Mismaloya, Puerto Vallarta

Mismaloya: The Hidden Gem of Puerto Vallarta

You know Puerto Vallarta is beautiful, but have you ventured just south of the city center to the lesser-known village of Mismaloya? Nestled between the jungle hillside and sparkling Banderas Bay, Mismaloya offers a peaceful escape from the crowds. Getting there is easy – a short 10-minute cab ride from downtown. Once you arrive, you’ll find lush nature trails, secluded beaches, and small hotels and restaurants lining the bay. The pace of life is slower, giving you a chance to unwind. Whether you want to lounge on an empty beach, hike to a hidden waterfall, or watch the sunset with a margarita in hand, Mismaloya is the perfect hideaway to experience old Vallarta charm. Keep reading to discover everything this laidback village has to offer.

Introducing Mismaloya: The Secluded Paradise South of Puerto Vallarta

Hidden away just 7 miles south of Puerto Vallarta is the picturesque village of Mismaloya. Nestled between the Sierra Madre Mountains and the Pacific Ocean, Mismaloya offers a tranquil escape from the crowds.

Natural Wonders

The emerald green jungle meets secluded beaches with soft sand and azure waters. You can spot colorful birds fluttering through the canopy and maybe even glimpse a monkey or iguana. A short hike leads you to a scenic waterfall, perfect for swimming on a hot day.

Activities Galore

There’s no shortage of things to do in this natural paradise. You can go snorkeling, kayaking or paddle boarding on the bay. Feeling adventurous? Rent a jet ski or go zip lining through the jungle. Or simply relax on the beach with a drink in hand, soaking in the peaceful surroundings.

Seclusion and Solitude

If you’re looking to unplug, Mismaloya is the perfect place. Accommodations are limited to small hotels, cabanas and vacation rentals, so you’ll avoid the crowds. Fall asleep to the sound of waves lapping at the shore and wake up to birds chirping outside your window. For a quiet escape, Mismaloya offers seclusion and solitude in spades.

Whether you want an active eco-adventure or a laid-back beach getaway, Mismaloya has something for everyone. Discover this hidden gem just south of Puerto Vallarta and you may never want to leave!

Getting to Mismaloya From Puerto Vallarta

Mismaloya is only about 30 minutes south of Puerto Vallarta, but the secluded beach town feels worlds away. The easiest way to get there is by taxi, which will cost around $20 USD each way. Just head to the taxi stand in downtown Puerto Vallarta and tell the driver you want to go to Mismaloya beach.

Take a Taxi

The taxi ride winds through the jungle, with stunning views of the Pacific Ocean around every turn. Roll down the windows, feel the warm, salty breeze on your face, and get ready to arrive in paradise. Once in Mismaloya, the main road dead ends at the beach, so your taxi driver will drop you off right in the heart of town.

Drive Yourself

If you have a rental car, Mismaloya is an easy drive down Highway 200. Head south from Puerto Vallarta, turn right at Boca de Tomatlan, and follow the signs to Mismaloya. It’s about a 30 minute drive, but you’ll have the freedom to stop for photos whenever you like. There’s plenty of parking right near the beach in Mismaloya, and driving yourself means you can also explore some of the other small towns on the way there and back.

Go By Bus

Public busses depart from the corner of Agua Azul and Venustiano Carranza in downtown Puerto Vallarta every 30 minutes. Fares are around $1 USD each way. The busses are older, so they don’t have air conditioning, but with the windows open riding through the jungle, you’ll enjoy the fresh air. The bus drops you off right in the center of Mismaloya, just a short stroll from the beach.

No matter how you get there, the scenic journey to Mismaloya is part of the adventure. Once you arrive, grab your beach towel and sunscreen— you’ll want to head straight to the sand! The turquoise waters and palm-lined shores of Mismaloya beach await.

Top Things to Do in Mismaloya: Beaches, Jungle Tours, Ziplining and More

Relax on the Beach

Mismaloya is home to a beautiful golden sand beach, perfect for sunbathing, swimming, and people watching. Grab your towel and sunscreen and find a spot along the scenic shoreline. The beach is especially stunning at sunset, with the jungle-covered mountains as a backdrop. If you’re looking for food and drinks, beach vendors stroll by selling everything from fresh fruit and ceviche to cold beers and margaritas.

Explore the Jungle

The jungles surrounding Mismaloya are ripe for adventure. Sign up for exciting excursions like jungle canopy tours, where you zoom through the treetops on ziplines, hike through dense rainforest, and maybe even spot wildlife like monkeys, parrots, and coatis. Horseback riding tours take you deep into the jungle, and many companies offer day trips to nearby waterfalls like La Cascada de Animas, a scenic jungle waterfall perfect for swimming.

