You have so many reasons to decide about your happiness, other than the persons telling you not to do it…

Just choose to be happy in your own skin!

You are amazing and so is Puerto Vallarta.

Puerto Vallarta has been recognized as one of the 10 Best Cities of the World to Visit Outside United States, in the category Small Cities, according to Condé Nast Traveler 32º Reader’s Choice Awards.

Our beautiful destination was granted 5th position due to its natural attributes, its powerful energy, attractive activities for the whole family, and other qualities that meet in the corner of the Bay.

Puerto Vallarta is one of the three Mexican cities that are part of the 40 Most Important Cities of the Worldand one of the two that appear among the 20 Best Small Cities. In fact, our destination is the only Mexican beach city that appears in both lists.

“We feel really honored to be part of this exclusive list of international cities. We think that this is the result of the charm that people of Puerto Vallarta offer and the diversity of attractions that can be enjoyed here”, mentioned Javier Aranda, general director of the Fideicomiso de Turismo de Puerto Vallarta.

This year, more than 600 thousand readers worldwide were in charge of rating and sharing their experiences about their favorite places. This is the complete list of the 10 Best Small Cities of the World to Visit:


10. Cologne, Germany

9. Monte Carlo, Monaco
8. Puebla, Mexico
7. Florence, Italy
6. Bergen, Norway
5. Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
4. Salzburg, Austria
3. Quebec City, Canada
2. Dresden, Germany
1. Mérida, Mexico

Todd Bates​

Double-digit tourism growth predicted at Jalisco’s haciendas and manors

Enjoy your own private pool at Hacienda el Carmen.Enjoy your own private pool at Hacienda el Carmen.

Double-digit tourism growth predicted at Jalisco’s haciendas and manors

They’re pricey, but visitors can expect much more than just a place to lay their heads

Double-digit growth is predicted in visitor numbers this year to rural Jalisco, where an overnight stay at a historical hacienda or manor is one of the unique experiences on offer.

Both Mexican and foreign tourists are increasingly willing to pay rates of between 2,500 and 10,000 pesos (US $130 to $520) a night to stay at properties that provide a rich experience full of culture, history and art, according to a report in the newspaper El Economista.

Antonio Gutiérrez Martín, president of the Association of Haciendas and Manors of Jalisco (AHCJ), said that visitors who opt to stay at such properties can expect much more than just a place to lay their heads.

“For example, in the city of Sayula, you could have a rate of 2,500 pesos [per night] but that doesn’t mean that they’re only going to give you a bed and a bathroom. It implies a complete experience, your senses – sight, smell and touch – will be awakened . . .” he said.

Gutiérrez added that visitors to Sayula, a municipality about 120 kilometers south of Guadalajara, can visit the house where acclaimed writer Juan Rulfo was born.

Sampling regional specialties such as cajeta (caramelized goat’s milk) and ponche de granada (pomegranate punch) and visiting workshops where knives are handmade by skilled artisans are also popular attractions in Sayula, he said.

Returning to the subject of unique, traditional accommodation, Gutiérrez said that the target market for historical haciendas and manors is people aged 40 years and older.

“Due to the rates we charge, it’s not easy tourism, it’s tourism in which the standards are quite high,” he said.

“We have rates of up to 10,000 pesos. For example, there are rooms at Hacienda El Carmen in Ahualulco de Mercado [a municipality 75 kilometers west of Guadalajara] where it’s quite an experience . . . [having] a private space with a private pool and spa,” Gutiérrez said.

He said that AHCJ data shows that 80% of people who stay at the organization’s 40 properties are Mexicans and the other 20% are foreign tourists.

The latter mostly stay at properties in or around the better-known tourist destinations of Tequila and Puerto Vallarta, Gutiérrez explained.

People who choose to stay at the haciendas and manors in Jalisco can expect a high-quality and memorable experience, the AHCJ chief added.

“. . . We have committees that review quality standards of each of our associates and that means there is a guarantee that the experience will be positive.”

