr. Fed. Tepic-Vallarta Km 7.5, Área Militar de Vallarta (is located 7.5 km (4.7 mi) north of downtown Puerto Vallarta (5 de diciembre, Centro & Emiliano Zapata (Zona Romantica)), 2 km (1.2 mi) north of Marina Vallarta and 4 km (2.5 mi) south of Nueva Vallarta as the crow flies. In actuality it is 13 km to drive around and to the other side of the airport runway to reach the main passenger terminal from Nueva Vallarta). Non stop air service is available from all regions of Mexico including flights from Guadalajara. International flights are only offered from Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom year round. Direct flights from additional cities in North America and from Europe are only offered seasonally, usually between November and March.
The following airlines offer regular service to Puerto Vallarta:
- Sala A – Concourse A: AeroMar, Aeromexico/Aeromexico Connect, Interjet, Calafia, Magnicharters, TAR, VivaAerobus and Volaris,
- Sala B – Concourse B: Alaska Airlines, Air Canada, Air Transat, American Airlines, Delta, Southwest, Sunwing, United, Thomson Airways, Virgin America and Westjet. The following carriers only come seasonally: Frontier, Finnair, LOT Polish, Sun Country and airlines chartered by Apple Vacations. Even the carriers that come regularly, year round, (listed in the former) offer seasonal flights from more cities in the U.S., Canada and Mexico than they do during the other times of the year.
Upon exiting from customs, the next two rooms outside of customs are plagued by timeshare hucksters. They will offer to arrange a cab ride, arrange for a tour, offer free meals, cash etc for you in an effort to rope you into a high pressure timeshare sales presentation. Unless you are looking to buy timeshare or to burn hours of vacation time in timeshare sales presentations, do not engage in conversation with anyone in the next two rooms. Walk quickly through the next two rooms – the ones housing the hucksters – continue walking past the rope-line out to the main arrivals area. Now look for the official taxi kiosk or car rental desks out in the main airport arrivals hall. You can purchase your taxi trip here. All other offers of cab rides you will receive between customs and the kiosk will be from the timeshare hucksters. Ignore every one of them. The bad experience of those taken in can ruin one’s first hours in PVR, and that would be a shame. Or hire private transportation.
If you’ve packed lightly you can take the city buses into town. Go out the doors and turn left towards the main road next to the building. Turn left again at the corner of the building and go through a small taxi and shuttle parking lot towards the pedestrian bridge. The bus stop is under the pedestrian overpass next to the building (1/4 block from the airport door). Wait for a bus (5 minutes or so) marked “Centro” (but not marked Pitillal or Bobadilla), wave it down, pay your M$7.50 (pesos), and enjoy the ride. The bus stops all throughout the town. It takes about 20 to 30 minutes for the bus to get to its farthest southerly stop. If going towards the bus station, Nueva Vallarta, Bucerias, Sayulita or anywhere north, go up to the pedestrian bridge and walk over to the other side of the road. The bus stop for buses going north is under the pedestrian bridge at the opposite side of the road and also where to get off if coming back to the airport from town. For going to the central bus station take the northbound bus going towards “Ixtapa” or “Juntas” and get off Las Palmas which is the Cerveza Corona building at Km 9 and walk back two blocks along La Palmas or take the “Victoria Guadalupe” bus which makes the turn towards the actual bus station in Colonia Victoria Guadalupe. The location on the opposite end of the pedestrian bridge from the airport terminal is also where you can catch a (regular) yellow taxi for less than the white airport taxis picking up at the front of the arrivals doors.
You’ve just saved US$20! You don’t need exact change for the bus. Drivers will make change for bills M$100 pesos or smaller.
By private transportation
If you are visiting Puerto Vallarta, you should consider private pre-arranged transportation directly from your airport to your hotel. This transportation can be arranged by contacting a company by phone or booking online. This will save you time and money. There are several companies that can take you anywhere in Puerto Vallarta and surrounds.
The Carretera Pacifico (Fed Hwy 200) begins 162 km north in Tepic (3 hr) and winds down through the Riviera and eventually into Puerto Vallarta from the north as Carretera Tepic-Pto Vallarta and Blvd Francisco Medina Ascencio. Going south into town the highway splits into local one way streets through 5 de diciembre and Zona Centro as Av Mexico and Av Morelos and as Ignacio Vallarta through Zona Romantica south of the Rio Cuale. The main highway continues south towards Manzanillo (273 km) through Mismaloya. From the south the highway enters as Carretera Pto Vallara-Cihuatlan and into Zona Romantica as Av Insurgentes. It becomes Av Juarez and than Av Colombia going north through Zona Centro and 5 de Diciembre.
Coming from Guadalajara (322 km) go west along Fed Hwy 15D towards “Tepic” to the “Chapilla-Pto Vallarta” exit and continue west towards Hwy 68D through Chapilla to the roundabout junction with Hwy 200, southwest of Compostela. Alternatively you can also exit off the main highway by following the signs for “Tepic Libre” (Fed Hwy 15) after entering into Zapopan instead of continuing along the “Tepic Cuota” (main toll highway on Fed Hwy 15D). Exit again at Fed Hwy 70 going towards “Tala Ameca”. The road winds through Tala, Ameca and Mascota; becomes State Hwy 544 west of Mascota and enter Pto Vallarta as Las Palmas through Col. Ixtapa northeast of town.
Major cruise ships loaded with thousands of tourists from the United States as well as Europe dock in the city’s main port typically spending an entire day there. Other port accommodations are available for those wishing to travel along the coast.
Bus service in Mexico is quite reliable and comfortable. Before the recent start-up of several low cost air carriers, bus was the main mean of transport across Mexico. Several lines serve Puerto Vallarta. Buses have air conditioning (except some “economy” ones), and often show movies and have refreshments.
You can take a taxi (~M$200) or local bus (Guadalupe Victoria, Ixtapa or Juntas for M$7.50) in the city to the bus station (Central de Autobuses) to catch a bus to Tepic (3 hours), Guadalajara (4-5 hr), Mexico City (12-13 hr), Manzanillo (5 hr), Mazatlan (6 hr), Barra de Navidad and to other locations. The main bus station is in the northeastern part of town, at Bahia de Sin Nombre 363, a couple blocks behind the Corona Building at Km 9 Carretera Tepic-Puerto Vallarta (Hwy 200) along Av Las Palmas in Colonia Guadalupe Victoria. It is located 3km past the airport terminal and 9 km NE of the downtown core (el centro). The following bus lines offer services into and out of the Central Bus Terminal:
- Grupo Estrella Blanca , toll-free: 800-507-5500. They also operate the Elite, Elite Plus, Futura, Chihuahuanese, and the Pacifico brands.
- ETN (Enlances Terrestre Nacionales); Turistar, , toll-free: 0800 8000-386.
- Primera Plus, , toll-free: 800 375-75-87. The major bus line for the region which also include the Coordinados and the Flecha Armarilla lines. They also have a second station at Carr. Fed Tepic-Vallarta 1160, 63732 Las Jarretadera in Nuevo Vallarta. Next to a strip mall at Blvd Nuevo Vallarta and a sales office at Venustiano Carranza 393, Col. Emiliano Zapata (Zona Romantica)
- TAP, , toll-free: 01 800 0011-827. Also include the Noreste and the Omnibus Plus brands.
