Puerto Vallarta Nightlife

Outdoorsy Vallarta switches gears after dark and rocks into the wee hours. When the beachgoers and sightseers have been showered and fed, Vallarta kicks up its heels and puts the baby to bed. Happy hour in martini lounges sets the stage for an evening that might include a show, live music, or just hobnobbing under the stars at a rooftop bar.

Many hotels have Mexican fiesta dinner shows,

which can be lavish affairs with buffet dinners, folk dances, and even fireworks. Tour groups and individuals—mainly middle-age and older Americans and Canadians—make up the audience at the Saturday-night buffet dinner show at Playa Los Arcos and other hotels. Vaqueros (cowboys) do rope tricks and dancers perform Mexican regional or pseudo-Aztec dances. The late-late crowd gets down after midnight at dance clubs, some of which stay open until 6 am.

The scene mellows as you head north and south of Puerto Vallarta. In Punta Mita (aka Punta de Mita), Bucerías, Sayulita, and San Francisco (aka San Pancho), local restaurants provide live music; the owners usually scare up someone good once or twice a week in high season. Along the Costalegre, tranquility reigns. Most people head here for relaxation, and nightlife generally takes the form of stargazing, drink in hand. If you're visiting June through October (low season), attend live performances whenever offered, as they are few and far between.

Although there's definitely crossover, many Mexicans favor the upscale bars and clubs of the Hotel Zone and Marina Vallarta hotels, while foreigners tend to like the Mexican flavor of places downtown and on the south side (the Zona Romántica), where dress is decidedly more casual.

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Zona Romántica 16

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Puerto Vallarta Nightlife

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Playa Los Arcos

  • Themed Entertainment

This place has a theme dinner show three nights a week and live music every night. The most popular theme night is Saturday's Mexico...

Puerto Fish Bar & Seafood

  • Bars/Pubs

Locals, mostly in their 20s, frequent this small bar with a comfortable second floor equipped with sofas and a nice balcony. Lounge and...

Roxy Rock House

  • Music Clubs

Puerto Vallarta's only rock house is a very energetic club that features live music every night at 11 pm. Roxy is an institution in this...

Sama Martini Bar

  • Wine Bars–Nightlife

A nice, sophisticated martini bar in the heart of the Zona Romántica, Sama is a cozy little place with a lovely terrace just by the...

Señor Frog's

  • Bars/Pubs

What's called simply "Frog's" by the locals is a good old-fashioned free-for-all for the young and the restless. There are black lights...

Steve's Bar

  • Bars/Pubs

With NASCAR on Sunday morning, NFL on Monday night, hockey, indispensable motocross, and welterweight fights, Steve's is a sports mecca.

Strana

  • Dance Clubs

This stylish nightclub seems to be a bit small, but it features an enormous dance floor. The lights and sound systems are state-of-the-art,...

Wing's Army Nuevo Vallarta

  • Bars/Pubs

This unpretentious place came to fill a bar void in Nuevo Vallarta. Large TV screens show every major sporting event, and the second...

Xtine

  • Dance Clubs

The spectacular light shows here are set to bass-thumping music that ranges from techno and house to disco, rock, and Mexican pop. Most...

Zoo Bar & Dance

  • Dance Clubs

Ready to party? Then head here for DJ-spun techno, Latin, reggae, and hip-hop. The adventurous can dance in the cage. It attracts a mixed...

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