Puerto Vallarta is a tourist destination with all kinds of accommodations to enjoy, but you will find the greatest concentration of hotels in the Hotel Zone. Zona Hotelera, as the locals call it, stretches along Francisco Medina Ascencio Avenue, from the Puerto Vallarta Maritime Terminal to the Sheraton Buganvilias Resort. The creation of the Hotel Zone moved the tourist accommodations outside the downtown boundaries, allowing the historic center to remain relatively untouched.
Although most of the hotels are not brand new, they are all on the beach and offer spectacular ocean views over Banderas Bay, making them highly popular among Vallarta visitors. The latest additions to the area are numerous skyscrapers with oceanfront exclusive condominiums that are often available for short-term vacation rentals.
Zona Hotelera is loved by joggers. They often start their route at the beginning of the river walk, located between Plaza Peninsula and the Holiday Inn, and continue to a calm residential area called Fluvial Vallarta across the street. Another option is to follow Medina Ascencio to the city’s public stadium, Agustin Flores Contreras, at the very end of the Hotel Zone (in front of the Sheraton Buganvilia Resort).
Beach lovers will enjoy the many interconnected beaches of the Hotel Zone. There are several points of access along Medina Ascencio Avenue, one of our favorites is the beach access just north of La Isla mall, you can get dropped off or park your car very close to the beach. Bring your own beach chairs and you can order food and drinks from the only beach bar in the area El Oasis del Holi. They have a public restroom as well ($5 Pesos). Further south, just past the Secrets hotel you can find the only other beach shack bar; Flamingos. Turn west off of Medina Ascencio at Febrino Uribe and you will find a large gravel parking lot which is used mostly for tour buses. If you are driving, tell the attendant that you are going to Flamingos, if you are walking just pass on through. Just like Oasis del Holi, Flamigos is very basic. It's a shack on the beach, and that is what makes it fun! They also have restrooms for $5 pesos. Both of these beach bars are great spots to enjoy the sunset.
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