When you think of Puerto Vallarta, what’s the very first thing that pops into your head? The beach, the sun and the eternal summer vibes are probably one of them or all of them. Puerto Vallarta is one of the locations in Mexico that are not only preferred by tourists, but it’s also very popular amongst nationals and this is because of its beautiful beaches.
We are here to tell you all that you need to know about the best beaches in town and how to get to them.
Going from North to South – the first beach that you need to visit is our beautiful San Francisco – or locally known as San Pancho – located less than an hour away from Puerto Vallarta, and surrounded by the jungle and the mountains, this destination truly offers something worth seeing. This beautiful beach town has less than 2,000 habitants – and it’s a place that you’re more than likely to fall in love with.
If you’re looking to experience the culture and nature all at once, this beach is ideal to visit. San Pancho not only offers blue waters and a wide beach, it also gives the vibe of the old town that it used to be, but this doesn’t mean you can’t find gourmet restaurants, art galleries, among other interesting things. Plus, its waves are just perfect for surfing.
To get to San Pancho you need to take the main road in Puerto Vallarta, which is Francisco Medina Ascencio towards the freeway of Puerto Vallarta/Tepic – from Nima Bay you will follow this road for about 50 minutes and you will have take a left turn in Av. Tercer Mundo, and you will be there, in beautiful San Pancho.
Close to San Pancho, and starting to go south we have the gorgeous beach town of Sayulita – which is the one that it’s almost impossible to have not heard of it. If you’ve never visited, this gorgeous spot is definitely a must. Sayulita is known for its colorful streets; its vibrant lifestyle and it definitely has the “eternal summer” vibes that you will only find here.
The most popular thing to do in Sayulita is surfing – the waves are ideal here for that and it’s actually one of the beaches that most people who practice this awesome sport come to visit. But even if you don’t practice it, this town has a lot of things to offer, from enjoying the sun, releasing some sea turtles into the ocean to watch a beautiful sunset with colors we bet you’ve never seen before.
Sayulita, because of the diversity that it offers and because it has become one of the most popular towns near Puerto Vallarta, offers more than it seems – art galleries, live music, music festivals and lots of restaurants to choose from. To get to Sayulita all you have to do is follow the freeway Puerto Vallarta Tepic, and you need to take the Av. Revolución – follow it until it becomes Calle Marlín, it’s only a 45 minute ride from Nima Bay.
Before we start with some of the beaches going towards south, we need to mention another beach that you don’t want to miss, and this is Litibú – a place where the ocean truly has a definition of blue waters and calm waves.
Litibú is the kind of beach that you want to visit if you want to experience having a true picnic by the ocean, since there’s not a town itself that surrounds this beach we recommend you to pack your things, bring some coolers with some sodas, some food to snack there, some umbrellas and some towels and you’re all set – of course, don’t forget some trash bags so we keep this gorgeous beach as beautiful as it is.
To get to this great beach, you will have to take the same freeway Puerto Vallarta/Tepic and take the exit towards Punta de Mita – the location itself of this beach is named Litibú, and to get here it should only be about 40 minutes coming from Marina Vallarta.
We’ve mentioned some beaches that are more towards North of Puerto Vallarta, but we also want to talk to you about some beautiful spots that you just can’t miss. Now, it’s very important to note that for the following beaches that we are about to mention there’s no access to them by car – you need to get to Boca de Tomatlán (which is about 30 minutes away from Nima Bay, Marina Vallarta) and from there you have to take a “water taxi” – also locally known as “Panga” – which is a small boat that will charge you between 70 – 150 pesos (usually per person) depending on the beach that you want to visit and how far is it.
Starting with Las Animas, with its beautiful blue water, white sands and almost hard to believe calm waves – this gorgeous beach is a spot that you don’t want to miss. Even though, there’s no access to this beach by car, there are restaurants, umbrellas and even sun loungers available for you to rent.
At this beautiful beach you can take your time to practice some snorkeling, maybe build some sandcastles or just enjoy the sun to get a nice tan while you enjoy a cold drink from any of the restaurant & bars. Even though there’s no access to this beach by land, there are about 200 habitants in this place; it gives you the experience of being on an island and something you and your family will not forget.
After Las Animas you can find the gorgeous beach of Quimixto, another gem in our beautiful Puerto Vallarta. Do you remember the movie terminator? The scene where it looks like Vietnam, that scene was shot near the area. There you can find plenty of things to do, from hiking, riding horses or take a tour that it’s about 3 hours and will take you to some beautiful waterfalls. Tell me, where can you find jungles, mountain, waterfalls and the ocean all at once? If you like hiking, this beach is ideal for you, just imagine refreshing yourself in a beautiful waterfall after a long hike, sounds like paradise, doesn’t it?.
Last but definitely not least, we have our beautiful Yelapa, now, I know we’ve said it before but this beach truly is the definition of paradise, because of the shape of the shore, this beach has waves that are calm almost all the time – and the water is clear and blue, also ideal for snorkeling and to have a nice swim.
The advantage of these last beaches that we mentioned is that they can truly give you the experience of being in the beach and you can either take a water taxi there or rent a boat or a yacht yourself and get to this beautiful places. If you’re planning on visiting any of these last 3, we advise you to not make any plans in the afternoon – because it usually gets you really tired, maybe you could grab a bite on your way back to town in the romantic zone of Vallarta and then go back to your condo at Nima Bay.
Remember that these beautiful places don’t have to be just something that you heard of, next time you can be the one telling your friends all about the beautiful places you visited while spending some time at your brand new condo at Nima Bay. Don’t miss the opportunity of living in this beautiful place that we call home, our gorgeous Puerto Vallarta.