It’s funny how Mexico is the natural desired getaway after going through major life transitions. Sometimes you just need some quality time with close friends with nothing to do but relax on a beautiful beach. For some of us this was an unfamiliar concept as it was the first vacation we went on that didn’t have an outdoor mission attached to it. Naturally, we had to be stranded on a private beach (aka not private for us) to chill out while we waited to flag down the next water taxi going in the right direction…
We chose Sayulita and Yelapa as we wanted to go somewhere relatively easily accessible but not too touristy. Sayulita is ~45 minute cab ride from Puerto Vallarta and Yelapa is ~45 minute water taxi from Puerto Vallarta. Southwest flies direct from Oakland to PV, ~3.5 hrs.
If you are not into the all inclusive resort feel then I am sure the Airbnb selection will not disappoint. We stayed in La Casa Dos Amigos, a great central location with a sweet private pool in the back. I felt very save in Sayulita while I was there but I would highly recommend locking your belongings in your room and your valuables in the safe when you are sleeping/ out.
You will not need a car here or even a golf cart if you stay in a central location like we did but it sure was fun splorin’ in the golf cart! We enjoyed taking the golf cart to a few of the more remote beaches like, Los Muertos Beach or Carricitos which was our favorite. You can also walk the main beach to a hiking trail which leads you to another remote beach as a more approachable option. Sayulita is known for its great surf so try to fit that in if you can! There is also amazing street art to enjoy and handmade treasures to treat yourself to.
Orangy for smoothies every damn day
Naty’s for breakfast tacos
Venezia for Pizza
El Itacate for burritos wrapped in fried cheese
Estrella de Mar Mariscos for popcorn shrimp and all things fish
Mary’s for Ceviche
Cameron on Friday night for dancing on the beach!
Alright, so you got your taco, margarita, dancing fix, now let’s bring it down a notch and relax in Yelapa, a small beach town/village accessible only by boat. If you are not staying with Jeff at Vereda you are doing it wrong, this place was a damn dream. He made the whole place himself out of the rock on the property including the most beautiful pool. There are 3 different houses to choose to stay in and the whole property can accommodate ~12 with a beautiful shared kitchen.
Even if you are staying in Puerto Vallarta you can still do a day trip to any of these beaches near Yelapa. I would highly recommend taking a water taxi to Boca de Tomatlan and hiking to Las Animas. It took ~1.5 hrs and there is an amazing bar and restaurant along the way called Medusa (Las Animas is about 10 min walk to Medusa if you want to skip the hike). In Yelapa there are two hikes to waterfalls, one more touristy than the other. For food, we went to Pollo Bollo for huge empanadas (3 per plate) and Taquería Los Abuelos for chimichangas- best meal of the trip!
*A big attraction in this area is scuba diving at the Marietas Island but do note that it is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.*
I would highly recommend this trip to anyone! It was a perfect variety of activities, exploration, and relaxation. Feel free to leave a comment with any questions!