The following do not serve the main bus station:
- 3 Vallarta Plus, (depot) Av. Palma Real 140, Guadalupe Victoria (They have a separate bus station located next to the main bus station along Av Palma Real), . They also have a second station at Carr. Fed Tepic-Vallarta 1003 Sur, Valle Dorado, 63735 Nuevo Vallarta. Next to Farmacia Ahorro.
- 4 Autotransportes Talpa Mascota (ATM), (depot) Corner Lucerna & Havre, Col. Díaz Ordaz, . Goes up towards Guadalajara through the mountains via Mascota, Ameca and Talpa along State Hwy 544 & Fed Hwy 70.
The following are local city buses going north to the Riviera such as Bucerias, Sayulita, Punta Mita, La Cruz de Huanacaxtle, Mezcales, Nuevo Vallarta, etc. in Nayarit state. Buses going towards Nayarit can only stop in front of Wal-Mart, next to the airport and in front of the Cerveza Corona Building at Km 9 along Carr. Tepic-Vallarta (Hwy 200):
- AutoTransportes Medina de Puerto Vallarta (ATM) (Grey or White buses with red & blue striping and “ATM” painted on the sides), (depot) 1410 Brasil, 5 Diciembre, . Goes up to Nuevo Vallarta, Mezcales, Punta de Mita, San Juan, La Penita, Bucerias, Valle de Banderas, Cruz de Huanacaxtle and anywhere in between.
- Compostela (White and green bus with “Compostela” painted on the sides). Goes further north to Sayulita, San Francisco (San Pancho); Lo de Marcos, Rincón de Guayabitos, Compostela, etc.
Going south there are white and orange buses going to Mismaloya, the Puerto Vallarta Zoo, Boca, and the Botanical Gardens plus all the small towns along the way. They pick up in front of Oxxo at Basilio Badillo & Constitucion in Col. Emiliano Zapata (Zona Romantica)
In town there’s an additional bus stop at the NE corner of Aguacate & Venustiano Carranza in Zona Romantica (Colonia Emiliano Zapata) for first & second class buses going south to El Tuito, Manzanillo and anywhere along the way. Tickets can bought from vendors in front of Abarrotes Don Chalio on 402 Venustiano Carranza; Farmacia Guadalajara on the SE corner of Insurgentes & Lazaro Cardenas; or Superior Tours on Ignacio L. Vallarta 228 (SW of Ignacio L Vallarta & Calle FCO Madero – Tel: +52 322-222-0024). Fares for second class buses can be paid to the driver at boarding. If coming into town from the south ask to get off in Zona Romantica (along Insurgent) if going to downtown or Zona Romantica, otherwise stay on the bus to the bus station (north) to continue north to Nuevo Vallarta, Bucerias, Sayulita, Tepic, or anywhere in the Riviera.
Hotels may provide a price list for cabs (expect to pay about M$50 for short trips, and M$200 for longer trips). Hotels will also offer (expensive) transport from airport to hotel, but it is much better to take a taxi. If you’ve booked with a travel agency, they will most likely provide you with transportation to and from the airport.
Be prepared for fast speeds, as the cab drivers have schedules to adhere to. Many of the cabs do not have working seatbelts or speedometers as well. Taxi drivers tend to gather at the intersection close to the liquor outlet in the Centro District. They are friendly and you can negotiate trips outside of Puerto Vallarta at a very reasonable cost on slow days. They will wait for you while you dine or shop as well as photograph you and your mates. Tip only if the taxi driver did something above and beyond normal transportation (e.g., helped with bags, waited while running an errand).
Tip: From the airport, there are two types of taxis available to get you to where you are going. The white federal taxis are available immediately upon exiting the airport but are more expensive. Cross the pedestrian bridge over the highway for the cheaper yellow taxis that are more common in other parts of the city.
- Local trips
Bus trips cost around M$7.50 that you pay to the bus driver when you get in and every ride is good for as long as you have to stay on — the whole city if you’d like. Make sure to keep the ticket you are provided by the driver in case an inspector gets on the bus, both for your sake and the driver’s sake. It is easy to find a bus stop. You will see large amounts of people loitering on the sidewalk. If you wait a few minutes, a bus will stop as they run quite frequently. Look for your travel location on the bus windshield. Buses stop almost every five to ten blocks and at peak hours tend to get very full & can get very hot, so be ready for that. If you are a man, be ready to give up your seat to women if the bus becomes crowded. Bus drivers will make change for any amount up to M$50, but won’t break larger bills (August 2020).
The buses are very reliable and quite handy to get to places like Pitillal (the rapidly growing suburb to the northeast) and Ixtapa (including the nearby U of Guadalajara campus with its gallery and crocodile farm). They are also useful for traveling from the hotel zone and marina area to the downtown or old-town areas. Any bus marked “Centro” will pass through both. Buses marked Tunel will skip downtown and head directly to the old town/Zona Romantica via the tunnel bypass. The city government or local council have a list of bus routes on their website. The list includes route maps overlaid on a map (Google Map) but no schedule as they run quite frequently.
- Out of town trips
You can visit Bucerias for M$14. You can also go to Punta Mita for M$8. Mismaloya buses charge around M$8. There are also larger buses that can take you to Guadalajara, which is about a 5-hour trip.
You can catch buses for Mismaloya along Basilio Badillo on the corner just west of where you see them lined up.
The easiest way to catch a bus to Bucerias, Punta Mita or points in between is to catch a city bus to Wal-Mart/Sams. Walk along the main road to the northernmost bus shelters in front of Wal-Mart. The buses to Bucerias leave from here.
If you want to catch a bus south to Barra de Navidad or any of the towns south to Costa Allagre, you can catch the bus at the corner of Dieguez & Aguacate at the south end of town. Buses leave at 06:00 and 09:00. Look for the blue bust stop sign. You will have to pay the driver in pesos (fares vary on distance). Just tell the driver where or when you want to get off the bus. Most buses make frequent stops but have A/C. Regional buses are very reliable & run 7 days per week.
Be very careful if you choose to drive in Puerto Vallarta. The police seem to pull tourists over at the drop of a hat during spring break. When you pick up a rental, check that all the lights work. Also when you are pulled over for a light violation, do not be surprised if the police holds out an open palmed hand, while holding your driver’s license hostage in the other. Most police officers are underpaid and will for the most part demand a small bribe to let you off the hook.
Beautiful Banderas Bay, one of the largest and deepest in the world, may be admired from many of the surrounding hills exuberant in lush vegetation. Located right at the mouth of the Bay, straddling both sides of the River Cuale lays a charming and picturesque little town with true Mexican spirit, Puerto Vallarta.
For those who just want to relax, Puerto Vallarta’s many golden sand beaches offer one of the best ways to experience the beauty and magic of the Bay of Banderas.
