Over 250 restaurants serve a wide range of international cuisine, from Mexican to Italian, French to Argentine, Austrian to Japanese, in settings ranging from funky beach palapas, or on the hills with fabulous views, to elegant candlelit castles.
The Cerro de la Cruz Lookout (Lookout on The Cross Hill), is, as the name states in Spanish, a lookout on the top of the La Cruz hill (Cerro de La Cruz) that towers on the East side over downtown Puerto Vallarta. It faces and views the sea silently, one of the most beautiful locations and bays of the Mexican Pacific, the Bay of Banderas and PV.
I've been informed Abasolo is being worked on, to improve access, so the best idea is to take Aldama up to the hill, can be a bit tricky, will update in a few months with the alternative route.
The locals know it's both a place for recreation, relaxation, and meditation, from this vantage point you can see the Mexican Pacific all the way from Los Arcos (The Arches) on the south side, downtown Puerto Vallarta and on clear days all the way to Punta Mita on the far north side of the Bay. Needless to say, it's a great place for photography enthusiasts and for those who just enjoy panoramic views, majestic sunsets and what nature has to offer.
Getting to the top requires a considerable physical effort, although it is completely worth it, there are several ways to get to the La Cruz Lookout, one is by following Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez Street, a straight uphill route with a gradual slope that increases as you approach the top.
Another route, for many the best, is following Abasolo Street, it's a bit more direct and starts from the Malecón, uphill toward the peak.
You will see the communications antenna in the distance guiding you along.
Crossing Guadalupe Sanchez street you'll get to the corner of Miramar street, here you start to go up the rustic stairs that end when you reach the intersection with Emilio Carranza street.
From there you follow the path along Abasolo flanked by houses and gardens this path is exclusively for those on foot, bikes or donkeys (which are seen from time to time).
Continue climbing straight along the path until you reach the bottom station of the funicular (cable-car), it runs during high season between 6 AM and 10 PM, from what I found out, they do not charge much for the service, in my case the man in charge told me that I could just give him a tip, so I guess it's actually free, correct me if it's not. I decided to go up the stairs, not because I'm a masochist, but because I wanted to take photos and videos while I was going up and I also wanted to see if my fitness training had actually made a difference (it did).
When you get to the top, you'll be treated to an incredible view of Puerto Vallarta and the coast, as well as other areas of the bay.
The lookout offers different angles of the surrounding area, even away from the sea inland, including the monument with the cross. There is also an elevated platform toward the sea where you will get a wider view without obstacles for better and more complete panoramic shots.
The distance from the Malecon to the lookout on both routes is 1600 feet (500 yards), although the route through Abasolo is more direct, with a more gradual slope, a bonus is that it also is a more varied walk, with better views and a bit more nature along the way, which It makes it more enjoyable, that's the one I recommend.
The climb takes between 15 to 40 minutes, depending on whether you are an athlete or a normal person, and if you take it easy or go up without stopping along the way. You can leave before sunset (about 40 minutes before), you'll then have time to rest along the way and enjoy the show that the famous sunsets of Puerto Vallarta will offer you.
In the old days there wasn't really a lookout as such, it was just a path and space around the cross and its base, the new lookout construction has stairs, concrete, hydraulic railing and benches, they mentioned the possibility of a cafe in the future, we'll see if it becomes a reality.
I recommend taking it easy, walking at a steady pace with regular breaks, on very sunny days, carry sunscreen and a good bottle of water. Going up running or jogging is an option for athletes, there are also those who've done the route on a mountain bike, but it's not a competition, best to take it easy and enjoy it, that's my opinion at least.
A trip to the La Cruz Hill Lookout can also be enjoyed with family and friends, just make sure that the kids and seniors have the strength to walk uphill. If at least one of the parents is in good condition, you can bring smaller kids along in a stroller, but bear in mind that there is a part with a steep slope, you may have to carry the child in your arms and fold the stroller instead.
We do not recommend going with those that have mobility issues and require a wheelchair. Despite the work the government has done to improve the access, people with disabilities, or elderly, will have problems, as the path is steep, with stairs and no alternative access routes. The last part is a long series of steps that can be bypassed using the funicular, but does not have an easy wheelchair access, you have to climb about 20 steps to reach the cable car access ramp and there is no way to get there by car, that includes the Cerro de La Cruz Lookout itself too.
The monument of Cerro de la Cruz is seen from different parts of the city, unfortunately, its radiance and beauty are somewhat diminished by the buildings and towers that surround it.
Even so, it is the best lookout in Puerto Vallarta, from there you can watch the already famous sunsets splashing warm colors over the beautiful cityscape.
Splendid panoramic views of Puerto Vallarta and the Bay of Banderas, without a doubt a place to bask in the beauty of the Mexican Pacific. Do not miss the Cerro Las Cruz Lookout if you are in town and are in shape to get there, it will really be worth the effort to get there.
Exploring the dazzling beauty of Puerto Vallarta becomes a magnificent experience when you stay at a hotel that offers all-inclusive packages.
