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Puerto Vallarta Smashes All Previous Tourism Records As Destination Soars In Popularity

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Puerto Vallarta remains one of the most popular destinations in Mexico, according to the latest report. 

Recent data showed how this city welcomed a total of 6 million and 42 thousand tourists in 2023, with the busiest month being November. 

Mismaloya Beach and Resort, site of the filming of the movie Night of the Iguana, along Banderas Bay in the Jalisco region near Puerto Vallarta

These are incredibly high numbers, especially for a city with a population of only 221 million citizens (as of 2014).

According to the report published by the State Ministry of Tourism, the vast majority of the tourists who came here to enjoy their holidays were from Mexico, but there were also high numbers of Americans. 

But why do visitors keep choosing Puerto Vallarta for their vacations? The factors are many. Here are just a few. 

Breathtaking beaches. 

The popular Malecon oceanside promenade at Olas Altas Beach at the Mexican resort town of Puerta Vallarta

Puerto Vallarta is mainly renowned for its huge number of breathtaking beaches, characterized by crystal-blue waters and golden sand. Some of these include The Malecon Beach, Boca de Tomates, Playa de Oro, Los Tules, Las Glorias, Los Muertos, and Las Gemelas, just to mention a few. 

Most of these beaches are swimmable and have great swells, making them the perfect place to try out water sports such as surfing, kitesurfing, and more. 

Plenty of beach clubs located on the seaside provide tourists with live entertainment while giving visitors the possibility to enjoy a refreshing drink while sunbathing. 

The sandy beach alongside the Malecon promenade boardwalk and Zona Romantica area of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, with the sea and city skyline in view

On top of this, Puerto Vallarta’s beaches are also extremely safe for tourists. The local government has made it its priority to constantly improve the city’s safety levels with several initiatives. 

Local beaches are regularly patrolled to ensure all bathers are safe and the water conditions are constantly monitored to warn tourists whenever swimming becomes dangerous due to strong currents, bad weather, or the presence of dangerous animals. 

Even though beaches can at times become dangerous, tourists shouldn’t worry too much as, when this happens, red and yellow flags are immediately placed on the sand to warn tourists.

Great activities

View from the street below of the The Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe with colorful flags strung across the street on a sunny morning in Puerto Vallarta, Mex

Of course, water sports are among the most popular activities in Puerto Vallarta. But these are not everything that this stunning place has to offer. 

Puerto Vallarta is home to a variety of natural areas where people can fully immerse themselves in Mexican unspoiled nature. 

A great example is the Canopy Ecotourism Park. Located in the Ejido El Jorullo, about 16 miles southeast of Puerto Vallarta, this natural area offers tourists a variety of activities for all tastes. 

View from the coastline of the large boulder islands offshore near Banderas Bay at Los Arcos National Park along the Mexican Riviera at Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

For instance, the new Jorullo Viewpoint. A massive bridge made of glass featuring a breathtaking 360° view over the Cuale River and mountain range while giving visitors the impression of being suspended in the air.  

But this is not all. People here can enjoy long hikes in nature and try zip-lining from one mountain to the other.

Of course, this is not the only natural park in the area. Tourists can also head to the Marietas Islands to enjoy some snorkeling or join a tour to discover the famous hidden beach.  

a white sand beach in puerto vallarta during sunset

Nightlife in Puerto Vallarta is also worth mentioning. Not by chance, this city won an award for best LGBTQ+ beach destination in Mexico. 

With plenty of bars, cafes, and nightclubs to choose from, there is no way of getting bored here. 

An authentic experience

Puerto Vallarta also remains popular among American tourists thanks to the many nearby villages where people can experience the most authentic Mexican culture. 

San Pancho Mexico locals enjoying beautiful beach day in the nice warm water

Whether you want to join a cacao ceremony or opt for a tequila-tasting experience, there are plenty of ways to get in contact with this unique culture and learn everything about the ancient traditions and customs of the people living here. 

Villages such as Sayulita, San Pancho, and Yelapa are the ideal place to escape the massive crowds of tourists typical of Puerto Vallarta and to truly familiarize yourself with the local culture. 

Here, people will also be able to explore the nearby jungle, surf on secluded beaches, and savor the delicious local food offered by the many street vendors in the area.  

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