- Los Muertos Beach. The downtown has a beach called “Los Muertos” that stretches to the Zona Romantica. There you will find the gay area with are many restaurants, stores and boutiques. At the end of “Los Muertos” you will find some beachfront restaurants with “palapas” that you can rent per day or have drink in. It is a perfect place to relax and meet people who party all day. Also, there you will find the trendiest place of the moment, where to go, what to see, the best shows. The best seasons is between December and May.
To the north, the hills give way a little. Here you will find mile-long stretches of golden sand beaches, rich plantations of papaya and mango and, tucked back along tumbling rivers and streams, small villages where life seems to move at a different pace. There are many different ways to explore the Bay.
To the south, the hills cascade towards the sea creating a rich palette that mixes the vivid green foliage with the deep blues of the water. At their feet nestle secluded coves and small fishing villages, many of which are still accessible only by sea.
To the east, the jungle clad Sierra Madre Mountains, which quickly rise to over 8,000 ft (2,400 m), encircle and protect the town from the winds and regulate the semi-tropical and humid climate.
And, to the west, the Bay of Banderas is home to a wide variety of aquatic life. Humpback whales come here to mate every year from December to March, and sea turtles nest on the beaches from May to October. Schools of dolphins and giant manta rays also inhabit these waters. The Bay and the Marietas Islands offer an amazing kaleidoscope of tropical fish, attracting snorkelers, scuba divers and sport fishermen alike.
Puerto Vallarta has many activities and excursions to keep you entertained. The adventurous can hike or mountain bike in the hills, explore the jungle and hidden trails on horseback, take a jeep safari, snorkel, scuba dive, charter a yacht or sailboat, or take a cruise on one of the many party boats, make a personal photoshoot. Oftentimes they are easily booked online.
Events around the year
Mardi Gras/Carnaval: The parade takes places in the Zona Romantica. You will also see the gay charm around downtown.
November: The first weekend of November Vallarta holds the Half Marathon and 5-km race. Everyone is welcome to enjoy it.
December: The Catholic religion has a big celebration for Our Lady of Guadalupe on December 12th. Puerto Vallarta start on December 1st, The local people, hotel, condominium owners, organization go on pilgrimage around 18:00 until 21:00 everyday at downtown. You´ll see traditional dancer, mariachis, bands offering tribute to the Virgin.
- Vallarta Botanical Gardens (Hacienda de Oro Restaurant), Carretera a Barra de Navidad Km.24 S/N just beyond Las Juntas y Los Veranos, . Tu-Su 09:00-18:00. Vallarta Botanical Gardens a pleasure garden high in the glorious Sierra Madre Mountains. These gardens are easily accessible, just 12 miles south of Puerto Vallarta (on Hwy 200). Located on 8 ha (20 acres) of land, these botanical collections features thousands of different species of plants. The gardens are in a unique tropical dry forest ecosystem at 400 m (1,300) feet above sea level. Against the breathtaking backdrop of soaring mountain peaks, there is much to experience: Palm Gardens, Rose Garden, Tree Fern Grotto, Orchid House, Jungle Trails, Tropical Bird Watching, Agave Gardens, displays of Mexican Wildflowers and the Carnivorous Plant Collection. Bringing your swimsuit and enjoy a refreshing dip in the crystal clear Rio Los Horcones The Puerto Vallarta Botanical Gardens is registered with Botanic Gardens Conservation International in Surrey, England and members of the Asociacion Mexicana de Orquideologia. The gardens are listed in the Lonely Planet 2009 Guide to Mexico as a “Vallarta Must See”.
- Vallarta Botanical Gardens is a nonprofit institution. The Puerto Vallarta Botanical Gardens was founded in 2004 and was opened to the public in 2005.
- Hacienda de Oro Visitor’s Center with spectacular mountain views, is also where you will find Hacienda de Oro Restaurant, with a courteous staff, delicious brick oven pizzas, salads and other Mexican specialties. Hacienda de Oro Restaurant was designed by Santa Rosa, California, native and world-renowned fine artist, Anthony Sbragia. Also, in this area are the famous “classy” restrooms. Located in the heart of an old growth native forest, with thousands of native and ornamental plants, a short ride from town – by car, bus, taxi.
Adventure and sports
- Puerto Vallarta’s whale watching season runs from December to March of every year. Humpback whales are the top liners of this fantastic nature show, but you can also see dolphins, porpoises and other animals. Puerto Vallarta Whale Watching Tours take you to see humpback whale mothers ant their calves in Banderas Bay.
- La Marina Vallarta Golf Course-Have to have good accuracy for this one due to narrow fairways that are guarded by water
- Los Flamingos Golf Course-Known as one of the easiest to play
- The Mayan Palace Nuevo Vallarta Golf Club, 18-hole par 71 course designed by Jim Lipe. Address: Paseo de las Moras S/N, Fraccionamiento Náutico Turístico, Nuevo Vallarta, Nayarit . Fun course with many obstacles is on the spectacular beaches of Vallarta between the Sierra Madre mountains and the Bahia de Banderas bay. The Vallarta course offers interesting competitive advantages and challenges to golf lovers for the vast fairways appear to be the easy part but the lakes complicate the game for the most expert golfers.
- El Tigre Golf Club-Long course with many traps and water
- Vista Vallarta-Hosted the 2002 EMC World Cup Championship
- Puerto Vallarta is one of Mexico’s top dive destinations. There are many rental shops along the beaches.
- The beaches in Puerto Vallarta are not ideal for surfing, but a daytrip out of town up along the coast of Banderas Bay will take you to some great surf spots! Passing the Ameca river along the way to these spots, you find yourself in the next door northern state of Nayarit. Such trips can be coordinated with a local surfing instructor or done solo.
- There are many surfing spots in the state of Nayarit: ranging from beginner waves, to perfect reef breaks for experienced surfers. The names of some of the more popular surf spots are: Veneros, Burros, la Lancha, Punta de Mita, San Pancho and Sayulita. The drive from downtown Vallarta to points inside the Bay takes around 45 minutes, and a bit over an hour to get to renowned Sayulita on the Pacific coast. Sayulita is a small village which is frequented by many visitors because it is easily accessible and a vast array of businesses cater to beginner surfers. You can find surfboard rentals, surf lessons and great beaches. Sayulita is known for producing some of the best surfers in Mexico like Tigre Cadena, Kalle Carranza, Diego Cadena and Adan Hernandez amongst others.
- The main beach at Sayulita has consistent waves and the place is crowded during the winter months particularly. There are waves small enough for beginners and large enough for the locals and experts. Most of the adventure companies don’t offer surfing lessons and you might need to find an independent instructor.
- The most popular snorkeling areas are Los Arcos underwater caves and Marietas Islands caverns. Vallarta Adventures snorkeling trips combine an extraordinary day of sun, fun, and adventure with just the right mixture of entertainment, learning and challenge, while snorkeling, sea kayaking, and exploring the tropical ecosystems on the secluded islands and beach hideaways that surround beautiful Banderas Bay.
