The heart and soul of Puerto Vallarta, or commonly known as ‘El Centro’, this is where the action is, a sensory and cultural feast never to be forgotten. Eclectic and bohemian in feel with world-class offerings, its dining and art scenes are extraordinary, the nightlife abundant, no visit here complete without a stroll and people-watching session on the popular oceanfront Malecon. Dotted with fascinating monumental public art, one side is lined with intriguing shops, restaurants and bars, a gorgeous bay vista on the other. The local color here so rich it’s absorbed by osmosis, performances of all stripes take place here every evening, spectacular events frequent at the Los Arcos outdoor amphitheater across from the main plaza all free of charge.
El Centro’s narrow cobblestone streets are great fun and can be challenging to navigate, especially those running east to west up the mountainside in the El Cerro and Gringo Gulch neighborhoods the latter where Liz Taylor and Richard Burton lived. The tiny Isla Rio Cuale, offers a flea market, restaurants and shops as well as an interesting museum, an active cultural center, and relaxing green spaces.