Things to Do in Puerto Vallarta
In Puerto Vallarta there will always be a long list of activities to discover. Explore the depths of the Pacific and see fascinating marine life, parachute into heights, learn more about the American crocodile in Latin America’s only urban estuary, or watch the spectacle attended by whales and turtles year after year during the season.
The vibrant Malecon has defined the spirit of Puerto Vallarta since its founding. Considered the quintessential meeting point, the Malecon is dotted with sculptures by renowned artists, art and craft galleries, shops and restaurants.
Enjoy outdoor performances and artistic expressions in the Los Arcos amphitheater and along this iconic nearly mile boardwalk, delight your palate at restaurants serving local and international cuisine that offer spectacular views of the Pacific, and watch Puerto Vallarta’s iconic sunsets in the front row.
When the sun goes down, this esplanade that goes from the Hotel Rosita – the oldest hotel in the city founded in 1948 – to the Cuale River, is dressed in celebration and color in the different bars and clubs.
Across the river Cuale you’ll find this charming, multicolored and cosmopolitan neighborhood, known as the LGBT zone, which offers sophisticated restaurants, squares, cafes and a vibrant nightlife to enjoy at sunset.
This area, also known as Olas Altas or Zona Sur, fascinates visitors with its typical Mexican style, cobblestone streets and picturesque facades. Art and culture occupy an important place, so you will find galleries with over 60 years of experience exhibiting works by local and foreign artists.
Be sure to stop at Lázaro Cárdenas Park to admire the display of artwork on its benches, poles, and walls with colorful tile designs that make it an open-air gallery.
It is in this same place that every Saturday morning – during the high season – small local producers gather to offer their handmade or harvested products. Here you can find unique items made by talented artisans, the freshest produce, local snacks or international delicacies, live music and much more!
Day or night, the Zona Romantica will be one of your favorite places with its enchanting places to enjoy everything from coffee and traditional and international dishes, to sophisticated mixology in front of Los Muertos pier with fascinating views of the bay.
The Marina is an important commercial, residential and maritime area where you will find some of Puerto Vallarta’s best hotels, shops, boutiques, cafes, galleries, restaurants and bars and its famous Lighthouse, arranged around its pier designed to accommodate 500 yachts and boats.
Both amateurs and golf professionals enjoy an 18-hole championship golf course designed by Joe Finger. Marina Vallarta Golf Club offers a course full of challenges to test the skill of golfers, who will have to compete with the wind in the holes that are located by the sea and in the six lakes that bring some difficulty to the game.
The generous biodiversity of the Sierra Madre and its tropical forests make Puerto Vallarta a fascinating place to venture beyond its beaches.
The Botanical Garden welcomes you with a plan perfectly designed for you to walk through sections: the Cactus Garden with species of different sizes and shapes; the Tropical Fruit Garden with an impressive collection of oaks, wild palms and agaves; the Orchid Conservatory with about 300 species native to Mexico – of the 1,000 found in this country -.
At the end of the visit to the greenhouses and gardens, you can enter the woods to cross the suspension bridge and admire the giant trees that populate the place.
Visit the souvenir shop, the nursery to buy your favorite plants and its renowned restaurant overlooking the Sierra Madre, after the walk.
Rio Cuale Island
Much of the cultural and arts scene takes place on the eastern edge of the island of the Cuale River, at the Cultural Center.
Events, art exhibitions, musical evenings, poetry and literature attract visitors and locals alike.
The Cuale Cultural Center offers painting, sculpture, dance, theater and music workshops and free access to the Cuale Archaeological Museum, which exhibits archaeological finds from the area and general information on Mesoamerican history and art.