Punta Mita Is Your Next Great Long Weekend Destination

Luckily, you have some coming up — and this peninsula is just 25 miles from Puerto Vallarta

May 2, 2023 7:14 am
A suite at the new Naviva resort in Punta Mita from the Four Seasons
The newest "hotel" in Punta Mita is 15 luxury tents across 48 ocean-facing acres.
Naviva/Four Seasons

With nearly 7,000 miles of coastline, Mexico’s sunny shores run along the Pacific, the Gulf of California, the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean. So, when a beach vacation is called for, you’ve got options. But one of the most compelling destinations in recent years is Punta Mita, the private peninsula situated in the Riviera Nayarit and located just 25 miles from Puerto Vallarta and its international airport. 

Punta Mita is home to a handful of luxury hotels, great restaurants and a couple top-notch golf courses, and its scenic waters provide opportunities for snorkeling, scuba diving and whale watching. Whether you want to get away for a weekend or a week, there’s plenty to keep you occupied once you arrive. Here’s a rundown of what you need to know, including where to stay and how to kill time between poolside margaritas.

The Destination

First, a note on nomenclature. Punta de Mita is the town itself, and Punta Mita is the 1,500-acre resort and residential community that’s housing some of the area’s best hotels, beach clubs and restaurants. Since Punta Mita is a gated community, you’ll often hear people make a distinction between what’s inside the gates versus what’s outside the gates when giving directions or discussing locations.

The Punta Mita peninsula is surrounded by 9.5 miles of beachfront and lush tropical flora, with 19 residential communities, five residential beach clubs (including a new surf club) and two Jack Nicklaus golf courses. At any given time, the population is a mix of visitors and property owners, and because the community includes part-time and full-time residents, there’s a lot more going on here than your typical resort.

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Picture of a stay in the Four Seasons Resort.
Naviva leans into local heritage and features custom furniture and artwork from Mexican craftspeople and artists.
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts

Where to Stay

Open since December, Naviva, a Four Seasons Resort, is the newest hotel in Punta Mita. It’s an adults-only sanctuary comprising 15 luxury tents spread across 48 acres of ocean-facing forest. The tents are integrated into the surrounding nature, with open-air living rooms, private plunge pools and large outdoor living areas sporting hammocks, firepits and outdoor showers. The resort leans into local heritage and features custom furniture and artwork from Mexican craftspeople and artists, and the on-site restaurant, Copal Cocina, cooks fresh seafood and meats sourced from local purveyors. They also take wellness seriously here, with nature trails and an open-air gym. The spa facilities are tucked into the forest and include cocoon-like treatment pods and a traditional temazcal, aka a sweat lodge. 

Naviva sits beside the Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita, which helped put the area on travelers’ maps when it opened in 1999. The newly renovated hotel features a private beachfront, multiple pools, a lazy river, a spa and three restaurants, all nestled within the natural landscape of greenery and palm trees. The restaurants range from Mexican to Asian to a steak and seafood spot, so you can dine on something new each night. There’s also a second-floor mezcal bar, where you can sip a flight of spirits while watching the waves crash onto the beach below.

The St. Regis Punta Mita Resort sets 89 rooms and 31 suites across 22 lush acres, each with either an ocean view or garden view. Restaurants include the AAA Five Diamond Carolina as well as a casual outdoor bistro and cantina. Sip drinks and snack on ceviche beside the palm-lined pool, and when it’s time for a massage, book a treatment at the Remède Spa. The St. Regis is currently undergoing a property-wide renovation to spruce up the rooms, spa, lobby and restaurants, with one phase already complete and the next phase beginning later this year.

Recently, a couple new hotels popped up outside of the Punta Mita gates, so if you want to position your stay a bit further afield while still basking in the Nayarit sun, Conrad Punta de Mita and Susurros del Corazón are just a few miles out.

What to Do 

If you play golf, or if you enjoy riding in a cart while someone else plays golf, you’ll like the courses here. Both the Pacifico and Bahía courses were designed by Jack Nicklaus and include several oceanfront holes. Pacifico features one of the world’s most famous holes; dubbed “Tail of the Whale,” the par-three hits onto the world’s only natural ocean island green.

Given its location, Punta Mita is primed for water activities, including snorkeling, kayaking and e-foiling, wherein an electric surfboard lets you fly across the water regardless of waves. And November through March is whale season. During these months, it’s common to see whales cresting above the water from your beach chair, but you can also book whale-watching excursions that take you a few miles offshore for a closer look. 

Punta Mita has also become a popular destination for festivals and events, including the annual Gourmet & Golf, which takes place each December and draws chefs and visitors for a long weekend of culinary events and a golf tournament. The resort also hosts occasional pop-ups, like the recent Vines to Surf, which brought in celebrated chefs from Valle de Guadalupe and Ensenada for a month-long residency at Punta Mita’s El Surf Club.


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