Snorkeling at Marieta Islands Mexico

Snorkeling at Marieta Islands MexicoSnorkeling at Marieta Islands Mexico  |  Riviera Nayarit, Mexico  |  Thank You Punta Mita Adventures for the photos of my half day tour to Marieta Islands, Riviera Nayarit, Mexico. Known as the Galapagos of Mexico, located at Banderas Bay, only 20 minutes sail from Punta de Mita, Riviera Nayarit. During my visit I was able to visit two times, one with a half day snorkeling tour, and the second on the Private Yacht of the Four Seasons Punta Mita, during our sunset sail and dinner. Carlos Melia Luxury Travel Curator –
Snorkeling at Marieta Islands Mexico
Snorkeling at Marieta Islands Mexico
Snorkeling at Marieta Islands Mexico

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Riviera Nayarit where all began

Riviera Nayarit by www.carlosmeliablog.comRiviera Nayarit  |  Riviera Nayarit, Mexico  |  Relatively unknown to many international travelers until only a few years ago, the Riviera Nayarit may be a fresh destination on the Mexico tourism travel scene. Just north of Puerto Vallarta, in the neighbor state of Jalisco, Mexico and spanning over 190 miles along the Pacific coast of Nayarit, Mexico’s Riviera Nayarit is not only a perfect holiday destination, but also the ideal place where many are establishing their temporary or permanent residence. Invited by the Four Seasons Punta Mita, I spend over a week exploring the destination and the many small villages and fishing towns that form this charming Riviera. There are nearly 200 miles of sandy beaches, resort hotels and attractions, siting at the foot of the Sierra Madre Mountain range.

Riviera Nayarit by www.carlosmeliablog.comI visited some of the towns within the coastal line of the Riviera, like the famous Litibu Beach, the happening Bucerias, Cruz de Huanacaxtle, and the up and coming Nuevo Vallarta, but I fell in love with two of them in particular Sayulita and Punta de Mita, just minutes away from my hotel, where we came for a lovely outdoor dinner over Anclote Beach at Rosa Mexicano. Special thanks to Richard Zarkin from the Tourism Office of Riviera Nayarit, for taking a full day to introduce me to this region of unspoiled beauty. Unfortunately time was not on my side, and I missed visiting San Blas, from what I heard, the ultimate fishing village experience, a tropical Oasis, filled with tradition among estuaries, mangroves and hundreds of birds and spectacular marine life. FYI this is where you will get the fresh giant Blue Shrimps.

Riviera Nayarit by www.carlosmeliablog.comSayulita, known by many as the trendy hippie chic town, full of local and international surfers. A very bohemian, chilled feel with cobblestone streets hosting dogs, chickens and playing children, Sayulita is a half-century away from nearby Puerto Vallarta and it’s huge resorts, discos and parasailing. I must say that I was not fully crazy about the beach, but of course coming from the Four Seasons Punta Mita, that was a whole statement. I was highly recommended for lunch or dinner at Don Pedro and/or Tacos on the Street. If you choose to stay overnight, there are two quaint hotels, KUPURI and Hotel Petit d’Hafa. I wish I could have spent the afternoon there and see the village lighting up after sunset. Maybe next time.

Riviera Nayarit by www.carlosmeliablog.comFrom there we moved to San Francisco, or as many call it San Pancho, yet another quaint fishing village, nestled between the verdant Sierra Madre Mountains and jungle and a long stretch of pristine Pacific coast. The great thing about Riviera Nayarit is that you can spend over a week driving along the shore and staying every night at a different village, to truly capture the essence and soul of each of them. In this case, if you plan to overnight at San Francisco, I would recommend Hotel Cielo Rojo.
Riviera Nayarit by www.carlosmeliablog.comBucerias and Nuevo Vallarta where the last two stops. This two more urban and developed, in particular Nuevo Vallarta, which of the years has taken over the presence of Puerto Vallarta. Nuevo Vallarta us like stepping into Collins Ave. in South Beach, with lots of new High Risers and modern developments and hotels.
Riviera Nayarit by www.carlosmeliablog.comIf you happen to stop by, have a drink at the INSU Sky Bar and Pool Lounge, at the rooftop of the Marival Residences & Spa. Great panoramic views of the shores of Nuevo Vallarta, along with lounge music and great drinks. My personal take the Beer Bloody Mary, a true mexican Michelada.

IMANTA Beach at Riviera Nayarit by www.carlosmeliablog.comMost say that one of the best beaches in Riviera Nayarit is Litibu, and although they are fairly close, rival by Manzanilla Beach and Las Cuevas Beach, I found my own personal favorite at the brand new self-named IMANTA Beach, right next to Litibu Beach, part of the new hotel development of IMANTA Resort.
Sailing onboard Four Seasons Yacht by www.carlosmeliablog.comThe Marieta Islands, is also a must during your visit to this region. A group of small uninhabited islands a few miles off the coast with two main volcanic formations dating from 60K years ago, each called Redonda (Rounded) and Larga (Long). Known as the Galapagos of Mexico, home to the beyond cute Blue Footed Boobies.

