Riviera Nayarit Vacations

Backed by the jungle-clad Sierra Madre Occidental in Western Mexico and nestled between the historic port town of San Blas and Banderas Bay with its world-famous Puerto Vallarta, the gateway to the region, Riviera Nayarit is a 196-mile stretch of magnificent Pacific coastline that offers visitors an impressively delectable slice of tropical paradise complemented by rich cultural heritage, luxury accommodations and the finest amenities. Boasting clear and warm waters that range from emerald to turquoise, year-round warm climate, abundance of biodiversity and pristine white sandy beaches, ideal for all kinds of beach activities as well as relaxation along the dunes, alongside an eclectic selection of all-inclusive resorts to suit all tastes, Riviera Nayarit is Mexico’s most promising and burgeoning tourist destination, worth exploring every bit from San Blas to Sayulita and Nuevo Vallarta.

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Let us show you the beauty that can be found in Riviera Nayarit. Be it your first trip or your hundredth, Riviera Nayarit is always special as will be your time spent there.

Overview

Backed by the jungle-clad Sierra Madre Occidental in Western Mexico and nestled between the historic port town of San Blas and Banderas Bay with its world-famous Puerto Vallarta, the gateway to the region, Riviera Nayarit is a 196-mile stretch of magnificent Pacific coastline that offers visitors an impressively delectable slice of tropical paradise complemented by rich cultural heritage, luxury accommodations and the finest amenities. Boasting clear and warm waters that range from emerald to turquoise, year-round warm climate, abundance of biodiversity and pristine white sandy beaches, ideal for all kinds of beach activities as well as relaxation along the dunes, alongside an eclectic selection of all-inclusive resorts to suit all tastes, Riviera Nayarit is Mexico’s most promising and burgeoning tourist destination, worth exploring every bit from San Blas to Sayulita and Nuevo Vallarta.

  • San Blas – Steeped in vast colonial history, the friendly, tranquil and quaint fishing town of San Blas (located 70 km northwest of Tepic, the capital of the Nayarit state) retains an endearing old-town charm from the Spanish colonization era, beautifully reflected in the whitewashed facades and the glorious ruins of both the 18th century Spanish fort La Contaduria and the nearby Templo de la Virgen del Rosario, built in 1769. San Blas is the ideal launching point to man-made island-city of Mexcaltitan, which is the birthplace of Aztec civilization. This peaceful cobblestoned, palm tree-lined backwater lures visitors with its laid-back ambiance, solitary and serene beaches as well as tropical jungles reached by riverboats for adventure aficionados. Home to 80% of North America’s migratory birds, San Blas is a haven for birdwatchers. Renowned for its low-rolling, long waves, Borrego Beach provides one of the finest surfing experiences in Mexico.
  • Punta Mita – A world-famous luxury getaway thanks to the multitude of exclusive, deluxe resorts with hacienda-style rooms and an impressive range of amenities catering to couples, singles, families and groups of friends, Punta Mita is all about getting pampered surrounded by mesmerizing scenery and incredible vistas of both the Pacific ocean and Marietas Islands, a UNESCO protected reserve originally formed by volcanic activity and rich in marine life. Golf enthusiasts and Punta Mita are a match made in heaven, as the self-contained village rich in the ancient Huichol culture also features two famed Jack Nicklaus golf courses, one of them with the one-of-a-kind 3B hole that actually lies off shore on a natural island.
  • Sayulita – An authentic, low-key beach village along Riviera Nayarit, Sayulita, although still largely undiscovered, impresses travels with its rustic Mexican vibe, bohemian flair, and quaint, narrow streets where tourists and locals enjoy riding in golf carts or even wandering barefoot. Most restaurants in Sayulita are al fresco, Captain Cook restaurant even setting up tables directly on the sand, while street vendors line the streets and beaches of the village with fresh fruit as well as artfully handcrafted souvenirs. Arguably Riviera Nayarit’s most popular surfing destination thanks to its excellent waves, Sayulita also offers secluded beaches for total serenity and tranquility, rocky coves, jungle and a fabulous resort nestled on a cliff, just 150 feet from the crashing waves.
  • Nuevo Vallarta – Famous worldwide for its abundant marine life, especially leatherback turtles, hawksbill turtles and humpback whales hitting up the shores every year, the community of Nuevo Vallarta is among US and Canada tourists’ favorite destinations in Mexico. Packed with all-inclusive, luxury resorts located right on Banderas Bay, Mexico’s largest natural bay, including Grand Velas, the only all-inclusive resort on the Pacific Coast to be awarded Five Diamonds by AAA, in addition to several malls and even the only Starbucks in the region, Nuevo Vallarta is Riviera Nayarit at its finest, delighting discerning tourists with the absolute best of both worlds.

