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Why Visit the Beautiful Riviera Nayarit in 2024?

How Far is Riviera Nayarit from Puerto Vallarta?

Riviera Nayarit is remarkably close to Puerto Vallarta, sharing proximity that enhances the appeal of both regions. The Puerto Vallarta International Airport, serving as the primary gateway to the area, is conveniently situated just a brief 10-minute drive from Nayarit. This geographical advantage allows travelers to seamlessly transition from the airport to the enticing destinations of the Riviera Nayarit, such as Nuevo Vallarta, Bucerias, La Cruz, Punta Mita, Sayulita, San Pancho, and more.

The short distance ensures that visitors can swiftly embark on their exploration of the diverse attractions and experiences offered by these charming locales in the neighboring state. The Riviera Nayarit spans over 200 miles of coast in the state of Nayarit, of which a lot still has yet to be fully developed. But the beaches and towns that currently line its shores are nothing short of remarkable.

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Sayulita beach at sunset

Is Riviera Nayarit Safe?

Some argue that the Riviera Nayarit coastal region is potentially even safer than Puerto Vallarta itself. While Puerto Vallarta consistently ranks among the top three safest cities in Mexico, many residences in Riviera Nayarit, including Nuevo, Bucerias, La Cruz, and Punta Mita, are gated, adding an extra layer of security. This makes these areas particularly reassuring for both vacationers and residents, who often find themselves in worry-free surroundings.

The same sense of security extends to resort stays, where the enclosed and gated nature of the resorts creates a formidable barrier against potential criminal activities.

It’s crucial to note that Puerto Vallarta is, in itself, an exceptionally safe city. However, like any large city or tourist destination, unforeseen events can occur. As a general rule, it’s advisable to remain vigilant and aware of your surroundings in any new environment. See where the Riviera Nayarit falls in our article, “Top 10 Safest Cities in Mexico” to learn more about Nayarit and Puerto Vallarta as well.

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La Lancha Beach

Can I leave the Resort in Puerto Vallarta/Riviera Nayarit?

Absolutely! Having spent almost three years in Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit, the question itself seems a bit perplexing. However, I understand that certain safety concerns might stem from preconceived notions about Mexico. In my personal experience, I have never once felt in danger or encountered any situation that made me uneasy while walking outside. Of course, it’s essential to acknowledge that incidents can happen anywhere, but the crime rate in Vallarta and its surrounding areas is significantly lower than cities like Los Angeles, Chicago, Toronto, and others.

Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit offer an incredible array of entertainment, delightful restaurants, and rich culture, all beyond the confines of any resort. While a resort vacation provides a beautiful and relaxing experience—perfect for disconnecting from the cold winter life up north—I believe it doesn’t capture the essence of real Mexico. Exploring beyond the resort is the key to truly understanding what Puerto Vallarta has to offer. Thanks to a robust police force prioritizing tourist safety, Vallarta is a remarkably safe destination.

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Four Seasons Punta Mita

What is There to-do in Riviera Nayarit?

Forget asking what there isn’t to do in Riviera Nayarit— the real question should be, where do you even begin? It’s no exaggeration when I say that Puerto Vallarta and the Riviera Nayarit have an abundance of offerings that can genuinely catch you off guard. Thanks to the calming embrace of Banderas Bay and the sprawling beauty of the Sierra Madre mountains, the possibilities are practically boundless. And when you stack it up against the likes of Cancun and Cabo, Puerto Vallarta/Riviera Nayarit stands out for providing a richer cultural experience. It’s not just a destination; it’s an immersion into the heart of Mexico’s vibrant and diverse offerings.

Have a quick read of the Best Free Things to-do In Puerto Vallarta Part 1 and Best Free Things to-do In Puerto Vallarta Part 2. These will give you some suggestions, but that’s only scratching the surface. Puerto Vallarta/Riviera Nayarit has a wide array of activities like: skydiving, ziplining, swimming with dolphins, whale watching, private beach exploration, ATVing, jet-skiing, snorkeling, scuba diving, incredible golf, surfing, overnight yacht trips, and so much more. For more information about Vallarta’s history, and the Bay of Banderas, you may enjoy our article titled, “What is Puerto Vallarta Known For?”

