We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

Which Puerto Vallarta hotels are on sale?
dd/mm/yyyy dd/mm/yyyy
See hotels
Level Contributor
5,621 posts
30 reviews
Save Topic
Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

I hope this question isn't too far off topic. First of all, let me state unquivocally that I love PV and plan to return again and again (and again!). But I also realize it's a big world and there's a lot out there that I haven't yet seen. I was wondering if my fellow PV lovers would be willing to share about other destinations that have captured your hearts. Are there other places to visit that have the same "essence" of PV? The charm of the city, the warmth of the people, the ease of just being there - ?

Lately I've been thinking about San Juan, Puerto Rico. I spent a day there in the early 90s (cruise ship stop) and from what I saw it struck me as a very charming city. Have been thinking of going back one of these days, but I don't want to be disappointed either. I wonder if I'll be comparing every other destination to PV, and I fear that if I go elsewhere, I'll be wishing I'd just gone back to PV instead!

I guess you could say I've got the wanderlust bug right now. I understand that many of you would probably say there's nowhere you'd rather be than in PV, but if anyone has other much-loved destinations, it would be great if you would share your thoughts.

Bardonia new york
Level Contributor
1,917 posts
1 review
Save Reply
1. Re: Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

If you want to see a pretty town Taxco in Mexico is gorgeous also Ixtapa....How about Europe like Spain or Portugal...Norway is also very nice but expensive.....

Great Neck, NY
Level Contributor
4,114 posts
52 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

Hey Baja -

Before we started coming every vacation to PV, we were going to the cliffs of Negril, Jamaica - stayed at a place 3x called The Rockhouse - google it to see what i'm talking about - absolutely one of the most beautiful & romantic locations/hotels i've ever seen & been to - that said though, we didn't think very much of the town of Negril - it was the kind of vacation strictly for R & R (the hotel has a wonderful spa with many offerings and also yoga class in the morning) - yes, we went off-property during the day but rarely ventured out at night, mostly from being so tired & relaxed -

I've been many times to San Juan but not recently - Old San Juan is (or was?) a lovely little area away from the big hotels with lots of quaint & good places to eat but again, i haven't been down there in many years -

I haven't been to TONS of places but a lot IMO, and i haven't found anything close to the feel of PV -

Level Contributor
662 posts
1 review
Save Reply
3. Re: Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

Havana, but not possible for you unless you travel via Mexico. Wonderful city!

Southlake, Texas
Level Contributor
4,696 posts
15 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

Hey Baja!

I've yet to find another tropical destination that is as charming as PVR.

Paris is amazing and I found the locals very nice.

But tropical, I would have to say maybe Placencia, Belize is the closest. There are many places we've enjoyed - just not the same feel as PVR - my favorites are:

STT and St. Johns- just returned from their last month.......beautiful

Grand Cayman - beautiful

Every where in the Caribbean I've visited including Jamaica, Costa Rica, Bahamas, there was an island "attitude" towards visitors that is just not seen in Mexico - when I travel to these places I just keep that in mind so it doesn't dampen the trip. Have fun exploring the world!

Shawnee, Kansas
Destination Expert
for Puerto Vallarta
Level Contributor
14,353 posts
93 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

I think this is a great subject, they just discussed this in similar kind on the Isla Mujeres forum, in which I recommended Puerto Vallarta LOL.

Two places I would recommend.

Isla Mujeres off the coast of Cancun. Not anything like Cancun or Cozumel for that matter, and it is the most similar to PV that I've ever been to because it is such a bustling little place. Absolutely darling friendly people and you can say the same for the island too and it has a great tourist infrastructure. Everybody drives golf carts around the island, and the locals use scooters and some golf carts. A few taxi's and cars, but not a lot. It is a wonderful Mexican island. We rented a little apartment there across from the ocean, with a fantastic view! This little island is ridiculously safe, you can go anywhere. In town it is a photographer's paradise as all the buildings which are similar to southside PV, are painted so Mexican/Carib cute. The homes in the Colonias are also decoratively painted with individual flare and pride. Nightlife too, but nothing like the clubs on the Malecon, but they have several places to choose from. We call Isla Mujeres our mini PV. A good place, and cheap, to go for just a week.

