Three ships can dock at the Marina Vallarta Maritime and Cruise Terminal, about
three miles north of downtown. Other ships will anchored and you will be tendered to the same terminal.
Depending on which dock your ship uses, there are different resorts which sell day passes. Hotel Krystall, not too far from the cruise terminal allows cruise passengers (show your cruisecard) to use their pool and beach if you buy your food and drinks there.
If you're looking for transportation into the city, you can pick up a taxi or a bus just outside the Terminal area. The bus fare is 10 pesos per ticket, and since there are no transfers, you have to buy a new ticket each time you board a bus. No need to pay exact fare, Often US$ are accepted (10 pesos) change in Pesos will given. To go downtown, take any bus marked "Centro" heading south but not "Tunel" since these bypass downtown. To head back, look for buses marked "Marina" or "Walmart".
There is now an open top bus available at this port of call. It’s not a HoHo bus, but takes you from the port through the main town and along the coastal road, where it turns round and comes back. The round trip is approximately 2.5 hours and is well worth it. The stop is easily found, just outside the exit from the terminal building, in the car park opposite the petrol (gas) station.
Taxi fare to the downtown area is negotiable, but should run about US$5-7.
If the weather is agreeable, walking is also a good option.
The yellow taxis, located outside of the port gates, are less expensive than those of the drivers walking around inside; the latter drive Federal Zone cabs, which cost more.
Printable map to take along.
Watch a destination video.
Puerto Vallarta is quite simply one of the most beautiful, cultured,
luxurious vacation spots in all of Mexico, and indeed in the world.
Here you will find the ultimate fusion of traditional Mexican culture,
from bullfights to grilled marlin served beachside; and the finest
of resort living, from spectacular sportfishing to all-inclusive resorts
that cater to your every whim.
Art and music abound in the city, with live concerts of all types, beachfront sculpture displays and hundreds of other exhibitions and performances both large and intimate. The local Indian culture is prominent, with an abundance of crafts and local wares available for purchase.
Golfers will find courses designed by Jack Nicklaus and Tom Weiskopf among the 7 championship layouts in the area. Puerto Vallarta's climate makes golf a year-round option!
For family vacations, you won't find a finer destination. There are abundant activities for all ages and interests, from beachside fun to craft and sports gatherings for kids and adults. You'll never hear, "Mom! There's nothing to do!" while you're here!
Take a city bus marked "Centro", walk the Malecon and the old center of the town, then walk pass the Rio Cuale bridge to the south side have a drink/meals etc. on the beach
It pays to compare your cruise line tours here.
One great side trip to take is to Tequila, a short drive away, where the agave plants that give us the liquor that takes its name from the area are grown. Hidden treasures like that abound in the area, seen by many of last generation's moviegoers in the Richard Burton/Ava Gardner masterpiece "Night of the Iguana."
Los Veranos Canopy Tours are a popular tour for families.
Beside smaller Mexican stores there are both a Wal-Mart and a Sam's Club directly across the main boulevard from the ship docking areas, about a 10-minute walk away. Galeria is a nice shopping mall, next to Walmart. A fleamarket is close to the cruise terminal.
The currency of Mexico is the peso (MXN). The symbol for pesos is the same as for US dollars, which can be slightly confusing. Prices in dollars (in tourist areas) are labeled "US$" or sport an S with a double stroke. There are about 17 peso to 1US$.
US dollars are widely accepted in the far north and in tourist locales elsewhere.
Credit cards are not as widely accepted as in Europe or the USA. Some companies make an extra charge of around 5% on such transactions.
Spanish is the main language. English is largely spoken in border cities with the United States as well as tourist destinations.
You can find cyber cafes everywhere in Puerto Vallarta. Rates are reasonable, running from $10 to $50 pesos per hour. There are several cafes which offer free WiFi for customers at the Marine Terminal area, just across the street from where your ship docks.
Mon-Sun 1000/1100-2000/2200 (big towns and cities); Mon-Fri 0900-1400/1600 (rest of the country).
Holidays in Mexico
Thank you for printing this article! Please don’t forget to come back to whatsinport.com for new and updated port guides.