After the most hectic flight experience I've had in all my travels, United Airlines finally got us to Mexico.. only 30 hours late with no luggage! Ultimately we missed our snorkeling plans and horse back riding. Always trying to stay on the positive side, we turned to the Puerto Vallarta life style guide magazine and it helped us get back on track to exploring the beauty of the town in what little time we had left. SO mucho gracias to 105 W magazine! You can find them on Instagram along with many beautiful photos of Puerto Vallarta that are also available on the apple store!!
Last year I lived in Mexico City! Thanks to the food and the people it is one of my top favorite places! It gave me the chance to fall in love with all of Mexico. Living in Mexico City I saw the modern on the go culture, yet I never had to travel far to get back to the Aztec history. The people of this city are so laid back and peaceful. Sometimes I feel like this beautiful place with all its culture and authenticity, doesn't get the credit it deserves. The food in Mexico City is top notch, you can walk in to any place on Amsterdam Circle and know it’ll be delicious. I was a regular at Kitchen 6, a hip gastro pub that served pizza, burgers, and fries. That place never disappoints! Amsterdam circle is where I lived in Condesa, it was a great place to live but also good for a vist. So, when the opportunity came togo to Puerto Vallarta with my sister Hannah, we jumped on it and this time even took our dad along for the ride! Our father is a man who almost never leaves the farm and is now leaving the USA for the first time! A comical, entertaining adventure is expected. My dad does not try new food, he does not go out of his comfort box, & he doesn't swim. So yeah, Mexico is going to be a culture shock! How he raised 2 bohemian travel junkies I don't know, but he's the perfect person to use as a guinea pig. I like to think I’m an experienced traveler, that's one of the reasons I started this blog. If I could make my dad love his trip to Mexico, then I truly have mastered the art of travel. When a person goes to another state, or country for that matter, it's so important to keep an open mind. It's not always an easy thing to do in this day and age. Yes there are unsafe and unsightly places in Mexico, but that's every where in the world; if we judged NYC or America based on every CSI episode on TV then nobody would vist! Ever! NYC is magical and so is Mexico! In fact, Puerto Vallarta at times was the most romantic and nostalgic place ever.
Our first official day in Puerto Vallarta was spent on the beach where my dad declared it the most beautiful place on earth! Hannah splashed around for hours in the ocean. How the palest person on the earth dosen't get burned is a mystery, but she glides through the water effortlessly like a mermaid. Me on the other hand, am as comfortable in the water as a cat, I swim like a rock. As you may have already seen on America's next top model cycle 13 in Hawaii. But fortunately I am great at laying out on the beach and enjoying sangria while I day dream!
The next day we went in to Puerto Vallarta. We were staying just about 15 minutes outside of town. We had a taxi drop us off at Malecon board walk around this bronze staue ....
When we got there and were dropped off our taxi driver told us to go left; that it's a popular spot. So even our taxi driver that didn't speak good english knew where we wanted to go! We wondered to the state above and started our aventure down the Malecon.
If you want to admire local architecture this is a perfect time to do so. You can start with a walk around Downtown; begin at the Romantic Zone, also known as "Olas Altas", you walk down the Malecon weaving in and out of ally ways. You can’t really get lost because if you simply look for ocean it will take you back to the Malecon. Malecón is the Spanish name for "esplanade along a waterfront" and that's exactly what it is, a walk along the ocean front. But to us it was so much more. Hearing the waves roar up and smash on the rocks is truly magical.
As you walk down the water front you will start to see what looks like a gaint crown hovering the city, and that's when you realize you have to visit the local cethedral known as Lady Guadalupe. It was Sunday when I went and there were elderly ladies serving food. Lliterally you guys, I was one person away from geting tacos when the woman in front of me bought them all! So I settled for fresh fruit, they only took donations because it was all for the church. Mexico has a huge catholic population and for the most part it's a bit conservative, no thong bikinis here. Near there are alleys that go up to neighborhoods on the mountain. I took the alleys to get to the cathedral and when we were done we popped out at a mini park. There you can see original and local architecture. I was also told near by is the house of Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton!