Source: El Economista (sp) 





Four Seasons Punta Mita Resort announces a New Cultural Round Table Series

  •  Four Seasons Punta Mita Resort announces a New Cultural Round Table Series

    Dos Catrinas restaurant, the dramatic new culinary offering at Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita, will play host to the first of a new cultural round table series presented by the resort, with this edition designed to celebrate Dia de Muertos.

    Known in Mexico as a “tertulia” – a gathering of intellects, similar to the days of the Algonquin Round Table – the Four Seasons Punta Mita Resort will present this first cultural tertulia under the title of “Catrinas Fest”, hosted by Executive Chef Jorge González and his team, along with some guest chefs and mixologists, to delve into the meaning and tradition behind Dia de Muertos and the key element that
    food plays in this most revered of Mexican celebrations.


    For more details and to book your Dos Catrinas Fest Package, please call: 1 866 280 9490.





Turtle Release and Beach Clean up, Oct 26, 2019

Dear customers and friends,

I invite you to join, as every year, you and your family or friends to this volunteer to help the ENVIRONMENT… Monex Bank invites you to:

Beach cleaning, and turtle release this time!
Date: SATURDAY 26 OCTOBER, 4.30PM (see more information in the postcard below)
Meeting point: Soriana Playa de Oro
I appreciate your confirmation please before this Friday, October 11, to register them with name, if you are an adult or child, and size to request your shirts and caps.

Hopefully you can join us, remember: It has no cost, nor do you have to bring anything, just your enthusiasm and participation!

Limited space, please confirm full name, adult and / or child, and size for your shirts.
Any doubt I am at your service,


Estimados clientes y amigos,


Los invito a sumarse como cada año a ustedes y su familia o amigos a este voluntariado para ayudar al MEDIO AMBIENTE  …Banco Monex los invita a :


  • Limpieza de playa, y liberación de tortugas  en esta ocasión!
  • Fecha:  SABADO 26 OCTUBRE, 4.30PM ( anexo  mas datos en la postal  abajo)
  • Punto reunión : Soriana Playa de Oro



Agradezco su confirmación por favor antes de este viernes 11 octubre , para inscribirlos con nombre , si es adulto o niño , y talla  para poder solicitar sus playeras y gorras.


Ojala puedan acompañarnos , recuerden : No tiene costo,  ni tienen que traer nada , solo su entusiasmo y participación ¡!


  • Cupo limitado, favor de confirmar nombre completo, adulto y/ o niño , y talla  para sus playeras..


Cualquier duda quedo a sus órdenes, ¡





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Cynthia M Hermosillo Ch.

Director Sucursal Puerto Vallarta



Tel. 3222599000 Ext. 9002

Tel. Directo ha cambiado!!: 

322 2599002(marcando los 10 digitos

Nos cambiamos!                 Blvd. Fco.Medina Ascencio No.2485 Local SUB E-1  Plaza Peninsula , Zona Hotelera Norte,

C.P. 48330, Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco

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Local singer-songwriter, Jose Carlos Olvera, will present an additional concert on Saturday, Oct. 12 at 8pm featuring a selection of acoustic covers and originals accompanied by othersurprise musicians. His previous performances were very popular and nearly sold out. Singer and entertainer, Losanna Diaz Avila, will be his special guest. Tickets are available from him directly via email at joc.olvera@hotmail.com or contact Incanto’s box office for assistance.

Returning to Incanto this season, award-winning singer-songwriter Cheko Ruiz presents ‘Mi Rumba’, his all-new show in the theatre. He plays original flamenco, rumba, and favorites from ‘The Gipsy Kings’ as well as traditional Mexican songs sung in his unique vocal style. His full band will join him featuring Emmanuel de la Rosa, bass guitar, Alex González, percussion, Juan Ramírez flamenco guitar, and Daniel Barragán, trumpet. Select Sundays at 7pm. Next show Oct. 20. See Incanto’s online calendar for dates, information, and tickets.

