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Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit, the paradise of Mexican cuisine

Mexican cuisine is one of the richest in the world. Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit have as a peculiarity, the fusion of two types of cuisine, which satisfies each and every one of your cravings.

By Karina Macías

If you are Mexican, you will know that food is an essential element for good living. Therefore, you understand that each place has its typical dishes that you should not stop trying. And if you are a foreigner and you really want to delve into the arteries of Mexican cuisine, you will surely take into account some of our recommendations, of what you should try on one of your trips to the most beautiful bay.

The geographical location of this bay is enviable. The Pacific Ocean has been well used by local fishermen, who with their great marine fauna and ingenuity have created dishes "to lick their fingers". On the other hand, the mountain region offers us other options that together offer us two types of cuisine, both nutritious and delicious.


Of cool nature due to its altitude, the mountain has an agricultural and livestock vocation, thanks to this, the people from places like Mascota, Talpa, San Sebastian del Oeste on the Jalisco side, and even Tepic or the Banderas Valley itself in the state of Nayarit, they prepare recipes for delicious dishes made from all kinds of meat, pork, beef, chicken, poultry, cheese; as well as milk sweets, nuts, roots etc.

In this way, and thanks to the fact that on one side we have the ecosystem of the mountain and on the other side the sea, it is how the two cuisines have merged, creating the most beautiful regional cuisine of the bay. Below we will tell you about the experience of some of the readers who have shared with us through our social networks, about which dishes they prefer.

The most sought after sea dishes by tourists

The cuisine of the sea is exquisite, so requested by the locals, as well as by the visitors. The traveler immediately looks for the oysters in their shell, the shrimp pozole, the zarandeado fish, the fish and the roasted or “pregnant” shrimp on a stick, as they are also named. The fish and shrimp tacos continue to be the favorite of travelers and without a doubt the fish and shrimp ceviche are the first on the list.

In the Bay of Banderas there are a large number of beaches that have at least one small restaurant to eat these dishes. In the Puerto Vallarta region we cannot fail to mention Boca de Tomates, the main reference to eat zarandeado fish. There are also restaurants along the beach in Olas Altas, Mismaloya, Yelapa and Tehuamixtle towards the south of the bay, in the latter, shell-shouldered oysters are a must.

Heading north, on the beaches of the Riviera Nayarit, the busiest places to eat seafood are Bucerias, Anclote, Sayulita, San Pancho and Punta Mita.

Mexican cuisine… appetizers and garnachas, everyone's guilty pleasure

We Mexicans are cravings by nature and when we are on vacation we give free rein to gluttony. In the morning we can satisfy our appetite with breakfast in the municipal market. The options recommended by our readers are the Aramara market, Centro or the Emiliano Zapata neighborhood. Within them you can find the traditional Birria de chivo or beef stalls. And of course, you could not miss the traditional inns that offer everything from red or white menudo, to a rich and traditional breakfast with eggs to taste.

In the afternoon, you can refresh yourself with a delicious flavored water: tamarind, pineapple, mango, barley, etc. A must drink from the region is the classic Tejuino y la Tuba; that we will share the magic of its preparation on another occasion.

And for dinner?

Late at night, on a walk along the boardwalk you will surely find food or snacks to satisfy your craving. The traditional elotes in a glass, also called esquites, tamales of all flavors: corn, chicken, rajas with cheese, pineapple, strawberry, pork, etc. And what about the churritos with chili and lemon, flavored waters, ice creams and crepes for children and adults. And if you really want to close with a flourish, practically in every corner of Mexico you will find a delicious taco stand, for many the best Mexican dish par excellence.

As you can see, local Mexican cuisine, both from the mountains and the coast, offers you an impressive variety. Whether in the traditional inns, restaurants and markets or the cuisine that is served in family homes, it is of an incomparable gastronomic quality. In the next installment we will talk about the restaurants, events, gastronomic festivals that have cataloged Puerto Vallarta as the «Gourmet City of Mexico” topic that we will tell you about.

For now, let's go for some snacks, right?
The most beautiful bay invites…

María Karina Macias Aguirre

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