Explore the Sierra Madre
- The Mexican Outback in the states of Jalisco and Nayarit offers an opportunity of discovery and adventure: A culturally and ecologically trained guide can take you into authentic Mexican villages and through the sub-tropical forest with its extraordinary ecology and wildlife. Vallarta Adventures´ Sierra Madre Expedition takes you in specially designed Mercedes Benz all-terrain vehicles on an off-road voyage of discovery, past forgotten villages into the heart of the Sierra Madre.
Canopy tour and zip lines
- Puerto Vallarta is well known for its canopy and zip line tours. Experience the exhilarating rush as you fly over the tree tops, securely fastened, from platform to platform.
- Banderas Bay is the second largest bay in North America, behind Hudson Bay. The deep, calm waters offer a very rich biodiversity, stunning beauty, romantic sunsets and relaxed sailing. Vallarta Adventures offers day sailing, sunset sailing, sailing with whales and private charters.
- Kitesurfing is becoming more and more popular in Banderas Bay. Especially in Bucerias, a fishing village north of Nuevo Vallarta, you can see up to 30 people kitesurfing on a Sunday when the wind is good. The calm waters of Banderas Bay, the extended shoreline and the fact that it´s not too crowded with kitesurfers (yet) make it an excellent place to take lessons, for example from Jamison Smith, an IKO Level 2 Senior Certified International Kiteboarding Instructor. The season is from February until May.
- You are able to parasail at pretty much every beach. The sky high trip usually last around 15 min.
- Jet skis can be rented at most beaches by the hour.
- Banderas Bay is home to annual Puerto Vallarta International Fishing Tournament held since 1956. Fish types include sailfish, dorado, marlin, bonita and yellowfin tuna, roostertail, jack cravel, pargo, red snapper and more denizens of the deep, black, blue and striped marlin.
- PV Charters – Offers fishing charter services. Phone +322 888-576-0329
- There are many ranches in town that offer horseback Riding into small villages and through the forests. They can last from a few hours to a few days.
Turtle-watching & repatriation
- Some tour companies offer educational programs combined with hands-on activities to help save Mexico’s turtles. After the female turtles lay their eggs in nests they create in the sand, volunteers dig up the eggs and re-bury them somewhere safe from predators. After about 45 to 60 days, the eggs hatch. Without help, only about 1 in every 1,000 baby turtles will survive to adulthood because most are caught by predators before they make it back to the safety of the ocean. However, turtle repatriation volunteers keep the babies safe until it is time to set them free to head for the ocean (at night when predators are less active). You can be part of these programs.
- You will be hard-pressed to find information about simple hiking excursions, because no one makes much money from hikers while they are hiking. So you must research this ahead of time if you wish to hike. However, one short and interesting hike may be accessed as follows. Take a water taxi to Yelapa. On the main beach in Yelapa, walk to the right and cross the creek. Hike upwards a few meters to the cobblestone trail. Turn right, and then follow the trail over a ridge and up the adjacent valley. After hiking about 1½ km through a tropical deciduous forest, your persistence will be rewarded. The waterfall is about 10 m high, with a pool for bathers at the base. The falls are more impressive during the rainy season (northern summer).
- Davannayoga, Matamoros 542, Col. Centro (Corner of Matamoros & Corona), . Great sunset yoga classes on a 360 rooftop in old town in front of the ocean. Well known for its traditional style yoga. Only certified teachers offering Vinyasa Flow, Morning Yoga, Sunset Yoga, Children’s Yoga.
- Yoga Vallarta, Basilio Badillo 325, Col Emilio Zapata (Between Insurgentes & Constitucion up on the third floor.), . Hours vary by instructor. Located in Zona Romantica (Basilio Badillo #325 3rd floor). This studio has high-mounted windows that bathe the studio in wonderful, natural light.
- Sea Life Park by Dolphin Discovery. Discover Sea Life Park. Located off the first exit of Nuevo Vallarta; look for the water slides that can be seeing from the road. Sa Su Tu-Th 10:00-18:00.
It usually occurs in the middle of November and includes:
- Many cocktail parties
- Wine and tequila tastings
- Cooking classes
- Gala dinners
- Art expos
Some of the local art galleries are:
- Galería Arte Latinoamericano – Two-floor gallery. Participates in art walk
- Galería Corsica – Contemporary Mexican fine art
- Gallería Dante – Voted #1 Gallery in Vallarta Voice Reader’s Choice 2003
- Galería Feedma – A recent addition to the Vallarta art scene, with renowned Mexican and international artists and photographers (moves to Mexico city firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Galería Omar Alonso – Dedicated to antique and contemporary photography, engraving and sculpture
- Gallería Pacificio – One of Vallarta’s leading galleries since 1987; Sponsors the Public Sculpture Walking Tour that starts at 21:30 every Tuesday on the Malecon, Nov-April.
Up to four companies perform English-language theatre at the Theater Agustin Flores Contreras.
- Electro Beach Puerto Vallarta – a yearly Electronic Dance Music (EDM) festival featuring talent like Tiesto, Avicii, Calvin Harris, Steve Aoki, and Hardwell.
- Malecon – You’ll find live Cuban, jazz, rock, Latin American ethnic, Mexican ranchero and Mariachi
- South Side – Los Muertos Beach offers jazz at Daiquiri Dick’s happy hour
You can also find blues, pop-rock and jazz.
- Marina Vallarta & Nuevo Vallarta-You can have a Mexican dinner and listen to mariachi, marimba, romantic trios and folk harp.
- North Shore – Offers a variety of live music.
- La Playa liquors and wines. At least two outlets – one in the old town and one in the centro. This is the place to go for reasonably priced tequila. Most of the flashy tequila shops are either factory stores or time-share gimmicks. Neither are good options for buying tequila at a decent price/quality ratio.
- Manta Maya a shop selling contemporary variations on traditional Mexican cotton clothing. The clothing is made in their shop in Zapopan, on the outskirts of Guadalajara. Basilio Badillo at Ignacio Vallarta.
- Galeria Indigena a shop specializing in Huichol art as well as art from other indigenous peoples. You’ll see bead art everywhere, but this is one of a few shops that sell somethint at least a little more authentic than colorful beaded lizards and such. Juarez 628.
- Arte Mágico Huichol another Huichol art shop. In addition to the usual bead art and yarn art they also sell piece of more traditional Huichol handicrafts. Coronoa 179.
- La Casa del Habano Vallarta’s best selection of real Cuban cigars. They also have a cigar bar. Aldama 170, Zona Centro. email@example.com
- Curvas Peligrosas (Swimwear and Beachwear), Juarez #178 (Downtown- close to Flea Market), . 10:00-18:00. Offers high quality swimwear and beachwear for women in sizes 6 to 18 and Plus Sizes 20-40. Great for when you cannot find a swimsuit at home or forget to pack one. Huge selection, reasonable prices, beautiful suits. Closed Sunday. Summer hours Monday to Friday 11:00-17:00.
- Oxxo (All over the city, every few blocks). Most open 24 hours. Best place to buy beer or snacks, save Wal-Mart (hassle, bus ride). They are all over the city & will save you tons of money. Most have cash machines. A great place to make small change for the bus.
