Most travelers invade Puerto Vallarta for one reason and one reason only. They want to sit on Puerto Vallarta’s sands and soak up the beach life. While Puerto Vallarta features plenty of relaxing beaches to enjoy for beach goers, non-beach goers don’t need to stay home. Puerto Vallarta offers plenty of attractions for those who prefer to steer clear of the beach. Here are four spots that don’t involve sand in your toes in Puerto Vallarta.
Nature Spotting at the Vallarta Botanical Gardens: If you are in need of a beach break but you still want to appreciate the natural elements of the area, you can head just 30 minutes south of Puerto Vallarta to the Vallarta Botanical Gardens. Home to 3,000 different species of plants, the gardens feature themed collections of roses, agaves, orchids, Mexican wildflowers and coffee trees. You can also expect to see a variety of birds and butterflies. If you want to hike, the Vallarta Botanical Gardens feature miles of hiking trails through native forests.
Outdoor Sculpture Tour Along the Malecón: Puerto Vallarta’s half-mile promenade along the waterfront, Malecón, features more than 15 sculptures dotted throughout the thoroughfare. Many of the sculptures are the work of famous Mexican artists such as Sergio Bustamante, Alejandro Colunga and Ramiz Barquet. The sculptures mostly depict the lives of important historical figures along with the culture of Puerto Vallarta. You can expect to see dolphins, amorous couples and even seahorses in sculpture form. Puerto Vallarta’s Tourism Board has a listing of all of the sculptures you can see with descriptions so that you can make up your own walking tour.
Architectural Appreciation at La Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe: If you have had a little too much sun, you can venture inside the Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Puerto Vallarta. The iconic structure is easy to spot in town for its distinctive bell tower topped with a crown. The structure itself was built over several decades in the first half of the 20th century. Those who love architecture will appreciate the church’s neo-baroque design.
Climb Puerto Vallarta’s Cobbled Streets: Near the church, you can begin climbing a street called Zaragoza. The street leads into an area nicknamed Gringo Gulch. It was once known for being home to the celebrity set such as Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. Today you can appreciate the villas sprinkling the steep hillside. The cobblestone streets in this area also lend views of the glowingly green foothills of the Sierra Madre Mountains.