Puerto Vallarta April 2014

My friend Holly and I are headed down to Puerto Vallarta for some relaxation and some sun! After this winter in Minnesota it is needed. Our flight on Sun Country was great! We were able to upgrade to first class, which made the start to vacation even better! The service was great and the food was good! What can be wrong with an omelet and a mimosa! We arrived into Puerto Vallarta on time and we were the first flight in so in and out of customs in like 20 mins! That was a first. I haven’t been to Puerto Vallarta in about 6 years so I was excited to get back and see the destination!

One thing you do have to remember when traveling to Mexico is avoid all the vendors in the airport looking to help you with your luggage or help you get transfers. When packages are booked the transfers are already included and they will be waiting outside of the airport. Just by pass everyone, I tell my clients not to make eye contact, and just head outside and they will be waiting for you! J The tour company that we used is IslandSun Experience. They were great! Talked about the destination on the way to the hotel. We did have to make a couple stops on the way to our hotel but it worked out perfect.

We are staying at the Riu Palace Pacifico. I have never stayed at Riu, I have seen them while on work trips and sell them all the time so I was excited to stay at one finally. We arrived at the hotel and were greeted by the bellman. We went right up to check-in, our room was ready, which we didn’t expect as we were at the resort about 11am! So happy to be able to go up to our room, change and get the pool! Our room did have a partial ocean view! Beautiful view of the courtyard, pool and ocean!

For the next 6 nights this was our home away from home! On our way back down to the pool we stopped at the concierge desk and made dinner reservations at their 4 ala carte restaurants, Krystal (Fusion), Kyoto (Japanese), La Toscana (grill and steakhouse) and Guacamole (Mexican). We were lucky enough to get reservations to all of them and they were all great! We did eat at the dinner buffet the other 2 nights and it was great! So much to choose from, you never would get sick of the food. They do change the menu up nightly at the buffet as well. Always something new to try!

One day, we visited the Hard Rock Puerto Vallarta to take a look around! What an amazing property! From the minute you walk in the door you are surrounded by music and the amazing memorabilia! Here are a few pictures of the resort and the amazing rooms!

 

One of the days we meandered to the malecon/downtown area! It is about 30mins from the Riu Palace Pacifico by taxi cab. It is in such a great area with many shops, restaurants and nightlife right on the beach. We walked by the Lady of Guadeloupe church. To visit here, long pants are required so I wasn’t able to go in and take pictures, but trust me, it is beautiful! Next, we stumbled across a restaurant called Viejo Vallarta for some lunch. It is located on the top floor with great views of the boardwalk, wonderful Mexican food and of course some of the best margarita’s! After lunch we went to the flea market. Here, you can find good shopping if you are prepared to bargain.  On our way back out to the beach we stopped for ice cream at a cute little place called Verde Manzana! Surprisingly, tequila ice cream wasn’t so bad J We made our way back to the center of town and decided to take the bus back to the hotel as it was going to be an experience and cheaper than a cab. My friend Holly has done this before so I was just along for the ride! All I have to say is thank goodness for the bus drivers and the lovely people of Puerto Vallarta. They helped us get from one bus to the other and made sure we were on the right bus!

We also ventured down the beach to a little town called Bucerias! We asked our hotel how long of a walk on the beach it would be… we heard anything from 20 minutes to an hour. Well we decided to give it a try… let’s just say they were both wrong, it’s about 1.5 hours. We began first thing in the morning so it wasn’t too warm but it was a long walk. Bucerias has a great farmers market and they do cater to tourists with many of the items featuring sports teams from the US and Canada. I was even able to find some Twins and Vikings goodies! J After spending a few hours shopping there we did end up taking a cab back and it was only about 10 minutes. I would love to spend an afternoon in that town as it has such a great old Mexican flare!

I love Puerto Vallarta and I can’t wait to get back there again!

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Kristi

Kristi

Leisure Travel Specialist at Travel Leaders (Woodbury Office)
I specialize in Destination Weddings and Honeymoons as well as travels to: Australia/New Zealand, Hawaii, Karisma Resorts and Pacific Islands (Fiji, Tahiti, etc.). Learn more about me and view my contact information►