Tuesday, June 10, 2014

PUERTO VALLARTA MORE THAN JUST A PRETTY BEACH


             Sunset over Puerto Vallarta on the Bahia de Banderas

I think it is only appropriate that one of my first blog postings shall be about Puerto Vallarta where our “journey” began seventeen years ago. After many years of visiting Mexico as tourists my husband and I finally made the decision to move to Mexico. And since Puerto Vallarta had always held a special place in our hearts, it was only natural that “PV” would be our new home. We were very naïve and maybe more than a little loco, but we took the plunge and have never looked back. So here we go on a mini introduction to this beautiful town. Welcome to Puerto Vallarta!


  Can you locate the state of Jalisco which is home to PV?



We quickly learned that Puerto Vallarta was much, much more than just a pretty beach. And despite the growth and modernization over the last seventeen years, Puerto Vallarta still has maintained its generous heart and soul which defines the culture of Mexico.



Church of Guadalupe, the heart of Puerto Vallarta, with its iconic crown.



The Charro parade, during the September celebrations of Mexican Independencia, reflects the strong cowboy tradition in the state of Jalisco.    

  Looking north from Old Town to Centro and beyond.


The excitement of setting up a home in a foreign land with a different culture, a different language, different traditions, etc., etc. was intoxicating to me! Each day was a new challenge and I found the experience thrilling.


A traditional Huichol family from the Sierras comes to Puerto Vallarta to sell their amazing art and to enjoy the beach.


Man, burro, and dog - traditional scenes still to be found in Puerto Vallarta.


As I am writing this post one early weekday morning I can hear a lively Mexican ballad being played over the loudspeakers at the Emiliano Zapata Elementary School. This "wake-up call" for the students precedes the principal making the daily announcements.  I don't know about you, but I never started the day in this wonderful fashion!


This public school is in the area commonly referred to as the "Zona Romantica" in Puerto Vallarta's "Old Town." And all of this is located less than one block from Los Muertos Beach, the most popular beach in Puerto Vallarta. How incredibly special! But I digress ...


Emiliano Zapata Elementary School in Old Town.


Puerto Vallarta is naturally blessed with being located on La Bahia de Banderas, the bay of flags, which is a beautifully large bay with endless beaches and surrounding mountains covered in dense tropical vegetation. It is truly magical!

One of the most popular beaches in Puerto Vallarta is Los Muertos Beach which is located in the "Old Town" (aka Zona Romantica) section of the city. It is where locals and visitors alike congregate to enjoy the beautiful blue waters, the many beach activities, and the many restaurants which are available both day and night.


Los Muertos Beach with its Boy and Dolphin sculpture.



Los Muertos is where the action is and during high season it is very busy and very fun!


         Up, up, and away! Fly like a bird and enjoy the sights!


The new pier at Los Muertos Beach - gorgeous and functional for both locals and visitors.



Hot action and warm ocean in the Bay of Banderas - a perfect combination!


The pelicanos taking a fishing break on one of the local fishing pangas.



    Fantastic sand sculptures!


The new Muelle (pier) at Los Muertos Beach at night is a definite WOW!


Not all the "locals" hang at the beach! This handsome one would rather hang in the trees!



But as the title of this posting says, Puerto Vallarta is much, much more than just a pretty beach! The newly reconstructed Malecon promenade has been totally redesigned and is the focal point of Puerto Vallarta. This pedestrian walkway runs along the beach from Old Town, crossing over the two Rio Cuale bridges, and continuing north through the shopping, dining, and entertainment center of Puerto Vallarta.  It is a beautiful walk during the day, but also a vibrant and happening place during the evenings.  It's where locals and visitors come to enjoy Puerto Vallarta's beauty, friendliness, and action and it's not to be missed!


The beautiful new Malecon promenade is a huge success!



A walk, a view of the bay, an art stroll, live entertainment, food vendors, artists, and music, and you can even dance with Michael on the Malecon - something for everyone!


The "Lovers" is one of many bronze sculptures on the Malecon and it has received many "good luck" knee rubs!


The plaza on the Malecon has live music and entertainment for everyone.

More bronze sculptures to be enjoyed on the newly designed Malecon "boardwalk."  

 
Cool new additions to Puerto Vallarta's Malecon.


Bravo PV for one of the best Malecons in the entire country!


And if the beach and the action on the Malecon and Old Town are not enough, another wonderful aspect of Puerto Vallarta is its extensive art scene. Art is not only found in the many art galleries throughout the city, but also outdoors as exemplified on the Malecon with its incredible collection of bronze sculptures and with locals artist showing their work. Sculptures and murals are also found in other outdoor venues throughout the city including the beaches. It is very much like walking through an outdoor museum and everyone can enjoy.


Makes you want to dance the night away, yes?



     Artist Evelyn Boren captures the magic of Puerto Vallarta in oils.



                                   Can you find the public phone?

       

This gorgeous iguana can be found on the Rio Cuale bridge near the Municipal Arts and Crafts Mercado in Old Town and he is a favorite.  


There is so much to see and do in Puerto Vallarta that words alone are inadequate, but hopefully my photos will help. I look forward to posting more in the future about Puerto Vallarta and the many nearby areas worth visiting including Sayulita, San Pancho, Boca de Tomatlan, Yelapa, El Tuito, San Sebastián del Oeste, the Puerto Vallarta Zoo, and the Puerto Vallarta Botanical Gardens.


I remember many, many years ago hearing that a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, I am a believer so click on WEB ALBUM for additional photos for this posting. I always look forward to hearing from my visitors so do not hesitate to contact me with any comments, suggestions, or questions. Until next time, saludos and gracias, Laura




                                          Memories are just a click away!

                                    

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