The name of Puerto Vallarta has become synonymous over the decades with pristine beaches, shimmering crystal blue waters, and verdant mountains and rain forest. This possibly most appealing beach destination in all of Mexico is renowned for its party stopping nightlife, paradise coastline, and charming old world cobblestone streets of the old town’s romantic zone. With all of these natural and man-built attractions, it should come as no surprise that the booming resort town draws in literally millions of tourists each year, all of them hungry for quality Puerto Vallarta tours.

Thanks to its year-round balmy climate (helped in no small part due to its geographic location on the Hawaiian Islands’ latitude on the Pacific coast of Mexico) and clear calm waters, it remains a tantalizing destination for outdoor and water sports enthusiasts the hemisphere over. Where else in the region can one find such a perfect balance of adventure and excitement, cultural hot spots, and relaxation all rolled into one happy vacation package? Visitors have choices to pass their perfect days strolling the renowned Malecon boardwalk, zip-lining through the jungle, or whale watching in what is among the largest bays in the world, Banderas Bay.

Things to Do In Puerto Vallarta

Here are our personal recommendations for six popular tourist must-do activities while in Puerto Vallarta:

Explore the natural beaches lying on the islands off of the coast

There are water taxis found in the Boca de Tomatlan seaside village. These whisk you away to a choice of completely unspoiled and isolated beaches of Majahuitas, Las Animas, Yelapa, and Quimixto.

Stroll El Malecon

The world-famous beachfront promenade of El Malecon runs for an incredible 14 blocks. Overflowing with literally dozens of restaurants, vendor booths, bars, and art galleries, you can go from party to locally based artisan exchange in mere minutes. Live music encourages tourists who love to party in the hippest discos and bars found right off of the boardwalk. Los Arcos (the arches) is just off the Malecon in the Piaza Morelos beachfront square.

Take A Guided City Tour

The traditional heritage of old Mexico has not been lost here. The guided city tours take in the history, architecture, and local culture of the area by visiting such landmarks as the Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe and the famed Municipal Market. These tours also take in a well-known silver artisan’s workshop and stop by the local tequila distillery for a tasting tour. Ole!

Enjoy a Boat Tour or Pirate Boat Excursion

The rocking resort town also features catamaran and luxury sailboat tours all through the enormous and beautiful Banderas Bay. From these boats, you can swim next to dolphins, snorkel the aquamarine blue waters, and take in amazing seascapes and landscapes such as hidden coves and exclusive beaches. These tours generally come with an open bar, picnic lunch, all sports equipment needed, and even Spanish-English speaking tour guides. They make time for you to swim, snorkel, and paddle board around the lovely bay.

The pirate-themed adventure is a cruise on the Marigalante Galleon. This authentic replica of legendary discoverer of the new world Christopher Columbus offers sword fighting shows and real cannon blasts. It is a seven hour long tour of the bay that offers something for everyone, including banana boating, beach volleyball, kayaking, and snorkeling. Children will love participating in the pirate-run treasure hunt.

Beach It Up On Scenic Playa Los Muertos

Dead Man’s Beach is found in the Old Vallarta section known as the Zona Romantica. It may be wildly popular with locals and tourists, but the expansive beach has room for all to swim, sunbathe, and even jet ski. It is fronted by literally dozens of cafes and bars.

Take in the Atmosphere of Zona Romantica (Puerto Vallarta Old Town – Romantic Zone)

The section of town dripping with the most charm and humming with energy and excitement is the aptly nicknamed Zona Romantica. It is bursting with outdoor cafes, restaurants, bars, theaters, pubs, night life spots, stores, gift shops, and more. If that’s not enough, you have two authentic farmers markets featuring locally produced vegetables, fruit, meat, fish, and even crafts. No Puerto Vallarta tours are complete without spending some serious time in this lovely quarter of town. Zona is complete with vacation rentals too.

When you are looking for a great place to stay for vacation rentals in the heart of the Zona Romantica, look no further than Casa Loma and Casa Cielo. This is a popular and beautiful part of town to make your home base while you take in this paradise place that boasts 3.7 million tourists each year and 300,000 year-long local residents.