Amongst all the thinking, organizing, and planning when choosing a vacation in the enchanting destination of Puerto Vallarta, the natural splendor of the flora and fauna of the rain forest is almost forgotten when deciding how to send your time. Amongst all the “beach” activities, shopping sprees, and the cultural offerings of the city, one has a tendency to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the well promoted, more traditional “hotspots”. Yet less than a mile or so away, the way the crow flies, from the coast lies one of the best kept secrets in Mexico.

The might Sierra Madre Mountain Range comes tumbling down to the sea near the south end of town, complete with an ecosystem that finds refuge high up in the canopy, hundreds of feet above the hillside. The terrain is extremely steep and literally drops to the crashing break of the waves below. Grasping to life on the rocky “cliffs” is found exotic vegetation that creates the source of life for an array of brilliantly colored butterflies and birds.

Finding ourselves near a tranquil waterfall some 3000 feet above the sea below, time seemed to stop as all that was heard was the beating of our hearts, and the symphony of bird calls serenading us with our own personal concert. Flashes of electric color flashed in the sunlight streaming through the densely forested landscape, as birds found their way to their next meal. Slow motion dances of iridescent  color took place from leaf to leaf  as butterflies displayed their “jeweled wings” to a world that is still void of the concept of man and his machines.

In between our quiet moments came the urge to physically “take part” in the natural beauty that had been so wonderfully presented to us. So, boys being boys, we shed all but our swim trunks and took the leap of faith into the cold mountain pools that quickly snapped us out of our Zen induced stupor. Invigorated and cleansed to our very souls, we returned the stair stepped ledges along the cliff time and time again to experience the rush of being airborne amongst such pristine beauty.

The water is the same water that rushes it’s way to the ocean, only at it’s source, it seems to be that of a different land. Thus is the beauty of the Bay of Banderas and all it has to offer….because magic happens when the mountains meet the sea! So when evaluating tropical vacations in Puerto Vallarta, you cannot go amiss!

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