My favorite day-trip from Puerto Vallarta!
I have taken this bus tour four times, and I have always seen something new and different each time. I recommend it for singles, families, young, and old! It always begins with a pick-up at your hotel early in the morning, but it's acceptable to snooze on the bus. They are comfortable motorcoaches with air-conditioning. The guides are very good at providing information and history of the area during the trip.
Soon after leaving Puerto Vallarta you cross into the state of Nayarit to the north. Bucerias is the next town... they have a great beach, and even nicer beaches a little farther at Destilladeras and Punta Mita. You may take local buses for about $2.50 each way from Puerto Vallarta if you'd like to enjoy those beaches. We eventually turn north to Sayulita on Highway 200, and then pass San Francisco, a sleepy little place that I instantly fell in love with. We stopped here for breakfast (included in tour), and it was great. We had time to visit the beach, which was very nice and uncrowded.
Later, you turn off the main highway and head west toward the ocean. You see long rolling fields of corn, tobacco, and watermelons. Also, John Deere tractors... (quite a few of them), and occasionally the horse/mule and plow! As you get nearer to the coast the road climbs and you wind along through beautiful scenery until you round a corner-- and there's the ocean down below!
As you get nearer San Blas, your driver may stop quickly to buy a "Jack Fruit" to share. One will feed all of you! Be sure to try it if you get a chance.
Our first tour stop is at the La Tovarra River. Here you board boats with outboard motors, and head upriver at a leisurely pace. The tall mangrove roots at this end of the river are really something! Eventually they give way to very tall grasses on either side, and lots of sunshine.
Most likely, the first wildlife you see will be birds. It could be an egret, white crane , cormorant drying its wings, hawk, or many other birds. On every trip we've also spotted crocodiles on the bank and tortoises sunning on logs.
You eventually reach a crocodile facility where you can get out of the boats and stretch. I enjoyed seeing the tiny baby crocs! After a while you head back down the river, and reboard the bus to San Blas.
There isn't a lot in town, but it's fun to look around and shop quickly. Then you visit a fort on a hill overlooking the town and surrounding areas. The view is breath-taking up there! Old cannons, an old church, and gardens are great for picture-taking. It's time for lunch (included) at a beach restaurant. It's usually fresh fish or fajitas... very tasty. Then, you may take a leisurely stroll on the wide sandy beach before you head home. The bus is usually quiet, and you'll probably have a beautiful sunset waiting for you in Puerto Vallarta!