Pianist and accompanist Jean-Guy Comeau, ‘Jay-Gee’, returns to Incanto with ‘Mostly Romantico’ on Thursdays at 5pm starting Oct. 10, with romantic favorites, smooth classical and jazz, plus Mexican boleros and chansons françaises! No cover charge.

Join host Dennis Crow for Incanto’s ongoing film series of recorded live stage productions. On Oct. 10 at 7:15pm, he will present ‘The Producers’, the original Broadway production starring Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick, and winner of a record-breaking 12 Tony Awards! On Oct. 17 he will present ‘Beauty and The Beast’. See Incanto’s website for more information about upcoming films all shown on a big screen with state of the art sound in the air-conditioned theatre.

In association with Democrats Abroad, Incanto will air the Democratic Presidential Debate in the theatre on Oct. 15, at 7pm. Beverage service will be available. It is recommended that you arrive early as seating is non-reserved. Join them for Happy Hour 4-5pm and for Bob Bruneau at the piano in ‘Swingin’ Bob at the 88’s’ starting at 5pm. No cover charge.

Local French entertainer Michel Giglia returns with an encore performance of his hit show, ‘Hello, Paris’, featuring the finest in French music from noted artists including Edith Piaf, Charles Trenet, and more. His beautiful, velvety-smooth vocals will draw you in and he will be accompanied by guitar and accordion. Take a leisurely stroll through the streets of Paris and revisit fond memories of romance through song and dance. Oct. 18, at 7pm. Tickets on sale now at Incanto’s website and box office.

Returning soon by popular demand, tenor Alejandro Peña will present an encore performance on Oct. 19 at 8pm in the theatre. His exquisite operatic vocals mesmerize his audiences and include several well-loved arias and heartfelt ballads. He will again welcome some surprise special guests to join him on stage.

Renowned vocalist and entertainer, Enrique de Allende, sold out several recent concerts at Incanto and will present two encore performances of ‘A Voice Without Borders’ on Oct. 25, 26 at 7pm in the theatre. He sings many of your favorites including familiar operatic arias and contemporary hits by Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Sam Smith, and many others. Early reservations are recommended.

In the Piano Bar…

Joby & Tongo play Latin and American pop/classics. Acoustic guitar and handmade flutes and drums with vocals in English and Spanish. Sundays at 5pm.

Benji Gutierrez plays piano including many of your favorite ballads, jazz, and more. Sundays at 7:30pm.

Salsa Dancing/Lessons are held on Sundays at 8pm (upper terrace) with professional instructor Francisco Ledezma. Lessons are free with your food/drink purchase.

Join ‘The Renteria Brothers’ band on Wednesdays at 7:30pm as they present ‘Thaûmata’. An exciting blend of Latin Jazz, swing, Afro-Cuban, boleros, covers, and originals. Tickets available at the door or online.

Tracy Parks and Joby Hernandez host Open Mic on Thursdays in the piano bar. One of their most popular nights, it is often a full-house and features locals and visitors from all over the world with a wide range of backgrounds and talent.

Popular sultry blues and jazz singer, Joan Houston, returns to Fridays at 5pm in ‘The Joan Houston Show’ featuring American standards and classics with Bob Bruneau at the piano. Arrive early for Happy Hour and two for one from 4-5pm.

The Zoe & Leon Trio (Zoe Wood and Eduardo Leon) play on Fridays at 7:30pm in the air-conditioned piano bar featuring Nuevo Flamenco, swing, Latin Jazz, and traditional Mexican covers and originals with Danny Renteria on percussion. Tickets available at Incanto’s website.

Bingo with Pearl is held on Saturdays at 4pm. Prizes include gift certificates, show tickets, and cash. Lots of laughs! Live entertainment by Ballet Folklorico Tradiciones.

