When you're looking for your next vacation to paradise, Mexico should be at the top on your list. With over 6,000 miles of coastline to explore, and with seaside towns just a few hours' by plane from the states, Mexico has beaches of all kinds to make your next getaway a trip to paradise.
This year, check out Puerto Vallarta, an up-and-coming little city that hugs a bay on the Pacific side of Mexico. Puerto Vallarta is famous in Mexico - and beyond - for its friendly culture, vibrant nature scene, soft sandy beaches, and of course - the sunsets over the Pacific.
Want the most relaxation in your vacation? Here are three beaches that make Puerto Vallarta a paradise on the Pacific:
Considered the iconic beach of Puerto Vallarta, this is the place to be for all the action. Playa Los Muertos offers wide sandy beaches with beautiful turquoise water lapping in the surf. Bordered on one side by a manmade pier and on the other by a cliff outcropping (that you can easily climb), this beach is one you can't miss.
This beach is just a short walk from the Malecon (the boardwalk in Vallarta) and the Zona Romantica, a charming neighborhood with plenty of local culture.
For those looking to spice up their adventure, hop on a jet ski or pull on some water skis with one of the many vendors on the beach. You can even take a parasailing loop around the bay. During the busy tourist season, you might have to schedule ahead. But most days, you can catch these adventures just by talking to the local owner on the beach.
Want a black-sand beach with a bit more intrigue? Check out the beach at Boca de Tomates. This beach is just a short trip from the Puerto Vallarta airport - you can easily catch an Uber there for just a handful of US dollars (Pro Tip: Uber and Taxi rides are far cheaper if you walk across the airport overpass to the other side of the highway).
Boca de Tomates is home to more than just incredible colors on the black beach. It's also where sea turtles come to lay their eggs every year. If you're looking to see the babies hatch, check out this beach during the hatching season from November to April. You'll most likely find conservationists and volunteers helping keep the little turtles from getting eaten on their way to the sea. If tending to baby turtles sounds like an adventure to you, you can even volunteer to help them out.
Want a quieter beach experience, away from the hordes of tourists? Playa Palmares is the place for you. This little beach is a local favorite, and for good reason. Tucked away behind seaside rocks and tide pools, this small but beautiful beach is usually very quiet - some mornings you may have it all to yourself.
The water at Playa Palmares is clearer than many places in Vallarta. It's a perfect place for a swim, with cliffs and boulders forming a natural frame around this little slice of heaven.
To get here, you can take a bus or an uber ride to the Playa Palmares condominiums, and walk down to the beach. For more of an adventure, you can also take a short hike across the cliffs and boulders. Simply follow the path south from Playa Los Muertos until you hit a local piece of paradise.
Not all the great beaches are as crowded as Cancun. For a quieter, adventurous beach vacation, check out Puerto Vallarta on Mexico's pacific side. This little seaside city will impress you, charm you, and ultimately make you feel at home.
Which of these beaches will you add to your next getaway?