Puerto Vallarta – better late than never!

Note: Houston started this blog last summer and finally finished the text over Christmas holidays. Being the slackers we are, we just now finished editing and adding in a few of our favorite pics. Hope you enjoy!

The captain invited us into the cockpit after our flight landed into Houston!

We visited Mexico in December 2016. It was really fun. We stayed for about a week, so I’m going to tell you about the adventure.

First I’m going to tell you about the flight there. We had to drive to Raleigh and spend the night. We went to bed early because our flight left early at 3 in the morning, so we woke up at 2. From Raleigh, we flew to Houston, Texas, which was a three-or-four-hour flight. From there, we were off Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. We brought a Nintendo DS, which we played on the plane, in the airport, and in Mexico.

In Houston, we got in the cockpit and saw all the controls. It was our first time on a plane, and on the first flight (to Houston), I was so paranoid. I thought it would be extremely loud, but it really wasn’t. In the Houston airport, we ate lunch and waited an hour or two for our flight.

Our Lady of Guadalupe Church: the symbol of Puerto Vallarta.

When we got on the plane, I noticed there was a charging outlet in front of our seat. I charged my DS the entire flight while I was playing it. The only games I played were Mario Cart DS and Lego Star Wars: the Complete Saga.

We had finally arrived in Puerto Vallarta. Right when exited the plane, we walked into this weird “welcome” room, which was loud, crammed, and chaotic. My dad talked to somebody for 45 minutes about a resort and then we left. We never did get the resort because we already had some place to stay. We arrived at our rental apartment, unpacked, and went to eat dinner.

For the first couple of days, we trekked around, eating lots of tasty food. At night, we went to a cathedral, where there was a special day, the Festival of Our Lady of Guadalupe. We ate popsicles and cotton candy, and there was a parade!

Drip castles, wave games, steamed oysters and fish-on-a-stick eaten right on the beach … what’s not to love?!

The next day, we went swimming in the pool at our Air BnB condo. Then we journeyed back to the room, got our bathing suits on, and went to the beach. It was awesome! We built sand castles and played fantastic a wave game.

This is how it works:
• first, you pick a beachy day with many waves
• next, you lie down on your stomach
• then, let the water wash over you
• finally, you get sucked in the water and you just have to survive
• now, you’re good and you can play again or whatever!

That night, we went out to eat for a fancy dinner. The food was tasty, but there was a drag queen there; it got weird really fast! This actually wasn’t a strange occurrence for Puerto Vallarta, which is considered an exceedingly gay-friendly city.

Why would you care about Trump wanting to build a wall if Mexico’s so great?!

That’s why was a rainbow flag in our rental condo that Zeke mistakenly thought was the local banner. “Look Mommy, the Puerto Vallarta flag,” he exclaimed, until Mommy gave him the lowdown.

The next day we walked to Piño Suárez. It’s a strange forest kind of place where people can shop. We saw a skeleton with the Mexican flag because los muertos (a Mexican holiday that means “Day of the Dead”) is a big theme in the city. We arrived at a little stream and then had to walk over a creaky, unstable bridge. A man even lectured us in Spanish to stop making it rock so much!

When we reached the other side, something odd waited for us: a car from California with a Confederate flag front plate! We got a picture. We ate lunch right across the street from the car and the bridge, and then bought some t-shirts.

We rebels are everywhere! Maybe this dude is planning on taking on the federales.

We met some dogs and cats that were skittish, and one of the cats even ran up a rooty tree. Past the dogs and cats was a bunch of weird works of art, including a sculpture that had Donald Trump as a pig. We went farther up the road and we saw a bunch of filthy t-shirts with bad words on them. We headed back to our place.

Later that day, we swam in the pool for a little bit. It was really cool, but the bottom of it was sharp, and I cut my feet. That night after dinner, we explored around the city square. There was a statue of two random Mexican kids, pulling on a donkey’s head and the other on his butt.

We headed out the next morning for Los Muertos Beach again and built some pretty awesome sand-and-drip castles. We played another game with the waves where you simply couldn’t let the water touch you!

Doing our part to hold up the rocks out in the Islas Marietas. Pretty good considering we had all experienced various degrees of sea sickness out there.

We met a nice but kinda weird Canadian girl who played with us. We chilled at restaurant, got drinks, and watched the sun set. On the way over to dinner, we saw a cigar place called “El Gato Gordo” (The Fat Cat).

The following day was the best day of the adventure: we were taking a boat ride out into Banderas Bay. It was a smooth ride at first until ……… the unexpected happened ……………….. IT STARTED SHAKING AND ROCKING! It was terribly scary. Zeke threw up all over the place, and when I went down to go to the bathroom, I saw …….. PUKE IN THE SINK ABSOLUTELY EVERYWHERE! It was a madhouse of sickness.

We finally stopped in the ocean near a rock/island called Islas Marietas. We then got on separate boats and went to a beach island with tons of rocks. We swam for a little bit and looked at the cool rock formations, and then got back on the boats and drove through a cave with a huge hole in the top!

The view from church we climbed to the top of during our day-trip to Pitallal.

We sailed back to the main boat and got snorkel gear and boated to an area in the water; this is where we snorkeled. We saw some fascinating fish of all different colors. We ventured back to the city of Puerto Vallarta.

The next day after we ate breakfast we headed for a church in Pitillal, a mountain town northeast of the city. On the way there we spotted a Nativity scene with …….. THE DEVIL IN IT. There was a reason it was in there, you see. It’s a tradition to keep the devil in it and then on Christmas day you take him out. I don’t know why, but it’s not my problem anyway.

Across the street there was a cathedral or a church, which we walked inside of and looked around. There were these strange birds inside an open-air area that we watched for half an hour; they were pretty funny.

Cool art, statues, performance artists, shops, restaurants, & vendors lined El Malecón.

After that, we climbed up to the bell tower. We could see really far from there. Then we walked back to our condo and swam in the pool. Later that night, we left for the festival of “Guadalupe” which in Mexico is a celebration for Mary. The festival was at a church named after her. We got cotton candy, which was really tasty. We walked around for a little bit and found a bunch of weird statues. Here are some that we saw.

Near the statues we saw a restaurant that was called “Tres Hermanos,” which means Three Brothers. We walked a little and found a bunch of letters that spelled “Puerto Vallarta.” There was also a statue that a person riding a sea horse, a boat that was shooting of fireworks, people dancing, and lot and lots of food. We were very tired so we went back to our condo.

Chillin’ out with a friendly Los Muertos figure, which can seen all around the city & are said to honor the dead.

The next day, we walked around for the last time. We strolled on the boardwalk and saw some other statues. One of them was a guy dropping food into his mouth; it was really slimy and gross. There were cannons and restaurants. We kept walking and we found a sand sculpture that said, “Welcome to Puerto Vallarta” which in spanish is “bienvenidos a Puerto Vallarta.”

There were these guys up on a pole with string tied to their leg and they were jumping off and swinging around. The next day we packed up and left for Chicago and then from there to Raleigh and then we drove home. Our adventure had come to an end.

The end. Thank you for reading.