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Puerto Vallarta

Coordinates: 20°38′45″N 105°13′20″W / 20.64583°N 105.22222°W / 20.64583; -105.22222
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Puerto Vallarta
Above, from left to right: Panoramic view of Villa del Palmar, Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish, the Sea Horse Sculpture, the pier, view of the hotel zone from the boardwalk, Marina Vallarta and downtown.
Above, from left to right: Panoramic view of Villa del Palmar, Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish, the Sea Horse Sculpture, the pier, view of the hotel zone from the boardwalk, Marina Vallarta and downtown.
Flag of Puerto Vallarta
Official seal of Puerto Vallarta
P.V., Vallarta
Location of the municipality within the state of Jalisco
Location of the municipality within the state of Jalisco
Puerto Vallarta is located in Mexico
Puerto Vallarta
Puerto Vallarta
Puerto Vallarta is located in Jalisco
Puerto Vallarta
Puerto Vallarta
Coordinates: 20°38′45″N 105°13′20″W / 20.64583°N 105.22222°W / 20.64583; -105.22222
MunicipalityPuerto Vallarta
FoundedDecember 12, 1851
Founded asLas Peñas
Named forIgnacio Vallarta
 • Municipal presidentLuis Alberto Michel Rodríguez ( Morena)
 • City49.11 km2 (18.96 sq mi)
 • Metro
1,452 km2 (561 sq mi)
 • Municipality680.9 km2 (262.9 sq mi)
7 m (23 ft)
 (2020 census)
 • City224,166
 • Density4,600/km2 (12,000/sq mi)
 • Metro
 • Metro density330/km2 (860/sq mi)
 • Municipality
 • Municipality density430/km2 (1,100/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC−6 (Central Central Standard Time)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−6 (Central Standard Time)
Postal code
Area code+52 322

Puerto Vallarta (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈpweɾto βaˈʎaɾta] or simply Vallarta) is a Mexican beach resort city on the Pacific Ocean's Bahía de Banderas in the Mexican state of Jalisco. Puerto Vallarta is the second largest urban agglomeration in the state after the Guadalajara Metropolitan Area. The City of Puerto Vallarta is the government seat of the Municipality of Puerto Vallarta, which comprises the city as well as population centers outside of the city extending from Boca de Tomatlán to the Nayarit border (the Ameca River). The city is located at 20°40′N 105°16′W / 20.667°N 105.267°W / 20.667; -105.267. The municipality has an area of 681 square kilometres (262.9 sq mi). To the north, it borders the southwest of the state of Nayarit. To the east, it borders the municipality of Mascota and San Sebastián del Oeste, and to the south, it borders the municipalities of Talpa de Allende and Cabo Corrientes.[4]

Puerto Vallarta is named after Ignacio Vallarta, a former governor of Jalisco. In Spanish, Puerto Vallarta is frequently shortened to "Vallarta", while English speakers call the city P.V. for short. In Internet shorthand, the city is often referred to as PVR, after the International Air Transport Association airport code for its Gustavo Diaz Ordaz International Airport.


Playa Los Muertos (Beach of the Dead)[edit]

In the 16th century, Hernán Cortés explored the Pacific side of Mexico by ship. Cortés used the established port of Acapulco to resupply and anchor his ships along the journey. During the early 1500s, he sent two of his ships North to explore the coastline without him. One of his ships wrecked in Banderas Bay and all but three men were reportedly killed. It is believed the corpses of the lost sailors washed ashore. Native villagers encountered numerous corpses on the beach for days after the wreck.[5]

Bahía de Banderas (Bay of Flags)[edit]

Pirates were known to attack ships along the Pacific Coast of Mexico as early as the 16th century. In the early 1500s the famous explorer Hernán Cortés set out to establish a safe harbor, north of Acapulco, to provide protection for cargo ships sailing the planned Manila galleon trade route to the Philippines. Just several hundred miles north, he discovered a large bay at the village of Tintoque. According to local legend, pirates were already anchoring in this bay and regularly pillaged local villagers while burying treasure in the hills. When Cortes and his crew set foot on the beach, a mob of angry villagers believed he and his crew were pirates and surrounded them with native weapons in hand. According to his journal, a Catholic friar accompanying the crew began praying to the Lord for help. Villagers were mesmerized by the red flags the crew carried and suddenly lowered their weapons, allowing the explorers to pass peacefully. It's likely the villagers had seen the flags before when they floated ashore with the dead crew from a Cortés ship that wrecked earlier in the bay. This is how the Bahía de Banderas was named. Francisco Cortés de Buenaventura, the nephew of Hernán Cortés, is said to have formalized the bay's name during his own conquering of the region in 1525. In the following years, Tintoque became a major port and safe harbor for ships traveling the Manila galleon.[6][7]

