Sayulita Revealed: Art, Surfing, Food & Drinks

Home to the crown jewel of Riviera Nayarit, Sayulita is the relaxed destination you’ve been looking for to host your upcoming destination wedding, vow renewal, honeymoon, or even a family getaway that will quickly turn into an unforgettable trip. Less than 12 years ago, the tourist industry didn’t really exist in the village of Sayulita. Travelers have easily been persuaded to enjoy the close-knit family structure of the town, the seaside surfer culture, and fall in love with authentic Mexican eateries and streets filled with charming art. We sat down with Karmen, a Weddings by Funjet Concierge specializing in the Vallarta-Nayarit area of Mexico for our couples, and got the inside scoop on her experiences to Sayulita.

Twenty-five miles north of Puerto Vallarta International Airport, the sleepy beach town of Sayulita attracts visitors of all walks of life and social statuses. Matt Damon, one of the highest-grossing actors of all time, was recently spotted at a local wood-fired pizza restaurant, La Rustica. The list of actors, musicians, and artists goes on from Icelandic actress Heida Reed to Mexican singer Alejandro Fernández. Why is this location in Mexico rising in popularity? Take it from our expert Concierge Karmen, “Sayulita is for the relaxed traveler not looking for gimmicks but more so looking to find authentic charm. As long as that is your travel mentality, I think any traveler of any age could be happy in Sayulita. This is not the destination for those looking for X boxes and Wi-Fi everywhere you go. For me, it is definitely a place I think about traveling with my love.”

Pacific Coast Food Heaven

If there’s one thing we can all agree on, most likely it would be the collective need to eat our way through any new city to feel we have experienced and fully embraced the local culture. When traveling to Sayulita Karmen recommends, “Indulge in something yummy from one of the many great (and casual) restaurants. Pull up a seat next to a stranger, enjoy a cold beer, and make new friends! That’s what Sayulita is all about.” Looking for a restaurant to host a wedding rehearsal dinner or farewell brunch? Karmen loves O’Restaurant, one of Sayulita’s most romantic dining options that boasts amazing views of Sayulita Bay with an unbeatable ambiance. The restaurant serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, but Karmen suggests hosting a farewell brunch that will leave your wedding guests with a sentimental memory of the special place they visited.

Say Yes to New Drinks

We take pride in the fact that our Concierges and Accommodation Specialists are experts in the destinations that we work with, so much so that they are able to make specific recommendations that will make your trip memorable and above the norm. Karmen reminisces about her first trip to Sayulita in April of 2009, “I have never felt so comfortable in a new place. The beaches were amazing, the food looked amazing and the people were beautiful and interesting. I felt like an insider to find this amazing gem. Every single time I talk about Puerto Vallarta, I mention Sayulita. I want everyone to fall in love like I have!” One of Karmen’s favorite drinks was from a random stop she made by a street side tea stand and ordered the most delicious Hibiscus Tea (maybe $1 at the most), located right across the street from Galeria Tanana. If you’re looking for an alcoholic beverage, Karmen’s go-to is the Mexican Bull Dog. This frozen margarita with a bottle of beer upside down is a perfect refreshing treat to settle into the laid-back Sayulita lifestyle.

For the Adventurous Traveler

The best way to explore Sayulita is to plan in advance, with many different tours and excursions to experience, you will feel content with an itinerary. If you are in Sayulita early December to February, Karmen advises her clients to make time to do some whale watching. It’s hump back whale season during those months, and watching the amazing creatures breach is a profound experience. Horseback riding is another popular thing to do because of it’s tie to the history of Sayulita. Take a glimpse into the cowboy culture that makes the region so special, on the beach or through the mountains!

Romance in Riviera Nayarit

Karmen has been with Weddings by Funjet since the very beginning in May of 2014, making her knowledge and expertise sharp in her favorite destination of Puerto Vallarta-Riviera Nayarit. Her favorite wedding venue in Sayulita, Villa Amor, has everything a couple could ask for in an intimate and unique wedding venue. Consider planning your dream event at this venue, and contact Weddings by Funjet to organize and plan the group travel for you and your guests. Stroll through the town on cobblestone streets and head to the beach, between the warm and inviting people, the Pacific Coast sunset and the surfers, Karmen guarantees there is no other place with a perfect blend of excitement and relaxation for a romantic getaway.

The Finer Things in Sayulita

You may be wondering how easy it is to get around in Sayulita if you know little to no Spanish, especially when shopping downtown. Feel comforted by knowing Sayulita is a melting pot of people from all over the world, and many residents have relocated to Sayulita to enjoy the lifestyle. In Karmen’s opinion, Sayulita is labeled a “sleepy beach town” because for the most part, it’s untouched by modernized tourism. “It is what it is, a relaxed surfing town. There is not a lot of fuss about it. It’s almost comparable to Playa del Carmen 25 years ago, and is filled with charm, personality and an effortless energy that makes you feel right at home.” Need gifts for the bridal party, guests of honor or a souvenir to take home? Galeria Tanana is Karmen’s favorite store with a large assortment of upscale artwork and jewelry, she suggests to browse the local artisan tables outside to find unique pieces that will bring you back to Sayulita every time you see or wear them. Karmen’s favorite souvenir she brought home from Sayulita is a handcrafted beaded bracelet of an eagle, “It’s not my normal style, but whenever I wear it I think of Sayulita and my time there.”

When in Sayulita…

Live as the people from Sayulita do. In other words, surf’s up! Weddings by Funjet works with Vallarta Adventures in offering the “Sayulita Surfing Experience,” where you are taken off the beaten path from Playa Mita to Sayulita. Once you arrive, you’ll experience a personalized surfing lesson, explore the downtown area and savor a delicious lunch. Still on Karmen’s travel bucket list, a surfing lesson is a must.

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Karmen has worked in the travel industry for 10+ years from customer service to specialized destination wedding planning. Her breadth of knowledge guides couples through a seamless event and travel planning process that surely guarantees a memorable trip in any of the destinations that we work with, particularly Puerto Vallarta-Riviera Nayarit. An eight-time bridesmaid, Karmen treats her friends and clients like family – there is no limit to what she’ll do to ensure your wedding is everything you dreamed of.

Interested in learning more? Skim through examples of Karmen’s real weddings, or drop her a line today.

This post was written by Weddings by Funjet

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