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  • 28
  • Jan
  • 2014

What are the best things to do in Puerto Vallarta when on a Mexican Riviera cruise?

Considering a Mexican Riviera cruise?  Chances are, Puerto Vallarta will be one of the port stops on your cruise, and you are in for a fun day onshore!

PUERTO VALLARTA or should we say “Vallarta Nayarit”

Happy Traveler Comment
Cesar has been very helpful and courteous. I have a family of 7 so a cruise such as we are taking really does take some arranging with which you folks have really done well. I am sure when we cruise again in the future we would give you folks first opportunity to serve us. — Ken B.

The Mexico Tourism Board is creating a new name for the Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit region by calling it Vallarta Nayarit. This region includes Banderas Bay and the Sierra Madre Mountain range. It’s the perfect location for water or mountain activities–and of course, food!

Four major cruise lines stop in Puerto Vallarta – Holland America, Carnival, Norwegian and Princess. We’ve done some research on the port city, and as a result, here are the top five favorite things to do when you get to Puerto Vallarta.


1. “Vallarta Eats” Food Tasting and Walking Tour is the best way to try all the authentic flavors traditional to Vallarta locals.


Photo credit goes to Vallarta Eats Food Tours

Learn about the history and culture as you walk through the old town, including the Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe, “El Malecon,” and the produce markets. Make sure you come with a big appetite because you’ll be trying all the best foods loved by the locals.


Photo credit goes to Vallarta Eats Food Tours

2. If you want to learn how to make authentic Mexican cuisine, then take a La Luna Puerto Vallarta cooking class. You’ll learn hands on how to use fresh ingredients to create traditional Mexican cuisine. The classes are taught by Le Cordon Bleu-certified chef Miriam Flores. You can learn how to make Grandma’s tortilla soup, braised pork shank, chile relleno, vanilla bean-orange flan as well as the traditional rice and salsas. If you have a group, you can contact La Luna through their Facebook to plan your class.


Photo credit goes to La Luna Puerto Vallarta

3. Los Veranos Canopy Tour is a great way for you and your entire group—big or small—to spend the day. Zip across the jungle on their 14 ziplines.


Photo credit goes to Los Veranos Canopy Tour

Afterwards, you can hang out at the restaurant and tequila bar which sits looking out over the river with water slides and swing ropes. There’s still more! Visit their mini-zoo, kayak along the river or take a walk on the hiking trail. What makes them even more special? Their energetic staff who want to make sure this is a day you’ll never forget.


Photo credit goes to Los Veranos Canopy Tour

4. Ahoy! Pirate Ship Vallarta is fun way to experience up close and personal what it was like to be a pirate, back in the day. Board the wooden pirate ship and set sail for an adventure full of surprises.


Photo credit goes to Pirate Ship Vallarta

On this wooden boat modeled after the one Christopher Columbus sailed across the ocean blue, you can learn a little history, enjoy a hearty pirate-style dinner, sit in the middle of a sword-yielding pirate show and let your inner-pirate out. Aaarrgghhh, ye ‘all have one, ye know?


5. Head north to Riviera Nayarit. A nature lover’s paradise is the Hidden Beach on Isla Marietas. The beach is tucked in the rim of an open crater and fresh ocean water is the perfect place to swim.


Photo credit goes to Rene Henriquez

Or just hang out on this popular surfing beach. It’s great for beginners as well as experienced surfers. Lessons are also available through Sayulita Surf School. There’s plenty of other things to do here, like stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking or snorkeling. If you want to try kite surfing, the season is February through May.


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Other blogs you may be interested in

What are the best things to do in Mazatlan when on a Mexican Riviera cruise

What are the best things to do in Puerto Vallarta when on a Mexican Riviera cruise

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