Many Puerto Vallarta residents say that living in this beautiful coastal town is the stuff that dreams are made of. With an abundance of beautiful beaches, year-round warm climate, and an endless amount of activities, Puerto Vallarta is an ideal place to live, retire or have a vacation home. Despite its idyllic setting, it is always fun to get out of town every now and then. Curious about what kind of fun weekend getaways you can take if you live in Puerto Vallarta? Located just 1 ½ hours inland from Puerto Vallarta is a quaint and magical small town called San Sebastian. A rustic and quaint pueblo, San Sebastian is perfect for a weekend getaway from Puerto Vallarta.
Charming Small Town
San Sebastian was founded in 1605 as a mining town, and originally was known for the gold, silver, and lead that were mined there during the early Spanish colonial Viceroyalty of New Spain period. By the year 1785, there were over 25 mines in the area and several foundries. Several years later in 1812, San Sebastian was formally established and reached a population of around 1000 people by the beginning of the 21st century. Nearly a century later by 1900, there were over 20,000 people that called San Sebastian home. However, Mexico’s national revolution that occurred in 1910 prompted a swift decline in the population and today, only around 500 people are San Sebastian residents.
Magic and History
San Sebastian earned the title of Pueblo Magico, which means “Magic Town” in English, in 2005 because of its historical character and charm. The main church in town, The Church of Saint Sebastian, was originally constructed in 1608 and was designed in the Colonial Spanish Baroque style with remarkable architectural details, Corinthian columns and vaulted ceiling frescoes. Many other structures located throughout San Sebastian were built of stone or adobe in the 18th or 19th centuries, and many local haciendas have recently been restored to their original glory. These days, San Sebastian is enjoying a peak in tourism as it is a perfect place for a weekend getaway to escape the hot and humid summer months in Puerto Vallarta.
San Sebastian boasts several cute hotels and vacation rentals that can fit any budget. Whether you are interested in being in heart of the action in town or prefer to have a quieter vacation and stay on the outskirts, there are affordable vacation rentals for everyone. The Hacienda Jalisco is a popular option that delivers an authentic San Sebastian experience. Situated just outside of San Sebastian, the historical Hacienda Jalisco is surrounded by vegetable fields and gardens. Potrero de Mulas Ecotourism Ranch is a great choice for adventurers that will be thrilled with its ecological cabins nestled amongst pine forests, streams and profuse trails. Prefer to be close to the city center so you can walk to see the sights? Mansion Real is found smack dab in the historic town center and is reasonably priced as well.
Not To Miss Tips
Coffee lovers must visit the Quinta Mary that has the best organic coffee in the region. Their coffee plantations are ecologically fumigated with chili, onion, and garlic as they pride themselves on not using any pesticides in their crops. Their delicious and healthy coffee is roasted, ground and packed. In addition to their tasty coffee, they also offer delicious traditional Mexican candies as well. Make sure to spend time relaxing in the charming central plaza. Surrounded by beautiful landscaping, restaurants, and shops, it is a great spot to enjoy ice cream and people watch. Want to know where to find the best view in the area? Head high up to the El Cerro de la Bufa found in the mountains above San Sebastian. On a clear day, you can even see as far as the Banderas Bay for the amazing ocean and mountain views you can’t find anywhere else. For culture lovers, the most popular cultural event in San Sebastian is held every year on January 20th when the town celebrates its patron saint, San Sebastian, with music, dancing, pyrotechnics, horseback riding, and cultural activities. Another popular event is on October 7th when the town honors the Most Holy Virgin of the Rosary of the Real Alto which is an ancient wooden altar that was created in the 17th century.
San Sebastian is a wonderful place for a weekend getaway from Puerto Vallarta. You can enjoy beautiful mountain vistas, a cooler climate, and a quaint small town charm. Don’t miss this hidden gem that is conveniently located just 60 km inland from Puerto Vallarta.