Puerto Vallarta, or PV for short, is beach city that feels like a small town. PV is located along Mexico’s Gulf of California, which opens into the Pacific Ocean, directly south of California and Arizona. Located in the state of Jalisco, the only place where tequila can be manufactured, PV has ample tequila bars for anyone who is an agave plant enthusiast. Deemed one of the top 10 places to visit in Mexico by the US News & World Report’s rankings, Puerto Vallarta is known for its charming atmosphere, beautiful beaches, tourist-friendly nature, and of course, its resorts. Whether you want peace and quiet of a serene luxury cabana or the hustle and bustle of a main tourist route, PV has you covered.
Less than 2 miles from Puerto Vallarta’s airport, high-end luxury resorts can be found in the Marina Vallarta area. For a more city-center experience, the Hotel Zone offers numerous hotels, alongside shopping, restaurants, and other attractions. El Centro, the center of town, houses a beautiful cathedral and the Malecon, a can’t miss beachfront promenade lined with hotels, bed and breakfasts, clubs, bars, art galleries, and more.
Further south is the Zona Romantica, a more laid-back neighborhood with old cobblestone streets that houses a vibrant gay population and active nightlife scene. The Zona Romantica is also adjacent to Playa Los Muertos, PV’s most famous beach, where the waters are the warm and traditional Mexican food/drink vendors are plentiful.
swimming are unparalleled. Nightlife choices are endless in both the Hotel Zone and Zona Romantica. Full golf courses can be found the Marina Vallarta area, including the Punta Mita’s Pacifico Golf Course, where eight holes directly face the ocean. Numerous hike/swim day trips are easily accessible from the city center and include beautiful, secluded beaches if you want to get away from the resort town’s hustle and bustle.
PV is a very safe area, where a tourism-geared bilingual police force is on hand to provide directions and assistant in addition to general security. In addition, most hotels and resorts have their own security guards on-site. Although kidnappings in Mexico do occur, all areas where kidnapping has occurred are several hours away from Puerto Vallarta by car, and tourists are typically not considered targets for anti-government sentiment kidnappings. Many travelers report feeling safer walking the streets of Puerto Vallarta at night than in their own home cities. As with any beach area, take care when swimming or doing other water-related activities, as the water can be rough.
Whether you’re traveling for surgery yourself or accompanying a family member or friend on their medical travel journey, Puerto Vallarta is a vibrant and beautiful locale where both low-cost, high-quality healthcare and beachside fun can be found.