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Puerto Vallarta

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Puerto Vallarta, located at Banderas Bay on Mexico’s Pacific Coast, is a popular destination with domestic and international tourists alike. Recent estimates suggest more than 1.5 million travelers make their way to this part of the world every year. With sandy beaches, bright blue seas, a vivid nightlife and a genuine mix of old and new, it’s all too easy to see why so many people make a beeline for PV, as it’s known locally. Licenciado Gustavo Diaz Ordaz International Airport (PVR) serves as a portal for international visitors, with flights connecting Pureto Vallarta to destinations across Mexico, the United States and Canada, as well and London and Amsterdam. The city also sees plenty of cruise ships dropping anchor at its port, while many Mexicans seek out the region as a weekend getaway. The majority of visitors head for the Hotel Zone, which houses resort hotels, standard hotels, budget hotels and more. More affluent visitors can opt to stay in a seafront villa, while those looking to break from the norm should seek out the Zona Romantica and its laid back atmosphere. In terms of tourist attractions, it should come as no surprise to learn that the beach rules the roost in these parts. Banderas Bay stretches some 25 miles round and houses almost countless beaches for visitors to enjoy. Some are busy and offer plenty of water sports and other activities to enjoy. Others are quieter and calmer, and perfect for unwinding. The region around Puerto Vallarta is known for its diving and snorkeling. Travelers wishing to see some truly magnificent sights should don a mask and tank and head below the surface. Stepping away from the beach, Viejo Vallarta – Puerto Vallarta’s Old Town – offers plenty to enjoy, including botanical gardens, the Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe, and a number of buildings that still hold their old Mexican charm. Visitors could do worse than spend an afternoon strolling its streets. First time visitors will want to seek out the picturesque Los Arcos, a series of arches that look out on the sea. Meanwhile, the Isla Rio Cuale is a hidden paradise featuring markets, pottery sellers, cafés and restaurants. puerto vallartaPuerto Vallarta also has its modern side too. Shopping malls, spa resorts and golf courses can all be found in the region, while the fishing boats that once filled the marinas have mostly been replaced by the sailboats of the rich and famous. Some boats are happy to take tourists out onto the high seas. If you’re looking to make the most of a nautical trip, head out between January and March and see if you can spot any whales passing along the coast. Once named the “Friendliest City in the World”, Puerto Vallarta is a popular choice with LGBT tourists, both from Mexico and further afield. With gay beaches, bars and more, it’s no wonder this part of the world is now considered the “San Francisco of Mexico”. Puerto Vallarta’s primary tourist season falls between December and April, when North American tourists are looking for a spot of winter sun. The city’s resorts are popular with U.S. students during Spring Break. Visitors looking to avoid the hordes should try to visit between April and June, while the temperatures are still warm and just before the rainy season.

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