Cancun vs. Puerto Vallarta: Which Mexico Vacation is Best?

There are so many things to do in Mexico that we know how hard it is to decide where to go. But don’t fret.

Two of our most popular Mexico posts are the Puerto Vallarta vs. Cabo showdown and the Cabo vs. Cancun standoff. Let’s find out which is better, Cancun or Puerto Vallarta.

Scenery and vibe

Cancun and the Mayan Riviera area are tropical paradises, with lush jungle colliding with the turquoise water. The soft white sand beaches, lined with palm trees, are what dreams are made of.

Puerto Vallarta is blessed to be sandwiched between the mountains and the brilliant azure waters of Bahia Bay (Banderas Bay). Pretty much any direction you look, you’ll see something picture-worthy.


Imagine warm Caribbean-blue water with soft powdery sand underfoot. That’s Cancun. The beaches in Cancun are postcard-perfect... Usually.

They’re broad, with soft golden sand flowing into deep-indigo water packed with aquatic life. It may not be that Caribbean-blue water, but no one ever thinks Puerto Vallarta beaches are anything less than stunning.

Which is best for activities?

Cancun activities. There is every water activity you could think of—parasailing, cruising, stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking, you name it.

What Puerto Vallarta has over Cancun are the mountains. So things like hiking, ziplining, and rappelling down a waterfall are easily found.

Swipe up to read the full post!