- Wal-Mart. Cheapest place to buy most groceries. Huge produce department. Good variety of Mexican & some US products. Good place to buy smokes or liquor before flying home. Can be inconvenient to bring back groceries via local bus.
- Woolworths (corner of 31 de Octubre & Juarez). Great & inexpensive place to purchase clothes & household items. Store has A/C. Prices average 10-40% less on similar items from the US. They also take Visa/MC. Bus stop directly outside the front door.
The rich cultural diversity of Puerto Vallarta is reflected in the cuisine that its many restaurants have to offer. From the most casual taco stands, to tropical beachfront palapas, to upscale rooftop restaurants with stunning views, there are literally hundreds of restaurants serving exactly what you are hungry for.
However, care should be taken to avoid travellers’ diarrhea. There are many beachside restaurants to tempt you with tropical drinks, but bottled beer is a much safer option. When taxi drivers, water taxis or other guides seamlessly hand you off to their “amigos” at a beachside restaurant, do not be bashful about seeking other options, or just order a bottled beer to be opened in front of you. Do not trust that your guide has made a good decision, he will be gone with your tip (or that of the restaurant owner for bringing you) long before you show any symptoms. Any restaurants listed in reputable guidebooks and/or are popular with locals are a fairly safe bet:
- Chez Elena, Calle Matamoros 520, Centro (Along Calle Matamoros between Galeana and Corona), . Famous hotel and restaurant located in Puerto Vallarta. It has been cited by Playboy Magazine and well known actors such as Peter O’Toole and Elizabeth Taylor.
- CoexistBistro (formerly Coexist Cafe), Agustín Rodríguez 175, Centro (In Hotel Rio at corner of Agustín Rodríguez and Calle Morelos (Hwy 200 main road)), . Tu-Th 08:00-18:00; F-Su 08:00-02:00. Locals and tourists create a unique atmosphere, where music is definitely an ingredient you will enjoy. An eclectic menu, reflecting Mexican and international dishes. Live music daily!
- Las Palomas Doradas, . Daily 08:00-23:00. Marina Vallarta’s first restaurant (open since 1988). Perfect for watching sunsets in the Marina over a glass of wine or trying out traditional Mexican breakfasts.
- Planeta Vegetariano, Iturbide 270, Centro (Just around the corner from the cathedral along Iturbide between Hidalgo & Matamoros), . Daily 08:30-11:30 & 12:00-22:00. Planeta Vegetariano serves a buffet-style vegan meal with a varied and changing menu. All-you-can-eat fresh juices, vegetables, salads, fruit, and many traditional dishes served “sin carne” are to be found. Reasonable prices. They serve a breakfast and lunch buffet, each with different dishes.
- El Palomar de los Gonzalez, Aguacate 425, Col Alta Vista, . Daily 18:00-23:00.
- Las Palomas Beyali, Calle Marina Palmira 245, Cecom 128, . This restaurant sits in the beautiful marina of Puerto Vallarta. Surrounded by massive yachts and a peaceful ambience. The food here is very authentic and quite tasteful.
- Pipi’s, Guadalupe Sánchez 804, Centro, . Daily 11:00-23:00. Fajitas and enchiladas to die for and also delicious margaritas of all flavors. Be prepared for a long wait, however it is worth it you will not regret waiting for this delectable treat. The only downside is that this restaurant is very touristy.
- Señor Frog’s, Paseo Diaz Ordaz 786, Centro (Paseo Diaz Ordaz and Pipila across the street from the waterfront.), . Daily 10:00-02:00. This restaurant is mostly known for its club-like environment. At night it is one of the most popular and exciting clubs. During the day though it offers good food that might remind you of Hooters. Owned by the same folks as Carlos O’Brian and similar atmosphere.
- The Blue Shrimp, Olas Altas 336, Emiliano Zapata (Zona Romantica) (Olas Altas at Venustiano Carranza, Restaurant is at other side of the block from the street at the beach front, behind Rosie’s & Richie’s Taste of Italy Restaurant.), . Daily 09:00-23:00. As the name implies you must like shrimp to eat at this restaurant. That said it offers some spectacular entrées that will take your hunger away that is for sure. Set partially outside the décor is fun but also very intimate.
- Rincon de Buenos Aires, Paseo de La Marina Sur 245, Local 126 y 127, Marina Vallarta, . Daily 16:00-23:00. This is a steak house that is simply put amazing. Their menu features a 900 g (2 lb) tenderloin that is marvelously prepared. They also offer a decent wine list. The setting is beautiful and the food even better.
- Ah Caramba, Calle Ecuador 1071, Col. 5 de Diciembre (Three blocks up along Calle Venezuela from the main road (Colombia) and a couple houses up along Ecuador from Calle Venezuela. Ask taxi or Uber driver.), . This restaurant is located atop a roof in the more residential part of Puerto Vallarta. They serve seafood that is freshly caught that day. Also they feature live music and a view that is unmatched. A very intimate setting. One of Puerto Vallarta’s very best kept secrets. The restaurant offers an exciting, ascending taxi-ride to the restaurant entrance, (high in the hills of Puerto Vallarta). The entrance to the restaurant is non-descript and belies what is to follow after walking a few shot stairwells. Upon entering the panoramic veranda, the view from table-side is phenomenal – panoramic east-to-west). The prices are very reasonable when taking into consideration the presentation of entree and service/accommodation.
- Black Forest Restaurant, C. Marlin 16, 63732 Cruz de Huanacaxtle, Nay (La Cruz de Huanacaxtle), . Su-W 18:00-22:00. Situated in La Cruz de Huanacaxtle 30 minutes north of Puerto Vallarta – Restaurant Black Forest is the creation of Chef Winfried Küffner and his family. It’s thoroughly German, from the half-timbered exterior to the gracious service and authentic Black Forest cuisine which is truly a blending of many European flavors. Each of Chef Winfried’s dishes contains traces of his professional background and his classical European training. His emphasis is always on freshness, quality and consistency in preparation and presentation which has earned them a loyal and growing clientele over the years.
- Cafe des Artistes, Calle Guadalupe Sánchez 740, Centro (Along Calle Guadalupe Sánchez between Leona Vicario y Josefa Ortíz de Dominguez, 3 blocks up from the Malecon), . Daily 18:00-23:00. A beautiful restaurant in the heart of downtown. The restaurant is divided into 3 areas: Inside, outside with a view of the ocean, and the garden. The garden is the most beautiful of the three, with an artificial creek running through it. The food here is very tasty.
- La Piazzetta, Calle Rodolfo Gómez 143, Col. E. Zapata (NW corner of c. Rodolfo Gómez & Olas Altas, one block in from the beach), . Daily 16:00-00:00. Locals come for the delicious Naples-style pizza (the crust not too thick, not too thin, and cooked in a brick oven), but there’s also great pasta and a good variety of entrées, like the cream-based salmon with caviar and lemon. For appetizers try the top-heavy (con molto tomate) bruschetta or steamed mussels with lemon, parsley, and butter. Most folks choose to sit on the open patio, but La Piazzeta also has an intimate dining room. Personal attention of the owner, Mimmo.
