This Friday, September 26, Puerto Vallarta will welcome the Coral Princess cruise ship, her first visit to Puerto Vallarta and the only planned stop in Mexico in route to Costa Rica with two thousand passengers.
The ship set sail on Tuesday from Los Angeles and was originally scheduled to arrive in Cabo San Lucas but changed its itinerary due to damage caused by Hurricane Odile in Cabo.
Puerto Vallarta will exchange rings with the Coral Princess in a small ceremony attended by local officials, port authority and representatives of the tourism-business sector. The ceremony is traditional to welcome first-time arrivals of cruise ships at a port.
September was scheduled to welcome four cruises in Puerto Vallarta, however due to Hurricane Marie and Hurricane Odile, two cancellations took place. The Coral Princess was not originally scheduled to arrive in Puerto Vallarta and the final arrival for September will be Monday, September 29, leaving Puerto Vallarta one less arrival than scheduled for the month.
An estimated 40 cruises are considering skipping Cabo in their itinerary and replacing with additional stops or port time with Puerto Vallarta while Cabo cleans up from Hurricane Odile.
Puerto Vallarta is one of Mexico’s leading tourism destinations popular with North American visitors for its picturesque Banderas Bay, colonial center and lush Sierra Madre mountains that surround the port of call. Today this world-class destination is a top choice amongst cruise lines for its wide array of activities, great weather year round and the calm and protected waters of its bay, one of the largest bays in Mexico extending over 62 miles of pristine coastline.
Coral Princess’ passenger will be challenged with choosing amongst the many offshore excursions on offer upon their arrival in Puerto Vallarta– from shopping at Galerias Vallarta across the street from the Marina or strolling around the historic downtown area bordered by a 6-mile long Malecon (boardwalk) home to hundreds of fine art galleries, jewelry shops, arts and crafts markets, tequila stores and over 360 restaurants. International visitors can receive a tax refund for certain goods they purchase in Puerto Vallarta before they board the ship.
Those with a more adventurous spirit will find that Puerto Vallarta has it all, from paddle boarding, scuba diving to rappelling down a waterfall and tequila tasting. Tour Operators such as Canopy River offer unique opportunities to Zipline or raft across rivers, hike or ride mules down the Sierra Madre Mountain range. At Dolphin Discovery visitors can swim with dolphins and sea lions while others can opt for exploring the country side on ATVs with Wild Treks Adventure. Vallarta Adventures incorporates cultural, adventure and ecological activities in its tours which range from visiting a ghost mining town in the middle of the jungle to all-inclusive beach day and even the fastest zip-line
in Mexico. Go Gay!PV also offers numerous outdoor adventures for LGBT visitors.
Passengers who prefer to keep their heart rate at rest and looking for a relaxing day by the beach can opt for the many luxurious offerings at Puerto Vallarta’s adult-only Beach Clubs, including Lido Beach, Mantamar Beach Club and Casa Velas’ Ocean Club. Spa treatments are also a big favorite with CasaMagna Marriott Ohtli and Villa Premire’s Spa one of the most frequented. Passengers can also get a day pass to enjoy a day lazing by the pool and other facilities at the many hotels in Puerto Vallarta including Secrets, Westin or Fiesta Americana, amongst others.
Story by Vallarta Daily and the Puerto Vallarta Tourism Board