The 200-mile stretch of coastline between San Blas in Nayarit and Banderas Bay in Nuevo Vallarta, the Riviera Nayarit is off the tourists’ radar by large, a fact that validates the presence of virgin beaches, unspoiled natural parks, unparalleled luxury resorts and lesser number of crowds in this region. If you too are looking to get away to a unique destination where you can have your peace of mind and a rejuvenating experience, here’s our basic guide to the Riviera Nayarit:
One of the most popular beach villages along the coast, Sayulita enchants visitors with its stunning beaches, bohemian-vibe, wonderful surfing opportunities and laid-back living. Visit the Marietta Islands to be astonished at the natural marvel that awaits you there in the form of a volcano in the ocean, with a hole that also has beach that you can swim to. Be sure to visit Evoke the Spirit or Artefakto store later to see intricate yarn paintings and bead work produced by the indigenous Huichol people. You can’t leave Sayulita without trying tequila, fish tacos as well as Paleta.
Popular as a luxury destination, Punta Mita is the place to just let go and unwind. Once a fishing village, Punta Mita now has an array of world class, luxury resorts lined on its breathtaking beaches. The town is of special interest to the golfers who can find two Jack Nicklaus golf courses here. The Downtown Punta Mita hosts a plethora of restaurants and pubs that are great for sampling local cuisine and meeting local people. The adventure seekers will particularly enjoy the hike to the Monkey Mountain, the highest point in the area.
San Blas moves at its own languid pace which is why travellers looking for slowing down for some days find it easy to love this quiet and friendly town. The old-world charm of San Blas is reflected through its ancient ruins and architectural remnants from the Spanish colonial days. The bird watchers love it here as 80% of the migratory birds in the North America are found in San Blas. In addition to spending a few leisurely hours at the Borrego Beach, tourists like to visit La Tovara National Park for meeting crocodiles. For travellers looking to get to Mexcaltitan, San Blas makes for a good starting or resting point.
Positioned favourably between Puerto Vallarta and Bucerias, Nuevo Vallarta has grown into a luxury resort town owing to its image as the ultimate holiday destination in the Riviera Nayarit. Apart from plush resorts, gourmet restaurants and sophisticated spas, visitors to Nuevo Vallarta can brace themselves for an encounter with hawksbills, leatherback turtles, and humpback whales that hit on its shores. A hike to the Sierra Madre Mountains is a highly recommended experience as it is from there that one can have a panoramic view of the whole of Nuevo Vallarta.
Puerto Vallarta is sought by many a holiday-starved or wanderlust-compelled tourists for its white sand beaches, top-notch restaurants, bustling streets and the adrenaline-pumping range of activities – boat trips, horseback rides, diving- that this astonishing coastal town has in store. The nightlife is exciting, and the town, also known as the gay beach capital of the world, is one of the friendliest to LGBT travellers. Among the places that you must visit in Puerto Vallarta, Los Arcos and El Malecón, Isla Río Cuale, Zona Romantica, Playa Los Muertos and Vallarta Botanical Gardens are the most recommended.