PUERTO VALLARTA TRAVEL GUIDE

The Basics

Welcome to Puerto Vallarta. Planning a trip overseas can be part of the fun, but there’s also a lot of ground to cover. Click the categories on the left-side navigation to find information about subjects that require in-depth looks, such as transportation and accessibility. Below, you’ll find quick overviews on other essential things, like the area layout, the local time zone, and visa requirements.

Geography

Puerto Vallarta is composed of over 30 colonies, with Conchas Chinas, Amapas, Emiliano Zapata, Centro, 5 de Diciembre, and Lazaro Cardenas make up the bulk of the tourist zone.

The main colonies of the most-known areas in Puerto Vallarta are as follows:

Southshore Vallarta: All colonies from Conchas Chinas and south to Mismaloya.

Old Town/ Romantic Zone: Amapas, Alta Vista, Emiliano Zapata.

Centro: Centro, 5 de Diciembre

Hotel Zone: Las Glorias, Lazaro Cardenas, Hotel Zone North

Time Zone

Puerto Vallarta is on Central Standard Time (Greenwich mean time minus five hours during daylight saving time, from about mid-March into early November, and minus six hours the rest of the year). It’s important to note that the dates Mexico observes time changes are different than that in the United States. Mexico changes their times 2 weeks prior to the USA.

International Visitors and Arrivals from Abroad

Visas
Visitors to Puerto Vallarta from outside of Mexico may need a visa to enter the country. In most cases these are issued in-flight and only a passport is needed while additional papers will be completed at the airport. Crossing the border into Mexico by land will require a passport and visiting the immigration offices at the border to obtain a tourist visa.

Local Laws

If you’re headed out for a night on the town, you should know that the drinking age in Puerto Vallarta—and throughout Mexico—is 18.

Useful Phone Numbers

Here are some important phone numbers to keep handy during your NYC visit.

  • Emergencies (police, fire or ambulance): 911
  • US Consular in Puerto Vallarta: (+52) 33-3268 2100
  • Canadian Consular in Puerto Vallarta: (+52) 322 293 0098

Currency

In Puerto Vallarta and throughout Mexico, the Mexican Peso is the standard currency. This converter allows you to determine the value of other currencies compared with the Pesos. While the USD and CAD are widely accepted in Puerto Vallarta, you will receive a sub-par exchange rate, so you will get better bang for your buck withdrawing money from the ATM machine in pesos and leave your dollars at home.

Safety

Puerto Vallarta is Mexico’s safest tourist city, but visitors should still use common sense to protect themselves and their property. Be aware of your surroundings, and make sure to always use licensed, reputable businesses for any services you need. Common sense is always encouraged, don’t walk streets alone at night, take a taxi at night even if you think you can walk the few blocks. Don’t wear flashy jewelry, being understated in a poor country is always the best option. Keep your phone in your pocket, snap your photo and put your phone back in your pocket. Women with purses, use traps over the neck and under the arm. No clutches. These are all tips that should be used anywhere you travel, not just Mexico.

Jalisco State

Puerto Vallarta is in the Mexican State of Jalisco on the central west coast bordered by Nayarit to the northwest, Zacatecas and Aguascalientes to the north, San Luis Potosí and Guanajuato to the east, and Michoacán and Colima to the south and by the Pacific Ocean to the west.