Pianist Dennis Crow plays many of your favorites on the piano Tues., and Fri.- Sun. starting at 9:30pm. He loves requests so bring some friends, gather around the piano and sing along.

Pianist Derek Carkner plays your favorite show tunes and ballads on Saturdays at 7:15pm. Join him around the piano and sing along!

Current hours 4pm-12am Thurs.- Sun. Starting Oct. 15, they will be open Tues. – Sun. Daily Happy Hour features two for one house cocktails, margaritas, and beers 4pm-5pm. Two for one show tickets for select current shows are available during ‘The Zen Hour’ 4pm-5pm daily. For more information and online tickets visit their website www.IncantoVallarta.com. Contact them at Incantopv@gmail.com or call 322 223 9756. Located at Insurgentes 109 (at the Rio Cuale).





RE/MAX Puerto Vallarta’s Latest Community Service!

 Oct 5, 2019

I am so proud to share that our RE/MAX agents did another wonderful job of helping another, local community, to clean up garbage, as well as a few other things!

Our location was Independencia, a few kilometers south of Costco.  Many of the neighbors thanked us for our efforts and Lupita may even get a listing there.

Firstly, I would like to introduce our newest agent, Andrea Thompson.  Originally from Los Angeles, Andrea  moved to Puerto Vallarta a little over 2 years ago and now calls Vallarta her forever home!

The 12 persons that assisted are:

Greg Schell, Warren Brander, their children Kiana and Justin, Gerard Allard, Dana Scapa, Lupita Montano, Martha Lievano, Alex Breceda, Patricia Zuniga and me.

As usual, we started at 930 am and were finished by 1045 am.  We collected another 47 bags, 3 chairs and a baby jacuzzi!

If you, or friends or family are ever thinking about real estate in the Puerto Vallarta area, please remember the company that really cares and works for the community.


Todd Bates






The Electric OM … Puerto Vallarta Art!

Another wonderful aspect of Puerto Vallarta; please go to see this incredible art and an expanding part of our landscape!

The Electric OM

This well-known piece in the Tile Park is so good, it’s tattooed right on Natasha’s arm. Or is the tattoo so good that it’s a piece in the Tile Park? Sometimes it’s hard to determine what is inspired and what is inspiration. Regardless of which it is, the electric om(s) are near and dear to our hearts. They’re the pulse of the park.
What Is “Om”? In many eastern philosophies, including Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism the word “om” is regarded as the sound of all things; the vibration from which literally everything and everyone originates. It is found in the hum of the earth, the bedrock itself. It is the sound of ants marching, and bees making honey. It’s in the ocean waves, and the screech of a hawk. It’s in every sound we make, and indeed, just like the earth itself, it’s in us even when we aren’t making any noise at all.

Om is that low level thrumming that underpins everything happening in this world, from the beat of your own heart to the roar of a jet engine.

If you’ve been to many yoga classes, you likely know that “om” is also a chant, a verbal totem. It is an anchor, a home base. It is a sound we can all make, from the moment we are born. From the universal om it builds into what will ultimately be our unique voice.

Just as one candle can light 1000 more without dulling its own flame, something magical happens when people add their unique voices to a chant of “om”. Everyone’s voice comes together as an auditory prism, with uniform yet singular facets, each as beautiful and rare as the last. It’s the most gorgeously-sung chorus you’ve ever heard, and it’s never the same twice.

Om is the silence after the chant too. The om after the om, if you will. On Sundays here in Vallarta, at the painfully early hour of 6 am, the church bells come a-calling, reminding you that you’re alive. And to get to church. Over the course of about thirty minutes there is a series of bell tolls, each with a different rhythm to them. Om is in every gong of every bell, and it carries the silence afterward too. Om is the void that’s left when the vibration stops.
Because om is the sound of all things. It is the true vibration and it never stops.

