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Lo de Marcos • El Monteón • Punta Raza • Los Ayala • Rincón de Guayabitos • La Peñita • Boca de Naranjo • Chacala • Playa Las Tortugas • Platanitos
Los Ayala is the smallest and southern-most town in Jaltemba Bay and is located just a stone’s throw from Guayabitos. It is a quiet beach community with an idyllic swimming beach that is popular on weekends and during Mexican holidays. There are several small hotels, numerous family-style bungalows and a couple of trailer parks. Tourist services include a few small mercados, gift shops specializing in beach paraphernalia, and the many taco stands and palapa restaurants where you can get a bite to eat and a cold drink.
There is a walking path at the very south end of the beach in Los Ayala that goes up and over the steep hill towards Playa Freideras. This tiny protected bay is only accessible on foot or by boat. The one small rustic restaurant here is usually open everyday and offers a simple menu featuring traditional Mexican dishes. (Note: Playa Freideras is commonly referred to as Playa del Beso or "Kissing Beach" by locals even though that is not its official name.) If you are feeling adventurous, at low tide you can access Playa Freideritas, a lovely little uninhabited beach, by walking over the rocks at the south end of Playa Freideras (or, if you can find it, you can continue walking on the rugged narrow walking trail that is most often hidden by jungle foliage). If you want to do a little more exploring, there are two semi-organized Los Ayala hikes that lead you to Punta Raza and back.
And while vacationing in Los Ayala, you'll want to set aside at least one Thursday morning so you can attend the Tianguis (open-air market) in La Peñita. You can find information, hours and the location for the Tianguis in La Peñita here.
Playa Los Ayala is referred to by locals as Pacific Mexico’s best swimming beach. The palm lined, sandy beach offers a gradually sloping shore, and calm, crystal clear blue-green waters that are perfect for swimming and measures in at .67 miles (1.08 km). Both locals and vacationers enjoy spending the day swimming, picnicking or just hanging out at the beach here. To learn about the neighboring beaches of Playas Freideras and Playa Freideritas, read below under "What to Do."
There are two small islands off the coast which undeniably provide an anchor for the entire bay. The name of the larger island is either Isla La Peña or Isla Coral (Rock or Coral Island), depending on who you ask. The smaller island is called Isla Cangrejo (Crab Island).
The population of Los Ayala is 630 permanent residents*.
It is worth noting that when you arrive in Puerto Vallarta, you will be on Central Time. Once you head north, you will leave the state of Jalisco and enter the state of Nayarit. The time zone no longer changes at the state lines as it once did. The new time zone includes the towns of Mezcales, Bucerias, Sayulita, San Pancho and Lo de Marcos. So, once you pass Lo de Marcos (and head towards Los Ayala, Guayabitos and La Peñita), be sure to turn your watches back one hour as you will now be on Mountain Time.
Upon your return to the airport in Puerto Vallarta, remember that you will loose an hour as the time zone changes back to Central Time. Be sure to set your watches accordingly so you don't miss your flight.
Location & Map
Los Ayala is situated in the Bay of Jaltemba in the state of Nayarit on the Pacific coast of Mexico. Los Ayala is a 5-15 minute drive from Rincón de Guayabitos and La Peñita. The nearest major cities are Puerto Vallarta (40 miles/72 km or 1.5 hours south) and Guadalajara (185 miles/299 km or 4.5 hours east), both of which are located in the state of Jalisco.
Click on our full-size interactive Map of Los Ayala to view hotels, vacation rentals,
restaurants, businesses, public facilities, beaches and attractions.
|Rincón de Guayabitos||La Peñita / La Colonia|
*Note: The population numbers listed are from a May 31, 2010 census. At that time, there were 13,860 full-time residents in the Jaltemba Bay area. These numbers do not reflect the influx of part-time residents or visitors to the area during the winter months.
We want to thank Christina Stobbs from Los Ayala for allowing us to use the beautiful photo of Los Ayala Bay featured on this page, as well as photos #4-9.