Puerto Vallarta is a city and popular vacation resort on the Pacific Coast of Mexico.
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 of Puerto Vallarta are very friendly and generally willing to help with directions and other requests. Old TownVallarta (or the Zona Romantica district) south of the River Cuale is more like a Mexican town and less like a tourist trap.
English is widely spoken, and as a tourist destination prices are higher than many other places in Mexico. Puerto Vallarta is very crowded at holiday times, 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.
Gustavo Diaz Ordaz International Airport (IATA: PVR) is located just to the North of Puerto Vallarta proper, and just south of [wiki=e42f29d67342d650b21bd311cbb71f57]Nuevo Vallarta[/wiki]. Most major US and Canadian airlines serve the airport along with Aeromexico, Interjet, Volaris and VivaAerobus. It has been recently remodeled, though waits can still occur when more than two flights have landed.
Note that the arrival area is plagued by timeshare hucksters as you come out from customs. They will offer to arrange a cab for you and try to rope you into a timeshare sales presentation. After you clear customs, walk quickly through the next room - the one housing the hucksters - continue walking past the rope-line. Now look for the official taxi kiosk out in the main airport atrium. You purchase your taxi trip here. All other offers of cab rides you will receive between customs and the kiosk will be from 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. Turn left as you come out of the building and go towards the main road. The bus stop is to your left, under the pedestrian overpass (1/4 block from the airport door), next to the airport terminal building. Wait for a bus (5 minutes or so) marked "Centro" or "Zona Romantica" (but NOT marked Pitillal or Bobadilla), wave it down, pay your M$6.50 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. You've just saved US$20 ($250 pesos)! You don't need exact change for the bus. Drivers will make change for bills $50.00 pesos & smaller. If going to the main bus station (or a bus to Nuevo Vallarta, Bucerias, and anywhere north along Hwy 200) go over the pedestrian bridge to the other side. The other stop is under the bridge at the opposite side. Get off at Km 9 or 9.5 which is front of the Corona building and walk up two or three blocks along Las Palmas (one of the roads beside the building) past the building to get there. Some of the of the buses such as the "Ixtapas" or "Central Autobuses" buses may make a turn at the Coronas building and go by the bus station. Ask the driver when getting on.
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 modern, well maintained toll roads all the way from the border, other local roads are not as well maintained especially in outlying, poorer neighborhoods where the roads are still dirt roads, but are still suitable for the drive. See also [wiki=22aad0d11c1af95ab85ff6b6afcb7958]driving in Mexico[/wiki] for further tips regarding driving in Mexico.
Federal Hwy 200 (MX Hwy 200) begins in Tepic (168km north) and goes through Sayulita, Bucerias, Nuevo Vallarta and into Puerto Vallarta. The highway continues south through Barra de Navidad, Manzanillo, Acapulco, etc. The road passes through town as a local road (at slower speeds) between the airport and the hills south of Zona Romantica. In downtown (north of Rio Cuale) the highway goes through as Av Mexico & Morelos (southbound along the Melacon or 1 block in) and Juarez & Colombia (northbound). South of R. Cuale, in Zona Romantica, the highway becomes Ignacio L. Vallarta (southbound) to Basilio Badilla and Insurgentes (northbound only between Basilio Badilla and R. Cuale).
From Guadalajara go west on Hwy 15 and exit at signs pointing towards "Ameca" to go through Mascota and America in the mountains along MX 70/90. Enters into town from the NE in the Ixtapa neighborhood as Carretera Las Palms & A Ixtapa. Or continue on Hwy 15 to "MX 68 Compostela Cuota/MX 68 Pto Vallarta Cuota" exit and go west along MX 68/200D to the Hwy 200 intersection just southwest of Compostela and go south on Hwy 200 to Pto Vallarta.
From Manzanillo simply go north on Hwy 200 for the next 284km . Winds into town on a curvy 2 lane road into Zona Romantica from the south.
There are many party boats that leave the coast from the Marina for day trips. Some stop at various beaches. You are even able to go horseback riding up to a waterfall at one beach south of Puerto Vallarta. 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.
The main bus station is north of town, 3km past the airport terminal to km 9 of the main road (Hwy 200) in front of the Corona Building (has a globe on pole in front lawn). The main bus station is two or three blocks behind the Corona Building between Avenida Las Palmas or Palma Real at Bahia Sin Nombre 363, Col Guadalupe Victoria. The following bus companies operate buses to/from here (Note: The 800 toll free numbers are for calling from within Mexico unless stated otherwise. Other numbers are regular or local numbers. From outside Mexico you will have to call the regular numbers):
* they operate the Elite, Elite Plus, Oriente, Chihuahuanese, Pacifico & the Turistar brands.
