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Best Hikes in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

City View of Puerto Vallarta with Ocean in the backgroud on a sunny day
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Mexico is a great destination to visit. Its tropical, with a diverse landscape and rich culture. Its known for its amazing beaches, cenotes, mountainous terrain, rainforests, and Mayan ruins, among a whole host of other unique features and qualities.

People come to Mexico, and Puerto Vallarta to enjoy the outdoors. Whether that be the beach or the jungle. While you are there, why not enjoy some of the best hikes in Puerto Vallarta?

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, is located in the state of Jalisco on Mexicos Pacific Coast. Its a popular tourist city and besides its amazing hiking. The area is known for its nightlife and resorts, as well as having a number of great restaurants, shops, and bars.

PV is surrounded by diverse landscapes, creating many opportunities for enjoying the outdoors and hiking some unique areas. So let’s dive into it.

Best Hikes in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

You can find hiking opportunities for all levels of hikers in Puerto Vallarta. Whether youre just looking for a brisk walk, hoping to challenge yourself, or looking for the very best views.

This list can help you pick the best hike for you during your trip to Puerto Vallarta.

Hiking is a great healthy, budget-friendly activity you can do when visiting a new place.

Its a great way to explore your surroundings without having to break the bank.

Being surrounded by the fresh air and pristine nature will be one of the most memorable parts of your trip, and of course, youll get great photos to go with it.

View of Puerto Vallarta on a sunny day from a nearby hike

1. Mirador La Cruz Hike

This hike stands for the Cross on the Hill Viewpoint, and at the top, you can enjoy 360° panoramic views of Puerto Vallarta, Banderas Bay, and the Sierra Mountains.

Youll climb up steep steps that lead to an overlook spot where you can enjoy the views. Mirador La Cruz got its name from the Cross on the top of La Cruz Hill, which youll see when you reach the top.

The hike is about a half-mile loop and is a short yet steep hike.

Its easy to access the trail, and its a great way to see the city from up high. The best thing about this hike in Puerto Vallarta is it wont take you much time.

Making it a great option if you want to go on a hike without exhausting half your day.

Lush Botanical Garden with wooded stairs

2. Vallarta Botanical Gardens Hike

Vallarta Botanical Gardens is located in the hills of the Sierra Mountains, a bit out of the city, but is one of the best hikes in Puerto Vallarta.

Here there are several great walking and hiking opportunities to choose from, including a swinging bridge through the jungle.

Most of the trails are moderate, with one trail being more difficult than the rest. If you want to enjoy the wildlife and all of the unique flora and fauna, visit this ecological park and walk the trails.

There are many trails to choose from, and if you have the time, you can do them all in one day.

The Jaguar trail is the most difficult trail in the park so keep that one in mind if you want to challenge yourself a bit!

Besides all the walking trails, you can enjoy walking through the cultivated gardens.

Lush green mountains in the back of a white sandy beach

3. Las Animas Beach Hike

This hike is a bit longer; youll need at least 2 hours if you dont plan to stop much during the hike or 4-6 hours if you want to take your time, stop along the way, and enjoy the views.

This hike is from the fishing village of Boca de Tomatlan to Las Animas Beach, just outside of Puerto Vallarta.

Its easy to take a bus to the village where the adventure begins, but there are also great hiking tours you can join if you dont want to worry about the logistics.

There is a half-day excursion will take you along the coast, where youll stop at various beaches and walk through the luscious jungle.

The best thing about this hike is you can stop and take a quick dip in the water, enjoy the views, and take your time.

Once youve reached Las Animas Beach, there will be lots of beachfront restaurants where you can grab food after your day of hiking.

This is one of the best hikes in Puerto Vallarta because it is easy to moderate with stairs, inclines, and declines.

You also start your hike in the jungle and then it switches to more of a flat rock path once youre out by the beaches. Seeing all of the best scenery in Mexico.

The hike is 2.5 miles long from Boca de Tomatlan to Las Animas Beach.

Plan to take your time so you can enjoy the views and take it all in without being rushed.

Suspension Bridge in Mexico over lush green forest

4. Jorullo Bridge Hike

This hike will take you through the jungle and over Jorullo Bridge, which is the longest suspension bridge in the world at over 1,500 feet long and 492 feet over the Cuale River.

Youll hike the mountains of the Sierra Madre Occidental, spot all flora and fauna, and hopefully see some wildlife.

Youll also get to check out El Salto Waterfall, where you can stop for a swim and enjoy the rushing water views.

There are many tour companies that will take you on this hike, too, if that interests you.

Old fishing boats on the beach in Mexico

5. Mirador El Toro Hike

This hike is a 3.8-mile out-and-back trail that is relatively easy. It will take 2 to 3 hours to complete depending on your skill levels and how much time you spend stopping to enjoy the views.

