Situated on the west coast of Mexico, the resort city of Puerto Vallarta has become an increasingly popular tourist destination for travelers. The city offers a mixture of golden beaches, urban retail destinations, and historic locations and landmarks. The tropical climate means that the weather is warm all year round, making it perfect for sun-seekers looking to relax during the colder months. Originally a colonial town, Puerto Vallarta has undergone a series of developments in recent years. It now offers countless activities for visitors. So with so much choice, what are the best things to do in Puerto Vallarta?
Everyone loves to get away from the stress of work for a while by jetting off on vacation to cut loose and relax, but that often means spending a lot of money and sticking to a budget while you’re away. The prices in Puerto Vallarta are reasonable when it comes to food and amenities, with the average cost of a meal falling around the $5 mark. But like most resort destinations, the costs soon start to add up when you take advantage of the activities on offer. We’ve put together a list of low-cost fun things to do so you can get the most out of your holiday without breaking the bank.
Ocean swimming and snorkeling
The beautifully clear waters off the coast of Puerto Vallarta are abundant and alive with all kinds of marine life, plants, and coral. The warm waters are home to some of the most beautiful species of fish in the world, and all you need is a snorkel for the chance to get a glimpse of them. You’ll find a number of instructors and Puerto Vallarta Snorkeling tours that offer snorkeling equipment and tuition at cheap rates. You could save money by purchasing your own snorkel from a local store and go on a Puerto Vallarta island beach trip instead. Snorkeling allows you to experience something new, see some amazing sights and is a great, inexpensive way to spend an afternoon.
Visit the museums
If you’re a fan of art, history or design, then you are sure to find something interesting in one of Puerto Vallarta’s 42 museums. Visiting the museums and art exhibits is a perfect way to soak up the city’s culture, and won’t cost a thing because entry is free. There are numerous art galleries, such as Galleria Dante, which feature some of the finest classic and modern art from artists all over the world. Casa Kimberly is worth visiting if you want to learn about Puerto Vallarta’s evolution from colonial town to tourist hotspot.
Mexico is famous for its tequila, and the city of Puerto Vallarta is home to some of the tastiest brands and custom crafts. You can try a few shots in the city center, with some facilities happy to also teach you about the brewing process and different blends that are available. If you want to save a little extra cash though, you can go straight to the source. The town is teeming with local tequila stores that offer all sorts of free samples. So get your lime wedge ready and experience the authentic taste of traditional Mexican tequila.
Beach food – one of our can’t miss things to do in Puerto Vallarta
Holiday resort destinations are often full of high-end restaurants and bars offering top quality food and drink, but it usually comes at a hefty cost. If you want to taste some colorful, authentic Mexican cuisine then venture away from the busy main streets and head towards the beach. Playa de Los Muertos is host to an abundance of vendors serving delicious traditional food at very reasonable prices. Relax in the sun and soak up the fun atmosphere will enjoying some freshly prepared food.
Home to countless street performers and musicians, the streets of Puerto Vallarta are buzzing with excitement and live music. While strolling through the square or along the beach front you’re bound to come across a busker or local performer. Every Thursday and Saturday evening the Municipal Band perform at the main plaza gazebo. The show is free to watch and is a great way to relax and unwind with a bit of dancing at the end of the day.
If you want to do some low-cost shopping during your trip stay away from the big stores. There is a market by the River Cuale which consists of a variety of stalls. Here, you’ll find everything from traditional garments to souvenirs. This is an unmissable thing to do in Puerto Vallarta if you love bagging a bargain. The beauty of a traditional Mexican market is that haggling is expected. That means that if you see something you want but the price is a little steep, you can put your negotiation skills to the test.
Hire a bicycle
There are some beautiful natural sights to be seen in Puerto Vallarta. Why not hop on a bike and go for a ride? There are lots of bicycle rental shops offering reasonable rates. Hiring a bike is an inexpensive way to increase the sights you can see throughout the day. Explore the back streets and country roads without having to stop at the spots you aren’t interested in.
Stand-up paddleboarding is a great way to have a little fun trying something new. It’s also inexpensive. Experience the sights of the coast while floating on the calm waters of the Bahia de Banderas. Paddling out into the bay is a great form of exercise. There is also the added reward of laying down on your board and staring up at beautiful clear skies.
These are just a few of our favorite fun, cheap things to do in Puerto Vallarta.