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The Botanical Garden in Puerto Vallarta is low-key the best botanical garden I’ve ever visited, anywhere in the world.
The curated collection of plants blends seamlessly into a wild jungle with winding hiking trails and even a private swimming hole!
And yeah, it may be an hour outside of Puerto Vallarta, but the time it takes to reach it just builds anticipation and makes the experience at the Botanical Garden in Puerto Vallarta even more special.
This guide will get you there and make sure you see discover the best that the garden has to offer when you go!
The impressive entrance in to the gardens
How to get to the Botanical Garden in Puerto Vallarta
It’s easy take the bus from Puerto Vallarta to the botanical garden.
The stop is located on the corner of Aguacate street and Venustiano Carranza and the bus is clearly marked for the Vallarta Botanical Garden. It pulls up outside of the Super Cosas market on Aguacate, so put that into Google Maps and it’ll lead ya right to the stop!
The trip costs 30 mxn / 1.50 usd each way and the ride takes about 50 minutes. If you don’t want to take the bus, you can also book a guided tour to the gardens on Airbnb.
The jungle view point in the gift shop is a great place to rest your feet after a hiking on their many trails
Vallarta Botanical Gardens: Know Before You Go
Entrance to the Botanical Garden in Puerto Vallarta costs 200 mxn / 10 usd per person.
The entrance ticket is actually good for two consecutive days which is pretty cool, so if you can’t get enough and want to return the next day, you can do so for free. Since it sprawls across more than 64 acres, there’s plenty to explore over two days.
The botanical garden in Puerto Vallarta is unique because they have hiking trails through all 64 acres of the property
Also, you need to know that the garden is open from 9 am to 6 pm Tuesday through Sunday and is closed on Mondays (even though this isn’t listed correctly on Google!).
If you’re not a huge flora and fauna fan I’d expect to spend a couple hours at the gardens at most – this is a great half-day trip from Puerto Vallarta.
Finally, make sure to bring bug spray, sunscreen, and hand sanitizer if you want to pet the four friendly dogs who live here and roam the grounds (you will, they’re adorable).
Taking an afternoon dip in the river to cool down from our hike on the Jaguar trail
What to Do at the Botanical Garden in PV
There is a ton to fill your time at the Vallarta Botanical Gardens. You can:
- Photograph the expansive jungle views
- Eat lunch at the Hacienda del Oro restaurant
- Buy gifts and live plants in their gift shop
- Go for a hike on the many trails that wind through the gardens (a well-marked map is included in your entrance fee)
- Swim in the river
- Play with the dogs (I’m sure Domino will be pleased to meet you)
- Visit the vanilla plantation
- Pray or meditate in the chapel
- Explore the orchid and cactus houses
- And much more!
The Hacienda del Oro restaurant has good food and great views
The Hacienda del Oro restaurant has phenomenal views of the mountains and jungle around the Vallarta Botanical Gardens and wood-fired pizza and tequila to top it all off.
But, even if you decide not to eat there, there’s a cozy viewpoint room in the back of the gift shop where you can still rest your feet, enjoy the views, and take beautiful photos.
Domino, nicknamed ‘the guide’ because she loves to lead people around the gardens
Where to Hike at the Vallarta Botanical Garden
The curated part of the gardens is near the entrance but I recommend exploring some of the trails that wind through the rest of the property as well.
The Jaguar trail leads all the way down to a swimming hole in the river that’s a perfect place to jump in and cool down after the 20-minute hike. Not many people venture this far but for me it was a highlight of our visit, and I definitely recommend wearing or bringing a swim suit for this hidden gem!
The Botanical Garden in Puerto Vallarta even has lockers and spacious bathrooms so changing and storing your hiking or swimming stuff is a breeze.
The Sendero Guacamaya and Plantación de Vanilla trails are also wild and beautiful but a little shorter and easier to navigate if you want a bit of an easier hike.
Lush jungle greenery as far as the eye can see 🙂
How much does it cost to visit the Botanical Gardens in Puerto Vallarta?
In total, this is a pretty budget-friendly day trip if you go to the gardens by bus. When we went, Dan and I spent:
- 120 pesos for two round trip bus rides
- 400 pesos for two entrance fees
…and that’s it! So, the half day outing only cost us 520 mxn / 27 usd which I think was so worth the price.
If you decide to eat at Hacienda del Oro, meals cost about 10 to 15 usd per person. I’ve heard lots of good things about the food and the restaurant has good reviews (especially the pizza!).
Bright potted plants for sale in the botanical garden greenhouses
Ready to Take a Day Trip to the Botanical Gardens in Puerto Vallarta?
This guide will get you there!
Pack up your bug spray, jump on a bus, and enjoy a seriously serene hike though the colorful flora and fauna of Puerto Vallarta on the manicured trails though this peaceful garden.
Walk a little, learn a little, swim a little, eat a little, and you just might discover that the Vallarta Botanical Gardens are the best hidden gem in the city!
Ready to go?
Explore unique stays on Airbnb – like this gorgeous open-air earth house with a private pool, a 66 ft. yacht, or a ranch in the mountains – and the top-rated hotels on Booking.com to plan the perfect night, weekend, or long-term stay in paradise.
Then, check out more food, nature, and cultural experiences in Puerto Vallarta to round out your itinerary (or book a multi-day Mexico tour with Intrepid to finish your travel planning in one click!).
This article is part of the Puerto Vallarta Hiking Guide. Read the rest below:
Or, plan the rest of your trip with the Mexico Series for 50+ more articles on what to see, do, eat, drink, and discover in the country.
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