As you travel around Banderas Bay in Mexico, from just outside the curve of the northern tip all the way around to the southern edge, you can find a smorgasbord of beaches, each one different, and each one gorgeous in its own way.
Banderas Bay is bounded on the north by Punta Mita and on the south by Cabo Corrientes, with the resort city of Puerto Vallarta just about in the centre. Within the blue curve of this Mexican coastline, each fold and turn hides sun-kissed beaches, some small and intimate, some wide and busy.
There’s a family beach, a surfing beach, a gay beach, a beach where you can buy fresh coconut pie – in short, a beach for every taste. With the town of Puerto Vallarta as your centre, a beach lover can choose a different stretch of sand each day and find a new slice of local Mexican life each time. Here’s an even dozen – all worth a visit.
With the peso having dropped even lower post-Trump, Mexico is a real bargain and with cold weather coming, it’s the perfect time for a warm escape. Life can indeed be a beach.
Los Muertos Beach, Sayulita
This is one of two “Beaches of the Dead” and I like to think of this one as the beach for philosophers. It is a quiet sandy space, protected from the larger waves by an outcropping.
The sand stretches all the way up to a traditional graveyard, worth a visit all by itself. It’s the perfect place to throw down a blanket, put on your sunscreen and contemplate the meaning of life and death. If you get bored, the surfing beach is just around the corner.
Punta Mita’s Four Seasons Resort Beaches
These are a string of sophisticated beaches, with comfortable cushioned sofas and cabanas, a cool thatched beach shack serving drinks and burgers, and a long, wide smile of white fine sand. One section has craggy rocks and rough surf, but just around the edge of the cliffs, the water becomes calm. The drawback here is that you can only use these beaches if you are a guest of the hotel. But you can book a reservation for lunch or dinner in the surfside Bahia Restaurant and enjoy the spectacular ocean views. Be prepared to go through some tight security, though. This is where the President of Mexico plays golf, and where celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow own villas.
The name originated from the fishing dock where local boats used to offload their catches, but now the beach is a super place for surfers, particularly for beginners and longboarders. This is where you can try out your moves before you tackle some of the bigger waves such as those at Playa Lo de Marcos, outside the bay.
Los Muertos Beach, Old Town, Puerto Vallarta
Nothing dead about this beach. It’s the epicentre of life in Puerto Vallarta and you can find almost everything here. The section near to the River Cuale is called Olas Altas, and in that part you can find, under the bridge, the local oyster vendors. There are often artists painting in the early mornings. Water sports abound, beachside cafés are numerous, mariachis will serenade you, vendors will sell you anything from sun hats to souvenirs and friendly ladies will give you a manicure, a tattoo or a massage while you recline under your umbrella. It’s busy, family friendly and fun.
Read the rest including Blue Chairs Beach, Conchas Chinas Beach, Palmares Beach, Mismaloya Beach, Boca de Tomatlan, Colomitos Cove, Yelapa, and Hidden Beach (Las Marietas) at The Globe and Mail.
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