Pre-Hispanic times to the 19th century[edit]

Few details are known about the history of the area prior to the 19th century. There is archaeological evidence to suggest continuous human habitation from 580 BC, and similar evidence (from sites near Ixtapa and in Col. Lázaro Cárdenas)[8] that the area belonged to the Aztlán culture which dominated Jalisco, Nayarit and Michoacán from c. 900–1200. The limited evidence in occidental Mexican archeology have limited the current knowledge about pre-historic life in the area.[9]

El Carrizal and Las Peñas – 19th century[edit]

The official founding story of Las Peñas and thus of Puerto Vallarta is that it was founded by Guadalupe Sánchez Torres, his wife Ambrosia Carrillo and some friends such as Cenobio Joya, Apolonio de Robles, Cleofas Peña and Martín Andrade, among others, on December 12, 1851, and was given the name of Las Peñas de Santa María de Guadalupe since it was the day dedicated to the virgin of Guadalupe. Although the purchase record of the property by Guadalupe Sanchez is dated 1859, his family lived there prior to the purchase year.[10][11]

There is however no doubt the development of Las Peñas into a self-sustaining village of any significant size happened in the 1860s as the mouth of the Cuale area was exploited to support the operations of the newly enfranchised Union en Cuale company. As such 1859 marks the beginning of Puerto Vallarta as a village. Twenty years later, by 1885, the village comprised about 250 homes and about 800 residents.[12]

The modern resort – 20th century to present[edit]

Closer view of the church

The Mexican government invested significantly in transportation improvements, making Puerto Vallarta an easy travel destination. To make Puerto Vallarta accessible by jet aircraft the government developed the city's international airport. Ground transportation significantly improved. Government invested heavily in the development of highway and utility infrastructure. Another vital improvement for the city was the El Salado wharf (where the current cruise terminal is), inaugurated on June 1, 1970, making Puerto Vallarta Jalisco's first harbor town.[13]

During the mid-1980s, Puerto Vallarta experienced a rapid expansion of impromptu communities poorly served by even basic public services. This very low standard of living leveled out Puerto Vallarta's resort boom. In the late 1980s Puerto Vallarta's government worked to alleviate the situation by developing housing and infrastructure. But the legacy of the 1980s boom remains, as the outlying areas of Puerto Vallarta suffer from poor provision of basic services (i.e. water, sewage, roads).[14]


Beaches of Puerto Vallarta

Puerto Vallarta lies on a narrow coastal plain at the foot of the Sierras Cuale and San Sebastián, parts of the Sierra Madre Occidental. The plain widens to the north, reaching its widest point along the Ameca river. Three rivers flow from the Sierra through the area. From south to north they are the Cuale, the Pitillal, and the Ameca. A number of arroyos also run from the Sierra to the coastal plain. Many of the valleys of these rivers and arroyos are inhabited. Also development has to some extent spread up the hillsides from the coastal plain.

The city proper comprises four main areas: the hotel zone along the shore to the north, Olas Altas – Colonia Emiliano Zapata to the south of the Cuale river (recently named Zona Romántica in some tourist brochures), the Centro along the shore between these two areas, and a number of residential areas to the east of the hotel zone. The oldest section of the town is the area of Col. Centro near the church of Our Lady of Guadalupe, especially Hidalgo street.

Seismic history[edit]

Puerto Vallarta, like much of the west coast of North America, is prone to earthquakes, though Puerto Vallarta tends to experience only peripheral effects of earthquakes centered farther south. On 9 October 1995, an earthquake located off the Colima coast shook the crown from the top of the Roman Catholic Church.[15][16]


Puerto Vallarta has a Tropical wet and dry climate (Köppen climate classification Aw), with dry winters and rainy summers.[17] The average daily high temperature is 86 °F (30 °C); average daily low temperature is 70 °F (21 °C); average daily humidity is 75%. The rainy season extends from mid June through mid October, with most of the rain between July and September. August is the city's wettest month, with an average of 14 days with significant precipitation. Even during the rainy season precipitation tends to be concentrated in large rainstorms. Occasional tropical storms will bring thunderstorms to the city in November, though the month is typically dry. There is a marked dry season in the winter. February, March and April are the months with the least cloud cover.[18]

Hurricanes seldom strike Puerto Vallarta. In 2002, Hurricane Kenna, a category 5 hurricane, made landfall about 160 km (100 mi) northwest of Puerto Vallarta, and the city suffered some damage from the resulting storm surge. In 1971, Hurricane Lily, a category 1 hurricane, caused serious flooding on the Isla Cuale, prompting the city to relocate all of its residents to the new Colonia Palo Seco.