- Mr. Taco (2 blocks east of Malecon, near Hard Rock Cafe). Cheap local street food cooked fresh. Excellent tortas. Although named to draw tourists, it’s authentically cooked & priced. Host does speak English.
- La Isla de Marins Seafood Restaurant (Seafood Restaurant Puerto Vallarta Mexico), Calle Matamoros 869, Cerro, Puerto Vallarta, JAL (Along Matamoros between Allende & Treinta y Uno. Take Marina Centro Bus to Downtown Puerta Vallarta. Tell Bus Driver to let you off at the store Lans. Walk to Allende. Take Allende 3 blocks up to Matamoros (Left). Halfway down block.), . Central Norte Puerto Vallarta. This is a great find. A tostada for US$1.80 and lobster for US$11.50. US$1.80-11.50.
- El brujo Vallarta, Venustiano Carranza 510, Emiliano Zapata, . around US$10 per dish.
- Le Bus Burgers, Revolution. They claim to make the best burgers in the world and make them out of beef, chicken, fish and veggies, including garlic burgers. The burgers are large, and they source fresh local and regional products. They use 100% grass-fed beef, the chicken is 100% free-range chicken breast, and the fish is Mahi Mahi caught by local fishermen that morning. M$80.
- 1 Mauricio’s, Carretera a las Palmas nº 176, Las Juntas, Hacienda San Javier, 48291, . Somewhat unpromisingly located in a field next to an industrial area near the airport, this humble but clean and cheerful joint is a classic local spot for very high quality, inexpensive seafood. All taxi drivers in PV know where it is. It gets some tourist trade, but tourists are normally heavily outnumbered by local families. For dinner, go early; they close at 7 pm.
- Cafe de Olla, Basilio Badillo 168, Emilio Zapata (Zona Romantica) (Middle of the block along Basilio Badillo between Olas Altas & Pino Surez. About a block half in from the beachfront.), . W-M 10:00-24:00. They have good, cheap food. Try the pork ribs or chicken.
- Takos Panchos, Basilio Badillo 162, Emilio Zapata (Zona Romantica) (Middle of the block along Basilio Badillo between Olas Altas & Pino Surez. About a block half in from the beachfront.), . Daily 18:00-02:00. Right next door to Cafe de Olla has awesome Al Pastor tacos for about US$1 each! Opens around 18:00 and is open late. Get there early to avoid a wait.
- Super Pollo, Av Los Tules 152, Díaz Ordaz (Plaza Caracol (Mall) along La Carretera Vallarta-Tepic (Hwy 200)). Whole chickens with Salsa, tortillas and many other side dishes. On Tuesday and Thursdays they have 2-for-1. 2 whole chickens with sides for US$10. The one on Calle Insurgentes & Francisco I Madero is closed.
- Coffee Cup, Rodolfo Gómez 146, Emilio Zapata (Zona Romantica) (SW corner of c. Rodolfo Gómez & Olas Altas, one block in from the beach and across from La Piazzetta Restaurant.), . An American-style coffee house that serves espresso, latte and cappuccino with local baked goods. It is still rare to find this type of coffee in Puerto Vallarta. Local art is displayed on the walls.
- Red Cabbage Cafe, Calle Rivera del Río No. 204A, El Remance, . M-Sa 17:00-23:00. A funky restaurant up the hill from the main streets in the Zona Romantica. Its theme is Frida Kahlo and features pre-Hispanic recipes. Dinners US$15-25.
- The Fajita republic, Pino Suárez 321, Col. Emiliano Zapata, . Tu-Su 17:00-23:00. They serve fajitas with over 10 varietiesin old town Puerto Vallarta. This restaurant offers a quiet setting and great food.
- Mariscos Tino’s, Calle Avenida 333, El Pitillal, . Tu-Su 12:00-21:00. Up on a hill overlooking Vallarta, most tourists don’t know about this place, frequented by local businessmen, and others looking to spend a buck for some fantastic seafood dishes. Some recommendations: tacos de marlin are excellent, and the “mariscada” or “parrillada” which is a huge sampler platter filled with house specialties. They also have another location operating as “La Laguana Tino’s” at Blvd. Nayarit #393, Nuevo Vallarta in Bahia de Banderas (tel: 322 297-0221 or 297-6663)
- El Arrayan, Allende 344, Centro, . A very good menu of specialties from many regions. The food is not “typical” to tourist-oriented Mexican restaurants, but rich banquet and festival foods with upscale service. You will have an opportunity to try many familiar dishes like lamb and pork, as well as cactus salad and seasoned roast crickets, for the adventurous.
Centro (Downtown): Located along the beachfront walk
- La Cave-Piano Bar
- La Dolce Vita-Live Music
- Le Carrousel-Disco/Dancing
- BeboTero-Live Rock at night
Emiliano Zapata (Old Town/Zona Romantica):
- Steve’s Sports Bar, Basilio Badillo 286, Emiliano Zapata (Basilio Badillo & Calle Constitucion), . Daily 11:00-01:00.
- Roxy Rock House (Club Roxy), Ignacio Vallarta 217, Emiliano Zapata (Along Ignacio Vallarta between Francisco Madero and), . Daily 22:00-05:00. Live R&B Hit among people over 30 with live blues and rock
- The El Pianito piano bar that used to be across the street from Steve’s at Basilio Badillo #284 has closed.
- La Bodeguita del Medio, Malecón 858, Centro (Calle Allende and the Malecon), . Daily 11:00 – 04:00. Look for the distinctive round yellow sign. Good solid Cuban food, great drinks, and a cigar shop up front, but the real attraction is the excellent salsa bands, often imported from Cuba. The dance floor is a delightful mix of young people showing off their moves and older couples who can still cut a rug.
- EL Zoo Bar, Paseo Díaz Ordaz 630, Centro (Entrance facing Morelos (main road) between Abasolo & Aldama), . Daily 11:00-03:00. This dance club is quite small but very fun. The dance floor doesn’t offer much room to bust a move but offers a great time to be had. Located on the Malecon it is in the center of everything.
- Hilo, Just down the street from El Zoo. Again this club is small. The inside is very cool and the bar is very large. It can get a little crazy because of the small area but is fun for younger kids.
- Señor Frogs, Paseo Díaz Ordaz 786, Centro (Paseo Diaz Ordaz and Pipila), . Daily 11:00-02:00. The Tues night foam party is the best and this place is the larger than most clubs. It has two bars and the service is awesome.
- Mandala Nightclub, Mariano Abasolo 601, Centro (Paseo Díaz Ordaz and Abasolo), . Daily 18:00-06:00. Restaurant and Disco-Bar. Located in front of the malecon, beside Zoo bar. This is one of the newest and hottest clubs in town.
- Xtine Garden (Christine’s), Las Garzas, Zona Hotelera (Next to Hotel Kristal), . Sa 22:30-05:00. This club is huge. It is only open a few nights a week though. It is located close to most hotels.
