Puerto Vallarta, Paradise in the Pacific
Like many other Mexican towns, religious traditions define great part of its social activities. Catholicism was adopted after great efforts from the Spanish government and different religious orders in New Spain and its territories, guiding the recognition of one deity per population, in this case the Patron Saint is Virgin of Guadalupe, to whom diverse processions are dedicated throughout the year.
Puerto Vallarta, supported by the government of the State of Jalisco and the local municipality, carries out diverse festivals and cultural programs. It has 200 neighborhoods, on which there are events in May and November. The cultural activity not only focuses on promoting domestic and foreign tourism, but also on including the community’s participation.
One of the gathering centers for planning and executing cultural programs is the Centro Cultural del Río Cuale, created on the island of the same name. It has destined an outdoor space for amphitheater, promoting the events organized throughout the year by different social groups.
Very important representations have been selected from among Mexico’s cultural mix; in music, the presence of mariachi bands is significant; embellishing almost every party and reunion of social or religious character.
Without a doubt, Puerto Vallarta invites rest, entertainment, culture and history. Traveling by air can be done over Sierra Madre. By land, you can enjoy the spectacular landscape apt for sporting activities. Local residents offer alternatives like bicycle rides through attractive natural scenery, in the town or on the beach. Visitors can also walk on the beach and horseback ride.
The average temperature is 77°F, with 66°F as the lowest and 88°F highest; proper for recreation and rest. Among the attractions are Islas Marietas and Los Arcos, two sea parks with very attractive species for divers. Fishing is another of the wonderful activities in the region, like boat races and fishing tournaments, with the highly valued sailfish. Commercial fishing offers yellow snapper, sawfish and bonito.
The endemic flora and fauna are still preserved despite the harm of illegal hunting and commerce. Vegetable varieties include cedar, walnut and palm trees, plus diverse fruit trees like mango and avocado. In its humid region you can observe birds like the chachalacas, buzzards, macaws and reptiles like iguanas and other species such as deer.
Puerto Vallarta keeps a great religious tradition, as evidenced by the Templo de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, from 1918, and festivities in honor of the Virgin that go on during twelve days.
Among other historic monuments and architectural attractions is the Teatro Saucedo from 1922, the Malecón is the obligated point of reference for the Port’s residents, where the beach’s extension can be appreciated, guarding the symbolic style and design of the place. Puerto Vallarta also has a Ceremonial Center, which during prehispanic times was probably used for the ball game. Its diverse vestiges originated the construction of the Regional Anthropology Museum, forming a triad of cultural spaces complementing the Museo de la Isla de Río Cuale and Galería Manuel Lepe.
On the exterior you can appreciate monuments like the Niños Heroes, dedicated to a very important page in national history. The same as the statue for the region’s outstanding citizen: Ignacio L. Vallarta, by Miguel Miramontes. Other national heroes acknowledged in Vallarta are Benito Juárez, Miguel Hidalgo and Lázaro Cárdenas.
The most important beaches of Vallarta are: Los Arcos, Los Muertos, Bahía de Banderas, Boca de Tomatlán, Majahuitas, Norte, Nuevo Vallarta, Islas Marietas, Conchas Chinas, Punta de Mita and Yelapa, among others.
Recent developments for more specialized tastes are, for example, Marina Vallarta and Flamingos Golf Clubs, joined to other tourist resorts like the traditional Hotel Presidente Intercontinental.
Artículo Producido por el Equipo Editorial Explorando México.
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