Om, Light and Dark – The Tile Park has two om pieces, a light and a dark one. Our oms have a certain electric quality to them. These oms illustrate vibration, bounce. They’re bright and they sparkle, even the dark one does. They are round and they are sharp too. They are happy little oms, a centerpiece of the park. They were among the first pieces to go up, because om is the original vibration. Just as the voices build in the room, the energy builds from what came before it. So the roots of the park are the most important things to us, the closest to our heart. The things that light the spark, the things that inspire.

Stop in and check them out! They’re near the west edge, by the amphitheater. Or if you happen to see Natasha out and about, just ask her to roll up her sleeve, it’s right there on her upper arm, close to her heart.




Jorge Chávez

Sep. 25, 2019

Relaxing in Bucerías can be very easy, with its wide range of entertainment including excellent restaurants, a thriving music scene, an art walk and both residential and commercial areas. The town’s name comes from the word “bucear” (to dive), as this activity is related to fishing, which has sustained the town since its founding. The Estatua del Buzo (Statue of the Diver), close to the main square, perfectly captures this tradition and is an ideal place for souvenir photos.

Bucerías: art and watersports, vallarta lifestyles

To Start

After breakfast at one of the various options in this Riviera Nayarit micro-destination, a short walk along its streets is the best way to begin. Thanks to its oceanfront location, Bucerías’s main square is the ideal place to get a feel for the town’s lifestyle and relaxed pace. To one side is the Artisans’ Market, which is very lively on weekends. A little hidden, but easy to reach, is Paseo del Beso (Alley of the Kiss), a pedestrian passageway connecting the market with the town, featuring curious murals highlighting romance.


Bucerías’s long, wide beach, with its fine sand and gentle waves, is undoubtedly one of its main attractions and one of the favorite destinations for families with young children. You will find many restaurants here, especially near the center of town. Due to its excellent climate throughout the year, this beach is an ideal place to practice and admire extreme watersports such as kitesurfing and windsurfing. And it is consistently included in SEMARNAT’s list of the cleanest beaches in Mexico.

Bucerías: art and watersports, vallarta lifestyles


From the simple to the gourmet, there are a number of options to consider here, many located on Lázaro Cárdenas and nearby streets, right next to shops and art galleries. Starting from the main square and heading north along the Pacific, a wide variety of oceanfront family restaurants offer exquisite specialties based on fish and seafood.


One of Bucerías’s busiest areas is the Zona Dorada (Golden Zone), where there are lots of boutiques, shops and galleries with different types of art. Consider taking the opportunity to admire the mystical and colorful Huichol crafts, especially the yarn paintings and beaded animal figures—not to be missed!

Bucerías: art and watersports, vallarta lifestyles


You can start the evening at one of Bucerías’s coffee shops, where you can enjoy blends from different parts of Mexico and the world, as well as exquisite fine pastries.

During the winter season, there are events such as the Farmers Market and the Bucerías Art Walk, which organizes art-related festivities. Throughout the year, there also are workshops in various disciplines.

When night falls, many bars have live music, performed by residents or some of the renowned musicians who visit. And the town’s culinary offerings have increased recently, with the addition of gourmet restaurants featuring various specialties, including Mexican, Asian and Italian dishes, among many others.

One of Riviera Nayarit’s most visited micro-destinations, Bucerías is ideal for anyone looking for a quiet weekend getaway and/or spending the day in the company of family or friends.

Bucerías: art and watersports, vallarta lifestyles

Venture south of Puerto Vallarta for small inlets, quaint towns and beautiful beaches

Mayto beach: 'absolutely divine.'Mayto beach: ‘absolutely divine.’

Venture south of Puerto Vallarta for small inlets, quaint towns and beautiful beaches

Take a boat from Boca de Tomatlán to Yelapa and get off the beaten track

When director John Huston came to film The Night of the Iguana in 1963, Puerto Vallarta was just a sleepy little fishing village. A little Hollywood glamour, provided by the famous cast and scandalous and media-drenched affair between Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, and this little pueblo suddenly became an international beach hideaway for starlets and regular folks alike.

