Puerto Vallarta is a coastal city on the Pacific Coast of Mexico. With a population of over 250,000, it’s the second-largest city in the state of Jalisco, after Guadalajara. Because of its coastal location and proximity to the important silver mines in the Sierra, Puerto Vallarta is older and has a more colorful past than most other Mexican tourist destinations. The Ameca Valley, in which the city is located, was taken by the Hernan Cortés as far back as 1524. The area was then named Banderas after the colorful flags borne by the indigenous warriors in battle.
During the 18th century, Puerto Vallarta became a small beach-landing port serving the Sierra towns of San Sebastian del Oeste, Talpa de Allende and Mascota. It was during this period that Puerto Vallarta first found its vocation as a tourist destination, becoming a favorite vacation spot for residents of the mining towns of the Sierra.
By the 1950s, Puerto Vallarta was attracting Americans – mostly writers and artists. However, the lack of infrastructure, as well as the ejido status of the land, stifled development. This changed in the early 1970’s when much of the land within city limits was transferred to private ownership. Also during this period, the Mexican government invested in roads and upgraded the airport, making Puerto Vallarta more accessible.
The filming of John Huston’s 1963 film The Night of the Iguana near Puerto Vallarta put the city and the surrounding area in the spotlight. The media frenzy over star Richard Burton’s torrid affair with Elizabeth Taylor helped put Puerto Vallarta on the map. The August 1970, visit of U.S. President Richard Nixon showcased the city’s newly updated infrastructure and helped contribute to its growth as a tourist destination.
Puerto Vallarta Real Estate & Homes for Sale
If you’re thinking of moving or retiring to somewhere warm, Puerto Vallarta is a great choice. The climate is ideal and the views are spectacular. Want to spend a day at the beach? You have five beaches to choose from. Enjoy playing golf? There are six world-class golf courses in and around the city. Epicures will appreciate the many fine restaurants which make Vallarta’s dining scene the best in Mexico, bar none! For those nagging health issues, be assured that excellent doctors and dental clinics, modern hospitals and medical facilities can be found here at affordable prices.
Puerto Vallarta real estate has certain advantages over that found in other resort areas of Mexico such as Cancun or Los Cabos. Hillside homes in the Sierra Madre hills surrounding the city can be worth nearly as much as beachfront due to the spectacular views they offer. The city itself offers a certain old-world charm that can’t be found in the more recent, planned resort communities.