Walking into a scrumptious breakfast buffet surrounded by the tropical ambiance, enjoying luscious delicacies à-la-carte for lunch and dinner, and not to forget, the vast selection of beer, wine, and cocktails any time of day or evening, make the vacation truly hassle-free and enjoyable.
Hotels and resorts offer competitive deals and are dotted along the blissfully pristine Banderas Bay Pacific Coast of this once exquisite fishing village, now a popular vacation destination.
All ratings provided are based on traveler reviews.
A perfect getaway for the whole family, Velas Vallarta offers a vast array of services and amenities in its all-inclusive packages. A sprawling resort with tastefully appointed suites, contemporary decor in textures and colors of Mexico, spacious accommodation and a range of services which include luxurious spa treatments, kids' activities, cultural and Tequila tours, shopping and city tours each week, nightly entertainments and much more make this an ideal resort.
Escape to a retreat cradled in the majestic serenity of the Sierra Madre Mountains and the spectacular Banderas Bay at the CasaMagna Marriott Resort. Upscale amenities, gives access to perfectly manicured golf courses, packages for families, romantic getaways and full-package deals make it one of the top-ranked resorts of the Condé Nast Traveler and other major travel magazines.
Set gorgeously in a sequestered area with a beach-cove hidden away from throngs of humanity, Hyatt Ziva is nevertheless within easy reach of the lovely Puerto Vallarta romantic zone. Offering incredible ocean pleasures and views, its all-inclusive package includes a choice of 5 internationally-inspired restaurants serving delectable preparations to suit every taste, 2 pools for children, 1 solely for adults among the 5 infinity pools with bar service. In addition, a taste of true tequila with a tequila sommelier comes with the package.
A treasure overlooking Banderas Bay, in Playa de Mismaloya, Barcelo Puerto Vallartas Hotel offers class, elegance and an abundance of gourmet delicacies. Sweeping views of the stunning mountains and the Pacific ocean, along with top-notch facilities and services have earned it AAA Four Diamonds. Featuring excursions, tours, entertainment, kids' club programs, crystal clear pools and semi-private beach with open bars, it is perfect for everyone in the family.
A Tourism Excellence Award winner 2014 of the Grupo Excelencias, Now Amber, prides itself on its refined and understated finesse and luxury. With its Ultimate-Luxury package, it is great for couples, friends and families, situated on the sun-kissed golden beaches of Puerto Vallarta. Renowned for its lavish, indulgent spa, it offers pampering indigenous and hydrotherapy treatments to revitalize and recharge your body and mind. The Explorer Club for younger children, activities for teens and tweens, movies on the beach for everyone, superb dining and a 24-hour room service enable each guest to find his or her tranquility and fun.
Soak yourself in the panoramic splendor of the mountains and the bay at the Grand Miramar Resort & Spa, in the upscale Conchas Chinas neighborhood of Puerto Vallarta. This large hotel boasts several types of lodging: Junior Suites, Master Suites and 2 or 3-bedroom villas. Exclusive rooftop terrace offers a Jacuzzi and swimming pool for adults to relax and enjoy a romantic hour.
An assortment of offerings for individuals and families makes Sheraton Buganvilias Resort & Convention Center a great choice in Puerto Vallarta. With a choice of the Traditional Buganvilias Package featuring daily breakfast and Sunday brunch with lodging, and the All-Inclusive Package offering a variety of dining options for all meals, beverages, 24-hour room service, daily entertainment, access to tennis courts, Kids' Club Sheratoons and Mini Disc, there is plenty for everyone.
Centrally located in a row of exclusive hotels along the blue sapphire coastline, Hilton Puerto Vallarta Resort is packed with many attractions for the entire family with its All-Inclusive feature. Buffet and a-la-carte meals, unlimited beverages, all activities and entertainment for adults and children, fitness room, an infinity edge swimming pool, spa service, room service, fully-stocked minibar bring the ultimate in convenience for guests. It is no surprise that this hotel has received the AAA Four-Diamond Award.
Phone: +52 (322) 176-1178
Intimate, romantic getaways are the name of the game at Secrets Vallarta Bay Resorts & Spas. Discover or rediscover your passion and togetherness in the tranquil, tropical, sun-drenched azure surroundings and leave all the pampering to the hospitable and highly knowledgeable hotel staff. The Ultimate-Luxury Package at this resort is defined for adult-only getaways with elegance, indulgence, breathtaking views of the ocean, unlimited premium drinks, rooms with en-suite Jacuzzi and excellent cuisine choices.
Sophistication underlines the Villa Premiere Hotel, an 83-room boutique hotel located in downtown Vallarta for adults and teens over 16. With a choice of three restaurants for a-la-carte fine dining, 24-hour room service included in the all-inclusive package, it is the only hotel offering the charm of downtown Vallarta and a spectacular beachfront.
Phone: +52 (322) 226-7040
The all-inclusive packages allow you to forget about small necessities and simply let your feet and mind wander where they will as you watch the famous and glorious sunsets and sunrises of Puerto Vallarta and the Banderas Bay.