* doesn't stop at the main bus station but have their own terminal at Av Palma Real 140, a block towards the Corona building from the main bus station., next to the main bus station.
Second class buses run from coastal towns throughout the riviera [wiki=406a314730008075ac930dc90545e3ce]Nayarit[/wiki] such as San Blas. Fares on second class buses can be paid to the driver if picked up from along side of the road.
To catch a local bus into town, exit the bus station and keep walking across the parking area. Then walk to your right toward the corner. The city buses will stop here. Any bus you pick up here will take you all the way down to the "Romantic Zone (Zona Romantica)", about a half an hour drive, for just Mx$5.50! Although not really known to tourists, the buses are one of the best ways to mingle with the locals, as well as getting a nice view of town.
It is possible to walk between the airport and the bus station, however catching a city bus is a cheap and reliable option from the other side of the road from the airport terminal. Go across the pedestrian bridge and the stop is under the pedestrian bridge at the other side.
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: 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.
The following have their own terminals and/or stops elsewhere instead:
* goes up to Nuevo Vallarta, Punta de Mita, San Juan, La Penita, Valle de Banderas and anywhere in between. In town the routes start at their terminal and they only stop in front of Wal-Mart, under the pedestrian bridge by the airport terminal, and in front of the Corona building along the main highway. If coming into town get off at the opposite side of the road from Wal-Mart and wait for another city bus to come by (w/ 'Centro' or 'Zona Romantica' marked on the windshield/windscreen).
* Compostela-Pacifico (Green & White) [http://www.rivieranayarit.com/local_buses] goes further north to Sayulita, San Francisco (San Pancho), and Rincón de Guayabitos in the Riviera. In town they stop at the same stops as ATM (Auto Transportes Medina) (see above).
* goes to Mascota, Talpa de Allende and Sabestian in the mountains from their OWN terminal on the corner of Lucerna & Havre in Colonia Javiar Ordaz near the sports complex.
Hotels may provide a price list for cabs (expect to pay about 50 pesos for short trips, and 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. Include a small tip with the very reasonable fare.
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.
Bus trips cost around $6.50 pesos, which is about US$0.50(0.35 Euro) 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. 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 $50.00 pesos, but won't break larger bills. (these prices updated August 2010)
The buses are very reliable quite handy to get to places like Pitillal (the rapidly growing suburb to the NE) and Ixtapa (including the nearby U of Guadalajara campus with its gallery and crocodile farm). They are also useful for travelling 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.
*Out of town trips
You can visit Bucerias for 12 pesos, $.85. You can also go to Punta Mita for 20 pesos, $1.50. Mismaloya buses charge around 6 pesos. 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. Busses leave at 6am & 9am. Look for the blue bust stop sign. You will have to pay the driver in Peso's (fares vary on distance). Just tell the driver where or when you want to get off the bus. Most busses make frequent stops but have A/C. Regional busses are very reliable & run 7 days per week.
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 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 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 501c3 nonprofit institution. The Puerto Vallarta Botanical Gardens was founded in 2004 and was opened to the public in 2005. Our Vision: to build Mexico's greatest botanical garden here in the enchanted highlands of Jalisco, Mexico. Our staff is dedicated to the research and education of plant life, as well as showing the public all the beauty that nature has to offer. Plus providing the finest hospitality around.
Presently listed as the Number One Botanical Gardens to visit.
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, CA 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.
* 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 and their calves in Banderas Bay.
* International Charter Group: [url=http://www.barcosbarcelona.com].]Yacht charter and sailing, one of the worlds largest yacht charter companies, can take care of all charter requirements, from bareboat to crewed in Puerto Vallarta. Operating from nine offices worldwide (USA, Spain, UK, Germany, Italy, France, Spain, Switzerland, Caribbean, Honk Kong and Dubai).
* Go kayaking or rent a boat from Bilbobentura [15[/url] (a company that rents out kayaks on the bank of the river nervion).
* 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, Mexico 63735, [url=http://www.mayanresortsgolf.com/].]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[/url]]. The drive from downtown Vallarta to points inside the Bay takes roughly 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 tourists 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 / 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 [url=http://www.jamisonsmith.com],]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.
