Puerto Vallarta, Mexico: Day 1

I’m so excited to share our 6-day itinerary in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico with you! We had an excellent time during one of the best months to visit, November. Happy reading 🙂

Malecón, Puerto Vallarta

This 6-day sun-filled trip was my first time in Mexico, outside of a one-day trip to Tijuana years ago. We went late November which is one of the best months to go! It was much less humid and the December holiday crowd had not arrived yet. We took an early morning flight to Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco and landed in the late afternoon. From the travel blogs I read before, I knew what to expect after customs at the airport. All travelers had to walk through this L-shaped room that was filled with booths on each side and aggressive salespeople trying to push timeshares, etc.

Puerto Vallarta International Airport

Knowing this was going to be the case, I tightened my grip on my suitcase and kept my gaze on the exit door without making any eye contact. I made it safely past all the sales pitches. In the arrival area, there were more salespeople, this time persuading you to take a taxi. For the 15-minute ride, they were going to charge us 250 pesos.

We had prepared ahead of time and ordered a SIM card online that could be used in Mexico. We bought the data package from Always Online Wireless. It took a while to get the data to work (refused to work on Android phones!) But fortunately, it worked quickly on my iPhone. Uber was relatively new in Puerto Vallarta when we went and I’m glad we had it as a choice. The car came within 5 minutes just outside the airport and drove us to our hotel for 55 pesos! That was significantly cheaper than the airport taxis.

We stayed at Fiesta Inn this trip, which is in a then 6-month-old mall called La Islas. After unloading our bags and changing into more summer appropriate clothing (we were coming from Canadian winter after all!) we headed to the bus stop located just outside the mall. The high 20s Celsius weather was fantastic 😊

View from our hotel room

Taking the local bus (7.5 pesos per person) we arrived at the Malecón. There wasn’t a bus stop sign that labeled the bus routes or prices, but we had a good idea from prior research. The buses come very frequently, so just look for the big writing on the windshield of the buses to find your destination, then hop on! If in doubt, ask the bus driver.

Taking the local bus

The sun was about to set at 7pm when we reached the Malecón. People were strolling along the waterfront and the sky was turning pink and purple ombre. It was so relaxing. We visited Puerto Vallarta’s parish Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, also known as the Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe. I enjoyed the stone roads, white and orange buildings and colour papel picado in this part of town.

Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Sunset at Malecón

After admiring the fiery orange sunset, we walked along the coast to find dinner. We’re used to eating dinner around 6-7pm, but Mexicans eat dinner much later. That meant we got to avoid the crowds! Fortunately, this was a tourist area so restaurants were open early for dinner. We ended up eating at Rico Taco and enjoyed red snapper, melted cheese and grilled beef taco.

First dinner in PV!

We took an Uber back to our hotel, which took about 15 minutes and cost 50 pesos. Again, the Uber came within minutes and we were impressed with the speed. When we used Uber in Las Vegas, credit card or debit card were the only payment options. However, in PV we had the option to pay cash to the driver. I think this is great for tourists who still want to user Uber, but want to avoid the credit card fees for foreign currencies.

Read about Day 2 in Zona Romantica and Las Caletas.

Leave a Reply