Coastal Mexico – Puerto Vallarta

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First Aruba and now Mexico–I was a pretty lucky girl to go on two beach vacations in one summer!

Although I grew up in Oregon, which is much closer to Mexico than Baltimore, this family vacation was my first visit down south. My parents have previously been to Cancun but wanted to go somewhere new and a bit less touristy so, we decided to visit Puerto Vallarta.

PV is beautiful a beautiful city on the west coast of Mexico. We traveled during low season which kept the crowds and craziness to a minimum. It did however mean that it would occasionally rain and storm at night, which was hardly an issue. The stormy weather made for really stunning sunrises and sunsets and the lighting made for perfect snaps!

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Sunset on First Night in PV

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7am Post Thunderstorm

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Sunset at the Port

Along with gorgeous views we also ate gorgeous food–always an important priority while on vacation! I love Mexican cuisine so I was extremely content eating local food the whole time. Sometimes though, we ended up eating at our hotel which was still delicious but not Mexican food. Needless to say, the food was awesome and the tequila margaritas were endless!

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Mexican Beef Stew Topped with Radish and Beet

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Unlike vacations with Lyle, my family vacations are much more structured. I’m glad I can appreciate both styles of vacationing–laying on the beach for a week is just as great as having activities planned everyday. It may be true that with structured vacations you come back more tired but, you will always have explored the world more!

Since none of us are huge swimmers it was unusual how much time we spent out on the ocean. We went snorkeling twice and spent many hours on boats. Our first day out sea we rented a catamaran with friends to take out snorkeling. Even though I have snorkeled once before, I was so scared to jump in! The ocean is so huge and you have no idea what is under you –eeepp! Kinda scary but seeing the fish and reef below are so worth it!

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This was the first spot we stopped at for a swim–20150826_113648

Another fun water activity we tried was ocean kayaking. We took one of those all day conducted tours with Vallarta Adventures. The talented tour guides taught us to kayak. Of course, the water was extremely calm otherwise we would have tipped on out!

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We also visited Yelapa, a tiny coastal town that can only be accessed by way of the ocean. Isn’t that nuts?! I saw a woman riding her donkey through town! I loved how rural and culturally intact it had remained.

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Here are a some more pics of our other day trips and activities!

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Lunch at the Botanical Gardens, PV

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Don Tadeo’s kin Teaching Us How to Make; Tequila Tasting Follows 🙂

This tequila tasting was right before our lunch which made us a bit loopy!

As for the remainder of the time we were not out and about, we chilled and just enjoyed each others company. Here is a pic of my beautiful family —

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And…There’s me!

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And of course our Iguana friends–goodness, there were so many of them basking in the sun!

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Last but not least, we ended our vacations with a massage! Not only does this mean I crossed one of the items off of my 101 in a 1001 list but, I also have a funny spa story that I will tell in my next update! Stay tuned and until next time!

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