July 4th weekend, we went to Puerto Vallarta. This was our second trip there, but first with Milana. The flight was direct from SNA and just 2.5 hours, making it a quick and easy trip. This was mostly a relaxing trip, since we have some travel coming up that’s going to include a ton of sightseeing, so we were content to spend lots of time by the pool We are heading to Thailand in August, so I’ve been wanting to try the 1st Class Kid Travel Pillow before we do a long-haul flight, so I brought it along on this trip. Milana loved it and her legs didn’t dangle. She slept on the way home, and it was perfect! Definitely bringing this on our 14 hour flight in August!
We stayed at the CasaMagna Marriott which was awesome! We had a one bedroom suite, with a separate bedroom, dining area and living room. The staff here is amazing, there really is nothing negative to say about this hotel and their reviews speak for themselves.
The hotel grounds are beautiful and the staff is amazing, definitely one of our better stays! We rented a cabana right by the pool the entire time of our stay, and it was the best choice ever! Lots of privacy and a place to relax in the shade. I highly recommend it!
The pool was a huge hit with Milana. It was huge and warm and we spent many hours just swimming!
If you’re going to a place with a pool, I highly recommend buying the Melissa and Doug frisbee, which is great for the water. The hotel sold these and lots of people had them!
Such a hard life she leads!
The food at the hotel was surprisingly good, we didn’t hesitate to order from their menu! The hardest part was choosing what to eat.
The hotel is just 5 minutes from the airport, and a short 5 minute walk to the marina where there are lots of shops and restaurants to choose from. Definitely be aware of crocodiles, we saw one while walking around!
There are also lots of huge lizards walking around the area!
There are a few OXXO (convenience store) located in the marina. Milana is obsessed with Kinder eggs, and they had a ton! Of course, we bought a few.
We had lunch at La Cevicheria. We had the shrimp tacos, fish tacos and garlic shrimp.
After lunch, walked a few doors down to Pie in the Sky for dessert. They had lots of options, and all looked really good. We got a chocolate cupcake and fruit tart.
On Friday evening, we went downtown (El Centro). Lots of shops and restaurants are here, and Milana being the shopper that she is, she was in heaven!
Some shots of the area:
We happened to be there when vendors were set up and selling street food, so of course we had some. They had elote in a cup. Basically corn with mayo and cotija cheese. So good! The line was long for this vendor, so we chose them and it was definitely a good choice!
We also tried a honey banana from another vendor, which was really good. And tacos (no pictures because we were starving!) that were really good and 4 for about $2.
Our favorite taco lady still sets up shop on the street in the evening, best tacos ever!
One of our favorite restaurants in Puerto Vallarta is Barcelona Tapas. The staff is here is awesome, the restaurant has great views of the city (you have to walk up 3 flights of stairs to get here) and of course the food is amazing! We ordered the croquettes, bacon wrapped dates and eggplant parmigiana tapas, and the paella valenciana as our meal. The paella was one of the best we’ve ever had!
Another one of our favorites is Porto Bello in the marina. It’s an Italian restaurant, with some really good food!
We had the Caesar salad, bruschetta and of course pasta which was awesome. A nice change from eating Mexican food for day!
On our last night, we hung out on the beach in front of the hotel and had ice cream.
The hotel also has giant games to play, so we played some of those as well. Not pictured is the Jenga, beanbag toss and ping pong.
Puerto Vallarta is by far our favorite Mexican destination. Unlike the popular Cabo and Cancun, PV has more of a local vibe. You can drive away from the city and be immersed in culture unlike in the other 2, which cater more to American tourists. We were sad to leave but will definitely be back for a quick weekend getaway!