Everybody knows the seahorse sculpture on the Malecon, it's Puerto Vallarta's symbol, what most people don't know is that the original statue is located in Las Pilitas on Los Muertos Beach.
Las Pilitas was the place where the original "El Niño Sobre el Caballo de Mar" sculpture ("The Boy on the Seahorse", now mostly known as "El Caballito de Mar") was located, sculpted by Rafael Zamarripa in 1960.
After a strong storm swept it away into the sea, a larger replica was requested from the artist and this one was placed on the Malecon, the first statue of many that are now part of an open-air exhibition along the seaside promenade.
The original statue was later recovered and once again placed at Las Pilitas (it was swept away again during Hurricane Kenna and recovered once again), you can see it there today, you can see that the concrete block is extra reinforced now and there are iron bars that go into the sculpture :-).
Las Pilitas themselves are just a series of rocks on Los Muertos Beach, before arriving at El Púlpito, that lay between the sea and the beach, nothing sensational, but a good reference point. Now with the sculpture, it's mucho más interesante.
Rafael Zamarripa (born February 8, 1942) at the age of 18 he won the Mexican National Sculpture Prize and was immediately commissioned to sculpt "El Niño Sobre el Caballo de Mar" (now mostly known as "The Seahorse"), which has since become one of the main symbols of Puerto Vallarta.
Author: M. A. Gallardo
On Plaza Hidalgo, just some 50 yards from Hotel Rosita, you'll find the sculpture of a famous hero from Mexico's Independence War, created by a very well known artist.
This bronze sculpture of the Mexican Independence hero is located at Plaza Hidalgo a block north off the northern end of the Malecon.
The sculpture depicts a hero any Mexican school boy can recognize at the blink of an eye, Miguel Gregorio Antonio Ignacio Hidalgo-Costilla y Gallaga Mandarte Villaseñor, better known as Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla or just plain Miguel Hidalgo, a Mexican priest and leader of the Mexican War of Independence.
The park itself was built to honor this National hero, the original concrete sculpture by artist José Esteban Ramírez Guareño, was replaced by the current bronze version sculpted by the same artist and was unveiled in 1988.
José Esteban Ramírez is also well known for the Stations of the Cross (Viacrucis) modeled in plaster and added to the Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish decoration in the years between 1953 and 1955, and is also the sculptor of the original 1965 crown placed on the main tower of the church.
Author: M. A. Gallardo
The city is constantly evolving and growing, offering new and cool ways to enjoy your stay in the area. One of the most recent additions is Jorullo Bridge (Puente Jorullo), which is part of Canopy River's activities and tours. They are an ecotourism resort 3 miles (15-20 minutes) outside Puerto Vallarta, offering many adventures that at the same time take care of the environment and natural resources that make PV a world-class tourist destination.
Jorullo Bridge is actually the longest suspension bridge in the world for vehicles, as mentioned, quite close to Puerto Vallarta in the Sierra Madre Occidental over the Cuale River, the same one that further downstream goes through the middle of the city. This large hanging structure was built in the course of 18 months in the Ejido El Jorullo, they started it off in November 2015. It's 1550 ft long (470 meters) and hangs almost 500 ft (150 meters) above the Cuale River. When you cross, you are treated to some very spectacular panoramic views of the mountains, the valley below, and the river.
The actual tour consists of a very exciting trip called RZR (Racer), a type of all-terrain vehicle (ATV) for several people, running through trails, slopes, and streams in the jungle. At the end, you reach the bridge that hangs majestically above the green valley that surrounds the Cuale River below.
On board an ATV, you'll explore trails in the Sierra Madre Occidental (Western Mother Sierra) and desert and sub-tropical rainforest ecosystems. You will also be able to experience the beautiful scenery from vantage points along the trail in the mountains.
For those who love water and swimming (you'll want to refresh along the way, it's hot, humid and dusty) there's a 30 minute stop at the "El Salto" waterfall where you'll enjoy crystal clear waters and unique nature experience. There's a stop along the way for refreshments at the bar "El Mirador". After that, the adventure continues with the most exciting part of the tour, the Jorullo Bridge and vertigo you may feel while crossing it.
The normal way to cross the bridge is on board the ATVs which is a very exciting experience even for those that enjoy more extreme adventure tourism; but if road vehicles are not for you, you can walk over in a more pleasant and relaxing way, on foot.
In order to fully enjoy the ride and tour, we recommend:
At the end of this exciting tour, you can wind down enjoying a Tequila tasting tour and also replenish your energy levels having a fabulous meal with an excellent view of the green areas and the bridge, under the palapas of the Los Coapinoles restaurant within the Canopy River facilities, the restaurant offers Mexican and seafood dishes and on the weekends a buffet breakfast (not included in the tour price).
Jorullo Bridge is one of the new attractions in the Puerto Vallarta area, especially for those who want a unique adventure activity that is also in harmony with nature and prioritizes environmental protection too.