If you are looking for the best beaches in Puerto Vallarta, look no further than a few of our faves here!
Los Muertos Beach
Los Muertos Beach (Playa Los Muertos) in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico is THE beach to go to in Puerto Vallarta. There are tons of vendors, plenty of food, and abundance of sun and fun!
♦ Getting There-- Located just north of Amapas Conchas Chinas in the heart of Zona Romantica, Playa Los Muertos is located near a ton of great restaurants, shops, and all sorts of activities! If you are getting to the beach by taxi, just tell the driver you want Los Muertos Beach and they will know exactly where you are talking about! If you see the large pier, you’re in the right spot.
♦ What to Do-- Located in the heart of Zona Romantica, Playa Los Muertos is located near a ton of great restaurants, shops, and all sorts of activities! Playa los Muertos is an excellent place to spend an entire day. You can bring your own beach chairs, or you can sit at one of the many restaurants and get a beach chair/table in exchange for your business. Swell Beach Bar is our favorite spot! The drinks are reasonably priced, the chairs are comfortable, and the service is always fast.
At Los Muertos Beach you will also find many beach vendors selling shrimp on a stick, ceviche, cold drinks, blankets, cigars, and pretty much anything else you can think of. Don’t automatically dismiss every vendor, some of them have really good food! Hillary is particularly fond of the potato chips with hot sauce on them! However, if you aren’t in the mood, a simple no gracias will do the trick. Some vendors are more persistent than others, just remain polite and they will leave you alone.
If you are feeling a little more adventurous you can rent a jet ski, go parasailing, go fishing, or take a water taxi to Yelapa or Las Animas!
♦ What Makes Los Muertos so Great?-- We usually aren’t the types to like big beaches that can get really busy, but Los Muertos is definitely an exception. So what makes it so great? First, though it can get really busy, we have never encountered any annoying people on the beach. Maybe that’s just pure luck, but we can only report on our experiences! Also, the proximity to restaurants makes it really convenient. You can go sit at the beach for a few hours, go grab some food, and head back to the beach all without any headaches!
One thing that makes Los Muertos Beach so special, and really Puerto Vallarta as a whole, is that although there are a lot of American tourists, there are also a lot of Mexican tourists as well. I am not sure why this is nice, other than if you are on vacation it is usually a tad annoying to be surrounded by a crowd of people that you could live next to in Dallas.
If you are headed to Puerto Vallarta, Los Muertos Beach should be one of your first stops. It is a great beach to get your vacation started and an excellent way to really feel the vibe of Puerto Vallarta.
Amapas Conchas Chinas
♦ About Conchas Chinas-- Amapas Conchas Chinas is by far one of our favorite beaches in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Located just south of Playa de Los Muertos, Amapas Chinas a hidden gym in Puerto Vallarta! If you are in the mood to relax, sit in peace and quiet, and play in clear water, Amapas Conchas Chinas is the place for you!
You will find Amapas Chinas to be peaceful compared to its partner to the north, Playa de los Muertos. However, if you like beaches that have beachside restaurants and bars, Playa de los Muertos may be a better option! Unlike Cancun, Puerto Vallarta is not known for it's crystal clear water. However, if hasn't rained in a few days, Amapas Conchas Chinas will be about as clear as you could ask for! If you are staying in Puerto Vallarta during the rainy season, don't expect Amapas to be crystal clear after a downpour!
♦ How to get There-- If you are at the Pier at Playa de los Muertos just follow the beach towards the blue chairs area (south) until the beach comes to an end. At this point you will climb up and descend a small hill that will bring you to a rocky beach. Continue walking south. Climb up another small hill towards a sidewalk next to a white condo building. Follow this path until you come to a small set of stairs leading towards the water. Keep on following the staircase down and at this point, you are at Amapas Conchas Chinas!
♦ What to Do-- We usually walk down another 50 yards or so towards a more open section of the beach. We suggest you get there early and find a spot next to some shade! If early (10am or earlier) isn't an option, we suggest bringing an umbrella or renting one at the beach. As awesome as the beach is, sitting in the sun for hours on end can make the rest of your day miserable! We have only seen a handful of the beaches of the world, but so far, Conchas Chinas is in the top 5! Every beach has it's own intricacies and things to love. We generally like beaches that are clear and off the beaten bath. Amapas Conchas Chinas checks both of those boxes!
Playa Punta Negra
♦ About Playa Punta Negra-- Playa Punta Negra quickly became one of our favorite beaches in Puerto Vallarta. It is fairly easy to reach, there are no crowds, and there is the perfect amount of vendors. While Los Muertos is the perfect party beach, Playa Punta Negra is one of the best beaches for relaxation in Puerto Vallarta.
While we enjoy Playa Los Muertos for its constant buzz, sometimes we just need some peace and quiet and enjoy a more relaxed calm getaway. Punta Negra is perfect if that is what you are looking for!
If you get hungry or thirsty there are a few vendors and restaurants right on the beach. However, there are not so many that you feel like somebody is constantly hounding you. We have found this to be a problem at Mismaloya and Boca.
♦ Location-- Located just a few short miles south downtown Puerto Vallarta, Playa Punta Negra is a great beach to unwind, relax, and get away from the crowds.
♦ How to get There-- There are two different options for traveling to Playa Punta Negra. The first option is to catch the orange bus at the corner of Constitución and Basilio Badillo and the second option is to catch a taxi. The map above shows exactly where the busses pickup. For less than 10 pesos (about 50 cents) per person, you can catch a bus ride straight to one of the best beaches in all of Puerto Vallarta! Whenever you get on just tell the driver that you are going to Playa Punta Negra. (You do not have to tell him, but I have found much better success in arriving to my intended destination if I tell the driver ahead of time where I want to get off.) When you are on the bus, you should be looking for signs for the Best Western and Playa Punta Negra--->you will want to get off here!
If you have made it to Mismaloya or you are seeing signs for the zoo, you have gone too far.
You can see where we were dropped off in this video:
Once you are dropped off you will walk down a long set of stairs that will lead straight to the beach. If you are not up for that much of an adventure, you can always take a taxi! This route is much faster, but it will set you back a few more dollars. Just tell your driver that you want to go to Playa Punta Negra and they should know exactly where that is. (If they do not, I would just find another driver!)
♦ Tips for Playa Punta Negra-- There is not much in the way of shade or protection from the sun at Playa Punta Negra. If you burn easily or you want to stay for a long period of time, we suggest bringing an umbrella to plant in the sand. If this is not an option, arrive early and find a spot to the right of the stairs close to the big cliff as this may provide some shade.
Bring plenty of water and snacks, as there may be limited options for food and drink depending on the day/time of day you visit. If blue water and relaxation is what you are after, Playa Punta Negra is a great choice for your next beach outing!
There you have it!! A few of our very favorite beaches in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico! Enjoy your time sipping a margarita and soak up a little sun for us!
Until next time, Have Less. Do More. Be More.