Palm-lined beaches, turquoise waters, brown sugar sand and a sultry year-round climate — there’s a lot to love in Puerto Vallarta.

Unbeknownst to a lot of travelers that beach-hop north – to the beaches of Punta Mita, Sayulita and San Francisco – Puerto Vallarta’s southern shores are dotted with delicious little inlets and a handful of quaint towns that boast some of the coast’s most beautiful beaches. It takes a little effort to get to these off-the-beaten track expanses of sand, but I think you’ll find it worth it once you arrive.

From Boca de Tomatlán to Yelapa

The road south out of central Puerto Vallarta is a jungle-lined trek past luxury hotels, public beach accesses and a half-dozen, half-built dream houses. Despite the constant construction, a dense fog of humidity and heat permeates everything, slowing even the most ambitious projects and most energetic tourists.

Along this road you’ll pass the now-closed Night of the Iguana hotel, and several exclusive housing developments in pre-sale before you reach the highway entrance to Boca de Tomatlán, a small village about 30 minutes down the coast. Whether you go by bus or by cab, it’s easy to find the town’s boat dock as you enter Boca’s small handful of streets. This is one of the bigger towns along this stretch of coast and the take-off point for the boat that takes you down the shoreline.

You’ll see handfuls of locals and Mexican tourists waiting for the next water taxi to set out. Boats to Yelapa leave every hour on the hour starting at 8:00am with an additional final boat at 6:30pm. Sounds prompt, but everything here is variable, so arrive with sunscreen and patience. The Yelapa taxi will drop you off at any of the beaches between Boca and Yelapa (about a 40-minute ride) but you have to ask the boat’s captain in advance.

Alternatively you can ask around to see which boats are going to the specific beach you want and you can often find someone leaving sooner and getting you there faster. There is a single walking path that will take you overland to both Animas beach and Quixmo beach but it is a long and hot walk. The boats are infinitely faster and more enjoyable. In the case of the water taxi you pay when you get off; a private boat ride requires you to set a price in advance.

I suggest riding the entire way to Yelapa to take a look at the beaches as you decide what suits your fancy. There is a first tiny, rocky-edged beach called Madagascar as you pass a palapa “house” on the edge of a cliff heading out from Boca. There is nothing here as far as amenities and not much shade, but it is an isolated pinpoint of a beach to drop anchor and swim for a bit.

A little farther down and you will see a short, palm-lined strip of beach that is absolutely lovely called El Caballo. This has little human presence to speak of although there are a few hotels on either end tucked up into the mountainside. Just past the rocky outcrop at the end of Caballo is Animas beach. Animas has a decent strip of beach and a long dock in the center.

This a popular beach for tourists because there are a couple of dozen restaurants that sit between the sand and the jungle backdrop. The water is nice but not as crystal clear and gorgeous blue as some of the others.

Morning in Yelapa.

Morning in Yelapa.

The next big beach is Quimixto, which you will recognize by the terracotta-roofed house that sits to one edge, almost in the water. This is a splendid beach for an afternoon, and many locals told me it was their favorite. There are a handful of restaurants and hotels but much fewer than at Animas.

Next is Caletas, which is the home to the Ritmo de Noches show put on by Vallarta Adventures at night. This was also the once home of director John Huston and the beach is absolutely adorable, even though there are just a few hotels and no restaurants open to the public. Majahuitas beach (the next down) is similar in that there are a few hotels but not much with open arms to the public. Still the beach is delicious and small.

Yelapa is next up, with an ample beach to one side of the town, home to about 1,500 people. Several restaurants, including the most famous, Fanny’s, sit center-stage on the beach and boats bob in the water near the town dock as many of the locals you see working in this area either live here or in Boca. Yelapa is a nice town to make your base if you’re comfortable depending on water taxis for transportation or paying exorbitant rates for private boats (someone quoted me US $70 an hour for a private ride).