**ProFishingVallarta Sport Fishing in Puerto Vallarta [url=http://www.profishingvallarta.com[/url]]- Offers fishing charter services throughout the whole year in Puerto Vallarta Mexico
* 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 1.5 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 [url=http://davannayoga.com/[/url]]- great sunset yoga classes on a 360 rooftop in old town in front of the ocean. Well known for it's traditional style yoga. Only certified teachers offering Vinyasa Flow, Morning Yoga, Sunset Yoga, Children's Yoga. Calle Matamoros #542 on the corner of Corona.
*Yoga Vallarta [http://yogavallarta.com/[/url] - 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 [http://www.sealifeparkvallarta.com]- Discover Sea Life Park. Located off the first exit of Nuevo Vallarta; look for the water slides that can be seeing from the road. Open daily except Mondays and Fridays from 10AM. to 6PM.
It usually occurs in the middle of November and includes:
*Many cocktail parties
*Wine and tequila tastings
Old Town Art Walk in El Centro - Will occur every Wednesday night, 6-10PM, from October 28, 2009 to May 26. 2010. Some of the local art galleries visited 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 9:30AM every Tuesday on the malecon, Nov-April.
Puerto Vallarta didn't have an English language theater scene until recently. Now you can see up to four companies from the venue Theater Agustin Flores Contreras.
*Electro Beach Puerto Vallarta - a yearly Electronic Dance Music (EDM) festival featuring talent like Tiesto, Avicii, Calvin Harris, Steve Aoki, Hardwell and more.
*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.
Cafe de Olla - Basilio Badillo, 168 (near Olas Altas, Zona Romantica). (322) 223-1626. Has good, cheap food. Try the pork ribs or chicken.
* Takos Panchos - Basilio Badillo, 166 approximate. Right next door to Cafe de Olla has awesome Al Pastor tacos for about $1USD each! Opens around 5pm and is open late.
* Super Pollo - Calle Insurgentes and Francisco I. Madero. 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 $10USD. Across the street is a different chicken restaurant that is a chain with similar deals. Shop local though.
* La Joya de Mismaloya - Eat with your toes in the sand and a cold Corona in your hand. Any of these quaint beach side restaurants will delight you with some fantastic and authentic local seafood dishes. Some recommendations: Shrimp empanadas, Pescado Sarandeado, Tostadas de Ceviche de Camaron.
* Coffee Cup - Rudolfo Gomez 146 (near Olas Atlas Street). 222-8584. An American-style coffee house that serves espresso, latte and cappucino with local baked goods. It is still rare to find this type of coffee in Puerto Vallarta. Local art is displayed on the walls.
* Esquina de los Caprichos - Miramar 402. 222-0911. Open 1 -10PM. Closed Sundays. Spanish and Basque tapas. A few dishes and a glass of sangria is around $17 USD.
* La Cigale French bistro - Hidalgo #398 . 222 7938 . open 5pm-12am. An inspiring menu featuring a great selection of French bistro gems with a South of France touch
* Mr. Pulpo - Basilio Badillo #219 - 222 2598 - a casual Seafood restaurant with fresh fish, octopus, calmars, shrimps, mussels any style at affordable prices. Also propose great meats and delicious cocktails.
* Tia Katrina - A hip take on traditional food. Appetizers from $5, mains from $9 USD. The Tortilla Soup is recommended.
* Red Cabbage - Rivera del Rio 204A. 223-0411. A funky restaurant up the hill from the main streets in the Zona Romantica. It is themed on Frida Kahlo and features pre-hispanic recipes. Dinners from $15 - $25 USD.
* Alaska's Diner - Lazaro Cardenas 515 ("near the tunnel"). Closed Sundays. American comfort food, award-winning chili, and International dishes. Dishes from $25 - $120 pesos.
* Barcelona Tapas - Matamoros & de Octubre, Downtown. Open for Lunch and Dinner, 12-noon to 11:30 pm (Every Day). Accept only American Express, Cash and, traveller's Checks (with ID) - do not accept Visa or Mastercard. Link: http://www.barcelonatapas.net/coupons.htm
Just as the name implies they serve fajitas. Not just any fajitas, the best I have personally ever tasted. With over 10 varieties you cannot go wrong visiting this restaurant in old town Puerto Vallarta. This restaurant offers a quiet setting and great food. If you are in the mood to savor the best fajitas this is the spot.
* Tinos - 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.
El Arrayan - Allende 344, El Centro. (322) 222 7195. 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.
Emergency, Police/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
*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 "tourist 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 & 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