Visiting Puerto Vallarta
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Visiting Puerto Vallarta
Hi, We are hoping to go to Puerto Vallarta with our two year
old for a little vaca in the fall. Any suggestions? We are
hoping to find a great kid friendly beach area, and hopefully a
great KIDS POOL....
Looking for a good Kids Resort
I just got back from PV after 4 days at Velas Vallarta. It is an all
inclusive ocean front resort with wonderful pools and child care. I'm not
sure if they take kids as young as 2 so be sure to check. We were there
on a family vacation with 12 people (the kids were older than yours at
6,7,11 and 14). Food was great. The rooms were just OK. Be sure to ask
for a corner unit (if you get a studio) as they seem to be bigger.
My advice is don't stay in PV. It is soooo touristy and not at all quaint.
I hate to spread the word- but take a taxi 40 min. north to Sayulita-
quiet, quaint, small, easy surf, yummy food, lots of nice places/houses to
stay, lots of english speakers if that is a plus for you...easy traveling
but still very Mexico. You can drink the water and eat the ice cubes...
check out www.SayulitaLife.com
Just one mile south, out of the fray, and a very cheap taxi ride away from
downtown PV is a small hotel with a great pool, a resort (not expensive!)
with its own restaurant and the cutest, kid friendliest beach you'll ever
I went to Puerto Vallarta 2 years ago with my husband, 18 month old and 3
year old. I was 5 month pregnant. We stayed at Villa Del Palmar.
There was a grocery story across the street, so we could buy kid food and
cook most of our meals in our room with a view.
They have an excellent kid pool. You can borrow sand toys. They have a
''kids village'' with art class during the day. We hired a hotel staff
member to watch our kids when we went out to dinner.
Like all of the hotels down there you will get a long winded pitch about
buying a time-share. They will offer you discounts on your excursion
trips - like boating, para-gliding etc. These discounts do not exist. We
bought our ''kids swim with a dolphin trip'' on site from a different
person (not part of the time-share scam) for the same ''discount'' price.
The time share people have a prominent desk at the entrance of the hotel
to make it look really official. All of the hotels seem to do this. Just
tell them you are not interested and enjoy your trip! Also, I would not
recommend buying the “food included” plan. It is very expensive per day,
and the hotel food is not worth that much money. We often went to
neighboring hotels to get a variety of places to eat.
P.S. Ask to have a room over-looking the pools.
We will be traveling to Puerta Vallarta this fall with a large
family group and are thinking of extending our week-long stay
and spending another week somewhere nearby, yet off the beaten
track. Has anyone visited Yelapa (or any other nearby
villages/towns) with kids? Any advice/recommendations would be
A great place to stay with kids is Costa Azul Adventure Resort,
about an hour north of PV in the town of San Francisco and
walking distance to Sayulita -- a big surfing spot. The towns
are very quaint and right on the water. Our extended family of
15 (kids ages 4 mos, 6-, 8-, 10- and 12-yos) spent a week there
before Christmastime and had a blast. You can choose a package
rate whereby meals and a daily adventure (surfing lessons,
wildlife/river tour, snorkeling) are included. Each day we all
picked different things to do and came together for meals. See
www.costaazul.com for their website.
One of the adventure/day trips we did from Costa Azul was a
boat ride and guided hike to waterfalls in Yelapa. Yelapa is
absolutely charming with a beautiful beach and thatched huts
along the water, but I had a hard time envisioning being able
to spend more than three days there before running out of
things to see/do, unless extreme beach lounging/relaxation is
I wouldn't recommend Yelapa for kids-its more of a drinking
spot for adult vacations. There ia a town north of PV called
Sayulita-small town, great beach for swimming, nice places to
stay, good food. I have stayed there a few times-I really like
it. You can rent houses in town or there are a couple hotels.
This is a great place to enjoy the beach, take surf lessons, go
out on a fishing boat, hang out in the town square. Local buses
run up there during the day-its about 25-35 pesos.
We are planning to take a family vacation with our 3 year old
son and our 6 month old infant and we want to go to an all-
inclusive resort that is kid-friendly and family oriented in the
WEST COAST of Mexico. Any suggestions of any good places to
I was with my family last Fall at Meli Puerto Vallarta, and my
3 year-old really enjoyed it. It has a very nice swimming pool
for smaller kids, playground, etc. It's also all inclusive.
Re: Warm, cheap, hassle-free place in Mexico?
