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In addition to outdoor activities, Puerto Vallarta is home to a thriving group of art galleries, shops, and eateries

The Area


Everyone who comes to El Banco will want to witness the spectacle of humpback whales breaching through the cresting waves. Each day during whale-watching season from December through March, boats take groups of eager naturalists to catch a glimpse of these marvelous mammals.

Other wildlife excursions by boat include encounters with such regional sea creatures as dolphins, sea turtles, and giant manta rays. Under the starry skies from June to September, residents can experience the wonder of turtle hatchlings as they break from their spotted shells, scurry across the sand into the sea.


If you’re a bird lover, you’ll appreciate the night herons, egrets, avocets, sandpipers, and kingfishers drawn to the area by the abundance of coastal waters. And the nearby forests are alive with a diverse and ancient ecology: strangler figs, coffee trees, vanilla vines, exotic orchids, and wild cactus.