Riviera Nayarit by www.carlosmeliablog.comRiviera Nayarit enjoys a tropical climate with average 80 degree temperatures. During these winter months, temperatures can dip to about 70 degrees. December to February is the peak season for vacationing tourists. Rainy season is between June and October.
Hotel Check IN at Four Seasons Punta Mita by www.carlosmeliablog.comNayarit is a multicultural, multiethnic and multilingual state, flavored with the lifestyle and traditions of the cultures that provide its depth and identity. Its four tribes of indigenous people, the Huicholes, Coras, Tepehuanes and Mexicaneros, still exist today and visitors can take tours to their communities to learn about some of the ethnic group’s ceremonies, lifestyles and artistic creations.

Riviera Nayarit by www.carlosmeliablog.comRiviera Nayarit, is a true piece of heritage, that began at the Isla de Mexcaltitan, from what they say a true magical place.  A small man-made island-city off the coast in the municipality of Santiago Ixcuintla, Nayarit. Legend has it that it was the Aztlan of the Aztecs, their home city and birthplace from where they set out on their pilgrimage in 1091 that led them to the founding of Tenochtitlan. Mexcaltitan, comes from Mexalli “mezcal” and Titlan “abundance of”. Mexcaltitan is known also as the Venice of Mexico. Many reasons to visit Riviera Nayarit right. CM @ Carlos Melia Recommends
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TEQUILA vs. MEZCAL  |  Riviera Nayarit, Mexico  |  Every destination I go, I try to embrace as much local information as possible, and with the help of my local contacts, always I like to learn about the typical drinks. This time in Mexico to subject is of course the Tequila, but also the Mezcal, not very well known by many, but very important for Mexico. So the Four Seasons Punta Mita, assigned their Tequila Sommelier, to give us a tasting class. Tequila is a type of Mezcal, made off a very particular type of Agave.

Tequila is a distilled beverage made from the blue agave plant, primarily in the area surrounding the city of Tequila, 65 kilometres (40 mi) northwest of Guadalajara, and in the highlands. All Tequilas go through two distillations. There are three different types of Tequila, and we tasted all of them. Silver Tequila, which is supposed to be drank along with Sangrita – made with Seville orange, lime and pomegranate juices, with chili powder or hot sauce. This Tequila is used as an appetitive.

Rested Tequila, with the taste of oak barrels since it is rested for a period of time in them, allowing for richer and more complex flavors. Used primarily for cocktails, like Margatitas. And third the Aged Tequila, with the main use for after dinner drink, served in a glass similar to the Cognaq.

Tequila’s taste is determined by the Blue agaves. Those grown in the highlands region are larger in size and sweeter in aroma and taste. Agaves harvested in the lowlands, on the other hand, have a more herbaceous fragrance and flavor. Forget about all those rules to drink Tequila, the only and right way to do it, is by zipping it through. And before you drink Tequila, to cleanse your palate, take a pinch of salt and some lime juice. Then you are ready for the experience.

As for the Mezcal, is a distilled alcoholic beverage made from the maguey plant, a form of agavenative to Mexico. The word mezcal comes from Nahuatl mexcalli – metl and ixcalli which means “oven-cooked agave. In Mexico, mezcal is generally consumed straight and has a strong smoky flavor. Though mezcal is not as popular as tequila (a mezcal made specifically from the blue agave in select regions of the country), Mexico does export the product. Hope you like this little introduction, our tasting went a bit further, but you will have to try it yourself. At the Four Seasons Punta Mita, they also do tastings of Mole, cheese among other local delights. CM @ Carlos Melia Recommends

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Sailing onboard Four Seasons Yacht

Sailing onboard Four Seasons Yacht   |  Riviera Nayarit, Mexico  |  What an amazing way to close my week stay at the Four Seasons Punta Mita at Riviera Nayarit, Mexico that onboard the Four Seasons Yacht sailing along Bahia Banderas, all the way back again to the Marieta Islands, and then sunset dinner along Anclote Beach, back to the marina over a fabulous dinner by the Executive Chef of the Four Seasons Punta Mita. OH and the final touch, a school of Blottenose Dolphins following our yacht and jumping around like saying farewell, such a magical afternoon.  Continue reading Sailing onboard Four Seasons Yacht

Marieta Islands National Park Mexico

Marieta Islands National Park Mexico  |  Riviera Nayarit, Mexico  |  Today I spent my full morning exploring the area of Bahia Banderas, and Marieta Islands National Park in the state of Riviera Nayarit, Mexico, waters of the Pacific Ocean. A group of small uninhabited islands a few miles off the coast with two main volcanic formations dating from 60K years ago, each called Redonda (Rounded) and Larga (Long). The photo above is an aereal photo (not taken by me) of the hidden beach located on the rounded main island. The access is only through a very narrow tunnel, since nobody is allow on the island anymore these days. Just SPECTACULAR. The beach was under a formation of volcanic rock which served as a sort of a roof, which collapsed long time ago, leaving this unusual beach out to be admired by all of us. Boats stop at the main entrance of the tunnel and you have to snorkel and swim your way into it.  Continue reading Marieta Islands National Park Mexico