The other place is Costa Rica. If you like the idea of seeing several kinds of Monkeys, Sloths, Toucans, Parrots etc. etc. in the wild you would love it! A very exciting place for that reason. In general the nightlife isn't at all like PV, but lots of great restaurants depending on where you go. The big excitement is the wildlife and eco-tourism such as - wow hanging bridges in the jungle, just to name one. I saw lots of wildlife right from the places we stayed and we stay middle of the road. We even had a Monkey chase us on the landing outside our room! Super exciting place if you like wildlife. The huge majority of people are very friendly, but you do have to watch your stuff due to a certain element, and be even smarter than you have to be in PV. However we drove nearly 900 miles around the country in 11 days and nothing happened, but we did what their forum advised us to do so all was well. I want to go back!

Redlands, California
Level Contributor
4,980 posts
38 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

I think this is an interesting thread, thanks! I love Phuket, Thailand. If you aren't looking for a beach location, Bangkok is a fascinating city. The people are very warm and friendly. Don't even get me started on the food! It's unbelievably delicious.

Closer to home, I love the smaller towns on Kauaii (spelling?), particularly Hanalei. It's small and charming, nothing like the mega-touristy Honolulu.

In July, we went to Florida for a family vacation. I loved Key West, so laid back. What a gorgeous place! I enjoyed Ft. Lauderdale, too. We're thinking about a cruise combined with a few days in Florida in the not too distant future. Orlando? Never again, not even for my beloved grandchildren.

I have my 2011 vacation plans in place. Puerto Vallarta for a month!

Saskatoon, Canada
Destination Expert
for Riviera Maya
Level Contributor
12,264 posts
46 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

We love Akumal and Playa del Carmen, Huatulco, and Zihuatanejo in Mexico the best.

We also loved Holguin, Cuba (you can fly from Toronto or from Cancun. They love Americans!)

San Juan does look like an interesting city. And I have heard wonderful things about Negril's beach, too.

Because we are divers, upcoming trips will be to Turks and Caicos and to Roatan, Honduras and also one day Bonaire, we hope.

Our dream beach vacation is a month at least in Thailand. One day!

Vancouver Island...
Level Contributor
1,660 posts
Save Reply
8. Re: Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

Hey BB...I don't know if you are just referring to tropical destinations? We live on Vancouver Island, in the most diverse and beautiful provinces in Canada....British Columbia. I think for someone from Texas you could really experience something totally different, whether you like urban areas or complete wilderness, it is all here. We just had the most spectacular summer, sunny and warm almost every day.

Burnaby, Canada
Level Contributor
12,439 posts
200 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

Big second to speed0's recommendation!! Big, bold, with so much to see and do, and never enough time to do it!!

For a Caribbean location (based on experiences that have meant more to me than others), it would be:

- Cayo Largo, Cuba - a small island, "thin slice of paradise", off the SW coast of the main island. Unspoiled, natural settings, friendly people, and great beaches that go on, and on, and on, seemingly forever!!

- Guadeloupe & Martinique - French, with wonderful local flairs and flavours!! Yum, and more yum!! Plus, lovely natural beauty to see and explore, and city's that offer/deliver "shopping in Paris within a Caribbean setting"!! For more of the former, it's Guadeloupe, more of the latter, it's Martinique.

Happy researching!!

Level Contributor
3,996 posts
168 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Fellow PV lovers - other destinations?

Interesting question!

I have been to a place that is similar in many respects to Puerto Vallarta and that is Cartagena, Colombia where we had a glorious holiday a number of years ago.

The two major differences are: 1. positive--it is VERY rich in history and thus has very interesting museums and historical attractions. 2. negative--could be changed now, but when I was there the water was not safe like it is in PV, so you have to be very careful about that aspect and I was sick like I usually am in all countries I travel to, if I let down my guard even a little.

The similarities are: Nice, long beach, but not spectacular like in some Caribbean spots; Wonderful friendly, helpful people; fantastic food and great restaurants--these options are vastly increased from when we visited; it is a place that Colombians themselves visit and is a real city, so on the weekends you can salsa dance (or try to!) with experienced locals at authentic spots. It is also very hot, hotter than PV in the winter months, but has a cooling tradewind that picks up in the late afternoon.

Interesting excursions available and lovely handicrafts to purchase. The beach vendors were far more interesting and colourful than in PV, but similar type of things.

Now you've got me thinking about it and I am going to have to research it for a holiday! But I too loved the ease of Puerto Vallarta.