Climate data for Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 35.0
Mean daily maximum °C (°F) 26.7
Daily mean °C (°F) 21.7
Mean daily minimum °C (°F) 16.7
Record low °C (°F) 11
Average rainfall mm (inches) 33.8
Average rainy days (≥ 0.1 mm) 2.2 0.7 0.6 0.2 1.0 10.8 16.4 15.2 15.6 5.1 1.4 1.9 71.1
Average relative humidity (%) 67 65 65 67 68 69 69 70 70 68 67 68 68
Source 1: World Meteorological Organization.[19]
Source 2: Weatherbase[20]
Puerto Vallarta mean sea temperature[21]
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
24 °C (75 °F) 24 °C (75 °F) 24 °C (75 °F) 25 °C (77 °F) 27 °C (81 °F) 28 °C (82 °F) 29 °C (84 °F) 30 °C (86 °F) 30 °C (86 °F) 30 °C (86 °F) 28 °C (82 °F) 25 °C (77 °F)

Hurricane Patricia[edit]

Hurricane Patricia, a Category 5 storm, became the most powerful cyclone ever measured in the Western Hemisphere with sustained wind speeds up to 200 mph (320 km/h). Hurricane Patricia was forecast to make landfall at Puerto Vallarta on the evening of October 23, 2015, with catastrophic damage predicted for the town and surrounding areas and the potential for mud slides. The storm changed from a Category 1 to a Category 5 in just 24 hours, thus catching some vacationers off guard and leaving many trapped in the town. The Jalisco state government put together 30 buses to evacuate tourists from the coast to Guadalajara, a 5-hour ride inland. Manzanillo, Colima was also near the forecast catastrophic damage zone. Ultimately, Patricia made landfall south of Puerto Vallarta, sparing the city from any significant damage.[22][23]


Nearly 80% of the workforce is employed in tourist related industries: hotels, restaurants, personal services, and transportation.[24]

Tourism trends[edit]

Puerto Vallarta Hotel Skyline

Tourism in Puerto Vallarta has increased steadily over the years and makes up 80% of the city's economic activity in 2020.[24] The high season for international tourism in Puerto Vallarta is from late November through March (or later, depending on the timing of the college spring break period in the U.S. The city is especially popular with U.S. residents from the southern and western U.S. because of the number of direct flights between Puerto Vallarta and Atlanta, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Denver, Phoenix, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Minneapolis/St Paul and Chicago.[25]

Real estate tourism[edit]

Velas Vallarta Hotel

Puerto Vallarta has become a popular retirement destination for U.S. and Canadian retirees. This has created a number of neighborhoods within the Puerto Vallarta region that cater primarily to real estate tourism, such as the Hotel Zone, which stretches from downtown Vallarta to the airport and Marina Vallarta (near the airport), and Amapas and Conchas Chinas, which are built into the mountain slightly south and behind Puerto Vallarta, and overlook the city and bay. Most recently the downtown area, especially in Emiliano Zapata (also known as the Romantic Zone), has seen a somewhat controversial trend of traditional homes being razed for the construction of condominium buildings. This region in recent years has been the most popular for Vallarta real estate tourism, with nearly 25% of all real estate sales for the region taking place there in 2019.[26]

Restaurant at Puerto Vallarta's Downtown

The Vallarta tourism real estate tourism market is made up of both full-time retirees and a second-home owners, primarily from the United States. On average about 40% of buyers are American, with Mexican nationals consisting of 30% and Canadians and other foreign buyers making up the remaining 20%. Mexicans favor destinations such as Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos and Cancún not just for the sun and beach, but also as real estate investment to hedge their pesos as real estate in these regions is priced in USD, rather than in pesos like the rest of the country.[26]

