Watching the sunset is a favourite Puerto Vallarta pastime and there’s no better place to do it than from Chez Elena. Established in 1954, this vintage Vallarta landmark inn sits high in the hills (Matamoros #520) with arguably the best view of the Bay of Banderas. Climb up to the rooftop El Nido bar and enjoy the setting sun. With luck you might see the green flash— that elusive brief flash of emerald light that sometimes appears just as the sun is sinking into the sea. Even if you don’t see it order a Green Flash, the bar’s signature drink.
If you’re a nighthawk, Puerto Vallarta is your kind of town. Many of the trendy nightclubs are located along the Malecon. At La Bodeguita del Medio hot live Latin music, minty muddled mojitos and a funky Cuban vibe beckon.
If a giant costumed gorilla invites you into his party, you’ve arrived at The Zoo. Inside, mounted animal heads embellish the party animal theme where the release of inhibitions is encouraged.
Cafe des Artistes, one of Puerto Vallarta’s best gourmet restaurants, also houses Constantini Martini and Wine Bar with a fabulous selection of wine, champagne and signature martinis.
For an unforgettable evening under the stars, take the Rhythms of the Night Cruise to Las Caletas offered by Vallarta Adventures. John Huston built his home on this pristine cove after directing Night of the Iguana. You arrive via catamaran to welcoming tiki torches and drummers dressed in native costumes. The evening includes outdoor candlelight buffet dinner and an indigenous dance performance.
Puerto Vallarta is a gay-friendly destination and Apaches on Olas Altas is one of the friendliest bars in the Romantic Zone. Men, women, gays, straights, locals and tourists are all welcome here.
From the end of October to the end of May participate in Art Walk every Wednesday evening. About 20 galleries and studios in the historic center open from six to ten. Most serve snacks and drinks; often they’ll have an artist or two on the premises. Ask at your hotel for an Art Walk map.