I have been wanting to go to Sayulita, for several years, after reading many articles about it. As a casual bohemian surfing village in Nayarit north of Puerto Vallarta, it continues to be extremely popular, particularly on weekends. You may want to go during the week to avoid the crowds. It has a very popular beach with a number of fun bars and restaurants. There is also a main street that has a large number of galleries, shops, bars and restaurants. It is definitely a fun spot to visit. Despite several lodging options, I recommend staying in Puerto Vallarta or Nuevo Vallarta and going up for a day excursion, like I did with my friends.
The area produces a large variety of tropical fruits including coconuts, bananas, tamarind and mangos. Local fishermen fish daily for great fish and seafood, from dogfish, sea bass, snapper, marlin, shrimp and oysters. So you can then enjoy these fresh ingredients in one of the casual, local restaurants.
My recommendations for you to explore include:
La Rustica: This is a fun contemporary spot for coffee, breakfast, lunch and dinner. It is known for its pizza, salads and pasta. Located at Av. Revolucion 40C, Centro, it is much less crowded than the beach restaurants a short distance away.
Galeria La Hamaca: This is a local store that features wonderful Mexican folk art and textiles. Revolucion #110 Centro.
Tierra Huichol, at Revolucion #38, features a great selection of Huichol folk art pieces. The Huichol are an indigenous people of Mexico living in the states of Nayarit, Jalisco, Zacatecas and Durango. They are known for their beautiful beaded art pieces. This is a relatively new innovation, with the works made using glass, plastic or metal beads pressed onto a wooden form covered in beeswax. Common bead art forms include masks, bowls and figurines. Like all Huichol art, the bead work depicts the prominent patterns and symbols featured in the Huichol religion. They are great souvenirs to take home.
El Mezcalita Bar: This casual bar gets great reviews for its cocktails and mezcal. Calle Jose Mariscal 7. Also good for cocktails is Le Zouave de Hafa.
Wakika Heladeria: This is a fun, casual spot for ice cream that makes everyone’s top lists. Ave. Revolucion #40.
Buonissimo Cafe and Gelato: This is a fun spot for great gelato. Manuel N. Navarrete 55.
Mary’s Traditional Mexican Cuisine is located at Av. Revolución 36 and is a must for casual Mexican specialities.
The Real Fish Taco at Delfines 9, is a casual spot for some of the best fish tacos in town.
Cafe El Espresso is a casual spot for coffee along with a breakfast and lunch menu. Av. Revolucion #51.
Don Pedro’s Restaurant & Bar on the beach in Sayulita, was founded in 1994. It sits on the beach under a giant thatched palapa surrounded by panoramic views of the ocean and jungle. It features Mediterranean-style cuisine with a Mexican influence.
Manantial: This clothing shop across the street from La Rústica features a great collection of chic, tropical clothing for both men and women. Besides clothing, the store also stocks jewelry, sandals and homewares.