Visit the Botanical Garden

For a peaceful escape, head to the Mismaloya Botanical Garden. This lush garden sprawls over 12 acres and showcases a variety of tropical plants, flowers and cacti. Follow winding paths to a scenic lookout point with panoramic views of the ocean and mountains. The garden is open every day of the week and admission fees are minimal. It’s a perfect place to relax surrounded by nature.

Whether you want to soak in the sun, get your adrenaline pumping, or find your zen amidst exotic plants, Mismaloya has an activity for you. Spend your days beach hopping, zip lining through the jungle canopy, hiking to hidden waterfalls or simply enjoying a cold drink while the warm waves lap at the shore. This secluded village offers a perfect blend of natural scenery and adventure.

Where to Stay: The Best Mismaloya Hotels and Resorts

Hotel Paraiso Escondido

Tucked away into the jungle hillside, the secluded Hotel Paraiso Escondido offers an authentic eco-resort experience. The private cabanas and bungalows feature rustic decor and balconies with stunning views of the ocean. You’ll feel immersed in nature as monkeys, parrots and iguanas frequent the grounds. There’s also an oceanview pool, restaurant and spa. It’s a 10-minute drive from Mismaloya Beach.

La Quinta de Don Jose

This small bed and breakfast provides a quiet escape in a lush garden setting. The colonial-style rooms have tile floors, wood furniture and private patios. A delicious homemade breakfast is included, and the staff can arrange activities like jungle tours, boat rides, and massages. It’s only a 5-minute walk to Mismaloya Beach, so you have easy access to the ocean without the big resort crowds.

Barceló Puerto Vallarta

For a classic beachfront resort experience, the Barceló Puerto Vallarta checks all the boxes. Its sprawling grounds feature multiple pools, restaurants, bars and an awesome kids club. The spacious rooms have private balconies, many with ocean views. You get access to a secluded stretch of beach, and the resort offers tons of activities from tequila tastings to dance lessons. Nightly entertainment and an all-inclusive option make this a solid family-friendly choice.

Whether you prefer an eco-chic hideaway, a cozy bed and breakfast or a happening beach resort, Mismaloya has lodging options for every taste. The area’s natural surroundings combined with old-school Mexican hospitality provide a charming alternative to the mega-resorts of Puerto Vallarta. You’ll find a more authentic vibe in this “hidden gem” just minutes south of town.

Mismaloya FAQs: Answering All Your Questions About This Hidden Gem

How far is Mismaloya from Puerto Vallarta?

Mismaloya is only about 30 minutes south of Puerto Vallarta, making it an easy day trip or short getaway. You have a few options to get there:

Take a bus: Public busses depart from Puerto Vallarta and drop you off right in Mismaloya. The ride takes around 30-40 minutes.

Hire a taxi: A one-way taxi from Puerto Vallarta to Mismaloya will cost around $20-$30 USD each way. Make sure to negotiate the price before getting in.

Rent a car: If you want flexibility exploring the area, rent a car in Puerto Vallarta and drive south along Highway 200. Watch for the turnoff to Mismaloya about 30 minutes down the road.

What makes Mismaloya unique?

Mismaloya has an untouched natural beauty that sets it apart from Puerto Vallarta. Nestled between the jungle-covered Sierra Madre mountains and the Pacific Ocean, Mismaloya offers:

  • Secluded beaches with soft sand and gentle waves. Some beaches you may have all to yourself!
  • Outdoor activities like hiking, ziplining, ATV riding and boat tours. The area’s natural scenery provides the perfect backdrop.
  • A slower pace of life. Mismaloya has a laid-back vibe without the crowds and hustle of Puerto Vallarta.
  • Unique wildlife. If you’re lucky you may spot iguanas, colorful birds, turtles or even dolphins.

Where to stay in Mismaloya?

There are a few small hotels and vacation rentals right in Mismaloya. For a relaxing tropical getaway, try:

  • Hotelito Desconocido: A secluded jungle oasis with cabanas, a spa and private beach access.
  • Casa Salamandra Mismaloya: An eco-friendly vacation home rental with amazing views, a pool and full kitchen. Perfect for families or groups.
  • Boca de Tomatlan Resort: Rustic beachfront villas in a lush setting. Some have private plunge pools and outdoor showers.

Whether you stay for a day or a week, the natural charm of Mismaloya is sure to capture your heart. This hidden gem is calling—answer its call!


So there you have it – everything you need to know about Mismaloya, the hidden gem of Puerto Vallarta. From how to get there, to where to stay and what to do, you now have all the info to plan the perfect getaway. With its beautiful beaches, lush jungle, and charming village vibes, Mismaloya offers a peaceful escape from the crowds of downtown Vallarta. And while it feels worlds away, it’s just a short 10-15 minute cab ride south along the coast. For a laidback and affordable beach vacation off the beaten path, look no further than Mismaloya. Load up on sunscreen, grab a good book, and get ready to soak up some rays in this tropical paradise by the sea.