OK, we can admit it: We Vallartenses like to complain. The potholes in the roads after the rains! Things don’t work like they do in the US or Canada! Traffic on holidays! And oh did we mention downtown blocked off for a parade!
But once a year, its time to drop our critical posture. For all that can make life in P.V. maddening, the truth is we love this place, and we don’t care who knows it.
Here are the 31 things that make us thankful we live in Puerto Vallarta.
We have a number of incredible Farmer’s Markets. These markets offer super prices on locally grown and made produce, meats, grains, jewelry, clothes and household goods. We love the adventure of strolling through the market to see what is fresh and available.
The fact that we live in this gorgeous tropical paradise let’s us harmonize with Mother Nature. We see wildlife popping up ever day around us in surprising places; Iguanas in the yard, Parakeets in our trees, Possums in the garden, Foxes in the jungle, …….. You never forget that in Puerto Vallarta you are in the natural world.
Mexico adopted the concept of equal rights quickly years ago and especially our community. This is one of the reasons so many gays and heterosexuals have been drawn to our city. Tolerance and acceptance of everyone for who they are make this a wonderful community of harmony.
We have a super nightlife that can run until 6:00 AM for those that are looking to dance the night away. Dinner here can easily begin at 10:00 at night and end at 2:00 in the morning with dear friends. It’s normal and really fun.
Taco stands. All over town you can drop in and have breakfast, lunch or late dinner at a plethora of taco stands that serve delicious food with each neighborhood having its amazing favorite hangout.
We have a number of movies, television shows, and reality TV programs shot here. We have long been a destination for Hollywood’s entertainment and movie business along with Mexico’s growing movie and television industry.
From Golf Tournaments to Fishing Tournaments and even Sailing Regattas we have been host to many world class events including the World Economic Conference and the super sized Mexico Tourism Expo.
Odds are that any foreigner you meet could be an Opera Singer, the CEO of a major Fortune 500 company, a World Economic leader, successful Entrepreneur, Movie Director, a Writer, Musician, a Photographer, Artist, or someone from any number of interesting and exciting professional careers.
A Malecon that is wonderful to stroll down along the oceans edge that is lined with beautiful statues, interesting people, an amphitheater with free events and productions, restaurants and cantinas, and of course what is great fun, people watching. You can purchase corn in a cup, cotton candy, fresh oysters, sweets, ice cream, crepes and fresh natural flavored waters to drink, toys and the list goes on and on. It is our magical place to stroll or take a beautiful morning run.
Nobody blinks when you say something weird while trying out your Spanish language skills.
Wonderful and beautiful local people form a tight knit community. People say good morning, afternoon and goodnight to strangers walking past. You know your neighbors. You make a new friend without evening trying. It is a wonderfully pleasant surprise to most who are not used to this.
Movie theaters and shopping centers offer all of the conveniences of home. Our major mall Liverpool offers the same shops or there equivalent. Movies theaters here are a great place to escape the warm the weather, have some yummy snacks and enjoy the latest releases. Most movies come out at the same time here in Mexico as in Canada or the US.
An abundance of shops. Most areas will have great markets with wonderful shops and more then you could imagine. Find everything from fine jewelry to tourist souvenirs, clothes, you name it you can find it.
Fresh fruit stands are easy to find here, sometimes they even come to you on the back of a truck. The fruits here are fresh and ready to eat right out of the bag. This is a great treat and inexpensive in comparison to other places.
Adventure tours offer a variety of options for different people. If you’re feeling very adventurous you can zip line through the jungle high above the trees or ride ATV´s through the mountains. If you desire something less adventurous you can take a nice boat ride to a beautiful beach or ride horses.
Dolphin Adventures are a great way to spend an afternoon. Head out on the boat and watch them swim around your boat or you can even swim with them in one of the many tours offered in the area.
Whales, dolphins, mantaray and other marine life are plentiful in the bay of Banderas. You can take a whale watching tour, head out to the Marietta Islands to snorkel or even learn how to scuba dive here in PV.
Vallartenses can turn any place into an Art Gallery. Walk into restaurants around town and if you fall in love with particular piece it most likely is from a local artist and can be yours. Along with this are an abundance of art galleries and every year we have several art walks.
Puerto Vallarta is very walkable. In most areas you can forget the car and walk to dinner, the beach pretty much anywhere if you like. We also have great hiking trails if you want something a little different. The Las Animas hike is a personal favorite.
Our Los Mangos library is full of wonderful books and offers educational programs for the community. Concerts, exhibits, per adoptions, music, and many opportunities to learn something new abound.
Inexpensive food is plentiful at your local neighborhood fruit and vegetable markets. Fresh fish markets, grains and seeds, and even local fresh meat markets are plentiful. Fresh healthy and organic alternatives are found everywhere. And it is less expensive than the grocery bill most foreigners are used to seeing.
Great Hospitals and health care professionals. Medical tourism has shot up in recent years and there is a reason why. You can receive great care without spending your last dime. We have specialized hospitals, plastic surgeons, dentists and local clinics, all very close by and every one of them have English speaking doctors and staff.
We also have free concerts downtown. On any given night you can walk the Malecon and find yourself in the middle of a concert. Sometimes you will find a local band playing or we often have events with big name musical guests like Enrique Iglesias and Alejandro Fernandez.
Tourists are welcome in Puerto Vallarta. Some of the most helpful and kind people are right here. There is always a helping hand and the people of Puerto Vallarta are happy to have you here and want nothing more then for you to enjoy their city.
The Pacific Ocean will take your breath away. Try it in the morning for an early stroll in the sand. Or what the heck: Try it in the evening when the sun is about to set on any beach. It is a sight to be seen at any time of day.
Strolling Musicians are available often in restaurants and bars to entertain. You can enjoy your meal or drink and listen to your special request. Live music at your fingertips.
It’s not the Wild West any more but we have Charros. You can see them in action at various venues around the bay in full attire and watch them ride and dance their horses.
We have Entertainment venues like the Celebrity Theatre or Act II’s new theatre and the boutique theater. You can see anything from a local choir, theater remake or a professionally choreographed show. We have professional actors come in for some shows and just had the Russian ballet in town.
New friends are easy to make. Everyone’s from somewhere else; everyone’s trying to network. You can make some incredible friends for life in Puerto Vallarta. Sometimes you are surprised by how much you have in common with the people who live here.
We have some of Mexico’s best Restaurants and eateries. From world class chocolate and ice cream to world class gourmet festivals that attract chefs from around the world.
The weather. Yes it’s a cliché, but you know what they say about that. After you have lived here, how could you be happy with the climate somewhere else?