Yelapa Day Trip From Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Yelapa day trip

Imagine a morning snorkeling the warm waters of the Pacific Ocean followed by wading into a cold waterfall on a brutally hot day before sitting under an umbrella looking out at the near-perfect water of a quiet fishing village. Taking a Yelapa day trip with Vallarta Adventures from Puerto Vallarta made these experiences possible.

I know there really aren’t any truly “hidden” fishing villages in tropical locations anymore. In my mind, pretty much every secluded beach and seaside paradise has been discovered. And many times, those secluded spots cater to the tourist trade so heavily that they end up being overrun. But on my Yelapa day trip earlier this summer, what we discovered was a quiet village sitting on a beautiful piece of sand and rock at the base of the mountains that lead to the Pacific Ocean.

Yelapa day trip

Yelapa turned out to be one of those beautiful spots that photographs and postcards don’t completely do it justice.

Yelapa day trip

But before we were cooling off in the waterfall above the village, we were snorkeling in the Pacific, somewhere between Puerto Vallarta and Yelapa.

Yelapa day trip

Our cruise left the Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, harbor about 9 a.m. and immediately headed south, adjacent to the city’s shore. We enjoyed a light breakfast onboard while watching the shore pass by.

Yelapa day trip

About an hour later we found ourselves stepping off the back of the boat for a snorkeling adventure around these beautiful rock formations.

Yelapa day trip

This was my first time to snorkel, so I was a tad nervous before stepping off the back of the boat. But once I did and discovered how easy it was to breathe through the snorkel, I was off to explore the world below. At first, we didn’t spot many fish. But as we swam closer to the rocks a colorful world of sea life presented itself below.

Even with the occasional stings of mosquito jellyfish, I loved this snorkel adventure. The stings weren’t bad; it was pretty much like a pesky mosquito bite, but without the constant itching that follows.

Yelapa day trip

Once we were back on the boat and on our way toward Yelapa, we were served a sandwich and fruit buffet as we motored closer to the village.

Yelapa day trip

And as soon as we rounded the corner, beautiful Yelapa presented itself in all its glory.

Yelapa day trip

Once we arrived, we had two choices: head straight to the beach or walk up the path to the top of the village where a cold waterfall awaited. And considering how hot the midday sun was, most of the group chose the waterfall.

Yelapa day trip

After about a 15-minute walk up the path, we arrived at the waterfall where we all had time to get in and enjoy the cold mountain stream water.

Yelapa day trip

After getting out, we headed down the path back through the village toward the beach. The carless streets were quiet.

Yelapa day trip

But I wasn’t here to enjoy the beautiful village streets. It was time to get to the beach where chairs and umbrellas next to the shore awaited.

Yelapa day trip

The water was great for a dip, but a word of warning is in order. The beach isn’t a gradual walk out into the ocean. I walked a few yards before the ocean floor quickly headed down.

Yelapa day trip

But as long as you can swim, this water is perfect for cooling off.

Yelapa day trip

Afterwards, I found some of the best raw oysters I’ve had in my life, all with a dash of fresh coconut water splashed on for good measure.

Yelapa day trip

There are some little lodging units on the north side of the harbor, so anyone wanting a truly secluded Mexican beach getaway might find it in Yelapa. I’m glad we only visited for a few hours because Puerto Vallarta has so much to offer visitors. So anyone looking to find a Pacific Ocean paradise for a shorter visit, a Yelapa day trip might be a great option.

Yelapa day trip

We not only enjoyed a couple of hours relaxing at Yelapa, we had the opportunity to snorkel, and enjoy food, snacks and drinks with some crazy entertainment on a fun cruise along the shore.

I was a guest of the Puerto Vallarta tourism board. As an unbiased journalist with more than 15 years’ experience in the industry, all opinions here are my own.

10 thoughts on “Yelapa Day Trip From Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

  1. I agree, Lance, Yelapa is a great little getaway from Puerto Vallarta. I just took the public boat over and returned in the afternoon, but I was very tempted to stay. The people in the little village are very friendly, and I might spend a few days there next time I come to PV. If you just want to chill out and let the world go by, Yelapa is about the best place you can find.
    Paul (the Travelling Boomer) recently posted…How to see China — on the cheapMy Profile

  2. Two great things about PV… Vallarta Adventures and Yelapa… I didn’t take their tour to the beach town, but have visited Yelapa a few times… Each enjoyable and each by boat…

    Actually, by boat is how you need to go to get there… That helps make it not an “overrunned” tourist destination, but a gem…

    Stay Loving Mexico Amigo, Craig
    Craig Zabransky recently posted…Sunset Sunday-A SUP Sunset on Lake Powell, UtahMy Profile

  3. I spent a total of five days in Puerto Vallarta. It was plenty to see and experience much of what the city has to offer. But it’s also the type of destination that if you want to see the sights, experience the city and relax by the beach a week makes more sense. As far as how long to visit Yelapa, I think it would be great to stay overnight there. But an afternoon or day is plenty.

  4. Erin, I think next spring break or even Christmas break. You inspired me to visit Puerto Rico so I guess it was only right that I return the inspirational favor.

  5. Ted, there was tequila every day. I actually had some Mexican beers on the beach with those oysters. so good and so cheap. Actually, those oysters and cervezas were probably a third the price of what I would pay for the same thing at an American beach. Good prices: Just one more reason to love Mexico.

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