Mexico has become one of my favorite weekend getaways. There are several direct flights from Denver to Mexico, just under 3 hours - I will board a flight around lunchtime and make my way to the beach by sunset.
This weekend, I caught a 8am flight to Puerto Vallarta- which translates to “Vallarta Port” which used to be named “Las Penas”. The city was renamed in 1918 after a former governor of the Mexican state Jalisco.
We stayed in a Villa called the “Villa Papellio” an absolutely beautiful beachfront property with an Infinity pool that overlooks the Pacific Ocean. The villa is beautiful. The villa is built around these trees called “papillio trees”. The villa has trees across the property built into the house! It is almost like a giant tree house with and infinity pool! (Yes, yes 🙌)
The papillio tree is also called “the gringo tree”. The term “gringo” if you are unfamiliar, translates to “white person” in Spanish. The tree is referenced to as the “gringo” tree - as a resemblance to peeling skin on a “gringo” after being sunburned.
Puerto Vallarta has some incredible seafood and dining options. I love the food in Mexico. Everything is always so fresh, and delicious here. Bold spices and flavors, fresh seafood and fruits/vegetables.
Most mornings, it’s fresh juice - naranja (orange) is my favorite. After my first trip to Mexico, I bought a juicer and stopped drinking bottled orange juice I usually buy in the USA.
Visiting other countries has made me very aware how poor the American diet is. Our foods are so processed- even down to the juices and milk we drink. I usually lose weight and feel much healthier and cleaner after a few days hanging out in Mexico.
The “spiny lobster” is the way to go in Mexico. These lobsters are native to the oceans here, and much larger than the lobsters you get in the USA. These lobsters don’t have any claws, and are full of juicy, succulent lobster 🦞
Puerto Vallarta has some incredible places to enjoy your meals. Beachfront restaurants overlooking the sunset, with your toes in the sand. We went to this beautiful restaurant “The Kliff” that hung right over the ocean. The locals told us this was the best spot in town for a beautiful and romantic dinner setting.
The food was phenomenal. Presentation was on point. Look at this octopus taco garnished in gold! Such attention to detail - even how the guacamole aesthetically accents the octopus.
This is a lobster tail with mole 🦞 Mole is a flavorful sauce made with spices and nuts. I was not a fan of mole the first time I tried, but have warmed up to the flavor of the sauce with my frequent visits to Mexico. Every region has their own version of Mole.
Mexico - is all about the tequila, which works great for me as it is my drink of choice. Our waiter showed up with a special 25 year Anejo to sip as the sunset. I like to explain Anejo as the “tequila” of whisky. Anejo tequila is aged tequila that gives a much more Smokey and oaky flavor. I don’t mix my anejos (nor should you) - give it to me straight. A beautiful way to watch the sunset.
The next morning it’s up and at em and we’re heading out on a yacht! I’m never mad about a day on a boat. Yeah… cruising, man.
The yacht was decked out with amenities for the day. Bedrooms, Jet skis, a hot tub on the roof, a full bar, kitchen and staff - everything you need for over 8 hours on a boat! We sailed along the coast of Jalisco, admiring the mountains and beaches. Many of the spots along the coast can only be accessed by boat, so there were many other boaters sailing on the water with us.
We stopped at a beach bar that could only be accessed by water taxi. We had to take a fishing boat from the yacht to get to the bar on the beach. Yes, I mostly always have a drink in my hand in Mexico… Pictured above was an ahi carpaccio we had on the beach. Oh my goodness - the fish is so fresh in Mexico - it is incredible.
I ended up making a new friend on the beach. I had just enough daiquiris to gain the liquid courage I needed to hold this thing. He was such a big guy. To be honest I was nervous the whole time, but he ended up being a pretty chill lizard.
We sailed back to the port and watched the sunset… My favorite sunsets have been in Mexico. I don’t know if it’s actually more beautiful - or if by the end of the day I’m so loaded up on margs and tacos, everything just feels right in the world.