Head north from the resort city of Puerto Vallarta and you’ll find a laid-back, low-key coastal setting called Riviera Nayarit. Its beaches, some of them half-hidden between rugged cliffs and vivid green vegetation are warm, welcome and eye-popping. The coastal towns, most of the quaint and colorful, offer a taste of old Mexico. Just offshore, the Islas Marietas Parque Nacional beckons those with an adventurous, nature loving spirit. If it’s luxury you want, there’s no shortage of resort properties along this strip of Mexico fronting the Pacific Ocean. Come for the culture, the ethereal natural beauty, and to tie the knot on a palm-fringed oasis.
Along the Bahia de Banderas
One of the first towns you find along Riviera Nayarit is Nuevo Vallarta, fronting the Bahia de Banderas, or Banderas Bay. You’ll find upscale resorts, family-friendly beaches and golf courses with amazing views of the Pacific from almost every tee.
Off the Beaten Path
North of the Bahia de Banderas, the tourist crowds thin out, leaving you with miles of scenic coastline to explore almost on your own. Visit Sayulita, a surfing town reminiscent of the 1960’s, complete with cobblestone streets, art galleries and vendors offering horseback rides along the sand. Punta Raza is one of those half-hidden beaches, framed with giant palms and accessed by a one-mile hike.
The Islas Marietas Parque Nacional, or Marietas Islands National Park, is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve sitting southwest of Punta de Mita in the Bahia de Banderas. Access is limited to this nature preserve, famed for its abundant wildlife, but licensed tour operators offer snorkeling and whale watching trips. Many boats leave from Punta de Mita and Sayulita, both visitor-friendly towns on the southern edge of the region. Tours are also available from Puerto Vallarta. One highlight is Playa Escondida, a crescent of sand completely surrounded by volcanic rock. To get to that beach, you must swim through an underwater tunnel. Challenging? Perhaps. Worth it? Definitely.
Romance, Romance Everywhere
Boasting high-end, all-inclusive resorts, this collection of authentic surf towns is perfect for exchanging vows off the beaten path. Whether you’re looking to say “I do” on the beach as the sun sinks into the bright blue horizon, or perhaps in a lush garden gazebo with spectacular views, our collection of top-notch properties is sure to exceed your romantic expectations.
For more destination wedding inspiration, browse through our website and latest edition of Get Married Away!