It starts from Los Ayala Beach and goes out to Del Toro Viewpoint, a cliffside overlook where youll have some of the best views along the Riviera Nayarit.

You can also stop at the beach during your hike and go swimming or just take some time to relax.

Waves crashing onbeach in Mexico

6. Waterfall in Quimixto Hike

Quimixto is known for its serene and natural beauty. The waterfall in Quimixto is a great place to swim and reward yourself after a nice hike near Puerto Vallarta.

The hike is relatively easy, with some uneven rock surfaces as well as a few inclines. The hike is a 2.8-mile out-and-back trail that will take just over an hour to complete.

Plan for more time if you want to swim or stop to take in the views. The hike starts at Quimixto Beach and takes you through the jungle.

There are some inclines, and at the highest point, youll get to enjoy incredible views of the surrounding jungle and the ocean before reaching the waterfall.

The best thing about this area is that its very secluded, you wont see many people.

This hike is a bit out of downtown Puerto Vallarta, but if youre up to exploring the surrounding area, then this is worth it!

7. Hike to Colomitos Beach 

The hike to Colomitos Beach is a 2.1-mile out-and-back trail. Its considered moderately challenging and takes about 1 hour to complete.

You can enjoy wonderful views along the way as you hike parallel to the ocean. There are some steep cliffs and rocky areas where you will need to do some climbing.

Its worth it, though, because Colomitos Beach is a beautiful, secluded beach with golden sand and emerald-green water.

Its a wonderful private beach once you reach it. Perfect for going for a dip and a great place to spend some time relaxing after the hike.

Bring your camera! Youll want to capture the beauty of this beach.

A lush waterfall flowing

8. Palo Maria Waterfall Hike

Palo Maria is a beautiful hike in the Sierra Madre mountains. The trail has a total of 12 waterfalls… yes, you read that right.

Some of the waterfalls have swimming pools, and some even have rope swings, so be ready for a good time.

However, not many hikers visit all of the waterfalls. Reaching some of them requires going to a much higher elevation and doing some rock climbing. A more advanced hike in Puerto Vallarta. Great if that is what you are looking for.

If youre an experienced hiker and up to the challenge, theyre worth checking out, but many people just hike to the first waterfall.

The trail to the first waterfall is a 1.7-mile out-and-back trail, and its an easy hike to the first waterfall.

Waterfall into mudding bottom

9. Yelapa Waterfall Hike

This hike is a bit of a drive from Puerto Vallarta, but its worth it.

A great way to explore the surrounding area. This is one of the easiest waterfall hikes near Puerto Vallarta.

Right from Yelapa Beach, its about a 20-minute walk up the stairs and through the small fishing village to the waterfall.

The hike, which is more of a walk, is along a paved path with a slight incline. If youre looking for an easy hike with a wonderful view, this is the one for you.

Yelapa is an awesome place to visit. Its a super remote town surrounded by the jungle on the Bay of Banderas. There are no roads leading to it, and it can only be accessed by boat.

There arent even cars in the village, so the easiest way to get here is by boat, and there are plenty of cheap water taxis right from Puerto Vallarta.

Its a wonderful place to visit if you want a break from the hustle and bustle of Puerto Vallarta.

10. Nogalito Waterfall Hike

Nogalito is a small town about 15 minutes from Puerto Vallarta and easily reachable by bus. This is one of the closest waterfall hikes from Puerto Vallarta.

This is a fun hike because youll be walking over the rocks on the river and not on a trail, so bring water shoes and plan to get wet!

If this excites you, youll love this hike. Youll be climbing up and down boulders and spending your time wading through the river, so this is more of a moderate hike.

This is a 4-mile out-and-back trail, and once you reach the waterfall, its a great place to swim.

A Mountain that looks like the face of a monkey

11. Monkey Mountain Hike

The hike to the top of Monkey Mountain takes about 4 hours and is about a 5.8 mile out and back hike.

Its located a bit out of Puerto Vallarta, so youll need to drive or find some transportation. However, It has some of the best coastline views in the area, but be prepared because there is no swimming area or place to cool off.

This may not be the best hike to take in the middle of a hot day. At the top, youll need to climb a bit, so youll surely get the satisfaction of a true hike.

If you like a good challenge or a great workout whilst, on holiday, this is the hike for you.

Be sure to prepare ahead of time and get familiar with the trail, or you can also hire a guide if youd like. Bring plenty of water and snacks for the hike.

Conclusions

Puerto Vallarta is a great place to visit. You wont ever run out of things to do with such a long list of options.

Not only are there great restaurants, bars, and shops, but there are so many opportunities to get outdoors and explore all the scenery that Mexico has to offer.

If youre an avid hiker or just like being outdoors, we hope you enjoyed this list of the best hikes in Puerto Vallarta.

You have so many options at your fingertips at all different experience levels, distances, and with diverse scenery.

So go out there and explore Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. You wont be disappointed!

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