The town has some nice hotels including Hotel Lagunita, Casa Pericos and others that sit along the edges of Yelapa’s tiny bay. The rock outcropping to the south end of the bay down the little coast to Playa Isabella has nice snorkeling.

Yelapa to Chimo

Twice daily from Yelapa runs a taxi that heads farther south down the coast to Chimo beach, about 30 minutes away. Again, beware of trusting timetables too much and always be early and prepare to wait. Catch the morning taxi to head to La Manzanilla, a minuscule beach that glitters like a jewel just 10 minutes down the coast by boat. There’s nothing there to distract from the beauty of the crystal-clear water but a shady palapa for picnics.

Manzanilla glitters like a jewel.

Manzanilla glitters like a jewel.

From Manzanilla you can walk south over the rocks (watch out for iguanas!) to the next beach ingeniously called Playa del Medio, or beach in the middle. This is another gorgeous little gem, and quiet, unless there is a rowdy yacht parked just off the coast like the day I was there.

From Playa del Medio you can walk along a cement path to Pizota, a small fishing village at the farthest end of this strip of beaches. Pizota has that same lovely water, but the beach is scattered with locals’ kayaks and canoes and the water with taxis and fishing boats. Most days you will have a little audience if you want to swim there as the local boat operators hang out in the shade near the edge of the beach, gabbing and drinking beers.

Pizota is a regular stop on the Chimo taxi’s route, but be sure to ask the taxi captain and not the locals what time they will be coming through – answers varied wildly and I ended up missing it altogether. There is a small convenience store on the edge of beach with some surly women running it – a fine place if you need to get a beer or water or snacks.

Inland and then out again

Too far to go by water (unless you have your own boat) there are a handful of places farther south, what is commonly called Costa Alegre, that I think you should know about.

Mayto beach is absolutely divine. The water makes a deep drop just past the sand-dune style coast, but while it looked rough, the day I went the waves were a joy. A single hotel sits on the beach, the Mayto Hotel (what else?), and they serve cheap beer and delicious food in an exclusive setting. This beach is starting to be on people’s lips, but it’s still so far out there (about an hour from the closest town of Tuito) that it’s yet to be overrun with tourists.

Playa del Medio is another gorgeous gem.

Playa del Medio is another gorgeous gem.

The day I went (albeit during the low season) there were only about six other people (and most of those eating at the hotel). The beach stretches lazily around a 12-kilometer bay that the staff of the Mayto says can have rougher waves in the winter season. There is no shade here so bring that umbrella or prepare to fry. There is a small tortoise refuge that releases turtles in the evening if you stick around. You can camp at the tortoise refuge for about $8 a person a night.

Once you make it out to Mayto you can hop down the coast for a few other hidden beaches. The Playa del Amor (love beach) is just a five-minute drive and another five minutes will take you to Tehu, a small fishing village famed for their oysters and ancient lighthouse. Talk to Juan Pablo at the XXX, he speaks perfect English after living in Los Angeles most of his life and can give you all kinds of tips on where to hike and which beaches he loves.

His suggestion, which I didn’t have time to follow, was Playa Corrales, about an hour north, where he said the bay is so small and intimate it’s like floating in a Jacuzzi. Sitting at Juan Pablo’s place you can see the beaches of Villa del Mar across the bay. Supposedly the waves are rough because of their location but you should definitely decide for yourself.

For a stop on the way back to Puerto Vallarta, the tiny town of El Tuito is growing in popularity. It is famed for its dairy products so make sure to order the jocoque or queso fresco from a local restaurant. Another lovely side trip? The Vallarta Botanical Gardens on that same road, a breathtaking collection of local flora in the midst of the dry, tropical forest.

While travel times and complications can sometimes feel overwhelming, I promise you any of these hidden beach that you make the effort to visit will reward you with a delicious swim and an equally delicious day.

Lydia Carey is a freelance writer based in Mexico City and a frequent contributor to Mexico News Daily.