Bucerias is a small attractive town located in the Banderas Bay in the state of Nayarit between La Cruz de Huanacaxtle to the north and Nuevo Vallarta to the south and is part of what is now called Riviera Nayarit.
The locals are simple, sincere and kind people, they are proud of their town and their clean beautiful beach.
The 5-mile long beach itself offers soft sand and calm waves. Though many state that the name derives from “place of divers”, the word itself doesn’t make much sense in Spanish, so I dispute this interpretation, sounds more like a “smart” gringo trying to unravel the meaning and doing it wrong :-).
- 11 miles from Puerto Vallarta’s Airport.
- 4 miles from Nuevo Vallarta.
- 90 miles from the capital of Nayarit: Tepic.
- Population (2010 census): 13098 inhabitants.
- Part of the Bahía de Banderas Municipality in the state of Nayarit, part of the Riviera Nayarit and Nuevo Vallarta.
- Longitude: -105.334722; Latitude: 20.755278
How to get to Bucerías
If you are already in Puerto Vallarta, Bucerias is located north of the bay, past the airport and Nuevo Vallarta, 17 miles from PV’s main square.
You’ll drive along Federal Highway 200 and about 40-60 minutes (depending on traffic and time of day) northward you’ll find the town to your left.
What to do in Bucerias
Among the various attractions and sightseeing landmarks in Bucerias, we could mention the Iglesia a la Señora de la Paz (Our Lady of Peace Church) and the remodeled main plaza.
The local beach, is a great place to relax, take walks, take a trip on horseback or an ATV, specially when you do so in the afternoon and can enjoy the impressive sunsets that are a part of the bay panorama, during the summer afternoons the sun sets behind the hills that surround the western edge of the bay and not the sea.
There is an entertaining water park with rafts and inflated games, ideal for families and active children who who want to have a blast in the warm sea. It’s called Wibit Adventures Water Park, a circuit of trampolines, climbing towers, slides, pyramids, tunnels and more, all floating in the waters off the beach.
This beach is a great place for surfing, windsurfing, boogie boarding and collecting shells. The area is now very popular among kitesurfers and various competitions are held here too.
Thursday evenings are art walk night, where art lovers are invited to visit galleries which are open during the evening and serve cocktails and refreshments along Lazaro Cardenas street.
Bucerias’ beach is also used for sand figure competitions, you can also enjoy the local delicacies, such as “pescado zarandeado” (grilled fish), ceviches, shellfish, lobster and so on.
Take a stroll along the cobblestone streets in Bucerias, it’ll be like a stroll back in time, enjoy the colorful houses, where people will greet you while they talk to their neighbors, small stores, some restaurants, government and real estate offices, art galleries, a local market with many Huichol works of art and even small eateries where you’ll be offered fresh oysters off their shell, you might just end up tempted to stay more than a day.
In the 1940’s Bucerias only had seven palapa huts, and the locals cultivated corn, sorgo, sesame, peanuts and fruit, other activities included fishing. Access to the small village was quite complicated, specially during the rainy season, but after 1955 a better road helped the locals giving them an easier way out and easier access for visitors.
The most popular local fiestas are the traditional religious festivities for the Peace Virgin (Virgen de la Paz), these are held on January 24 each year, that include peregrinations by sea on colorfully decorated boats with various religious motives, fireworks, dance, local Mexican delicacies and many more activities.
On October 14th Bucerías celebrates its anniversary and on November 22, Saint Cecilia’s day, musicians from the state of Michoacan visit and celebrate with the locals.
Bucerias is a key component of what is now being developed and promoted as “Riviera Nayarit”, so now suddenly the town is attractive as a real estate investment option and new businesses are establishing themselves in the area, offering different tourist oriented services, entertainment and ecotourism.
The town despite all this activity is calm and relaxed, making it a very attractive place to retire from the bustle of it all. Many say Bucerias is very much as Puerto Vallarta was 50 years ago, maybe it’s time to find out if that’s true.