Puerto Vallarta Journals

Vallarta Adventure

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A January 2001 trip to Puerto Vallarta by g3

Club Regina Puerto Vallarta Photo, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico More Photos
Quote: Nestled between the misty Sierra Madres rising to the east and a huge bay to the west, Puerto Vallarta exists because of tourism but has yet to be ruined by it. It is a unique melding of Planet Hollywood-style attractions with the 'real' Mexico just beneath the surface.

Vallarta Adventure

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Overview

Quote:
Like most tropical resorts, Puerto Vallarta has endless options depending on your state of mind. We were there for a conference and a much needed escape from the Minnesota winter. While I can't blame the folks who opted to lay by the pool during their non-conference time, we couldn't help feeling that they were missing the whole beauty of this place. From the hundreds of humpback whales that spend their winters in the bay to the wonderful galleries in Old Vallarta, our recommendation is to get out and explore. There's more to see than we could cover in one week, but we sure covered a lot of ground. Must dos: 1. spend some time on the Bay. Regardless of the size of the boat or the length of the tr...Read More

Club Regina Puerto Vallarta

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Hotel | "Westin Regina"

Club Regina Puerto Vallarta Photo, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
Quote:
This high-end resort hotel has all the amenities and yet doesn''t overwhelm. Located in the Marina Vallarta hotel zone on the north side of the bay, the Westin is only a 3 peso bus ride into town. The Westin is beautifully designed with ample open space and an elegant Mexican style. Our room was on the eleventh floor and we could see all the way across the bay. Sunsets were spectacular from our balcony and we opted to host a daily margarita happy hour on our balcony to watch it. One afternoon, we watched whales breaching in the bay from our balcony as well. The hotel grounds are impressive, with an intricate network of swimming pools spreading across the meticulously groomed land...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 10, 2001

Club Regina Puerto Vallarta
Paseo de la Marina Sur 205
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico 48321
01(322)221-11-00

Mariscos Tino's

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Restaurant

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We were dead set on avoiding the tourist traps in town and wanted a locally-owned restaurant that was frequented by locals as well. Our concierge recommended Tino's which is located in the nearby 'suburb' of Pitillal. It was exactly what we were looking for. While we weren't the only gringos here (after all, we did get the recommendation from our resort), we were definutely in a part of Puerto Vallarta that does not exist for the sake tourism; this was the real Mexico. Tino's specializes in seafood caught fresh from the bay only a few miles away. The house specialty, and a regional favorite, is pescado Zarandeado-- a sea bass that is served whole and cooked in an open smoke bar-b-c...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 10, 2001

Mariscos Tino's
Calle Avenida No. 333, Esq. Revolucion
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
(3) 22-455-84

Vallarta Adventures (Canopy Tours, Scuba, Snorkel, Whale Watching)

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Attraction | "Whale Watching"

Vallarta Adventures (Canopy Tours, Scuba, Snorkel, Whale Watching) Photo, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
Quote:
I did fairly extensive research before our trip to find activities that would be of interest to us, and I found one company that seemed to offer every thing we wanted. Vallarta Adventures is an adventure travel company specializing in local outdoor activities. While that part was not unique, I found their ecological sensitivity and experienced staff to be the difference. Our whale watching excursion is a prime example. Our guide, Susan, is a biologist by training who came to Mexico several years ago from her native Holland to study the humpback whales that migrate here each winter to mate and give birth. From the moment we met her until the end of the tour, her enthusiasm was contagious and ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 10, 2001

Vallarta Adventures (Canopy Tours, Scuba, Snorkel, Whale Watching)
Edificio Marina Golf Local 13-c, Calle Mástil, Marina Vallarta
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico 48354
+52 322 297 1212

Chico's Dive Shop

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Attraction | "Diving Los Arcos"

Quote:
While Banderas Bay offers some exceptional advanced diving opportunities with superb chances of pelagic interaction (mantas, turtles, dolphin, etc..), we didn't have a full day to dedicate to the trip to and from Las Marietas. Instead, we opted for the more convenient Los Arcos National Park. We picked up our gear at Chico's at 7:30am and were shuttled by panga to the dive boat anchored off shore. The boat was full of snorklers and divers in training. Only six of us were already certified so we were looking forward to getting away from the crowds. The boat ride itself was worth the trip since we cruised just off shore from Puerto Vallarta and got some great shots of the city, the cathedral...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on March 10, 2001

Chico's Dive Shop
Díaz Ordaz 772
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
+52 (322) 222-1895

Vallarta Adventures (Canopy Tours, Scuba, Snorkel, Whale Watching)

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Attraction | "Sierra Madre Expedition"

Vallarta Adventures (Canopy Tours, Scuba, Snorkel, Whale Watching) Photo, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
Quote:
While most of our visit centered around the town of Puerto Vallarta and the Bay, we decided to take the full day Sierra Madre Expedition with Vallarta Adventures to get a fuller appreciation of the diversity of this beautiful place. We met at Vallarta Adventures office in the Marina at 9:30 and after a briefing on the day's activities we were assigned a guide and spilt into small groups of twelve. Each group then boarded a bright yellow Mercedes all-terrain vehicle--actually a truck with benches in the back and an awning over our heads. We were comfortable enough, each of us having a seat belt and bars to hold onto as well as pads on the benches. Our guide, Abel, gave us a brief history of th...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 10, 2001

Vallarta Adventures (Canopy Tours, Scuba, Snorkel, Whale Watching)
Edificio Marina Golf Local 13-c, Calle Mástil, Marina Vallarta
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico 48354
+52 322 297 1212

Porfidio Tequila Distillery Tour

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Attraction

Quote:
Napa Valley is known for its wine, Seattle for its handcrafted beers and Champagne for its champagne. Until my trip to Puerto Vallarta, I had no idea that the Mexican state of Jalisco is the only place on earth where tequila is made. A five minute cab ride from Marina Vallarta brings you to one of the finest distillers of tequila in the state...and thus, the world. Porfidio tequilas are a world apart from the spring break, margarita mixer stuff one frequently associates with tequila. This is sipping tequila, with a subtlety and complexity much like single malt scotch. The distillery itself is small, and the tequila is made in small batches. The tour lasts about thirty minutes and ta...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on March 10, 2001

Porfidio Tequila Distillery Tour
Highway 200
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico