Puerto Vallarta Destination Guide
There’s no doubt that Puerto Vallarta’s multicultural history and popular beaches are just two reasons why this seaside gem finds itself at the top of many a destination wedding list.
Puerto Vallarta stretches around Bahía de Banderas, which means “Bay of Flags,” and is considered one of the most beautiful bays in the world. At the gateway to Mexico’s famous Riviera Nayarit region, Puerto Vallarta looks out over the sparking Pacific Ocean and entices destination wedding travellers from all regions because of the delightful melding of new and old, modern and traditional. Whether your trip “must haves” require a hip urban scene or an intimate getaway, Vallarta (as it’s commonly known) offers something for everyone.
Leave the Rain and Snow Behind
Whoever said you can’t have it all obviously didn’t know about Puerto Vallarta. So if sandals and summer temps seduce your spirit, then come enjoy the dry season between December and April. You might encounter higher costs and crowded resorts, but then again, you can always head to the beach with your iPod and while away the hours unstressed and unhurried.
Between July and October, hotel rates can drop as much as 40 percent, but the trade-off comes with higher humidity and afternoon showers (which you can sit out under a nice palapa with a cool beverage in hand). After all, paradise is still paradise when there’s a chance of seeing a rainbow.
Taking in the Sights
By choosing Puerto Vallarta, you double your options. In Zona Centro, the old town area, you can marvel at historical architecture. In Zona Romántica, smaller hotels, restaurants, and bars abound, as well as spectacular beaches. But don’t feel constrained. Plenty of sights and adventures are tucked away in the city and surrounding areas.
Getting Around and Getting Along
If you’ve forgotten some (or all) of what you learned in your high school Spanish class, you’re in luck. Most people in the city shops and restaurants speak English very well even though Spanish is the primary language. You can use your credit cards in most major hotels and shops, but plan to bring cash with you if adventuring in a more remote location suits your fancy. Many vendors accept U.S. dollars (and display the conversion rate prominently), but you’ll get a better exchange rate if you pay in pesos.
Puerto Vallarta is served by the Gustavo Díaz Ordaz International Airport, which is approximately 10km (about 6 miles) north of the city. Several North American airlines offer flights to Puerto Vallarta, and direct flights (i.e. no annoying layovers between home and heaven) are available from many major U.S. cities. After arriving, pick the transportation that suits you best. Rental cars, taxies, and private transportation can easily be arranged with your accommodation provider.