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Looking for the best Puerto Vallarta sunset spots? Let me help you! I live in Puerto Vallarta and love watching the sunset, so I’ve found all the best places to watch the sun go down.
The city’s unique location on the Pacific Coast affords it breathtaking sunset views. The sun setting over the expansive ocean creates a stunning palette of reds, oranges, and purples every night.
Complementing this is the Sierra Madre Mountains, whose silhouette adds depth and drama to the evening sky.
If you’re a sunset lover looking to snap some Insta-worthy sunset shots on your vacation, here are the best places to watch the sunset in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
My favorite memories of watching the sunset in Puerto Vallarta are from a sailing boat – where you can watch the sky change color over this magical city!
Best places to watch the Puerto Vallarta sunset
#1. From the comfort of your hotel
If you want to stay in an accommodation where you can watch the sun go down every night, consider one of these beachfront hotels in Puerto Vallarta.
They are all situated on the coast and are sure to offer amazing views. Alternatively, there are plenty of boutique hotels offering infinity pools with sunset views.
But if you aren’t so lucky to have a sunset view from your accommodation, no worries because there are plenty of other places to watch the sunset.
#2. Playa Conchas Chinas
The beaches of Puerto Vallarta are one of the best places to watch the sunset.
You’ll be able to see the sunset from any beach, but some of my favorites are Las Glorias Beach and Playa Conchas Chinas.
The golden sands, turquoise water, and the sun setting in the backdrop form an alluring blend that’s hard to resist.
The beaches further down the south coast, like Quimixto and Yelapa, offer even better sunsets.
But sadly, most public water taxis stop running around sunset time. If you’re clever, you can time it to come back during sunset for a fantastic view – or stay overnight in Yelapa.
#3. On the Malecon
Walking along the Malecon, the mile-long stretch of the boardwalk downtown is one of the best free things to do in the city.
While it’s a bustling boardwalk during the day, the Malecon transforms into a more serene spot come dusk.
It faces west, so you can stop anywhere and be guaranteed a beautiful view. The sun’s rays reflecting off the ocean provide an incredible view!
#4. Cerro De La Cruz Mirador
If you’re looking for some exercise before sunset, one of the best places to go is the Cerro De La Cruz lookout point. To get there, walk from the Malecon uphill along Calle Abasolo.
You’ll reach a series of stairs which you climb up to the top, where there’s an observation deck with stunning panoramic views of downtown Vallarta and the surrounding Banderas Bay.
This hilltop lookout offers panoramic views of Puerto Vallarta and the bay. At sunset, the cityscape below transitions into a sea of twinkling lights while the sky above bursts into colors.
#5. At a restaurant
Is there anything better than enjoying a sunset view with a fantastic meal? Luckily, Puerto Vallarta has no shortage of fantastic restaurants to dine at. There’s something uniquely satisfying about dining al fresco while the sun sets!
Head to Los Muertos Beach, and you’ll find plenty of restaurants with outdoor seating on the beach where you can enjoy a sunset view with a margarita. I love El Dorado!
Alternatively, you can head up to one of the restaurants higher up that overlooks the city and ocean.
Barcelona Tapas, with its elevated location and open-air setting, provides an unobstructed view of the sun melting into the ocean. The tasty Spanish cuisine is just the cherry on top. It’s best to make a reservation here during high season as it’s quite popular.
Another great restaurant for sunset views and fine dining is Le Kliff. It’s a restaurant perched on a cliff south of the city!
#6. Playa Los Muertos Pier
Los Muertos Beach is famous for its lively atmosphere. As day turns to night, the pier becomes a romantic stage for the setting sun.
The silhouette of the unique spiral pier against the sunset is one of the most photographed places in the city!
#7. During yoga at Terra Noble
They offer yoga classes during sunset, which are incredibly relaxing.
#8. On a sunset cruise Puerto Vallarta
Taking a boat cruise is one of the best things to do here, so why not time it to coincide with the sunset for an even better experience?
A sunset cruise offers an unobstructed view of the setting sun and a unique perspective of Puerto Vallarta’s skyline.
If you’ve ever wanted to go sailing, Puerto Vallarta is the perfect place to try it! Join this luxury sailboat tour, where you’ll get to sail along the coast of Banderas Bay with a glass of champagne in hand and snacks provided. Trust me; there is nothing better than sailing along Banderas Bay at sunset.
BOOK A SUNSET CRUISE BELOW
#9. Marina Vallarta
Located near the Puerto Vallarta airport, Marina Vallarta is an upscale area known for its vibrant atmosphere, luxury yachts, boutique stores, and a wide selection of restaurants.
This bustling harbor area is the perfect place to watch the sunset.
The boats moored in the marina make for a beautiful contrast against the setting sun. Strolling along the boardwalk as the day comes to an end is a memorable experience, as the area basks in the warm, soft light of golden hour.
Among the numerous dining options available, restaurants with open-air seating or waterfront views offer the best sunset vistas. You can indulge in a variety of cuisines, from authentic Mexican to gourmet seafood, all while basking in the breathtaking view of the sun dipping below the horizon.
What time is sunset in Puerto Vallarta?
The exact sunset time in Puerto Vallarta changes throughout the year, ranging from around 6:30 PM in the winter to nearly 9 PM in the summer.
The easiest way to see the sunset time in Puerto Vallarta during your visit is by using a weather app or a website like this one.
The best time to watch the sunset is 30 minutes before the sun actually sets. This is the onset of the “golden hour,” when the light takes on a warm hue, bathing everything in a soft, golden glow.
Remember, this magical display doesn’t end with the sun’s disappearance; the post-sunset sky often puts up a color show of its own!
Check the sunset time during your trip so you can plan to watch it at one of these places.
Puerto Vallarta sunset photography
The beautiful sunsets of Puerto Vallarta are the perfect place to practice your travel photography! Here’s some tips for capturing the beautiful sunsets in Puerto Vallarta.
- Use a Tripod: Keeping your camera stable is crucial for sharp, clear photos, especially in lower light conditions around sunset.
- Understand Your Camera Settings: Learning about exposure, ISO, and shutter speed can drastically improve your sunset photos. A lower ISO reduces noise, while slower shutter speeds can give water a silky smooth appearance.
- Harness the Rule of Thirds: Place the horizon on one of the horizontal lines in your camera’s grid to create balance and allow the colors of the sky and sea to shine.
- Look for Silhouettes and Reflections: Silhouettes can add drama to your sunset photos, and reflections can double the impact of the sunset’s colors. Look for opportunities to incorporate both.
- Don’t Pack Up After the Sun Sets: The colors can become even more intense and dramatic in the period of twilight following the actual sunset, often referred to as “blue hour.”
Alternatively, you can hire a photographer in Puerto Vallarta to take your photos at sunset! On this photo walk, you’ll have the opportunity to get some great pictures of you taken throughout the city at the best time of day – golden hour.
Final thoughts: Puerto Vallarta sunset
Sunsets are always magical, but when painted across the stunning landscapes of Puerto Vallarta, they are even more enchanting.
Each spot, from the vibrant Malecon and tranquil Conchas Chinas to the elevated view from Mirador Cerro de La Cruz or a rooftop restaurant, brings its own unique charm to the sunset experience.
But it’s not just about the locations – it’s about the moments these places create. Whether you’re capturing the perfect shot, dining by the beach, cruising on the Pacific, or simply soaking in the beauty, each sunset in Puerto Vallarta is sure to stay in your memory.
As the vibrant hues gradually gade, Puerto Vallarta transforms under the night sky, ready to offer more adventures until the sun comes up again.