Best Puerto Vallarta Excursions: Puerto Vallarta is a city that has much to offer. From the beautiful beaches to the great restaurants, incredible sightseeing and activities, it is easy to get overwhelmed by Puerto Vallarta. If you are planning a trip to the city, you should decide which sites, tours, and excursions you are most interested in, and schedule them ahead of time. Some of Puerto Vallarta’s excursions are so popular that if you wait until you get there to try to book them, you might not be able to get in. Here are some of the best Puerto Vallarta excursions that you should consider for your next trip.
Yacht and Snorkel Tours
The warm, calm, clear waters around Puerto Vallarta are ideal for snorkeling and yachting. The city’s experienced boat captains and tour guides will take you on an adventure that you will never forget, as you sail around the Bay of Banderas, past beautiful rock formations, stopping at secluded beaches, and snorkeling through schools of tropical fish, and past dolphins, turtles, and moray eels.
Most yacht and snorkel tours in Puerto Vallarta last for about four or five hours, and include a lunch, open bar, and snorkeling and paddleboarding equipment. Snorkeling experience is not required, as there are flotation devices and instructors available to help.
This is one Puerto Vallarta excursion that you may want to book about a week in advance when you have a forecast of the weather for your trip. Although the tours do run even in rainy weather, going on a nice day is a much better experience.
Whale Watching Tours
From December to April the waters off of Puerto Vallarta become a hotspot for migrating whales, stopping in the warm Mexican waters for the winter before heading to the north Pacific and Bering Sea for the summer.
The coast off Puerto Vallarta is one of the best places on earth for whale watching. The tours are led by experienced boat captains and expert tour guides, who will point out any marine life you pass and explain exactly what you are seeing. Frequently seen on the tours are humpback whales, gray whales, and dolphins, plus blue whales, minke whales, and orcas are sometimes spotted as well.
These tours get you up close to the wildlife, giving you the opportunity for incredible photographs and a once in a lifetime experience of seeing these giant creatures from just feet away.
Cultural Tour of the City
One of the best ways to experience everything Puerto Vallarta has to offer is through a guided tour of the city. The tours are typically a combination of a shuttle tour and walking tour, covering the most famous sites and most interesting locations in the city. Complimentary hotel pickup and dropoff is included on the tours, which usually last either half a day or a full day (you can choose) and start at Marina Vallarta. From there, the tours proceed down the boardwalk to the famous sea horse statue, the to landmarks like Guadalupe church, the City Hall, and the market, where you will have time to do some shopping.
The tours proceed to the residential area, the hilltops overlooking El Arco, and the village of Mismaloya, which is famous as the shooting location of the movie The Night of the Iguana. The tour proceeds to a tequila factory, where you will be able to partake in a tequila tasting, see the manufacturing and bottling process, and enjoy great Mexican food before returning back to your hotel.
ATV and Zipline Tour
One of the best Puerto Vallarta excursions for adrenaline junkies is the ATV and zipline tour through the Sierra Madre Mountains. This tour is a once in a lifetime experience that includes riding an ATV along the beach and through the old city of Puerto Vallarta, then going off roading through the lush jungle of the Sierra Madre, making your way to the top of the mountain. At the top, you will find eight ziplines that take you high above the canopy of the jungle at up to 70 miles per hour, back to the base of the mountain.
The ATV and Zipline tour is one of the most popular tours in Puerto Vallarta, so be sure to book yours in advance.
Tequila Tasting and Food Tour
As one of the largest cities in the state of Jalisco, which is famous as the birthplace of tequila and mariachi music, Puerto Vallarta is well known for its excellent tequila and its authentic Mexican food. Some of the most popular Puerto Vallarta excursions are the tequila tasting and food tours, which take participants in small groups to Puerto Vallarta’s best tequila factories for a behind-the-scenes look at how the drinks are made.
You will go from factory to factory, sampling the tequila, mezcal, and racillia and trying the famous local cocktails, including jalapeño margaritas, lime and cucumber mezcal drinks, and micheladas. You will also have the opportunity to eat some of the best Mexican food in the city, including steak tacos, fish tacos, shrimp and other fresh seafood, and fajitas.