Tuesday, April 16, 2024
Cities

Puerto Vallarta, Popular LGBTQ-friendly Destination in Mexico

Over the past decade, the number of LGBTQ travellers to Puerto Vallarta has increased significantly. There are hotels, bars, nightclubs, beaches, and even drinks specifically designed for the enjoyment of LGBTQ travelers. Because of its safe and welcoming environment for LGBTQ travelers, it is the first city in Mexico to receive the Gay Travel Approved distinction by GayTravel.com

Laws banning homosexuality or homosexual acts have never existed in Mexico, unlike many other countries. There is, however, a strong culture of toxic masculinity and religious influence which disapproves of homosexuality, however, the locals are usually resectful. Because of this, there is a growing community of LGBTQ-led organizations that work to promote a cultural shift in the pursuit of equality. 

Their work has garnered many results, such as achieving recognition of gay rights, and implementing laws protecting against the provocation and incitement of hate or violence against LGBTQ people, and to guarantee equality in employment, public accomodation, and services. In 2013, civil unions between LGBTQ couples was legalized in Puerto Vallarta, followed by same-sex marriage in 2016.

With assitance from local neighboring American and Canadian communities, the city also organized its first Gay Pride March, and hosted the Pink & Proud Women’s Party for many years. The multiple LGBTQ-focused events has led some to nickname Puerto Vallarta the “Mexican San Francisco.”

Located on Mexico’s Pacific coast, in the northwest corner of the state of Jalisco, Puerto Vallarta rings Mexico’s largest natural bay – Bahia de Banderas (Bay of Flags). This popular beach resort area has a well-deserved reputation as a foodie destination, and is also home to a wide variety of natural and cultural attractions. It is also one of the main ports of call for Mexican Riviera cruises.  

In the south of Puerto Vallarta you will find the “Old Town,” which is also referred to as “The Romantic Zone”. This popular area is favored by travelers who want to experience local traditions. Since 1980, Old Puerto Vallarta has also been considered the gay neighborhood, after the LGBTQ community and many retired North Americans bought land and properties in order to create a gay-friendly atmosphere where businesses were welcoming and accepting.

Also in this area is nestled the popular beach, Playa de los Muertos – which has been known as a LGBTQ-friendly beach for the past 20 years. Although not exclusively LGBTQ, it maintains a large members of LGBTQ tourists, mainly in the high season from November to March.

This pristine beach remains an LGBTQ meeting point, because of its queer-friendly beachfront hotels and businesses, and its multicultural ambience where members of this community know they will be respected without discrimination. In the morning they can socialize and enjoy the party atmosphere, and in the afternoon walk holding hands under the dazzling sunset, in a romantic atmosphere free of hostility. 

Puerto Vallarta, framed by the Mexican Pacific and the mountains of the Sierra Madre Occidental of Jalisco, is fascinating tourist destination with red roofs, golden sunsets, and cobbled streets. It possesses everything that makes for an amazing vacation: beautiful beaches, great hotels, and a variety of restaurants and activities.

For more infomation on Puerto Villarta, please visit visitpuertovallarta.com and gaytravel.com/gay-guides/puerto-vallarta/.

Puerto Vallarta Pride

Vacationer Staff

Vacationer Magazine's writing staff works hard to bring you all the latest LGBTQ travel articles to help inspire and inform.

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