The official feast (and biggest party) is on December 12th, but the streets of Puerto Vallarta have been festive every night for the past week, including food vendors (think tacos and tamales on every corner), parades, music, singing, and dancing. Not only does it make it easy to get some street grub, but it gives visitors a chance to experience a very local side of the city.
Vallarta is a big tourist destination, but these two weeks after Thanksgiving and before the Christmas holiday are pretty thin. Walking the streets at night, this celebration is clearly for the locals - not tourists - and we feel that we are truly getting an authentic view of how Mexicans throw down in the name of the Lord. It is also a great time of year weather-wise, as the humidity of the summer has passed and temperatures sit in the 80s with a nice breeze.
While the hustle and bustle of the city is definitely a good thing, keep this in mind when you are booking a place to stay. If you find a hotel or room for rent downtown, don't plan on going to bed early or sleeping late, as the noise from the street continues well into the night and the church bells are rung what seems like on the hour, every hour.
[Photos: Will McGough for Jaunted]