There is so much more to Vallarta than just the resort areas and downtown. Puerto Vallarta is located on the Pacific Ocean’s Bahía de Banderas aka Banderas Bay. We love to venture out and see how the locals live, experience their culture and eat authentic food.
The drive along the coast is amazing and so very different from the tourist areas. Sometimes you are high above the water and sometimes you are almost at sea level – both giving very unique views.
Over the years, we’ve left the town several different ways (taxi, bus, 4 wheeler, private driver). Twice we hired a driver.
In 2006 we were vacationing with our 2 young daughters. Our 2 year old was hot (August) and needed a nap. Our private driver/tour guide, who we found in a downtown church, drove us around in his Yukon XL (lots of good A/C) while we saw the sights and our baby napped. It was great. He knew a lot about the area and then he took us to our resort. Great trip. Nice guy.
Our private driver, Alberto, on our most recent trip (October 2017) took us around the bay, up to the mountains, down to the beaches, out to where the road ends, and around town and made lots of stops so that we could get out and take pictures.
His English was pretty good, but we spent our driving time teaching each other English and Spanish words and talking about our kids. He even showed us where to get the biggest selection of tequila for the best price – where the locals shop. We took some home to our babysitter (that 2 year old is now 13) and dog sitter.
He even circled the Puerto Vallarta sign in heavy traffic to make sure that I got a good image. He even made an extra stop so we could see some big crocs and arrived at our resort just before a big storm.
On our 2006 trip, we took a bus out to Los Arcos. I knew I loved it from the start. I knew that some day I would swim or kayak or snorkel or paddle board or something…..in that amazing water around those fascinating rocks.
When our bus stopped for pics of Los Arcos, someone put an iguana on our heads and shoulders so we took pictures of that too.
He seemed friendly enough – the iguana I mean – I don’t even remember the guy.
Next we toured a tequila farm and some of us even had samples. The tour was interesting but I don’t like tequila so this little piggy had NONE!