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December 30, 2021

Responsible Tourism, more than a travel trend and why Puerto Vallarta is ideal for it

Have you ever imagined living on a more beautiful planet than this one? It is very likely that the answer is "no", and the fact is that we are very fortunate to be able to enjoy our world, our landscapes and our beaches. And although year after year the habits and lifestyle we have acquired damage our environment to a great extent, it’s never too late to take actions to help preserve what we have and even improve it. Want to join us?

More than a trend, Responsible Tourism is an alternative to undertake trips with sense and purpose, and here we tell you a little more to encourage you to travel while you help with specific actions to take care of Puerto Vallarta: from witnessing the careful care of El Salado Estuary -the only one in Latin America located within an urban area- and the species that inhabit it, to living adventures organized by tour operators that destine funds to noble preservation causes and support projects that seek social welfare by providing health and educational services.

How do you want to help?

Caring for wildlife

Caring for wildlife

The biodiversity that we have in Puerto Vallarta is very vast, in fact, one of the most extensive in Mexico, since our tropical climate is a perfect habitat for many species of flora and fauna. Did you know that we have 400 different bird species? That's right, among them are the Tufted Magpie, the Blue-footed Booby, the Yellow-breasted Woodpecker and a wide variety of Hummingbirds.

How about taking time on your schedule to admire or study birds? Birding San Pancho is a non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation of birds and their habitat that organizes excursions in the Banderas Bay region to marvel at these lovely feathered creatures.

Another noble cause is to take care of species that are in danger of disappearing from our planet. The Boca de Tomates Turtle Camp in Puerto Vallarta has courageous protectors, a group of people from the civil society committed to the conservation tasks of the Olive Ridley Turtle, and have achieved to exclude it from the list of endangered species and is now part of the vulnerable animal species. An honor for Puerto Vallarta that has been taking care of this species since 1986. Besides helping the Camp in its task, you’ll be able to learn more about this species that returns year after year to our coasts and enjoy the release of baby turtles. The season starts in August and ends in December. On the other hand, the Vallarta Botanical Gardens, known as one of the most beautiful in North America, organizes talks and invites you to help preserve its forest reserve where wild animals in danger of extinction, such as the jaguarundi (Herpailurus yagouaroundi), live. 

If you decide to go into the sea on a boat tour, either private or with one of our tour operators, hopefully you will be able to spot wild Bottlenose Dolphins, Spotted Dolphins or Spinner Dolphins and swim in complete freedom with them. For this exciting adventure, we suggest you take a look at our operators that offer this adventure, always thinking in a respectful, friendly and cordial treatment to wildlife. If you prefer to venture into the Pacific waters in search of whales, Puerto Vallarta is your place. You’ll be guided by marine biologists on a boat who will tell you more about these majestic species and you will be able to listen to their songs with the help of a hydrophone. From December until March you will have the opportunity to live this experience, one of the most exciting in our destination.

If you’d rather see crocodiles up close and learn more about how they live, what they eat, what their habits are and observe them safely in their natural environment, then you should definitely visit El Salado Estuary, "The only urban estuary in all Latin America".

Here you can discover more about the different types of mangroves, birds and other terrestrial species that inhabit it. The guided tour offers details about the importance of mangroves in the balance of our ecosystem and how they act as temperature regulators. The nutrients of our estuary serve as a food base for all the species that inhabit Banderas Bay. In addition, it’s an important hydrological regulator that protects the city from flooding. Take the trip! You'll be amazed at the wonderful world you'll find.

As these wonderful species should not only be enjoyed, but also conserved and valued, here are some tips to help take care of them:

  • When visiting the natural area, be respectful with the environment, walk only on marked trails, do not cut leaves or stems without justification, and do not remove sand, shells or coral when visiting the beaches. If you have any doubts, you can contact the guide or any person responsible for the area who can guide you.
  • Enjoy the natural beauty with all your senses: feel it, observe it carefully and if you can, capture those moments on your phone or camera without flash. Please note that the use of drones in some areas is prohibited, and make sure to tag us on your pics and videos! 
  • Do not leave garbage in the natural areas you visit. You can bring your own bag to dispose of waste. Use the special containers for this purpose; if there are specialized containers such as one for organic waste, solid waste, etc., do not hesitate to separate the garbage properly. Remember that it’s in our hands to take care of this planet and to set an example is the best legacy for future generations.
  • Use environmentally friendly products for your personal protection, such as insect repellent, sunscreen, etc. However, there are some activities in which these products are not allowed for the care of certain species, check with the tour operator what you can use as an alternative.


Give a helping hand to those in need and support the local economy

Ayudar en Puerto Vallarta

In Puerto Vallarta we take care of the natural environment as well as our inhabitants, and we work hand in hand with associations to create a conscious and active society towards vulnerable groups, such as the elderly, people with disabilities, and homes for the homeless, among many others.

You’ll probably be interested to know that the Network of Altruistic Associations of Puerto Vallarta and Banderas Bayis made up of 28 non-profit Civil Associations that you can gladly join.

How can you actively help?

  • Donate
  • Do volunteer work
  • Share your professional experience
  • Join scholarship programs
  • Request specialized talks for your company
  • Help maintain our facilities
  • Be a source of work for the inclusion of people with disabilities

Another way to help is by supporting the local economy. Most small businesses depend on tourism, and it is always a good idea to shop at small establishments.

Visit local cafes and restaurants, purchase unique pieces directly from artisans and immerse yourself in the culture of our town while enjoying our artistic expressions or visiting the markets. These actions will generate an even more authentic experience for you.

What positive footprints do you want to leave during your visit?

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