Puerto Vallarta can be classified as a medium-ranged real estate market with a market consisting mostly of condominiums with the average price around US$320,000 in 2019.[26] Any foreigner wishing to buy real estate in Puerto Vallarta (or anywhere along the coast of Mexico), can't own real estate there outright, but needs to establish a fideicommissum or beneficial trust which is held with a Mexican bank on the owner's behalf. It is not the same as holding the title. The trust is good for 50 years and can be renewed for another 50-year period.[27]

LGBT tourism[edit]

The LGBT portion of the Playa de Los Muertos (Beach of the Dead)

Puerto Vallarta has developed into Mexico's premier resort town as a sort of satellite gay space for its big sister Guadalajara, much as Fire Island is to New York City and Palm Springs is to Los Angeles.[28] It is now considered the most welcoming and gay-friendly destination in the country, dubbed the "San Francisco of Mexico."[29] Previously quite conservative, the municipal government has become increasingly supportive in recognising and accepting the LGBT tourism segment and supporting LGBT events such as Vallarta gay pride celebrations, which launched in 2013 and are now held annually to coincide with U.S. Memorial Day weekend.[30] It boasts a gay scene, centered in the city's south-side Zona Romántica, of hotels and resorts as well as many bars, nightclubs and a gay beach on the main shore.[29] Puerto Vallarta has been cited as the number one gay beach destination in Latin America,[31] with city officials claiming a 5% tourism increase in 2013.[32]

Population and growth rate for Puerto Vallarta[edit]

The major suburb is Bahia de Banderas in Nayarit across state lines, in which Nuevo Vallarta and Sayulita are localities. Ixtapa is a locality in PV, not to be confused with the municipality of Ixtapa in Guerrero state.

1950 1960 1970 1980 1990 1995 2000 2005 2010 2014est/2015
Locality Population (city) 93,503 121,844 151,432 177,830 203,342 221,200
Municipality 10,801 15,462 35,911 57,028 111,457 184,728 255,725 275,640

sources: (locality & 2015 municipal) [33] (municipal to 2010) sources: Cuaderno Estadistico Municipal[34] Censo de Poblacion y Vivienda 2010.[35]

Growth-related problems[edit]

Poverty remains a problem, fueled by the constant influx of persons seeking employment. Many areas of the city are still poorly served by roads and sewers. For example, Colonia Ramblases is served by roads in generally poor condition only 10% of which are paved, and Ramblases has been a populated neighborhood since the 1940s.[36] The Municipality of Puerto Vallarta comprises about 45,000 regular dwellings. Of those, 10% do not have a potable water supply (carrying their water from a public tap), 8% do not have connections to a sewer system or septic system (using instead crude septic pits or dumping sewage directly into waterways), and 4% do not have electricity.[37] There have been improvements in 2005 to 2007, such as new IMSS facilities in Col. Versalles, improvements to several recreation facilities, improved communal beach access policies, etc. Still efforts seem to aim more at quick and visible infrastructure improvements than at solving the more pressing and enduring problem of insufficient infrastructure for basic services.[38]

One positive result of recent growth has been that in relative terms a smaller percentage of the population lives in older and poorly served neighborhoods. A growing number of residents live in housing projects and low-income housing developments which provide at least adequate basic services.[39]


Taxi in downtown, driving on characteristic cobblestones

The Licenciado Gustavo Díaz Ordaz International Airport comprises a commercial international section and a general aviation section.[40]

Puerto Vallarta currently has no passenger rail service. Historically, buses connected with nearby Tepic, where there was a passenger rail service on the main north–south trunk of Ferromex. Heading north, trains continued to Nogales, opposite its namesake in Arizona. A spur headed northwest to Mexicali, opposite Calexico, California. Service to the east went to Guadalajara and then to Mexico City.[41]

As of June 2017, Uber began operating in Puerto Vallarta.[42] Their arrival has not been without conflict, as there have been confrontations between them due to their much lower rates.[43]


Film and television[edit]

Landmarks, sights, activities[edit]

Landmarks in Puerto Vallarta[edit]

Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe
Playa Conchas Chinas
Isla del Río Cuale
  • Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe – Colonia Centro
  • Púlpito and Pilitas (Pulpit and Baptismal Font) – Colonia Emiliano Zapata – two rock formations at the South end of Los Muertos Beach. El Púlpito is the tall headland and Las Pilitas are the formation of rocks beneath it. Las Pilitas was the original location of the Boy on a Seahorse sculpture (El Caballito) now located on the Malecón, an identical sculpture is also located on Los Muertos Beach. There are two streets in the Olas Altas area named after the rock formations.
  • Playa Conchas Chinas (Curly Shells Beach) – Fraccionamiento Amapas – the city's most secluded beach, located to the south of the headland which forms the boundary of Los Muertos beach.
  • The Malecón – paved walkway along the seashore in Colonia Centro – especially popular during the Sunday evening paseo. It features a collection of contemporary sculptures by Sergio Bustamante, Alejandro Colunga, Ramiz Barquet and others. The Malecon was extensively rebuilt in 2002–2003 following damage from hurricane Kenna. It was also greatly renovated, having new walkways and iconic sculptures in 2010.
  • Mercado Isle Cuale and Mercado Municipal Río Cuale – there are two large public markets in the Centro (Downtown) along the banks of the Cuale selling a variety of artisanal and souvenir goods, and the Isla Cuale has a number of souvenir vendor shops as well. The Isla Cuale was also famous for its cat population. The Island was a lower class suburb until flooding during Hurricane Lily (1971) forced residents to be relocated. They were moved to Palo Seco (which means "dry stick") and the Island was converted into a site for restaurants, shops and a cultural center.[citation needed]
  • Cuale Archaeological Museum – on the West side of the Isla Cuale, the museum presents a significant collection of local and regional pre-Hispanic art in a number of informative displays.[citation needed] The museum also houses a small gallery for showing contemporary art.
  • Statue of John Huston on Isla Cuale – dedicated on the 25th anniversary of the film's release and honoring Huston's contributions to the city. John's son Danny was married in a ceremony that took place at the statue in 2002.[citation needed]
  • Plaza de Armas (Ignacio Vallarta) / Aquiles Serdán Amphitheater (Los Arcos) – the city's main plaza – site of public concerts both at the bandstand in the Plaza de Armas and on the stage in front of the arches across the street.
  • City Hall – a modern city hall laid out using a traditional courtyard plan. There is a tourist office in the SW corner, and on the landing of the main (West off the courtyard) stairwell there is a modest naive style mural by local artist Manuel Lepe.
  • Saucedo Theatre Building (Juárez and Iturbide) – Built in 1922 in a Belle Époque style reminiscent of architecture of the Porfirato. The theater presented live shows and films on its first floor, and the second floor housed a ballroom. The building has been converted to retail use.

Landmarks south of Puerto Vallarta[edit]

Los Arcos Marine Park
Vallarta Botanical Gardens
  • Los Arcos National Marine Park – offshore of Mismaloya 12 km south of Puerto Vallarta. The area has been a National Marine Park since 1984. The area is protected as a breeding ground for pelicans, boobies and other sea birds. The park is a popular snorkeling destination both for the rocks themselves and for the fossilized coral beds that surround them.
  • Vallarta Botanical Gardens[47] – A popular showcase of orchids, agaves, cactus, palms, and other native plants. A restaurant and river swimming is also available to visitors. The gardens are located 14 mi (23 km) South of Puerto Vallarta on Highway 200. Buses for the Vallarta Botanical Gardens depart from the corner of Carranzas and Aguacate Streets in the Zona Romantica and are labeled as both "El Tuito" and "Botanical Gardens".
  • Puerto Vallarta Zoo[48] – with 350 animals, and located in a forested setting in Mismaloya.

Landmarks east of Puerto Vallarta[edit]

  • Terra Noble Art and Healing Center – a New Age spa, meditation center and artist retreat on the hills east of Puerto Vallarta along the edge of the Agua Azul Nature Reserve overlooking Bahía de Banderas. The complex, built to resemble an early Mexican wattle and daub home was created by architect Jorge Rubio in conjunction with American sculptor Suzy Odom.[49][50]

Beaches and beach towns[edit]

Beaches in Puerto Vallarta[edit]

  • Playa Camarones (Shrimp Beach) – Colonia 5 de Diciembre (vicinity of Av. Paragua – Hotel Buenaventura. This is the northernmost public beach in the City of Puerto Vallarta proper. It is named after the shrimp fishermen that once landed their launches on the beach to unload their catch.[51]
  • Playa Olas Altas (High Waves Beach) – Colonia Emiliano Zapata – the beach extends from the Cuale River South to the fishing pier. In spite of the name, the waves offshore are not particularly high, and the beach is a popular place to swim, especially for locals and national tourists. The beach is lined with outdoor restaurants.[52]
  • Playa de los Muertos (Beach of the Dead) – Colonia Emiliano Zapata – the city's largest public beach. Legend has it the beach's name (Dead Men's Beach) stems from a battle between pirates and local miners after which bodies remained strewn on the beach, but it's a legend, since there were never any miners in Vallarta. The South Side of the beach is a popular gathering spot for gay and lesbian tourists. The North end is frequented mostly by locals, and national tourists. The city has recently tried to change the name of the beach to Playa del Sol.[52]