Cuale Islad is also a must see! It's near to the malecon so you kinda just stumble upon it & there will be a bridge over a little river that meets the ocean and stairs down to the island. Cuale island is surrounded by the river and lots of nature. It's small and not an actual floating island. It has local markets you can haggle at, art and restaurants like "River Café" 105 W magazine recommended it to us so we went and it was beautiful, unfortunately they were closed for a private event. We then asked the super cute hostess where else she suggest & she sent us to Oliver's; it was great Mexican food that satisfied the foodie in me and even the tastebuds of our picky dad! To top it off our table over looked the ocean, making it such a beautiful experience.
After leaving the restaurant we did some more exploring. Walking up the beach front where there was so much food I didn't know what to do. Wishing I could eat everything in sight, but knowing there’s no way that was possible. We found a local flea market where I bought some great chocolate, this was one of my favorites because they were selling some really great quality food and art. I suggest you save your money until half way through your walk. Whenyou get to the point where you see people sellingfood on the streets and it gets busy you will know you are there and ready to spend!
105 W magazine also suggested "Café de Olla" wich ended up being at the end of our walk but when I saw it I wanted to eat there too! Just too much food for a tiny hippy person to eat in one day!
105 W magazine also suggested "Café de Olla" wich ended up being at the end of our walk but when I saw it i wanted to eat there too! Just to much food for a tiny hippy person to eat in one day!
Traveling can be just as rough as it is glamorous! At times we wanted to pull our hair out but we were exploring together, a memory my sister and I will forever have with my father. I got to watch my father experience new food, new culture, new country and that was priceless. To me Traveling is the best education and I'd spend my last dime to travel somewhere new. I will always miss a place I've never been to. I will crave things I don't know exist. I will reach out in the dark not knowing what I am searching for and that rock of the boat will always be my comfort. once you see part of the world you will want to see more. My dad now wants to go to Hawaii so perhaps he has caught the travel bug as well. Either way my goal is to keep learning, to keep traveling, to keep meeting new cultures and push my self out of my comfort box. I believe it’s what will lead to my personal growth and self happiness.
So you know I always end on some good ol' inspiration so you probably though the blog was over ha your wrong below are some taxi tips, more suggestions from 105 w magazine and funny things my dad did! ENJOY......
Taxi cab trick "when you have wifi at where ever your staying in google maps app drop a pin to your destination and map it out before heading out even when you don't have wifi the dot will still follow you so you can have comfort that your headed in the right direction and if your not you can tell your cab driver even if he don't speak english then you can show him. traffic is usually pretty heavy the cab drivers expect it so ask for a price before you get in ask your hotel how much you can expect to pay that way your not being ripped off, don't get in if your not happy with the price. Don't forget to tip and don't be weak when you speak and negotiate a price. My hotel said it would be 200 dollars to get back so I ask the driver if he knew where my hotel was he said yes the cab driver said 300 and I said no walked away he came back and said 220 and then I said 220 it wont change right and he giggled I just stared back firmly and I said again the price wont change correct he agreed so I hoped in when we got to our hotel I pulled out 220 then 120 for tip. I handed it to him and got out I was firm so he didn't try and push me some taxi driver will try to take for granted that your american and don't speak Spanish or know the area so if you don't act timid then they wont push it. Even if your taxi driver dose take you the long way your still not out alot of money the average taxi ride cost $5 USD so its really not alot of money."
other places 105 W Magazine sujest to vist and didn't get the chance is ..... (im most upset about the hippy beach lol)
You have to spend a day also in one of the Beach Villages near to Puerto Vallarta like "Yelapa" or "Las Ánimas". You can take a water taxi in Los Muertos Beach in the morning And spend your day in those. I think you would love the seafood And nature. Yelapa has that hippie style and you can do horseriding and Admire the waterfall. And you have to ask for tradicional pay!Other ways to explore nature is taking a Canopy Tour. There are a lot here in PV like "Vallarta Adventures", a nd the activities are great and fun You also can visit La Marina, There are restaurants like "Las Palomas" or "Los Alcatraces" with regional food. For night life on the malecon I would recommend to visit "La Bodeguita del Medio", a cuban bar with tropical music and nice mojitos :)If you like modern music "Bar Morelos" is the one. It's also near to malecon.I hope had given to you nice information. There are so many things to do or see. There is also "Marieta Island", you can visit it, it has an unique hidden Beach
He caught a chill and declared he might freeze to death ........ right on the tropical beach of Mexico! ha