Home » Mexico » Visit El Salado in Puerto Vallarta

Puerto Vallarta is a top tourist destination in Mexico. Located on the Pacific Coast of Mexico, Puerto Vallarta enjoys an excellent climate that attracts millions of visitors each year. It is also home to beautiful beaches and the lush jungle greenery of the Sierra Madre mountains. Did you know that the El Salado estuary is a national protected area that consists mainly of mangroves and marshes? Located near the Puerto Vallarta marina, it’s a must-visit attraction for visitors that want to reconnect with nature. Keep reading below to learn more about El Salado Sanctuary in Puerto Vallarta.  


Visit El Salado in Puerto Vallarta

The “El Salado” Estuary is located near the marina in Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco. Considered an Urban Estuary, it is a protected natural estuary that is surrounded by urban areas of the city. On July 27th, 2000 it was declared as an ecological conservation zone to protect the flora and fauna that inhabit the area. Plus, it is permanently connected to the Pacific Ocean via a 20 meter wide, 3-meter deep channel that is 2 kilometers long. The area is favorable for migratory birds and for many mammals and reptiles, too. In fact, it is documented that there are more than 99 species of birds, 46 species of plants, 10 species of mammals, and 29 species of amphibians/reptiles in the area. Some of the animals that inhabit this protected area include the iguana, garrobo, river crocodile, raccoon, opossum and crab, and more.


Mangroves and Marsh Vegetation

The El Salado offers tours for visitors to experience the area’s natural beauty. Visitors can enjoy a guided tour by boat through the estuary’s lush and tropical canals. Located on a protected area, nearly 135 hectares of the area contain 3 types of mangrove and marsh vegetation, too. The remainder of the estuary is considered a tropical semi-deciduous forest surrounded by underwater vegetation, a thorn forest, and secondary vegetation. The estuaries serve a unique purpose in that it helps to regulate temperature and maintain the climatic balance of the region. As a result, the estuary’s ecosystem is ideal for the reproduction and development of various species. Similarly,  the nutrients in El Salado also serve as a food base for all the species that inhabit Banderas Bay. Lastly, El Salado is an important hydrological regulator that helps to protect the city from floods as well.


El Salado Wildlife

In addition to the area’s lush vegetation, studies have revealed that more than 100 species of birds live in the estuary. In addition, more than 29 species of amphibians and reptiles and 10 types of mammals also inhabit the estuary. Lastly, a large variety of invertebrates and fish that live in mangroves have been spotted in the area, too. As far as reptiles, the iguana (iguana iguana), the Mexican spiny-tailed iguana (Ctenosaura pectinata), and the American crocodile (Crocodylus acutus) also live in the area. In addition, the raccoon (Procyon lotor) and the possum (Didelphis virginiana) are mammals that have been sighted in the mangrove. Lastly, abundant populations of the Fiddler crab (Uca crenulata) and the mouthless crab (Cardisoma crassum) have been noted in the marsh and the mangroves, too. An estuary is a place where an incredible amount of specimens of flora and fauna are protected by conservation laws and regulations. 


Book a Tour at El Salado Today!

Are you ready to get to know Puerto Vallarta’s El Salado Estuary for yourself? Tours are available from Monday through Friday at 9 am, 11 am, 1 pm, and 3 pm. To reserve your place, call 322-201-7361 or email reservas@esterosalado.org. Reservations are mandatory so make sure to reserve your place ahead of time as space is limited. It’s a great way to get to know the area’s local flora and fauna as you enjoy a tranquil tour by boat along the estuary’s canals. Skip the beach for the day and visit El Salado. It’s one of Puerto Vallarta’s naturally beautiful areas that need to be preserved for future generations to enjoy.  


Looking for a place to stay in Puerto Vallarta? If so, contact My Vacation to Mexico at 1-800-607-7499. They are a reputable travel agency that works with top resorts such as the Villa Group. With more than 30 years in the industry, the Villa Group has luxurious amenities, premier services, and comfortable accommodations. The whole family will enjoy a dream vacation to Mexico. They also sell affordable travel packages to other top destinations in Mexico including Cabo, Cancun, Islands of Loreto, and Riviera Nayarit. Contact My Vacation to Mexico today, to book your vacation to Puerto Vallarta. Make sure to visit the El Salado Estuary while you are there. It’s sure to be one of your favorite vacation memories!

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