PUERTO VALLARTA -- For visitors in search of an active vacation
beyond the beach, Puerto Vallarta offers the chance to climb
mountains, take in a bird's-eye view of the rain forest with a
canopy tour or interact with one of the last remaining indigenous
cultures in the world.
The following tour operators offer 10% commissionable adventure
tours, many of which combine activities such as hiking and biking
with cultural pursuits. All tours include equipment and lessons if
• Vallarta Adventures is marketing a new rain forest canopy
tour, a historical tour of the mountain village of San Sebastian
and an excursion to the remote township of San Andres Coamihata,
home to the Huichol Indians.
The historical plan, one of the firm's newest tours, takes
clients to San Sebastian, a once prosperous, 1700s silver mining
town situated some 4,300 feet above the Sierra Madre mountains.
The excursion, priced at $125 per person, starts with a
15-minute flight from Puerto Vallarta in a 14-passenger plane (it
would take two days by car to reach the town on the one road
San Sebastian has been described as a "living museum," an
excellent example of how people used to live and work in a remote
Mexican mountain town.
Clients will meet with a local family in their home and watch
them grind coffee beans and make tortillas. The tour includes an
authentic Mexican meal at a 150-year-old hacienda.
Vallarta Adventures rolled out a Tree Top Canopy Tour similar to
those offered in Costa Rica. Clients "swing" from one tree platform
to another wearing harnesses hanging from pulleys supported on
horizontal traverse cables.
The tour, which costs $65 per person, includes a rain forest
history lesson from expert guides.
The third program whisks clients approximately one hour by plane
from Puerto Vallarta to the remote town of San Andres Coamihata,
home to the Huichol Indians. The Huichol are believed to be direct
descendants of the Aztecs and are one of the last remaining
indigenous cultures in the world.
Clients will interact with the Huichol and learn about their
traditions, costumes and language. This tour costs $225 per person.
Departures are scheduled for Fridays.
For reservations or information about these or other Vallarta
Adventures tours, visit www.vallarta-adventures.com or call (011) 52-322
• Mountain Bike Adventures, which has been offering bike tours
for more than 20 years, offers a number of itineraries in Puerto
Vallarta for bikers of every ability.
Bikers of every level can sign up for the Rio Tour, which follows
the River Cuale through Puerto Vallarta's cobblestone streets and
stretches to the outskirts of town.
A dirt trail winds its way through small villages, with plenty
of stops along the way to sample local markets. The $44 tour
includes a stop at a waterfall for lunch and a swim.
Advanced cyclists can sign up for the $60 Killer Donkey Tour. As
its name implies, this five-hour plan takes cyclists 2,000 feet up
the Sierra Madre Mountains with a choice of three routes depending
on weather conditions.
For more information or reservations, visit www.bikemex.com or
call (011) 52-322 316-80.
• If your clients are avid hikers, Open-Air Expeditions offers
an Advanced Jungle Hike program. The uphill journey ventures up the
Sierra Madre Mountains. Clients are led by expert guides who
provide commentary on the flora and fauna along the route.
The excursion, which costs $60 per person, includes a picnic and
a swim in a waterfall. The company also offers less strenuous hikes
for novice hikers that run alongside a river.
All tours include lunch with refreshments and transportation.
For reservations or information, e-mail Open-Air Expeditions at [email protected] or call (011) 52-322 10657.
For general information about Puerto Vallarta, call (888)
384-6822 or visit www.puertovallarta.net.