I go to Mexico frequently and like inexpensive, warm, hassle
free vacations. The past two years I stayed at a wonderful
place for kids in Puerto Vallarta. It has 3 properties with 3
pools, entertainment, and all food and drink are included which
for me works better than dragging little kids around to
restaurants all day. It is very inexpensive--worked out to
about $700 per week per person including airfare, food and
hotel. (Book with Suntrips for Plaza Pelicanos). As in all of
Mexico, if you stay at a hotel, they have a roped-off section of
the beach where vendors cannot enter to approach you on sales. If you leave this area, however, you will be approached--but the
vendors are polite and not persistent if you just say no thank
you. If you stop to look, however, others will come up.
Personally, I like the vendors at times. The prices are cheaper
than in the stores and overall the merchandise is fine,
especially if bought on the beach near your hotel.
My family and I just returned from outside of Puerto Vallarta; we
stayed at a 4-Seasons, so I will not recommend that vis-a-vis
your request for a reasonably-priced place, but I can tell you
that Punta Mita, the area of the 4-Seasons, does have rentals
that may be able to be Googled; the area tends to have a lovely
(!) beach. I do know the West coast of Mexico fairly well. I
would say that Puerto Vallarta proper is fairly expensive and
touristy and over-developed. I would even venture to say that
some of the better/best eating establishments in PV were on a
par, cost-wise, with the cost of eating at the 4-Seasons resort.
One of the nicest, least spoiled, and reasonably-priced places
in Mexico is Zihuantanejo, more South of PV, on the coast. The
only reason that we didn't go there is that at the time of
booking, there were no jet flights (other than Alaska Air, which
we don't fly) into Zihua. A few weeks ago, United instituted a
non-stop, once-weekly flight from LA to Zihuantanejo. There are
many reasonably-priced places that are trim, clean, and on the
beach/water in Zihuantanejo. The places that I have stayed there
are all high end, but I know that other lovely places to stay
exist in Zihua. The best place to look at and compare
accommodations in Zihua is tripadvisory.com. They have the
wonderful feature of many, many evaluations of accommodations in
many global locales. One hotel that I know of that may or may
not be in your price range in Zihua is ''Brisas del Mar,'' which is
supposed to be lovely and reasonably-priced (great food!) and
very much evocative of a cultural experience--it is beautifully
situated on the water, as well. I think that you can also try
for a AAA discount, as well. Additionally, tripadvisory.com
offers comparative pricing from the many Internet
wholesalers--Orbitz, hotel.com, etc. Next to Zihua is
Ixtapa--more developed and commercial; they are a ten minute cab
ride from each other. The cost of everything in Zihua is cheaper
than PV, and the beach is better. PV, in my opinion, is nothing
more than Miami beach transplanted to the Mexican coast, and the
food is mediocre to good, not great. Finally, the beach in PV,
proper, is unuseable--rough and inhospitable because of all the
rivers feeding into its bay.
We're trying to plan a vacation in either Acapulco or Puerto
Vallerta - if you have experience in either place, which would
you recommend? We're looking for recommendations for places to
stay with our 4-year old son so if you know of a great resort,
rental property, or hotel, we'd love to hear from you. Thanks!
Our extended family of 15 vacationed last December at Costa Azul
resort about an hour north of Puerto Vallarta. Our group
included 5 kids -- our 4 mo. old and 6-, 8-, 10- and 12- yr
olds. Each family got a room or rooms overlooking the swimming
pool and beach, with all activities and meals included. The
beaches were quite clean, although the surf directly in front of
the resort was a bit rough -- though an easy 10-minute walk
south to a calmer area, and the nearby town. There were several
activities each day, including trips to view wildlife, hike up
to waterfalls, go snorkeling, take surf lessons, shop in PV,
etc. -- we could choose a morning and/or afternoon activity.
The flexibility and all-inclusive setup was great! Staff was
super-friendly and helped arrange in-room massage and even
babysitting when there was one snorkeling expedition that we all
wanted to go on (thus no family members to babysit the infant).
They have a web site -- www.costaazul.com -- and have special
programs for kids, too.
My husband and I purchased a 2 bedroom/ocean-view piece of
Paradise Village in Nuevo Vallarta (right next to the turtle egg
sanctuary) because we wanted a place where our child and her
grandparents would be comfortable. It certainly has lots of
amenities, activities and we really enjoy the 'European-style'
spa and back massages under the waterfall. You could either stay
in our place which has no week restrictions, or follow up on
some of those package deals offered by Sandals or SunTrips.
Either way, it's a nice place to be!
this page was last updated: Sep 24, 2008
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