My Favorite’s List and Must Try’s

Below I break things out better. There are over 1k restaurants in PV. Many are very good in Old Town so it is hard to go wrong.


  • Sea Monkey – $, VERY POPULAR – People Watch at the bar or sit on the beach under palapas (avoid food), also good for anytime you want a cold beer
  • Cuates y Cuetes – $$, VERY POPULAR– Live Music also till closing, Cocktails, People Watch. Sometimes there are concerts on the beach right there with well known/famous musicians
  • La Palapa – $$$ – Very nice, great for breakfast, lunch, dinner, a day at the beach


  • Plaza Mar Rooftop poolABSOLUTELY RECOMMEND 🙂 !!– great for sunsets and watching lightning shows. Grab a beer and go up!
  • Sky Bar PinnacleHIGHLY RECOMMEND – Open to the public from 5 pm-8 pm or so. Worth a cocktail or 2. Incredible view. It is predominately a gay condo building known for partying but everyone goes up there for the view. You can walk up Olas Altas and the before the Swedes Restaurant take steps or funicular tram, walk past first building, and then into next. Front Desk will direct you from there to the elevator. You can also cab or Uber for a few bucks.


  • Bar La Playa – 2 for 1 drinks – VERY POPULAR
  • All Access – 2 for 1 drinks – Sports bar, left out condo, walk 40 yards


  • Playa Los Arcos HotelHIGHLY RECOMMEND – 2 for 1 drinks – the bar is off to the side of the closest pool to the beach, the performance was actually quite impressive.


  • Swells Beach BarHIGHLY RECOMMEND– $ least expensive place on the beach, locals hangout, lounge chairs, cool bar, Tiki like atmosphere.
  • La Palapa or El Dorado – $$$, they will pamper you, you will pay, but good.




  • Cheap and Quick $ – Pancake House – sit at counter when busy, good coffee, fresh orange juice.
  • Best Healthy $ – SaludVERY POPULAR, Lunch Too
  • All Around $$ – Cafe MaximillianHIGHLY RECOMMEND has A/C inside or sidewalk tables
  • Solid $$ – Coco’s Kitchen, nice garden setting.
  • Beach $$$ – La Palapa, this place is just nice.


  • Best To Go Lunch $
  • Best Healthy Lunch $ – SaludVERY POPULAR – organic, vegan, etc
  • Seafood Tacos – Tuna Azul – Lobster Tacos, Shrimp Burritas, TunaTostadas, Ceviche, Aguachile – highly ranked, Dinner also
  • Cheap and Quick $ – Los Muerto’s Brewery – 1 slice of Pizza, side Salad, a pint of beer. $90 pesos
  • Very Local Mexican Grill $ – La Parrilla de Villa VersallesHIGHLY RECOMMEND – 15 minutes away


  • El Rio BBQ – $$ – bus, Uber, or Taxi – Great BBQ – River you can wade/swim in. Call ahead or check out the schedule of events on the website, Music in early evenings
  • Ocean Grill – $$$ – Bring Swimsuit, take Uber, Taxi, Bus to Boca Tomatlan (25 minutes), call and Ocean Grill will pick you up by boat and bring you back. Interesting Place and food was great albeit expensive but you have to take into account where they are at. Boca Tomatlan has been growing so there is some stuff going on there too.


  • Best Beach Romantic Dinner – La Palapa – swing by during the day to reserve a table on the beach
  • Best Romantic – Trio HIGHLY RECOMMEND – just really good, A/C
  • Best Popular – Cafe de ArtisteVERY POPULAR – Centro (location), A/C


  • Jorge’s Hideaway HIGHLY RECOMMEND – Might be one of your best meals. Jorge is a really nice guy and the food is excellent. Cozy place. Mainly seafood. Excellent Shrimp Dishes. Chicken, Pork, and beef options too are great. Popular – Pineapple Diabla (shrimp in half pineapple), also Special House Shrimp!! A/C
  • Joe Jack’s Fish Shack VERY POPULAR – mahi-mahi, beans, rice, pico de gallo dish is PV on a plate, excellent cocktails, A/C
  • Pulpito 116VERY POPULAR – small place – great cocktails, certain days are 2 for 1 mules, food is small plate but interesting/good.
  • Bravos Restaurant and Bar VERY POPULAR, A/C


  • Tacos (Taco Cart Map)
    • Sonorita Olas Altas – closes 12 am – HIGHLY RECOMMEND left out condo, left at the corner. Closes at midnight. Try potato thing. I think they now have a vegan taco option too.
    • Panchos Takos – closes 1 am or so – VERY POPULAR – high season expect long lines
    • Tuna Azul – Lobster Tacos, Tostadas, Ceviche – highly ranked, Lunch also
  • Mexican – many are open for lunch as well
    • Cafe OllaVERY POPULAR – straight forward solid Mexican food, split a fajita if not overly hungry
    • Restaurant Adobes – Inexpensive, not fancy, but very good
    • El Brujo – you are going here for the Molcajeta – volcanic rock bowl with sizzling meats in a sauce.
    • Best Mole – El Mole de Jovita
  • Seafood
    • Baracuda HIGHLY RECOMMEND, BEACH – (north side of Malecon), very much worth it. Tables on the beach, Casual. Bar next door with lots of Mexico’s craft beers, wait there for a table to open up. Popular: Grilled Octopus. Red Snapper in a bag. You may see Sea Turtles laying eggs right next to you!
    • Canto del MarCONVENIENT , BEACH – On the beach.  Simple, straight forward, nothing fancy, light if you don’t want a heavy meal.
  • Italian
  • Thai
    • Siam Cocina Thai – VERY POPULAR – Not listed in Google, Next to Bravos (same owner), A/C
  • Chinese
    • Archie’s Wok – $$ – good but kind of expensive for Mexico, take out or dine in.



LATE NIGHT FOOD AFTER 10 pm – most restaurants stop serving at 10 pm

  • Taco Carts – closes 2am – – Next to Farmacia Guadalajara, 4 blocks up Lazaro Cardenas
  • Sonorita Olas Altas – closes 12 am – HIGHLY RECOMMEND – left out condo, left at the corner. Closes at midnight. Try potato thing.
  • Panchos Takos – 2 am – HUGELY POPULAR, BIG LINES
  • Taco North of Malecon – El CarbonocitoHIGHLY RECOMMEND 4-5 blocks past McDonald’s (north end of Malecon), make a left, across the street from Captain Don’s
  • Encino Hotel Puerto Vallarta – 11-12 pm – Take the elevator to the top. Very local place- decent food, good drinks, interesting place, nothing fancy but great view and space. Again, very local, different.
  • All Access – 11 pm food stops, bar 2 am +
  • OXXO – yes, the convenience store, tastes better after lots of cocktails! Popular: Doritos bag, open it up, squirt nacho cheese in the bag, top with jalapenos, and maybe a splash of hot sauce. The best at 2 am!! Not so much at 9 am.. They also have these pre-made sandwiches that work if you are trying to get something in you. Pick up the Electrolyte Drinks!! Great for hang-overs and beating the heat. Do not drink more than 1 a day and unless you are really hung-over otherwise only drink about 1/3rd 3x a day (said the guy who ended up in hospital drinking too many).
    • Tacon de Marlin – $ – HIGHLY RECOMMEND – Seafood Burritos (smoked marlin, crab, shrimp, octopus, etc). Cold Beer. Pick Uber up here or a yellow cab.