Not every adventurer is inclined to go skiing during the winter months and many just want a break from the cold. Those of a certain age may remember the TV show “The Love Boat”. Every week, the “Pacific Princess” sailed between Los Angelos and Mexico’s Puerto Vallarta and featured the amorous adventures of passengers on board and the humorous antics of the crew.
Puerto Vallarta was known as “Puerto Las Peñas” from 1851 until 1918 when it was designated as a municipally and received the official name of “Puerto Vallarta”, in honor of Don Ignacio L. Vallarta, a representative of the State of Jalisco at the time. It remained a small fishing village for 20 years.
In the 1930s, Puerto Vallarta started to become a popular tourist destination and it gained additional notoriety in 1964 with the release of John Huston’s movie version of Tennessee Williams’ The Night of the Iguana.
This publicity helped to attract foreign investors in the 1970s, which brought about the massive expansion of the area.
Known for its spectacular beaches, marine life, water sports, and local resorts, Puerto Vallarta (AKA referred to as PV) is one of the most popular vacation destinations in the world. Color is everywhere.
A city of more than 200,000 people, PV stretches along the shores of the Bay of Banderas (Spanish for Bay of Flags). The old town area is the center of the tourist trade. It features a plethora of boutiques, cafes, galleries, sweet smelling bakeries and the multi-purpose Act2PV theater that hosts everything from Drag shows to Broadway shows.
An art walk takes place every Wednesday evening from 6 PM to 10 pm at some of the most stunning galleries anywhere.
One of the most popular pastimes is to walk along the Malecon, a wide pedestrian boulevard that stretches about 11 blocks along the bay and is dotted with eateries, drinkers, trinket shops, sculptures and venders selling their wares.
One can go parasailing directly from the beach that separates the walkway from the bay.
A revered stop on the Malecom is the locale for the iconic sea horse statue that sits smack in the middle of huge block letters that spell out the name of the city.
The configuration occupies a prominent spot almost directly across from the Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe (Cathedral of Our Lady of Guadaluepe).
The Cathedral itself is a must see especially during the religious holiday known as the Day of the Dead. Mexico is a predominantly Catholic country.
According to U.S. News and World Report, the best time to visit PV is from April to June when the weather is good and lodging rates are more affordable due to a reduction in tourists. However, if you want to go whale watching, November through March is ideal.
Puerto Vallarta attracts large numbers of vacationers from the U.S. and Canada who want to escape the cold and enjoy a relaxing change of pace. English is spoken everywhere. Year round temperatures range from 83 degrees (F) to 92 degrees so extreme heat is not a factor.
More information about Mexican resorts can be found elsewhere on this web site. Check out Cabo San Lucas Worth More than One Visit and Many Fabulous Los Cabos Vacation Options: Timeshare Anyone?.