My Puerto Vallarta trip definitely ranks up there with one of my favorite family trips. Our adventures were endless and we had a fabulous time. If sailing on a luxury yacht, with a very small group of people (less than 30 people) accompanied with all you can drink beverages, fantastic food, and tons of water activities lights your fire, I have found your adventure. For the rest of you, go look at those large booze cruises, because this is not your gig!
I read a lot of things to do in Puerto Vallarta long before we left and I read about all the different companies that offered adventures. I decided that my family needed to head out on a luxury yacht, to snorkel at Los Arcos and then take in the lovely secluded coves of the Cabo Corrientes.
Lavishly live passport travel out loud, let’s dive into the best snorkeling adventure in Puerto Vallarta while sailing on a luxury yacht! Who’s ready to travel?
Best Snorkeling Experience at Los Arcos in Puerto Vallarta
Chances are if you are reading my article you have been Googling and Googling and hoping to find some confirmation that Vallarta Adventures Luxury Yacht & Snorkel tour is your passport to fun in the Puerto Vallarta sun and you are about to receive that blessing.
I do not work for Vallarta Adventures, in fact, all I know about them is that we booked tours with them and they were handled professionally. I was not provided anything by them other than the tour I purchased, so please note this is based on my experience, they did not even know my profession was a travel writer. You should know that Vallarta Adventures is the largest adventure provider in Puerto Vallarta and it is safety first, customers first and fun all mixed in.
The Luxury Yacht & Snorkel Experience
Ask me how I know they are the best experience and here’s how I know! We were at Los Arcos, the water was a bit ‘rough’ moving us from the boat rapidly. Our Captain positioned the boat so that if we floated away, we would float to him and his staff.
Another venue we had looked at online set their people in the water, did not provide snorkels, flippers, or facemasks and our Captain rescued them. That’s right, a full out rescue. Our captain allowed them to rest, and then got them back to their boat, who’s Captain did not even note he had lost those passengers. SO choose Vallarta Adventures if you want safety.
What is Provided
We were provided with towels (as many as we needed), snorkels (all being cleaned in warm, soapy, sterile water, goggles, and life vests. Additional equipment on board were paddle boards for the secluded cove you travel to after snorkeling.
We chose to leave from the Maritime Terminal, which was about 10 minutes from the Buenaventura Grand Hotel. Our cab fits the 5 of us and it cost us $7 to get there. Additionally, you need about $1.25 a person to enter the marina before you check in with Vallarta Adventures.
Getting on the boat, the crew takes your shoes, for the duration of the cruise but you move to the front of the boat, they explain how to walk and hold on during the cruise and they take GOOD care of you while you are sailing. I highly suggest a water camera for snorkeling, this one works awesome and does not break the bank. Additionally, bring sunscreen you are on the water for about 5 hours and it gets hot.
From the month of December to the beginning of March you might get lucky enough to see whales and we did. Don’t pay for those other tours and then go snorkeling, while we got lucky, we understand that is the ‘trend’ during these months and wow did everyone get excited when we saw them, totally unexpectedly. The Captain cut the motor and allowed the Whale to move around, it was crazy great!
Why To Love This Cruise
In front of us is Los Arcos. In case you do not know why it is so famous, it is the sight of where Night of The Iguana starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton was filmed.
This is a newer adventure for Vallarta Adventures and if you have kids with you, or if you do not like those LARGE crowds that get louder as they drink, then you definitely will love this cruise. The Luxury Yacht is that luxurious, the front seats are soft pillows or you can sit on the steps.
My husband and I wanted to keep our wits about ourselves after all we had three children to tend to, we were in open water and getting in that water, we did not drink anything more than water on the way to Los Arcos.
While we did not have a drink immediately, we were off and munching with this fantastic trio of shrimp, guac, and nachos! Yes this cruise included all you can drink beverages as well as a snack and a fresh twist on lunch which you will see as you read on.
Small Group = More Personalized Service
Our group consisted of about a total of 17, I told you very small and very nice. Our director of the snorkeling and cove fun was Cory. He is a master of what he does, not only does he explain everything step by step he does not push you if you are not comfortable doing something. I personally hate getting into the Ocean, guess what, after his explanation, I was in as much as everyone else snorkeling!
This is Cory he told us everything about the area, the water and set our expectations about snorkeling. Here are the fish we could expect to see today, this helped my husband quickly identify what he was seeing behind the camera and shoot photos fast.
My children were the ‘youngest’ on this cruise it seemed to be adults 25+ but the children were welcome and treated like queens and kings.
That’s them (up above in photo, Los Arcos), the arches where we are going to snorkel, more to the one on the right rather than the one on the left, but the sky and conditions are perfect.
This is where we are headed to snorkle and the more brilliant the sun the better the snorkeling.
And we are in and Cory is waiting for all of us and the Captain is helping us too!
LET’S TAKE A PEEK BELOW
If you hear people say they can not see anything they are just used to the Caribbean water. You can see so many fish, you can see down to about 15 feet without an issue and without diving down. Cory heads down to show us stuff and we photo!
WHAT YOU WANT TO KNOW
The food and beverages are outstanding and the staff works so hard to keep you having fun without pushing on you. They provided us time to just rest and time to eat, and of course assisted us paddle boarding, snorkeling and taking photos. The Captain helped us boarding and snorkeling as well when Cody was in the water, they were all just so nice!
Onboard there is even a photographer, but they do not push you to buy the photos, it’s all your choice. We were looking for one of us all in the water, but it did not turn out well enough.
Cove Of Colimis
This cove knocked my socks off, the water was warm, the color was incredible and the clarity was amazing. In addition to fish and great snorkeling, there were multiple stingrays at the bottom and Cory went around with my husband and son and showed them these creatures.
When Cory was not in the water, he was getting us in the water on Paddle boards and we were all cheering each other on, as all of us tried it out! Once off the paddle boards we swam to the beach and rested and then swam back to the boat! It was so much fun.
Honestly exhausted from paddle boarding, snorkeling and tons of swimming we happily set sail back to the marina, and on the way we dined on this delicious tray for 2 along with plenty of margaritas and cervezas. Fresh Mozzarella, pasta salad, fruits, sushi and raw veggies, perfect for this vegetarian!
Check out our other basket with delectable bites, a very savory selection of carbs and truly romantic even if we had the kids with us. My 2 teens ate this as well, and Niko had a boxed lunch specially prepared for him by our wonderful and helpful Buenaventura Grand Hotel!
The Overall Trip
Our trip began just a little off schedule as the Captain explained something had happened, but they more than made sure we had enough time everywhere. The group we were with were relaxed, fun and out to enjoy the day and the ride on the luxury yacht.
There are bathrooms on board, a welcoming staff and delicious food and beverages. You do NOT have to get in the water if you do not want to you can simply stay onboard the entire time. There was a deck as you saw that you can sit underneath if you prefer to not sun.
The day started at about 9:30 and we were back in about 2:30. Make sure you get to the Marina on time so you get on your adventure, all the cabs know where to go when you tell them the Marina. Unlike most tours this one provided all the equipment including towels which made it so much easier on us. The tour is very affordable in respect to some tours we have done when traveling in other places.
We had a fabulous time with the staff, and the adventure and we would do it again. It’s a fabulous day on the water and below the water and this crew was incredible! Lavishly live passport travel out loud with the Best Snorkeling Experience at Los Arcos in Puerto Vallarta.