Ten Days Next Winter in PV and SMdA

May 31st, 2017, 12:30 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 7,578
Ten Days Next Winter in PV and SMdA

For some time my wife and I have thought we might want to spend part of our winters in Mexico after retirement. We figured we'd best get started checking around for likely spots, though retirement is still a ways off.

We'd like to go in mid February or March and considering splitting our time between PV and SMdA, two places we haven't been before. How much time should we allocate to each spot? I thought an even split might be best. It is simple to get to PV and to leave from SMdA, but how should we get from one to the other?

We tend to prefer medium sized hotels with a local flavor, and like to sample the local specialties at lunch and dinner. We like colonial architecture, rain forests, hiking if it's not too hot, some beach time (although an old codger, I thought I might take some surf lessons). We love exploring old ruins but gather that is not a strong suit in either location. I think we'd rather stay in town than at a resort. Budget is not a big deal.

Appreciate any advice!
Fra_Diavolo is offline  
May 31st, 2017, 12:59 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 92,935
There's no ruins, rain forests, and not much surfing in Puerto Vallarta since the city sits within the Bay of Banderas.

I can help you with a place to stay in downtown PV though. Centro and Zona Romantica (just to the north and south of the Rio Cuale, the river dividing the downtown area) are the two neighborhoods most central that are not the Hotel Zone or The Marina with the big resorts.

I'll just run some down some of the non-resort places I'm familiar with and you can take a look to get the idea of the kinds of things available:

condo rentals:
el Escondido - www.vallarta-getaways.com
Vista del Sol & Plaza Mar - www.puerto-vallarta-rentals.com
Selva Romantica - http://serentavallarta.com/selva-romantica/

boutique hotels:
Quinta Maria Cortez - http://villasinvallarta.com/room-list/qmc/
Casa Isabel - http://www.casaisabelpv.com/
Casa Amorita - http://www.casaamorita.com/
Hacienda Alemana - http://www.haciendaalemana.com/puert...ccommodations/

basic beachfront hotels on Los Muertos:
Hotel Playa Los Arcos - http://www.playalosarcos.com/
The Tropicana - http://www.tropicanavallarta.com/

good area maps:
www.vallartainfo.com

Let me know if you have questions, Vallarta is my town! suze
suze is offline  
May 31st, 2017, 01:17 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 92,935
With the huge disclaimer that I have never done this I believe:

Between the two would be one fairly long bus ride (~12 hours) or you'd fly part of the way (Guadalajara or Mexico City or Leon) then bus from there.

The two cities don't really pair up particularly well and 5 days is awful short to see new places. Maybe two separate trips instead?
suze is offline  
May 31st, 2017, 02:40 PM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 7,578
Thanks suze. I know PV is one of your favorites.
Fra_Diavolo is offline  
May 31st, 2017, 02:55 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 92,935
It is my fabulous home away from home. I'm on a twice a year vacation schedule these days, staying 2-3 weeks at a time.
suze is offline  
Jun 1st, 2017, 06:40 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 634
Most people fly to Leon and bus from there to San Miguel.
We have some surfing, just north of the bay in Sayulita, San Miguel has zero, LOL ��. Our jungle is classed as tropical dry forest, although we get plenty of rain in the summer.
One of the best attractions for Vallarta is our wide range of restaurants, from delicious taco stands to haute cuisine.
cabron is offline  
Jun 1st, 2017, 07:13 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 223
I would be very hesitant to recommend sayulita right now due to the sickness there that seems to plague many who visit. Some say it's water contamination and others blame norovirus. So no matter what it is, not a great place to be right now.
maried11 is offline  
Jun 1st, 2017, 08:19 AM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 7,578
>>>Most people fly to Leon and bus from there to San Miguel.<<<

Thanks for the information. Airfare seems reasonable.

Hope the Sayulita problem clears up.