Local festivals[edit]

  • Beef Dip Bear Week – annual gay event for bears and their admirers at end of January and beginning of February.
  • Flower and Garden Festival (last week of February) – week of tours, classes, and workshops at the Vallarta Botanical Gardens. Dozens of plant, garden, flower, and local craft vendors feature their products and knowledge.
  • Electro Beach Puerto Vallarta (42-day festival starting in the beginning of March) – electronic dance music (EDM) festival
  • May Festival (last week of May and first week of June) – commemorating the anniversary of the municipality. The festival features outdoor concerts, artistic expositions, sporting events and a parade.
  • Día de MuertosDay of the Dead (November 2) – A day of honoring the dead in full Mexican Tradition held at the Vallarta Botanical Gardens. Workshops on making catrina skeleton dolls and cempasúchil (Tagetes erecta) flower arrangements are followed by celebrations in the Garden of Memories and a bonfire dance.
  • Las Posadas (20 December) – An evening of candlelight caroling & processions to handmade nativities is hosted by the Vallarta Botanical Gardens. Poinsettias and native Mexican pines are also featured during the celebrations.
  • 1 to 12 December – Festival of the Virgin of Guadalupe.


Puerto Vallarta comprises numerous neighborhoods (colonias). Notable neighborhoods include (from South to North)

  • Res. Conchas Chinas – hillside Southeast from Los Muertos beach.
  • Col. Alta Vista.
  • Amapas – on the hillside behind Los Muertos beach overlooking the bay.
  • Col. Emiliano Zapata – South of the Cuale (called Zona Romántica or "Old Town" in tourist brochures).
  • Cols. Caloso and Canoas – east of Col. Emiliano Zapata and up the Rio Cuale.
  • Col. Centro – the oldest section of town and its current center – North of the Cuale river to Parque Hidalgo.
  • Col. 5 Diciembre – just north of the Centro, and with Col. Zapata among the first neighborhoods beyond the Centro to be developed.
  • Col. Lázaro Cardenas – which houses a large recreation complex and the city's largest fish market – Parque Hidalgo to the Libramiento.
  • Col. Versalles – the old Zona Rosa, prior to the development of the North Hotel Zone.
  • Hotel Zone – Follows the coastline into down Vallarta  from the airport. Lined with hotels, timeshare resorts and residential towers.
  • Cols. Bugambillas and Ramblases – located on the NW slopes of the hills East of the city and relatively poor areas serviced mostly by dirt roads except for the hillside areas which have good views and thus attract residents with more resources.
  • Marina Vallarta – a large planned real estate tourism development near the airport with a marina, golf course, hotels, timeshare resorts and residential areas of homes and condominiums.
  • Del. Pitillal – once a small town and now a populous neighborhood, a separate delegación but now part of the City of Puerto Vallarta proper.
  • Col. Bobadilla – just north of Pitillal and also an important residential area.

The city also includes numerous fraccionamientos, densely built residential blocks that provide affordable housing for the city's workforce.

Additionally the municipality of Puerto Vallarta comprises a few other significant population centers (from South to North):

  • Boca de Tomatlán (pop. 570)
  • Mismaloya (pop. 970)
  • Las Juntas
  • Ixtapa (pop. 25,700) (n.b. there is a more well known Ixtapa in Guerrero – a resort development near the village of Zihuatanejo)
  • La Desembocada
  • El Ranchito (El Colesio)
  • El Colorado
  • Las Palmas de Arriba

Sister cities[edit]

