Sayulita has long been a favorite surf spot in Mexico, dating all the way back to the 1960s when this sleepy little fishing village was “discovered” by surfers from the U.S. and Canada who wandered south of the border in search of good waves and mellow vibes. You can say a lot has changed since then in Sayulita, but you can’t say that the surf has changed. It’s still the consistent break that it always was, easy enough for beginners and still a joy for longboarders and other more experienced surfers.
Old-timers and those who have just arrived will all tell you it’s the community of Sayulita that makes the place great. A place where you can be a blue-haired hippy, a yoga mama or a straight-laced tourist on Easter vacation, Sayulita accepts all types and makes no judgements. The international and national community mix and mingle and tourists are invited to be one of the crowd, hanging out in the local plaza or sipping beers at the bar.
As the town grows so does its great food options, to the point that now Sayulita has some really awesome restaurants you need to try. La Esperanza has a delicious, organic menu, Don Pedro’s is a classic for fresh seafood, Leda is blowing folks away with their traditional Italian and The Blue Corn Mama Cafe is great food for a great cause (they support the arts in the local Huichol community).
Sayulita serves as a great base for exploring the area. San Pancho (San Francisco) is just minutes up the coast and definitely worth a day trip or even longer for the food and fun. Puerto Vallarta is further south and the area’s biggest town with lots of restaurants, luxury tours, waterfall hiking and hidden beach alcoves to discover. But before you make it all the way to PV, stop in Punta Mita, the town known for its upscale hotels and restaurants as well as the great surf off its various beaches. Don’t forget to take a trip out to see the Marieta Islands – pristine beaches created by volcanos in the middle of the sea.
Yoga, massage, the healing arts, and the healing sand – what more could you ask for on a break from your everyday life? Each year the town hosts dozens of yoga and wellness retreats adding to the already plentiful offering of wellness professionals that have made Sayulita their home. The Haramara retreat just outside of town is particularly well-known for tranformative stays.
Want to buy cheap baubles and surfer t-shirts? Sayulita has it. Want high-end home furnishings? Sayulita has it. Looking to support local arts and artisans? You’ve come to the right place. Whatever your budget or your taste you will find a shop in Sayulita to suit your fancy. For the kitschy yet collectible try Revolucion del Sueno, for upscale enlightenment Evoke and for all your souvenir and t-shirt needs, the various shops that line Delfines and Marlin streets.
Unlike many of Mexico’s beach vacation hotspots – Cancun, Los Cabos or the Riviera Maya – Sayulita’s prices are still accesible to the everyday traveler. You can go high-end with a luxury boutique hotel or find yourself a cheap beach shack to while away your days. Food is gourmet but with regular person prices and if you really want to go cheap you can find all the fresh seafood and tropical fruit that you can imagine. Even flights to and from major hubs like Mexico City can be bought for under $100 (€80).