Where to stay in Puerto Vallarta
Accommodations around the Bay of Banderas range from well-known international hotel chains and upscale villas and condominiums in the hotel zone, Marina Vallarta, Nuevo Vallarta, and Punta Mita to moderately priced hotels, motels, bed and breakfasts, apartments villas, and condominiums in Old Town Vallarta. The south end of Old Town has a number of gay-friendly hotels.
- Cartagena de Indias Hotel, Madero 428, . In the old town the street F. Madero hosts a bunch of similar, simple but clean hotels at a very affordable price. It is a 5-10 minute walk away from the Malecon. M$80-140 per person in a private room.
- Hotel Belmar, Insurgentes 161, , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Family-owned hotel with a personalized service. 30 rooms with color TV. Air conditioning is optional.
- Hotel Bernal, Madero 423, . One of the cheap hotels on the street F. Madero.
- Hotel Encino, Juarez 122, , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. Hotel located in the heart of Puerto Vallarta, one block away from the beach, in front of the market and two blocks from the Malecon.
- Hotel Lina, Madero 367, . One of the cheap hotels on the street F. Madero.
- Hotel Mocali, Nicaragua 286 Col. 5 de Diciembre, . Hotel located in downtown Puerto Vallarta, 2 blocks from the beach and 7 from the pier or “Malecon”. Located near restaurants, drug stores, and night clubs.
- Hotel Villa del Mar, Francisco. I. Madero 440; Col. E. Zapata; Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico, , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. The hotel offers 49 beautiful and affordable rooms and 10 suites with kitchenette. Many of the rooms have private balcony.
- Oasis Hostel.
- Viva La Vida Hostel (email@example.com), Juarez #386, Puerto Vallarta Centro, . 1 minute from the beach, opened in April 2009, they have free Internet – WiFi and a public computer and a massive TV with cable. right in the heart of the city and they have a beautiful terrace where you can have a beer and watch the sun set. The staff its very friendly and the food its good & clean they always have an option for vegetarians. The security lockers here are very small. M$150, breakfast included.
- Casa de Piedra (Bed and Breakfast), Boca de Tomatlán, , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. A spectacular piece of authentic Mexican architecture, the property is surrounded by lush tropical gardens and fronting the Rio Los Horcones; it offers beautiful views of the river, the Sierra Madre Mountains, and Boca Bay. Has two buildings that house four spacious apartments, courtyard, pool, entertainment room, and includes breakfast.
- Casa Panoramica (Bed and Breakfast), Carr. Barra de Navidad 599, , ✉ email@example.com. Traditional Mexican style villa runs as a Bed and Breakfast, with six bedroom suites, each with its own private bathroom. Panoramic views of the city and the bay.
- Embarcadero Pacífico – All Inclusive Resort, , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 16:00, check-out: 12:00. Wonderfully located in the exclusive zone of Marina Vallarta, this family-friendly all inclusive resort allows its guests to enjoy the main channel of Mexico’s biggest marina, and the spectacular Banderas Bay.
- Golden Crown Paradise- Adults All Inclusive Spa, , ✉ email@example.com. This resort caters to adult travelers with spacious accommodations, a la carte dining, friendly service, activities, sports and entertainment, and romantic settings for candlelit dinners. Offers an activities pool, water park with pirate ship, a historic castle and 9 water slides, playground area, outdoor family game area, and fine dining & bars.
- fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Located five minutes from the downtown shops and restaurants, and 15 minutes from the airport, Buenaventura is a beachfront resort. , Av. Mexico 1301, Col. 5 de Diciembre, ,
- Hacienda Hotel and SPA, Blvd. Francisco Medina Ascencio 2699, , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. A Mexican hacienda with lush tropical gardens, palm trees and cascades of water and secluded green areas.
- Krystal International Vacation Club (KIVC) Vallarta, Vallarta Avenida de Las Garzas S/N Zona Hotelera. Check-in: 16:00, check-out: 12:00. Centrally located to shopping and nightclubs with a private beach, multiple restaurants, kid’s club, and outdoor pools. Krystal KIVC Vallarta is a family-oriented resort.
- Hotel El Pescador, Paraguay 1117, , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Located by the beach in downtown few blocks away from the popular Malecon.
- Hotel Emperador. Hotel Emperador is in the heart of the most traditional area of the Old Puerto Vallarta, 3 minutes away from the downtown and 20 minutes from the International Airport. On Puerto Vallarta’s famous beach “Playa Los Muertos”.
- Hotel Rio, ✉ email@example.com. Located within walking distance of the main downtown attractions, Hotel Rio is a good deal with clean, comfortable rooms with central air conditioning, telephone, color TV with cable, complete bathroom and balcony. Swimming pool and restaurant. Money exchange and 24 hours internet service.
- Hotel Rosita, Paseo Díaz Ordaz 901, , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. One of the first hotels in town on the beach and where the famous Malecon begins.
- Melia Puerto Vallarta, Paseo de la Marina Sur 7 Marina Vallarta, , ✉ email@example.com. Beachfront, all-inclusive resort for families on Mexico’s Pacific coast.
- Mexican Resort at Los Tules, Blvd. Fco. Medina Ascencio S/N, interior Los Tules, , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Located within Los Tules right in the hotel zone in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. An oceanfront condominium-style resort located 3.2 km (2 miles) from the airport and 1.6 km (1 mile) from downtown Vallarta. You can also book condominiums directly from owners.
- Villa del Palmar Puerto Vallarta Beach Resort & Spa, , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. Blvd. Francisco Medina Ascencio Km 2.5, Zona Hotelera Norte. The resort has a Spanish colonial courtyard that opens to expansive grounds with flowering gardens, lawns and towering palm trees. Ten hacienda style buildings with terra-cotta-tile roofs range from four to eight stories. At the centerpiece is a freeform activities pool containing a rock garden waterfall with waterslide. A quiet relaxing pool and oceanfront pool complete the main gardens of the resort.
- Hotel Lagunita, Yelapa minicipio Cabo Corrientes, , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Charming thatched bungalows is on the beach in Yelapa, a 30 minute boat ride from Puerto Vallarta. It offers an outdoor pool, beach bar and a range of personalized massages.
- Casamagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort and Spa, Paseo La Marina 435, Marina Vallarta, , fax: . Nestled between the Sierra Madre Mountains and Banderas Bay, CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa is one of the 100 World’s Best Hotels according to Conde Nast Traveler. The Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort has completed its $10.7 million renovation. The enhancements include newly decorated rooms with luxurious bedding, contemporary bathrooms, new furniture with Mexican-inspired colors and patterns, a complete redesign of the resort’s La Estancia restaurant, and updates to the banquet facilities and business meeting rooms.
- Casa Velas Hotel Boutique, #311 Fracc. Marina Vallarta, C.P. 48354 Puerto Vallarta, Casa Velas Hotel Boutique, Hotel Telephone: 52-322-226-6688 For Reservations Only : 1-866-529-8813, Experience Puerto Vallarta, Mexico Resort – Casa Velas Hotel Boutique is an all-inclusive, luxury vacation resort in Puerto Vallarta, with stunning tropical scenery, a world-class spa, gourmet dining and an ocean-front beach club.
