Expectation vs. Reality 

In less than 4 weeks I will be basking in the Puerto Vallarta sun and I can hardly wait! We began planning this particular trip 6 months ago and it feels like it’s taken forever to finally get here. I’m sooo ready and can’t wait for another adventure!

So in anticipation of our upcoming beach vacation I decided it would be fun to compile a list of things I would like to see and do while visiting sunny Mexico. Then after returning from our getaway I can compare my expectations to the reality we experienced.


This particular vacation will be at an all inclusive resort so a lot of the planning was already done for me. But that certainly hasn’t stopped me from researching all that Puerto Vallarta has to offer. And let me tell you that’s a lot!

I use a lot of different resources when planning any trip. I usually start online and Pinterest is a great place to begin. There are pins and boards on literally everything and everywhere. I also am a big fan of my trusty Fodor’s Travel books. I hope to have a whole bookshelf filled with travel guides of the places I’ve been lucky enough to visit!


So here is a list of the Top 10 Things to do in Puerto Vallarta that I’m most looking forward to:

1. Zona Romantica
I mean with a name like that, how can it not be my top choice? The fact that is is also supposed to have great shopping doesn’t hurt!

2. Malecon
This is a walkway along the ocean and the pictures I’ve seen are absolutely heavenly!
3. Sunset Sailing on Banderas Bay
Again, the pictures I’ve seen have been amazing and the chance of doing some whale watching while sailing would truly be a once-in-a-lifetime type of experience.


4. Our Lady of Guadalupe Cathedral

The exterior of this building located across from the main plaza is one of the most photographed places in all of Puerto Vallarta. If we are lucky we might also be able to take a tour of the interior which has beautiful, ornate architecture that would be amazing to view in person.

5. Visit the Marina

Lucky for us our hotel is close to the marina and this should be easy to do. The fresh fish market would be great to visit as well.

6. Puerto Vallarta Botanical Gardens

This is an area about 12 miles from downtown and features thousands of species of plants. There are also hiking trails, a stream for swimming and bird watching tours. It is considered a dry tropical forest, I guess as opposed to a rain forest and it would certainly have plenty of great picture taking opportunities.

7. Turtle Release

There are tours that run from summer through late fall that include walking the beach to search for eggs and also releasing tiny turtles into the wild. I’ve read that this is an amazing experience and since we will be there at the perfect time I would love to have this experience as well.

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8. Las Islas Marietas

Now I’m not sure this is a place I will actually visit but it’s too beautiful not to include on my wish list. The problem is that to reach the island requires a boat ride which can be pricey and to get to the hidden beach you have to swim under water through a tunnel. Sounds a little scary to me, especially with the tide, so I guess we’ll just wait and see how adventurous I’m feeling.


9. Los Meurtos Beach and Pier

This is the main beach in the Zona Romantica area with lots of eateries and vendors. The pier itself looks like a work of art and is on my definite must see list!

10.Food Tour

I always look forward to exploring restaurants and trying regional foods when traveling. And since I LOVE Mexican food this should be especially great! There are many tours you can take to get a taste (literally) of authentic local cuisine and am looking forward to this for sure!


So now that I have my To Do List made up I am more excited than ever to begin my Mexican holiday! It will also be interesting to see how this list will compare to my actual favorite Puerto Vallarta experiences. I can’t wait to share the memories that we collect on this vacation with you all!

4 thoughts on “Expectation vs. Reality 

  1. Wow, thanks for the information. All of that sounds amazing. But I’m way too much of a scary cat to swim in tunnel to get to the other side.😀

  2. I am looking forward to being a part of this adventure. Your wish list sounds interesting except for the island reached by underwater tunnel!!!

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