Within short driving distances of Puerto Vallarta you will never run out of exciting and interesting places to visit. We love Melaque, just a stone’s throw north of Barra de Navidad, for so many great reasons. We have always loved this trip and discover something every time we travel this southern route. We recommend at least an overnight but once you arrive, we guarantee you’ll want to relax in this romantic setting for longer.
We plan to stop around lunchtime in Careyes on our way. Though it’s considered a luxury community and some sadly mistake it for being off limits to the public, it’s a very welcoming settlement with fabulous restaurants and a smattering of lovely shops. Our personal favorite eatery is La Coscolina. They serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The menu is varied with choices for all appetites and their ice dream alone is worth a mini-layover.
The village of your destination is actually San Patricio – Melaque, and Villa Obregon is also adjacent but we have found that everyone refers to this entire area as Melaque. It’s become a fairly modern town from the time we originally happened upon it years ago. Accommodations are easy to find these days and we recommend reserving at least one night before venturing forth; it’s best to inquire about availability of vacancies in the middle of high season, December to March.
We have a short list of suggestions with enough gusto to share our opinion that the best Mexican restaurant in town is Ayala. There’s also an excellent French café in town that rivals anything you might find in Puerto Vallarta; give Bistro Gigi a try for a delightful surprise. Aside from Ayala, we’d send you to Estela’s for Chili rellenos; and if you love your chilaquiles for breakfast, check out The Frog, and stop into La Taza Negra first thing in the mornings for a cup of delicious java. La Oficina has great hamburgers for those seeking a break from local cuisine and they also serve a mean margarita. Head to Albatros Bar for Happy Hour and fab sunsets.
Though Puerto Vallarta has some of the best swimming beaches we’ve seen on the west coast, we love getting in the water at Melaque. There’s super surfing and skimboarding at the main beach but the west end is best for those who simply want to get wet and have a good paddling around.
Events take place in the main square, which has been carefully preserved over time; Mexicans have vacationed here for decades. If the locals love it, it must be good!
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