Activities

10 Things to Do on A Riviera Nayarit Vacation

Riviera Nayarit is an understated Mexico destination, yet is a paradise of nature’s richness and life’s luxurious indulgences! It holds unsurpassable beauty that goes beyond its 200-mile stretch along the Pacific Coastline, the very place where the Sierra Madre mountains meet the blue Pacific ocean. The spectacular expanse of pristine beaches, world-class accommodations, colonial history, delicious food, countless activities day or night, water and land adventures, altogether create the perfect dream vacation. There’s no other time to explore Riviera Nayarit than now, before crowds realize how wondrous this spot on earth is!

Things to Do:

  1. Explore Nature – Riviera Nayarit is home to a diversity of flora and fauna. Embark on a nature trail in green mountains and lush forests brimming with plant life. Animal lovers will enjoy bird watching and swimming with dolphins! You can also see iguanas, crocodiles, whales and other fascinating marine life.
  2. Rekindle Romance – Couples will find tons of new things to try together. Share a romantic meal, go on a cruise, have a toast to your love! The coastal paradise is the perfect place to be on a honeymoon.
  3. Learn History and Culture – People who are fascinated with history will travel back in time with old tales and the Riviera Nayarit warm culture to learn. Notable structures include churches, pyramids, pueblos, and stone fortresses in exquisite architecture. There are numerous celebrations such as festivals and parades where locals are seen with traditional clothing. The artwork from writers, sculptors and artisans, are endearing as they depict stories of the region’s indigenous people.
  4. Indulge in Luxury – Riviera Nayarit is a treasure and paradise of the Pacific Ocean that’s perfect for beach lovers. Luxurious hotels with complete amenities and stellar service enhance comfortability during your entire stay.
  5. Experience Simple Joys – Relax on the beach with family and friends, build a sand sculpture, ride on a segway, fly a kite, cruise the countryside and breathe in the majestic surroundings.
  6. Be Dauntless – Thrill-seekers will be raving with awesome adventures within a natural setting, whether on water or land:
    • Water Sports – Go snorkeling, fishing, boating, or canoeing. Surf the waves of the beaches, explore deeper through scuba diving, and try cliff diving or parasailing!
    • Land Activities – Go zip lining, horseback riding, off road tour, rappelling down a rainforest waterfall, and more!
  7. Savor Fresh Meals – Dine in hundreds of restaurants, from casual cantinas offering local specialties to fine dining with a huge selection of international dishes. Enjoy the freshest seafood and your meal with a nice outdoor view.
  8. Shop ‘til You Drop – Head over to designer malls to satisfy your every fashion whim. Go to the beachfront or street side markets and galleries for great finds. Bring home a piece of Riviera Nayarit with handmade souvenirs crafted by locals such as beadwork, clothing, and jewelry.
  9. Nightlife – Experience live entertainment, drink all you can to happy times, and dance to Latin rhythms amidst a stunning backdrop of bright lights!
  10. Release Sea Turtles – One of the most rewarding things you can do on your Riviera Nayarit vacation is joining the sea turtles adventure tour. Have a breathtaking experience as thousands of endangered baby sea turtles hatch along the Vallarta beaches and slowly but surely, find their way to the Pacific ocean.

 

Dining

Dining in Riviera Nayarit

The Riviera Nayarit is a sun-soaked 200-mile stretch of coast and beach along Mexico’s Pacific coast. Named after the state of the same name, it’s an epic landmass for tourism and ecology, and for experiencing the best of the Mexican sun. Tourism is one of the main driving factors of this stretch of coastline, and as a result, hosts of dining experiences await any traveler heading there. It features a unique blend of European, international and Mexican cuisine that will delight even the most discerning palate.

Seafood is plentiful along the Riviera Nayarit, and a plethora of restaurants, from casual to upscale, offer regionalized dishes to suit the local environment. In additional to traditional Mexican fare, based on beans, rice, tomatoes, chilies and seasonings, international cuisine is also a big part of the area. Travelers from around the globe flock to this coastline for their holiday adventures, therefore a wide variety of dishes are available to suit any imaginable taste.

Due to the large number of resorts and vacation attractions dotting this coastline, a huge array of culinary tours are available. Known as cultural safaris, these excursions offer the participant the chance to indulge and savor local cuisine as well as immerse themselves in the customs and culture of the authentic Mexican Riviera Nayarit. These excursions are centered around the annual Festival Gourmet, which takes place in an area spread between Puerto Vallarta and the Riviera Nayarit. It’s held every November for 10 days and showcases the best foods that the Nayarit region has to offer. Traditional dishes abound, and participants can sample local dishes and cuisine guided by expert tour guides. They will usually feature between three and four restaurants each, ranging from fine dining to casual to street cart fare. For the foodie, it’s an excellent opportunity to get a true taste of this idyllic coastline.