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Metropolitan Area population includes municipalities in both Jalisco and Nayarit, Municipality includes other localities.
  2. ^ "Puerto Vallarta (Municipality, Mexico) - Population Statistics, Charts, Map and Location". City Population. 2022-12-24. Archived from the original on Jul 28, 2023.
  3. ^ Citypopulation.de Population of Puerto Vallarta metropolitan area
  4. ^ Guia Roji – Ciudad de Puerto Vallarta (map)
  6. ^ "History of Playa Los Muertos". exploratoryglory.com. TRAVEL, PHOTOGRAPHY AND TINY HOUSE LIVING. Retrieved 28 January 2023.
  7. ^ Harris, Kathleen. "December 12, 2011 Marks 160th Anniversary of Vallarta's Founding". banderasnews.com. Banderas News. Retrieved 29 January 2023.
  8. ^ The archaeologist in charge of these digs maintains a website with information related to them (in Spanish), one for the Ixtapa site, and one for the Calle Costa Rica Archived 2007-09-27 at the Wayback Machine site.
  9. ^ An example of this neglect is the City of Puerto Vallarta's destruction of the active excavation in the area of Calle Costa Rica and the Libramiento in 1995 to create a soccer field. See the website of the archeologist Archived 2007-09-27 at the Wayback Machine who led the dig for details.
  10. ^ Familia Sanchez Carrillo family records C.Haro
  11. ^ Munguia Fregoso – Panorámica p. 66
  12. ^ Munguia Fregoso – Panorámica p. 68
  13. ^ C. Munguía F., Panorama Histórico de Puerto Vallarta y de la Bahía de Banderas. (Secretaría de Cultura Gobierno de Jalisco H. Ayuntamiento de Puerto Vallarta, 1997) pp. 200
  14. ^ Read almost any issue of the local newspapers and you will see an endless procession of complaints by the residents of outlying neighborhoods about poor road, sewage and water supply. See Munguia Fregoso – Panorámica p. 132-3 for the chronology that ties this situation to the peso devaluation crisis of the early 80s.
  15. ^ "La Parroquia de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, punto de referencia de Puerto Vallarta" (in Spanish). 3 October 2016. Retrieved 26 August 2021.
  16. ^ "Corona de la Parroquia de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe (Rafael Parra Castillo y José Esteban Ramírez Guareño, 1963)". Puerto Vallarta Net (in Spanish). 30 September 2017. Retrieved 26 August 2021.
  17. ^ Wikimedia.org
  18. ^ Climate data taken from the Weather Underground Archived 2007-03-21 at the Wayback Machine site for 2001–2006.
  19. ^ Climatological Information for Puerto Vallarta, World Meteorological Organization. Retrieved 17 July 2012.
  20. ^ "Climate Statistics for Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico". Retrieved February 27, 2012.
  21. ^ "Puerto Vallarta Climate and Weather Averages, Mexico". Retrieved 25 January 2014.
  22. ^ "Post-Tropical Cyclone Selma Public Advisory". www.nhc.noaa.gov. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  23. ^ AP, Mexico braces for strongest hurricane in Western hemisphere, By CHRISTOPHER SHERMAN, with Associated Press, Oct 23, 11:53 AM EDT Archived 2015-10-24 at the Wayback Machine
  24. ^ a b Cornejo-Ortega, Jose Luis; Dagostino, Rosa María Chávez (May 2020). "The Tourism Sector in Puerto Vallarta: An Approximation from the Circular Economy". Sustainability. 12 (11): 4442. doi:10.3390/su12114442.
  25. ^ Lic. Gustavo Díaz Ordaz International Airport
  26. ^ a b c Vallarta, M. L. S. "2019 Puerto Vallarta Real Estate Sales Report". mlsvallarta.com/. Retrieved 2020-06-10.
  27. ^ "Buying Property in Mexico's Restricted Zone | Connell & Associates". Retrieved 2020-06-10.
  28. ^ Lionel Cantú, Nancy A. Naples, Salvador Vidal-Ortiz. The Sexuality of Migration: Border Crossings and Mexican Immigrant Men. NYU Press, 2009. 245 p. (101 p.) ISBN 0-8147-5849-5.
  29. ^ a b Howard L. Hughes. Pink tourism: holidays of gay men and lesbians. CABI, 2006. 234 p. (110 p.) ISBN 1-84593-076-2.
  30. ^ "Gay PV | LGBT Community Works Together for Successful 2014 Pride". Gaypv.mx. 2014-05-18. Archived from the original on 2015-12-08. Retrieved 2015-11-27.
  31. ^ Sara Lieber, Liza Monroy, Ann Summa, Jeff Spurrier, Rachel Tavel. MTV Best of Mexico. Frommer's, 2007. 722 p. (56 p.) ISBN 0-7645-8775-7.
  32. ^ "Gay PV | Puerto Vallarta: The New Gay Mecca". Gaypv.mx. 2014-04-30. Archived from the original on 2014-06-06. Retrieved 2015-11-27.
  33. ^ "Jalisco (Mexico): State, Major Cities & Towns – Population Statistics in Maps and Charts". citypopulation.de. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  34. ^ Cuaderno Estadistico Municipal (2000) H. Ayuntamiento de Puerto Vallarta
  35. ^ "Censo de Poblacion y Vivienda 2010". Archived from the original on 2011-04-06.(Instituto Nacional de Estadistica y Geografia)
  36. ^ Mantilla Barrios Pobres p 16
  37. ^ Cuaderno Estadistico Municipal 2000
  38. ^ This is a simple observed fact: high profile projects like those mentioned succeed while year after year little changes in the poorer colonias where basic services continue to be lacking.
  39. ^ Compare a map of the city in 1990 to one from 2006 and you will see dozens of new fraccionamientos (housing projects) developed to help absorb the influx of workers.
  40. ^ Airport information comes from the website of the Díaz Ordaz Airport Archived 2007-06-09 at the Wayback Machine
  41. ^ Thomas Cook Publishing, UK, "Overseas Timetable," May–June 2005, service was indicated on the map, p 123 and absent from the timetable, p. 125.
  42. ^ "Drive or Ride with Uber in Puerto Vallarta – Uber". www.uber.com. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  43. ^ "Taxi drivers harass tourists in Puerto Vallarta". 4 September 2017. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  44. ^ "La noche de la iguana". IMDb. Retrieved 1 September 2021.
  45. ^ "The Night of the Iguana". AllMovie. Retrieved 1 September 2021.
  46. ^ "The Love Boat has left Puerto Vallarta | San Diego Reader". www.sandiegoreader.com. Retrieved 2024-02-22.
  47. ^ "Vallarta Boanical Gardens -". www.vallartabotanicalgardensac.org. Archived from the original on 12 June 2007. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  48. ^ A.C., Departamento de Diseño, Zoológico de Vallarta. "::: Zoologico de Vallarta – Descubre la magia de la selva::Discover the magic of the jungle :::". www.zoologicodevallarta.com. Archived from the original on 20 June 2007. Retrieved 9 February 2018.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  49. ^ "TERRA NOBLE". TERRA NOBLE. Archived from the original on 31 August 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  50. ^ Listing for Terra Noble at Moon Travel Guides Archived 2010-09-10 at the Wayback Machine
  51. ^ Harris – Hidden p. 159
  52. ^ a b Harris – Hidden p. 175
  53. ^ "Lake County, Illinois International Sister Cities". Visitlakecounty.org. Archived from the original on 2015-12-08. Retrieved 2015-11-27.
  54. ^ Santa Barbara Sister City Committee. "Santa Barbara/Puerto Vallarta Sister City Committee". Sbpvsistercity.org. Archived from the original on 2015-11-17. Retrieved 2015-11-27.
  55. ^ "McAllen mayor signs sister city agreement with Puerto Vallarta". BorderReport. 2022-07-21. Retrieved 2023-04-21.