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Litibu Beach

As mentioned, the Riviera Nayarit has a number of excellent surfing locations for beginners to intermediate. Anyone who’s coming to Puerto Vallarta for surfing will likely really be coming to Mexico for Nayarit’s surfing spots such as: La Lancha, Stinky’s in Punta de Mita, as well as the famous town of Sayulita and neighboring town San Pancho. These locations all have their own surf shops close to the beach so you can rent boards, other supplies, and inquire about surfing lessons if you’re looking for an instructor to help you. WildMex for example has a wonderful article about surfing in Punta de Mita and also offers board rentals.

The Riviera Nayarit has some of the best beaches in the general Puerto Vallarta area. Our favorite beach is Carreyeros located in Litibu. With its blue waters, excellent snorkeling conditions (not always, but when the conditions are good its one of the best places in the bay), and white sand. This beach is always a top choice for us when we want to get away from the city and ground ourselves in nature for the day. For more information on beach in the Riviera Nayarit and Puerto Vallarta, check out our article “Are Puerto Vallarta’s Beaches Swimmable?

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Sayulita beach from above

Luxury Vacation Destination in Riviera Nayarit

In recent years, the Riviera Nayarit has blossomed into a coveted hub for luxury tourism, marking a significant surge in popularity. The region not only has ambitious plans for sustained growth in this exclusive segment but also beckons discerning travelers with a lineup of high-end accommodations, including illustrious names like the Four Seasons, St. Regis, Conrad, and more.

Celebrities and affluent travelers across various age groups have diverted their attention from the conventional allure of Cabo to discover the tranquil beauty that graces the shores of Mexico’s Pacific coast. The Riviera Nayarit has earned its place on the map as a premier destination, thanks to its commitment to delivering a superlative experience in service, cuisine, lodging, and recreational activities.

This shift in preference is underscored by the region’s impressive vacancy rates. Surprisingly, Riviera Nayarit boasts a higher vacancy rate (78.4%) compared to Puerto Vallarta (76.4%). The allure of living or staying along the stunning coastline of the Riviera Nayarit becomes abundantly clear when you immerse yourself in the exceptional offerings and idyllic ambiance it provides. Once you’ve experienced the unparalleled charm of this coastal haven, leaving becomes a sentiment not easily entertained. It’s a testament to why the Riviera Nayarit has rightfully ascended to greater popularity among those seeking a luxurious and unforgettable escape.

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“Tail of the Whale” Hole at Punta Mita Golf Course

Best Luxury Experience in Mexico

Embarking on a luxury resort experience is undoubtedly exceptional, yet amidst these extraordinary offerings, one experience effortlessly rises above the rest—the allure of yachting. But not just a mere day charter; we’re talking about the epitome of indulgence—the immersive escape of spending several days and nights on a luxurious vessel.

Our most coveted voyage? The weekend cruise—a tantalizing 3-day, 2-night sojourn on the tranquil waters beneath a canopy of stars. This isn’t just a boat ride; it’s an encounter that transcends the ordinary, an adventure that etches its mark on the canvas of your memories. While being on a boat during the day has its charm, the allure of a fully serviced yacht with a dedicated crew, a chef conjuring exquisite meals, and the enchantment of sipping wine as the sun bathes the horizon in hues of neon during the sunset is an experience in a league of its own.

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Owners suite at night on our 85ft yacht

Picture this: Watching a movie in the main salon, surrounded by the warm glow of the yacht’s interior, sharing these moments with friends and family. However, a yacht truly reveals its magic at night, casting a spell that transforms the vessel into a living, breathing entity.

On an extended charter, the opportunity to journey to secluded islands, untouched by human presence, unveils itself. Explore virgin beaches, witness marine life in its unspoiled habitat—encounters with manta rays, sharks, whale sharks, whales, octopuses, dolphins, and more await. It’s not just one of the best things to do in Mexico; it’s a journey that becomes a cherished memory, eternally imprinted on your soul. A private yacht trip is an odyssey of unparalleled delight, an experience that resonates in the corridors of your recollections, forever cherished. To book your yacht trip, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information and details at Palmara Charters.

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Sunset charter view

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