For the less adventurous, there is a wide variety of excellent restaurants located along the Riviera Nayarit. The seafood experience at Adriatico features such delightful entrees as fettuccine pasta and lobster in tomato sauce, jumbo shrimp, as well as a mouth-watering shrimp ceviche. Tutto Pronto is Italian-inspired dining at its finest, with a comfortable atmosphere. La Laguna Tino’s is another seafood hotspot along the coast, and has been labeled “the cathedral of seafood”. Le Provence brings a distinctly French flavor to the area, and for more authentic local cuisine, Restaurant IXTA delights diners with traditional Mexican dishes specifically crafted to the local Nayarit region. And after dinner, don’t forget to cap the evening with a sampling of tejuino, a delicious cocktail made from fermented corn and sugar cane, as well as a delectable selection of local favorites such as coconut cookies and corn candies.

Traveling to the Riviera Nayarit is an opportunity to partake in an epic adventure of distinct and authentic Mexican cuisine. The wide variety of offerings are inspired by a mix of ethnicities, from Spanish colonizers in the 15th century to modern tourists from abroad, and this fusion gives the discerning palate a chance to savor some of the world’s best dishes.

Nightlife

Riviera Nayarit Nightlife

As much as there are a lot of choices of beaches during the day with 200-miles of Pacific Coast, the Riviera Nayarit nightlife goes as broad as the horizon! It is situated just north of Puerto Vallarta, the resort town famous for its vibrant nightlife. Enjoy your evening with family and friends. Enter cool divey joints, cocktail lounges, lively clubs, and wine bars. Check out some of the best places to be in once the sun sets at Riviera Nayarit:

  1. Coffee Shops and Bars – Breathe in a relaxed and calm atmosphere. Share an intimate dinner, walk under the moonlight, and have a romantic meal as a couple. Have a pleasant conversation during your family dinner while listening to good music, or chat about experiences and catch up with friends on your dinner reunion.
  2. Restaurants – Establishments range from casual to fine dining at Nuevo Vallarta, Bucerias, Punta de Mita, Sayulita, San Blas, and various other resort communities, serving delicious food to suit the tastes and needs of visitors from all over the world. Mexican cuisine with local specialties, traditional recipes and delicacies, taco shops, and bistros are what you can mostly find for a flavorful lunch or dinner. Mexico’s Pacific west coast along Riviera Nayarit is influenced by refined European cuisine from colonial times. There are also plenty of North American, Italian cuisines, and international dishes among hundreds of restaurants to choose from.
  3. Exciting Nightclubs – Huge dance floors play American pop, salsa, jazz, piano, guitar, bohemian theme, tropical ambiance, electronic music, and different moods tailor the Riviera Nayarit experience. Have all the fun with your lover on a blast of a honeymoon! Enjoy a night out at fantastic clubs with friends, meet new ones, and dance with groups of people and bask under the stars with similar night owls as yourself.
    • CHRISTINE. An avant-garde club in Vallarta with contemporary facilities presenting a casual and fresh ambiance. The place features an incredible light show along with international hits and modern music booming all night for a superb party! No wonder it’s the most visited disco in Riviera Nayarit.
    • COLLAGE. Experience a one-of-a-kind foam party with an acrobatics show, cage dancers, a video game arcade, bowling, dance floor, with sumptuous sushi and cool drinks.
    • GECKO Bar & Grill. Strong drinks in a beach bar ambiance create a relaxing night of cold beer and cocktails at Bucerias. Feel at home with grilled and fried comfort food, washed down with some cool cerveza.
    • LUNA Lounge. A steakhouse and grill in Bucerias with a warm and romantic ambiance perfect for honeymooners in Riviera Nayarit. Witness the fun-filled cabaret shows and sultry dancing from drag shows to Cuban salsa.
    • PACHA Nightclub. A favorite party spot in Nuevo Vallarta for guests and locals alike with their friendly and attentive staff, and great DJ who spins amazing tunes which make your body groove and just want to dance all night!
    • SCONDIDO Wine Bar & Cocktails. Classy wine joint at Sayulita main plaza downtown offering fine glasses of red and white wine, and yellow cocktails! Have some paninis and salads, then sit back and relax throughout the evening.
    • YAMBAK. This Riviera Nayarit nightlife hotspot in Sayulita blends a hip and casual atmosphere, with lively music pumping all night topped with the greatness of tasty drinks.

Weddings

These Riviera Nayarit resorts offer wedding-specific packages:

  • Decameron
  • Dreams
  • Hard Rock
  • Iberostar
  • Marival
  • Occidental
  • Palladium
  • Riu
  • Velas
  • Villa Group Mexico

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Our travel specialists have stayed at or visited most of the vacations we recommend (unlike most online agencies). In order to best match your requirements with the array of resorts, packages and options available, we believe it is best for us to speak with you personally by phone about your vacation.

If you can’t call us now or our office is currently closed, please schedule a personal one on one consultation below with one of our travel specialists when it is convenient for you and let us take all the stress out of planning your vacation. Thank you for considering Traveloni!

Lynn Farrell, President

Lynn Farrell
President