  • Link to tables of population data from Census of 2005 INEGI: Instituto Nacional de Estadística, Geografía e Informática
  • Jalisco Enciclopedia de los Municipios de México
  • Munguía Fregoso, Carlos – Panorama Histórico de Puerto Vallarta y de la Bahía de Banderas. Guadalajara (2003) Secretaría Cultura Jalisco
  • Montes de Oca de Contreras, Catalina – Puerto Vallarta en mis recuerdos. Guadalajara (1982) Gobierno de Jalisco, Secretaria General, Unidad Editorial
  • Guia Roji – Ciudad de Puerto Vallarta – Area Metropolitana Map 2005–6
  • Moon Handbooks – Puerto Vallarta Emeryville, California (2003) Avalon Travel Publishing
  • Martínez Campos, Gabriel – Recetario colimense de la iguana – Mexico DF (2004) Conaculta
  • Mantilla, Lucia – Los barrios pobres en 31 ciudades Mexicanas: Barrio Ramblases, Puerto Vallarta – Mexico (2004) Secretaria de Desarollo Social
  • Harris, Richard – Hidden Puerto Vallarta Berkeley (2006) Ulysses Press
  • [1] Children of the Dump Vallarta, Feed the Children Vallarta & the School of Champions Vallarta

External links[edit]