Riviera Nayarit, Mexico Vacations

Our Opinion of Riviera Nayarit

Located just north of Puerto Vallarta, Riviera Nayarit is where you will find many of the newer hotels in the Puerto Vallarta area. Similar to what happened with the Riviera Maya and Cancun, Riviera Nayarit is now becoming more popular than Puerto Vallarta, the original destination that this new area was started from. Some great resorts can be found in Riviera Nayarit, include the Riu Palace Pacifico and the always popular and affordable Royal Decameron.

This Pacific coast destination, surrounded by beautiful natural scenery, tropical jungle areas and the Sierra Madre mountains, has developed into an important tourist resort over a relatively short period of time. The beaches, small islands and coral formations in Riviera Nayarit make it an unbeatable place to spend your vacation. Many traditions of the pre-Hispanic people persist, as you'll see in the colorful crafts. It offers top-notch hotels, luxurious boats at the Marina de Riviera Nayarit, excellent spas and world-class golf courses.

Riviera Nayarit has a network of deluxe hotels, some located on secluded coves. Most travelers from Canada choose to stay in the popular all inclusive resorts located through out the are. You still can find a few budget hotels on the waterfront. Many resorts have various spas offering all kinds of treatments to relax the body and mind.

Riviera Nayarit is a well-developed tourist destination where you'll find beaches and virgin areas that are ideal for experiencing direct contact with nature. Islas Marietas and Punta Mita are a couple of the beautiful beaches to visit. Riviera Nayarit on Mexico's pacific coast is quickly growing in popularity and is a great all inclusive vacation spot for all types of travelers.

Things to know about Riviera Nayarit, Mexico Vacations

Activities & Sports

While enjoying the magnificent scenery, you can do various aquatic activities in Riviera Nayarit, including surfing, kayaking, snorkeling, scuba diving, boating and sailing.

Great deep-sea and freshwater fishing are included among the many attractions; sailfish, dorado and red snapper fishing are some of the most popular catches.

If you're looking to do recreational activities on land, you can go on an ecotourism outing, do an adventure tour, or go mountain biking. Other outdoor activities you can enjoy here include horseback riding and whale-watching.

Located near the main entrance of the Riviera Nayarit tourist resort is the Parque Aquatico Splash. This aquatic park has spacious green areas where you can relax, a 20 m water slide, a children's play area and a dolphin and sea lion show.

Vallarta is a great destination for golf enthusiasts, as it has world-class courses with abundant vegetation and beautiful bay views: Casa Club El Tigre, Paradise Village Golf and Country Club, Club de Golf Flamingos, Mayan Resort Palace Club de Golf, and Four Seasons Golf.

Dining & Nightlife

Among Riviera Nayarit's most traditional dishes are pescado zarandeado (whole grilled fish), trozos ahumados con lena de mangle (fish smoked over mangrove wood), soups, and famous oyster enchiladas. You can also try various dishes prepared with shrimp, including meatballs, tamales, turnovers and tecuelena style (baked shrimp with cheese). Other regional favorites are tlatishuile, a thick stew with various spices, and caldo de cuarentena, a chicken soup seasoned with saffron and cumin. For tasty desserts, indulge in the cheesecake or corn pie.

Many hotels organize fiesta nights once a week. At Marina Vallarta you'll find several nightclubs where you can have some cocktails as you take in an impressive view of the marina. If you had something more intimate in mind, you can visit the various establishments that play lounge music, which gives the atmosphere a much more romantic feel.

For night owls, check out the many bars and nightclubs in Puerto Vallarta, offering everything from live jazz and salsa, to popular DJ mixes. Favourites include Cactus, El Faro, J.B. and Zapata for nightly pre-Hispanic and folk music.


If you want to buy souvenirs, such as crafts, jewelry, clothes or perfumes, the best place to visit is Riviera Nayarit's Paradise Plaza, a mall with various boutiques.

Riviera Nayarit is famous for its crafts made by the Huicholes, who create original and colorful hand-beaded items, including various embroidered products. Here you'll also find handicrafts made of conches and seashells, as well as lovely ornaments, toys and regional sweets in the Bucerias or Cruz de Huanacaxtle artisan markets.

Flying time from:
Toronto: Approximately 5 hours
Montreal: Approximately 5 hours 30 minutes
Calgary: Approximately 5 hours
Vancouver: Approximately 5 hours
Languages: Spanish.
Currency: Mexican Pesos. U.S. currency widely accepted.
Climate: Sub-tropical with average tempuratures of 27C.
Electricity: Same as Canada and the U.S.
Canadian citizens require a valid passport or birth certificate and government issued photo ID (ie. drivers licences). Passports are highly recommended. All other nationalities please consult a vacation specialist or the Mexican consulate.
Note: Some hotels require credit card imprint upon check-in for any incidental charges. Hotel check-in is typically between 3pm and 4pm. If your flight arrives early, it is a good idea to pack essential items in your carry-on luggage (i.e. bathing suit, suntan lotion, medications, etc.), so you do not miss any valuable vacation time.
Mexican tourist cards are supplied & validated with vacation packages. Some restrictions apply to tourists 18 years & under, when travelling without parents. Contact the Mexican Government Tourist Office toll free at 1-800-446-3942.

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