January 1 – New Year’s Day (Año Nuevo) in Mexico and Puerto Vallarta is a national holiday. Banks and public government offices remain closed for the day. Take a stroll along El Malecon and enjoy all the different events, at night there’ll be fireworks and ships in the Bay.
New Year in Puerto Vallarta
January 6 – Three Kings Day (Día de Reyes) is a traditional gift-giving day for kids and a moment to eat the “Rosca” (try to avoid the little baby Jesus hidden in it) and drink warm chocolate. It’s a Mexican holiday when children receive toys and gifts in honor of the Three Kings’ visit to baby Jesus.
Some restaurants, hotels and The International Friendship Club, one of Puerto Vallarta’s largest charities, annually visit local hospitals and rural communities bringing truckloads of toys for the needy local children, read more on Puerto Vallarta Non-profit Organizations and Charities.
Rosca de Reyes – Día de Reyes
DECEMBER – MID-MARCH
Whale watching: Each winter season a growing number of tourists and locals enjoy tours that take them out to see the migrating Humpback whales in Banderas Bay.
From December to April, these gentle giants can be seen breaching out of the water as parents instruct their baby calves in the ways of their watery world.
Local eco-tour operators are licensed by the National Environmental Agency to assure respectful watching of these magnificent mammals.
Whale Watching – Humpback Whale
February 5 – Anniversary of the Mexican Constitution, national holiday and it includes a parade through downtown PV. Banks and public government offices remain closed.
February 14 – Friendship Day (Día de Amistad – Valentine’s Day); in Mexico, it’s not just about love, but also friendship, as well, is celebrated on February 14. Special menus in most the local restaurants, and live music to dance in different Latino ambiance nightclubs. You need to reserve in advance if you don’t want to wait for ages and get into a fight with your fiancee ;-).
February 24 – Day of the Mexican Flag. Local Mexican celebration.
Banderas Bay fills with sails as a series of regattas and takes full advantage of the gentle breezes, clear skies and calm waters surrounding Puerto Vallarta. Read more at http://www.vallartayachtclub.org/
First Tuesday – Carnaval Day. Party with masks, kids parade in the streets.
First Wednesday of the month – Ash Wednesday.
March 21 – Benito Juarez Day is a national holiday honoring the renowned former president who is known as the “Lincoln of Mexico.” March 21 First Day of Spring, and the beginning of the Springbreak season.
Semana Santa and Pascua, (Easter Break); Puerto Vallarta is at its peak occupancy during this pre-Easter Holy week, this period is a normal national vacation and there’s “spring break” from school, and many local families, mainly Guadalajara and surroundings, take the opportunity to bask at the beach and enjoy beautiful Puerto Vallarta.
April 9 & 10 – Bank holidays.
April 30 – Día del Niño (Children’s Day). Local children participate in a parade on the streets and enjoy the party.
May Cultural Festival (Festival Cultural de Mayo)
Every year the local government organizes the “Festival Cultural de Mayo”, with events and activities all through the month. Important local, national and international artists (painters, musicians, actors, etc.) participate in various concerts, events, and happenings all over the city and the surroundings.
Puerto Vallarta International Sports Classic
Various sports events are held around town. Exact dates vary but are always held in May. Click here for more info.
May 1 – Labor Day, a national holiday. Banks and public government offices are closed.
May 5 – “Cinco de Mayo”, celebrating the defeat of the French Army at Puebla in 1862, a national holiday. Banks and public government offices remain closed. In the USA known as “5 de Mayo”, though in Mexico it’s not as important an event.
May 10 – Mother’s Day (Día de la Madre), a national holiday. Mexicans really go out of their way to show their respect for their mothers, despite the “macho” background the country may have, mothers, have always been deeply revered and admired. Father’s day was created more recently and as an afterthought…
Fiestas de Mayo (May Fiestas, most of May). Traditional fair throughout the month, complete with games and attractions, livestock, exhibits, food, drinks, and entertainment. It is held in an open field in the charming neighborhood of El Pitillal; across from the cruise ship terminal.
May 24 – Springbreakers arrive during the following 6 weeks.
May 31 – Puerto Vallarta Anniversary day (birthday). Events along the Malecon and a great fireworks display.
MAY – DECEMBER Sea Turtle Preservation Months. Turtle Preservation Program; Puerto Vallarta has implemented a community-wide preservation program that combines protected nurseries for turtle eggs, plus educational projects. Turtle liberation ceremonies are held daily during the season at participating hotel beaches. In addition, Vallarta eco-tour operators host nighttime tours to research camps designed to protect the eggs where visitors witness sea turtles laying eggs in their natural habitat and the release of the baby turtles as they make their initial voyage to the sea. Puerto Vallarta’s coastline is among the most important breeding grounds in the world for numerous endangered species of sea turtles. The Puerto Vallarta Sea Turtle Protection Project is a joint effort of the Puerto Vallarta Hotel Association, city government and federal authorities.
June 1, Navy Day (Día de la Marina). A Mexican National event since 1942, it’s held in memory of those that June 1, 1917, sailed out in the ship “Tabasco” in Veracruz, the first Mexican merchant ship. This day, in all Mexican harbors, they honor the sailors that have lost their lives on duty, not only in battle but all activities related to the sea.
The event is mainly held at sea with all the city’s Navy ships in an offshore parade, they are followed by tour boats and fishermen that then hold a ceremony to honor navy personnel.
Dia de la Armada/Navy Day
All fishermen towns in the area also hold their own special celebrations out to sea and in their towns, you can enjoy this more traditional event for example in Yelapa, see more:
June (Third Sunday), Father’s Day. Not such a big event as Mother’s Day, but stores love it and remind you all June about it.
June 20 – Solstice
July 2 – National Elections Day. Held in Mexico every six years (next during 2012).
July 6 – End of the Spring break season
End of July – Mexican school season vacations, begins
July to December – Turtle release programmes at many hotels in Puerto Vallarta.
End of August – National vacation season ends. Schools resume activities.
Turtle release programmes at many hotels in Puerto Vallarta.
Mexico’s independence – read a complete article
Commemorated during the month of September, with the famed Independence Eve celebration taking place on the 15th. On this night, the central plaza is filled with revellers participating in the traditional “grito”, or Cry for Independence. The following day is a national holiday, celebrated with a parade through the center of town and continuing festivities.
September 14 – Charro Day. Mexican Charros (Mexican cowboys) parade through town in the morning (beginning at 10:00 am) wearing traditional charro outfits with beautifully decorated jackets, pants, and sombreros. Their finely brushed horses are decked with their best equipment and saddlery.
Festivities continue throughout the day and evening at various charro rings, celebrations include bullfights, calf roping, traditional Mexican food, and dancing.
September 15 – Independence Eve. On this night, the central plaza is filled with revellers participating in the traditional “