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A Puerto Vallarta travel guide – Pacific beaches and cosmopolitan art

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Crimson sunsets over ultramarine waters, resplendent golden beaches curtained by palms and long balmy nights at refined restaurants – Puerto Vallarta is a vacation paradise. Colonial-era streets, lined with art galleries, lead down to bustling waterfronts of glimmering beach bars and relaxed seaside eateries. Book a Puerto Vallarta hotel in Mexico’s most urbane resort town.

Relaxing Puerto Vallarta

A Puerto Vallarta vacation caters to every beach-lover’s taste. A few steps away from the center, playa los muertos’ strip of palm-fringed sand fills with contented sun worshipers gazing out at the changing hues of light at sunset. Further south, deserted stretches of pristine beach and secluded coves are a short boat ride away. Seek out the quiet fishing village of Boca de Tomatlán at the edge of the jungle where wooden panga boats slip off a soft powdery beach where the estuary meets the sea.

Cultural delights

Puerto Vallarta’s old town of quaint cobblestone streets and domed cathedrals borders the 19th Century main square, the Plaza Principal. Cooled by a gentle sea breeze, the surrounding alleys thrive with contemporary Mexican art studios and traditional workshops. Brightly decorated stores exhibit local hero Ramiz Barquet’s master sculptures, fine Oaxacan black clay ceramics and native Mexican folk paintings. Join the biweekly downtown art walks for a sedate stroll around the charming quarter’s vibrant galleries. 

Gastronomic pleasures

Book a Puerto Vallarta hotel to sample Mexico’s emerging nouvelle cuisine and enticing mariscos (seafood) fresh from the ocean. Palapa shacks dot the hidden bay at Quimixto, where succulent tuna steaks are grilled on the beach and served with fresh cilantro and sassy salsa. For contemporary Mexican comfort food, head to the old town and El Arrayán’s patio for modern twists on old favorites like chipotle-chilli shrimp marinated in lime. Open-air family- friendly restaurants nestle between mountain rivers and jungle canopies on the scenic road toward Mismaloya