Puerto Vallarta is a city on the Pacific Coast of Mexico in the state of Jalisco. Chiefly a resort city, people come to Puerto Vallarta for the beach and associated activities such as scuba diving, sailing and surfing. On the Bahia de Banderas, it has more to it than its coastal location such as an array of historical landmarks. In the city itself, there are a number of festivals and other events, not to mention cultural venues where you can see an art exhibition, revel at a gig or learn more about how Puerto Vallarta has developed through the centuries. Shopping is also popular here, as the city centre and coastal area is packed with market stalls and indoor malls selling all manner of souvenirs.
With the right tyres, a family car would be safe to drive along some of the dirt roads in the city, whereas smaller cars might come unstuck in the rain.
Driving in Puerto Vallarta
Road Driving Side
Urban Speed Limit
Rural Speed Limit
Motorway Speed Limit
Important things to note
Although the local toll roads are in excellent condition, the same cannot be said for some minor routes, which look dilapidated in places.
Even though dirt roads are a common sight in Puerto Vallarta, they can be safe to drive on, except in wet weather where they can become tricky for some cars.
At some of the toll roads, you might not have to pay as much as you anticipate, as the cost of motoring in Mexico is lower than many other countries.
Highlights & Hotspots
The November Festival is the highlight of the calendar in the city. The festival has numerous cocktail parties, concerts, wine tasting sessions, art exhibitions and screenings of locally-made films. The party atmosphere will have you intoxicated in more ways than one!
At Banderas Bay, one of the most popular pastimes is yachting. If you can afford it, you can hire a yacht and go sailing across the bay to your heart’s content. If you want more of a thrill, then it’s possible to go surfing after a few lessons.
Elsewhere on the beach, you can go on a scuba diving tour of the Pacific. There are plenty of places in Puerto Vallarta where you can get all the necessary gear, but if you’re new to it, try to look for instructors in the city.
Further inland, Vallarta Botanical Gardens in the Sierra Madre Mountains are as good a place as any to explore the local plant life. Being a unique ecosystem, you’re likely to see plants that are barely seen elsewhere in the world.
Licenciado Gustavo Diaz Ordaz International Airport is 2.5 miles north of the city centre. It has a terminal with two halls for passengers, one for local flights to other parts of Mexico and the other for international flights.
The airport is connected to the MX 200 highway, which goes southwards along the coast towards the city centre and main parts of the beach.