Didn't plan to do much surfing up in the mountains!
Fra_Diavolo is offline  
Jun 1st, 2017, 09:43 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 941
How long to spend in either place would probably depend on what you want to accomplish since you're kinda scoping out potential retirement spots.
Near San Miguel, there is some spectacular hiking in the Sierra Gorda, but it's about 2 hours and best accessed by car. There are some minor archeological sites there as well. More cloud forest than rain.
http://www.zonaturistica.com/atracti...queretaro.html
Near San Miguel, some 15-20 minutes, is the Otomi site, Canada De La Virgen.
http://albertcoffeetours.com/Canada-de-la-Virgen/
Not pre-colombian ruins, but Mineral De Pozos is a worthy half-day trip. See my trip report.
As far as colonial architecture goes, 45 minutes from San Miguel, Queretaro (our new home) has the largest colonial center in Mexico (outside of CDMX), and of course there's San Miguel itself and Guanajuato. PV has zero, LOL.
This area doesn't have much in the way of unique regional foods, but probably rivals PV's food scene, if not in quantity, then quality.
http://dondayinsma.com/
If budget is not a big deal, the 2 hotels that stand out are the Sierra Nevada in the heart of centro, and the Rosewood, a spectacular building, (new, not colonial), where all the movie stars and dignitaries stay when in town. A fabulous rooftop bar as well.
https://www.belmond.com/casa-de-sier...el-de-allende/
https://www.rosewoodhotels.com/en/san-miguel-de-allende
Getting to San Miguel from PV is easy. TAR has a direct flight to QRO, less than an hour. Then shuttle to SMA. Some tickets sell for about 1,000 mxn, about $55 US. There is no bus from BJX, the airport in Leon, only shuttles such as Bajiogo. Interjet's flights to BJX I believe route through MEX and are more expensive, at least right now.
For us, the best thing about San Miguel as a retirement site, is not so much the town itself, but it's proximity to so many other fascinating destinations; San Luis Potosi and the Huasteca, Leon, Morelia, Patzcuaro, Bernal, etc. are all within a couple of hours, not to mention the many Pueblos Magicos in the area.
baldone is online now  
Jun 1st, 2017, 10:35 AM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 7,578
Thanks baldone, very informative.

I have been to Queretaro and Guanajuato and enjoyed the visits. SMdA we missed. I have a friend (since high school days) who has lived in San Luis Potosi for almost 20 years now. He loves the city of Zacatecas.

The Sieera Nevada looks great. Haven't checked the Rosewood as movie stars and dignitaries aren't really my type of people.
Fra_Diavolo is offline  
Jun 1st, 2017, 10:37 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 92,935


I'm not sure what's so funny about that?

Puerto Vallarta isn't old enough to have "colonial architecture". It was just a small fishing village historically.
suze is offline  
Jun 1st, 2017, 11:15 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 941
cabron will have to explain it to you.
baldone is online now  
Jun 1st, 2017, 04:01 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,765
Interjet has daily service Leon to PV & back. About a hours flight. I took it in March for $62 one way Leon to PV.
Stewbear is offline  
Jun 1st, 2017, 07:47 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,765
Interjet flight BJX to PV is a direct flight as I took it.
Stewbear is offline  
Jun 2nd, 2017, 05:02 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 22,036
The Rosewood is a delightful property, not glitzy at all in my mind, although they do host frequent weddings on weekends. I swam there many times while renting a house in the city and would certainly consider staying there if that is in your budget. Look into rental properties, too.
ekscrunchy is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
suze
Mexico & Central America
14
Feb 11th, 2017 07:26 PM
violetm
Mexico & Central America
6
Nov 29th, 2014 12:02 PM
shelleybeach
Mexico & Central America
11
Sep 24th, 2012 10:56 AM
inman14mom
Mexico & Central America
6
Feb 8th, 2004 07:51 PM
Mazzy
Mexico & Central America
8
Sep 24th, 2002 04:33 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 06:32 PM.