- Crown Paradise Club All-Inclusive Resort and SPA, Av. de las Garzas S/N, , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. A full all-inclusive program this resort offers: activities pool, water park with pirate ship, a historic castle and 9 water slides, playground area, outdoor family game area, options for fine dining & bars, programmed activities.
- Dreams Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa. A luxury resort on a private beach cove. Accommodations include spacious ocean-view rooms and suites overlooking the ocean and large private beach. Several rooms and penthouses have twin floors and private swimming pools. There are three pools, four gourmet restaurants and friendly lounges.
- Fiesta Americana Puerto Vallarta, Av. Francisco Medina Ascencio km. 2.5 48333, . The refurbished Fiesta Americana Puerto Vallarta resort has 291 rooms. The hotel has three bars and restaurants. Located on site are a fitness and business center. This resort offers a pool, massage services, water sports, beach volleyball, waterpolo and bingo.
- Golden Crown Paradise Adults All-Inclusive and SPA, Av. de las Garzas 3, , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. This medium-sized adult-only resort offer spacious accommodations, a la carte dining, friendly service, activities, sports and entertainment, and romantic settings for candlelit dinners.
- Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit (Puerto Vallarta), Av. Cocoteros 98 Sur, C.P. 63735, .
- Riu Palace Pacifico. On Flamingo Beach, minutes drive from Riu Vallarta and Riu Jalisco, 14.5 km (9 miles) away from downtown Puerto Vallarta.
- Velas Vallarta, Av. Costera S/N, LH2, Fracc. Marina Vallarta Apartado Postal 139B, , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. An all-inclusive resort with studios, one, two and three bedrooms, all with kitchens or kitchenettes. Hotel offers on-site mini-supermarket, boutique, travel agents, car and bicycle rental, tennis courts, and “Kid’s Club”. Marina Vallarta golf course is within walking distance (2 min).
- Villa La Estancia Nuevo Vallarta, Paseo Cocoteros 750 Sur, Flamingos Nuevo Vallarta, Nayarit, , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Fax: Reservations – 01800 725-6277 / 01800–823-4488. Spacious garden surround the pool with its dancing fountains and Jacuzzis. The earthy colored buildings form a U-shape on top of a hill looking out to the Bay of Banderas.
- Villa del Palmar Flamingos Beach Resort & Spa, Paseo Cocoteros 750 Sur, Flamingos Nuevo Vallarta, Nayarit, , fax: . Reservations:+1 877-845-5247 (US & Canada) E-Mail: email@example.com. Featuring Vanguard architecture with a fine Mexican touch, distinctive eight-story Spanish Colonial-style buildings are topped with red-tile roofs and blue-tile domes. Bordering a central garden courtyard with freeform pool, the tan buildings form a U-shape looking out to the Bay of Banderas.
Emergency numbers in Puerto Vallarta
- Emergency, Police and Fire: 060
- Fire Dept: 223-9476, 223-9478
- Police Dept: 290-0507, 290-0512
- Red Cross & Ambulance: 222-1533
- Motor Vehicle Dept: 224-8484
- Consumer Protection (Profeco): 225-0000
- Immigration Office: 221-1380
- American Consulate: 222-0069, 223-0074 – After hours: 01-333-268-2145
- Canadian Consulate: 293-0098, 223-0074 – After hours: 01-800-706-2900
- Ameri-Med: 226-2080
- CMG: 223-1919
- Cornerstone: 224-9400
- I.M.S.S.: 224-3838
- Medasist: 223-0444
- Regional: 224-4000
- San Javier: 226-1010
Puerto Vallarta is a beautiful holiday destination, but this is not an excuse to leave your common sense at home. You should not treat the city as if it is a huge beach resort existing solely for your pleasure.
Exercise caution here as in any place that you are unfamiliar. Keep an eye on your possessions (purses, cameras, etc.) at all times. Do not flaunt large amounts of cash and wear a concealed money belt to secure large bills and your passport. Make sure you always have small bills/ coins on hand to pay for small items.
The beaches and hotels have security people who are familiar with the area and tend to ward off most undesirable characters. As in many “tourism destinations”, there are local “tourist police”, who concentrate on keeping the area safe for visitors. They, and the locals, understand the value of visitors and make life very difficult for those who may consider preying on visitors.
Avoid confrontations with the police. In the event you do have a disagreement with them, expect to be treated poorly and expect to pay many a peso to regain your freedom. Respect and co-operation goes a long way with them, disrespect usually will not be tolerated.
For digestive issues, use Immodium. It is sold over the counter and works for most issues.
Water you have never been to can be dangerous. Leaving your valuables (cameras, purses, passport) alone on the beach, is an invitation to theft at any beach.
- Observe the warning flags on public beaches. There could be a strong undertow.
- Never dive into unknown waters. There may be rocks.
- Never have a knife in your bag.
Note that not very many places take credit cards. Some larger hotel complexes, high end restaurants and shops do, but most do not. It is very much a cash only economy with ATMs available in convenient locations and a bank downtown where in-person withdrawals can be made.
For the budget traveller – time your visit outside of peak holiday periods (e.g. Santa Semana/ Easter week). Accommodation prices during peak times can double or triple and the beaches become insanely crowded.
If you are traveling around Mexico leave your souvenir shopping until Guadalajara as prices in Puerto Vallarta are higher, sometimes bordering on exorbitant.
Consulates in Puerto Vallarta
- Canada, Plaza Peninsula, Local Sub F, Blvd Francisco Medina Ascencio 2485, Zona Hotelera Norte, , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Monday to Friday 09:00-13:00. Accredited from the Canadian Consulate General at Av. Mariano Otero #1249, Piso 8, Torre Pacífico, Col. Rinconada del Bosque in Guadalajara
- United States, (Consular Agency) Paseo de los Cocoteros #85, Sur Paradise Plaza, Interior Local L-7, Nuevo Vallarta, , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. M-Th 08:30-12:30. Accredited from the U.S. Consulate General at Progreso 175, Col Americana, Sector Benito Juarez in Guadalajara
Your exploring does not have to be limited just to the Bay, there are nearby archeological sites to visit as well. Close at hand, in the region of Ixtapa, studies have uncovered sites dating back to 400 B.C.
Mismaloya is a short drive outside town. It is famous for being the location for the movie “The Night of the Iguana” directed by John Houston. You can tour the location.
Chico’s Paradise, a river valley with rock formations and picnic/restaurant areas is a short drive or bus ride outside town.
For a trip back in time to the 1600s and 1700s; a day-trip up (4600′) to the old silver mining town of San Sebastian del Oeste is worth the time.
Puerto Vallarta is less than a 45-minute flight away from the inland city of Guadalajara and about a one-hour flight from Mexico City. A 30-minute drive up the coast lands you in Bucerias, a small coastal village.
Yelapa is a lovely little beach town that time forgot, near the southwest corner of Banderas Bay. It’s a long and bumpy bus ride from Puerto Vallarta, or if the fishing business is slow you can usually hire a local charter boat to take you over there.
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