Little Sayulita (pop. 3,000), 22 miles (35 km) north of the Puerto Vallarta  airport, was once the kind of spot that romantics hankered for: a drowsy village on a palmy arc of sand, a hidden retreat for those who enjoy the quiet pleasures and local color of Mexico. And while Sayulita during low season still resembles that former description, it’s become much busier during the fall-winter vacation season.
Once only a destination for Puerto Vallarta day-trippers, Sayulita now is host to a yearly influx of RV retirees and youthful Americans, Canadians, Europeans, and Japanese who have made Sayulita their fall-winter destination of choice. (If, howevever, you hanker for the tranquility of old Sayulita, simply come during the uncrowded Aug.–Nov. season, when Sayulita reverts to its former sleepy village self.)
Nevertheless, any time of the year Sayulita’s amenities remain: clean waters, fine for swimming, bodysurfing, beginning-to-intermediate surfing, and fishing; colorful country ambience; and plenty of warm sun during the day and cool offshore breezes at night.