Think of the Mexican resort city of Puerto Vallarta and chances are that your first thoughts gravitate towards a beach vacation. The majority of visitors are North American, neighbors from the United States and Canada, escaping a colder climate, for a bit of fun in the sun. Offering over 300 days of sunshine, adventures on the are endless. Perhaps a surf lesson in Sayulita, a round of golf in Nuevo Vallarta, snorkeling at Los Arcos, deep sea fishing and scuba diving in the Marietta Islands are all part of a sun-drenched tropical fiesta.
However, there is more to life in Puerto Vallarta. than a day at the beach. As the sun sets and you down your last margarita and trade in your beach towel for more hedonistic options, you just might be caught off guard. Puerto Vallarta also offers a vibrant, world-class, epicurean scene in a once-sleepy beach town. For a relatively small area of around 30 miles from the central "Zona Romántica" to the north of Punta Mita, the foodie options are seemingly endless. It has been said that one could eat for a year and still not visit all of the restaurants in the area. Whether your passion is Mexican delicacies, Italian eats created by Italian transplants, tapas that would make any Spaniard salivate, Asian fusion created by the son of a Puerto Vallarta icon, or gourmet seafood served fresh from the sea, there are scrumptious gastronomic options for every taste and palate.
For those who take a liking to local spirited street food, Puerto Vallarta does not disappoint. It is said that perhaps Mexicans invented the "food truck" movement, because street tacos are seemingly everywhere. Chow down for a local lunch served at a family style eatery serving hardy plates of enchiladas, chicken mole, chili relleno, birria and more for as little as 5 USD.
Food and wine has become such a vital part of travel and for thriving, local economies throughout the world. For food travelers, Puerto Vallarta does not disappoint. P.V. and Riviera Nayarit have become foodie heaven. Puerto Vallarta is now an esteemed travel destination that has taken on its own gourmet festivals. Puerto Vallarta comes alive every May and November. A two-week period in May, ‘Restaurant Week,’ highlights the very best local restaurants offering incredible three-course meals at discount prices. In November, Puerto Vallarta is a foodies' delight during ‘Festival Gourmet,’ when master chefs converge on the lively seaside town to partake in its spirited culinary stage.
On your next visit to Mexico’s Pacific Paradise, from tacos to tapas, from pozole to pasta, there are mouth-watering dishes to satisfy every palate. Try one of these fine savoir-faire grub spots.
“Pizza My Heart” – Pizza Quattro Stagioni and a glass of Chianti at La Dolce Vita on the Malecón, downtown Puerto Vallarta.
Tacos Al Pastor in Zona Romántica at Pancho’s Takos
Mouthwatering, smoky grilled fish, serandeoado at Tino’s Mariscos – La Laguna in Nuevo Vallarta
Here are some of Puerto Vallarta’s favorite restaurants:
Archie’s Wok - Asian fusion in Zona Romantica
Barcelona Tapas – Spanish Tapas above the Malecon, downtown
Blue Shrimp – Zona Romantica, but I love the one in Punta Mita
Don Pedro’s – Dining and drinking on the beach in Sayulita
El Arrayan – Unique and original, Mexican Mayan cuisine
Freddie’s Tucan – Best breakfast in Puerto Vallarta located in Zona Romantica
Joe’s Jack’s Fish Shack – All you can eat fish & chips on Fridays
Kensao – Best sushi in town, in the Peninsula Shopping Center
La Dolce Vita - Real Italian cuisine created by actual Italians – my hang out on the Malecon, Tell them “Nicholas El Griego” sent you; also a location in Nuevo Vallarta
Las Adelitas – for carne asada. Comfort food for gringos.
Mark’s Restaurant – in Bucerias – Love the pork chop.
Marisma Fish Tacos – Excellent fish tacos on the Marina Vallarta.
Pancho’s Takos – Tacos al pastor to die for in Zona Romántica
Street Tacos La Cruz – In La Cruz on the way to or from a day of surfing
Tinos Mariscos La Laguna – Nuevo Vallarta - Delish crab enchiladas and mouthwatering smoky grilled fish serandeoado . Also on the Malacon in P.V. in Punta Mita.
Learn More About Mexico’s tropical Pacific paradise at:
About the Author: Nicholas Kontis – Travel Expert and Founder of World Travel List
Born on the one of the most beautiful Islands in the world, Santorini, Greece and raised in America’s culture capital of San Francisco. Nick Kontis started out as a world traveler at an early age traveling back and forth between California and Greece every summer. But it was a backpacking trip around the world at age 24 that proved to be a life changing experience. After traveling by car, train, plane, bike and, boat around the world, it would be this trip of a lifetime that would lead to a life as a travel entrepreneur and world traveler. Nick has been on both radio and television. Featured on Arthur Frommer’s television show, and referred by Lonely Planet writers as a leader in discount airfares. Frequently mentioned as the “father of around the world airfares.” Arthur Frommer once said, “If Jules Verne were alive today he would use Nick to go around the world in 80 days.” Nick and his various travel companies and agents have sent over 10,000 people around the world. Now, Nick promotes travel through his World Travel List and ‘Trip Rambler’ by World Travel List. Having traveled to over 80 countries Nick hopes to inspire others to travel the world. Follow Nick’s “passion for travel” on World Travel List.