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Sea and Beaches Sayulita (Nayarit)

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If you don’t mind prices in dollars and receptionists who speak better English than Spanish, then this is your place. Sayulita is a pretty small beachtown on the Pacific coast, near San Blas or Puerto Vallarta. Center town square is just 3 blocks from the beach and is surrounded by restaurants, coffee shops and bars. There is decent night life here. Most of the accommodation is not at the beach but rather around the center of the town in small hotels or bungalows. Many properties are owned by Americans today which is good and bad. Thanks to the money Sayulita is well equipped with whatever you might need and the competition drives the prices down and standard up. That, unfortunately does not apply to the local taxi drivers, who are arrogant bastards and their only goal is to overcharge you. On the beach you can find several surf schools and locals shout at you automatically in English „how are you“, which I don’t care for at all. Half of the beach is full of umbrellas, chairs, people and garbage. But if you walk to the north end of the beach you will find a small paradise. Deserted romantic sand beaches hidden between rocks. Here you can actually swim naked, if that is what you like.
Or you take a walk to the other end of the beach. You will pass by some luxury villas in the hills and very romantic hotels. Right behind them you turn left towards local graveyard and walk along until you reach small picturesque cove with rocks on both sides. The sea is much calmer here. The walk from the centre will take you maximum 15 minutes.
Main season is from November till May. It is better to come during summer when the prices are noticeably lower. It is however very hot, fug and quite wet.
What here: Visit a huge tree downtown full of iguanas. Lie at the beach, learn how to surf (the waves are mild here) and relax. You can enjoy a massage on the beach or try a horseback ride. Or rent one of those luxurious villas hidden in gardens for few months and write a book, the place calls for that. And if you get fed up of Sayulita, you just take a local bus and go to Punta Mita or Puerto Vallarta.

Where to stay:

Aurinko Bungalows. It’s a complex of very nice orange bungalows situated in green garden one block from the beach. Each bungalow has its own halfway open terrace, kitchen, dining table, sofas and a hammock. You can use wi-fi, water in the kitchen is filtered so you can drink it without any consequences (I tried myself) and if you wish so, senorita Carmen will happily prepare you a breakfast or dinner. Plate full of shrimps cost us 80 pesos and I would definitely recommend it. Should you hear a thump no worries it is only an iguana. Trees around are full of them and they sometimes loose a balance.
Price: 800 – 1600 pesos (during low season you can bargain nice discount). Street Marlín. Tel: (329) 291 3150, www.sayulita-vacations.com
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Hotel la Casona. Boutique hotel with only 9 rooms is situated just around the corner from Aurinko bungalows, slightly closer to the beach. The white and blue reception is very stylish, the lounge – dining room on the first floor is cozy and the kitchen is shared. Wi-fi and breakfast are included in the price. The more expensive rooms are beautiful, the cheaper ones rather ordinary. All rooms have a small balcony and a hammock. Some have sea view. Another thing included is a pair of ear plugs. Due to a nearby night club Budha Mar the nights could get a little noisy.
Price: 585 – 1170 (includes breakfast) pesos. Street Delfin 7. Tel: (329) 291 3629, www.lacasonasayulita.com
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Junto al Río. One of the few possibilities to stay at the beach! The first couple of cottages is in „jungle style“ ( own bathroom, kitchen and ceiling fen). Ocean view, lampions in trees and hammocks are pleasant supplements. At the back in the garden are big “tents” with classic beds, bathroom and small kitchen inside. This unusual combination looks interesting but it is little too warm inside. Complex has own restaurant and small bar at the beach. The owner speaks fluent English and Spanish.
Price: 600 - 1500 pesos. On the beach next to the river. Tel: (329) 291 3416, www.juntoalrio.com
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Casa Duende Vista. Bungalows further from the sea but with a beautiful view. The terraces are wide open and from the shower or bath you can actually see the whole picturesque bay. The hotel also has a restaurant at the beach and apparently they will provide you with an umbrella and beds. The owner is a slightly arrogant guy from California but hey you are here for the rooms, right.
Price: 300 – 2000 pesos. Street Gabriel Rodriguez 6. www.duendesurfsayulita.com
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Hostel El Venado Azul. Probably the only hostel in Sayulita. It is located in a street behind the park, about 5 blocks from the beach. You could use wi-fi and a common kitchen. However the prices are not so much hostel like and they would not show me the inside.
Price: 150 per person. Street Jose Mariscal 33. Tel: (329) 291 3280, hostalelvenadoazul@hotmail.com

Directly on the beach are 2 decent camps. 100 pesos per person per night.
How to get here: Pacifico buses, that can leave you on the crossroad some 3 km from Sayulita town, leave from Tepic to Puerto Vallarta every half an hour. One ticket is 98 pesos. The journey, according to the attendant at the booth, would take 2,5 hour, however it took 4. So be patient. Bus will leave you at deserted crossroad. You could catch a local bus here. They pass by every 20 minutes and charge 5 pesos. The bus will leave you in front of a small bridge and once you cross it you are actually in the downtown.

I do not recommend to use local taxi unless absolutely necessary. Overpriced and rude.