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Los Arcos National Marine Park
Los Arcos National Marine Park

Los Arcos National Marine Park

Free admission
Malecon, Puerto Vallarta, 48300

The Basics

Los Arcos is reachable only by boat, and most visitors arrive as part of a Puerto Vallarta day cruise that includes relaxing at sea and snorkeling in the caves of Los Arcos. The marine life is stupendously varied, from clown and puffer fish to rays and sea turtles. Sightseeing cruises typically also visit other must-see Puerto Vallarta attractions, such as the malecon (waterfront promenade), Romantic Zone, and Mismaloya Beach. There are also small-group snorkeling tours and popular South Shore private sightseeing cruises. Puerto Vallarta city highlights tours let you view Los Arcos from the shore and include hotel pickup and drop-off.

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Half day - Wild dolphins encounter & snorkeling at Los Arcos
Half day - Wild dolphins encounter & snorkeling at Los Arcos
$90.00 per adult
Traveler Favorite
We loved our guide...
We loved our guide Margarita, and our boat driver Martin. We spotted many dolphins and even a sei whale. Highly recommended this tour.
Cheryti_H, May 2022

Recent reviews from experiences in Puerto Vallarta

star-5
Perfect tour designed to meet our needs!
GKirk_S, Jul 2022
Private Snorkeling Tour to Los Arcos
Our captain (Fernando I think) and his son were excellent. They had extensive knowledge of Los Arcos both fish and birds. The tour was fantastic. We were able to spend as much time as we wanted exploring several of the arches (rocks). He showed us a cave that was beautiful but not visited by many snorkelers. A great tour tailored to our needs. I will happily use LA Vila Bella again. Far superior to the cattle tours we saw around us. Thank you for a wonderful experience.
star-5
Absolutely amazing. Lots...
Ching_L, Mar 2022
Half day - Wild dolphins encounter & snorkeling at Los Arcos
Absolutely amazing. Lots of whales and dolphins. Watching them playing together. Margarita and captain Rafael are the best.
star-5
Great experience with kids
Kamy_M, Mar 2022
Half day - Wild dolphins encounter & snorkeling at Los Arcos
Michael and Raphael were awesome. They gave us a mini educational briefing before the tour. Provided a delicious lunch. Although the visibility was poor we did get to be feet from wild dolphins and we did see whales which was unexpected. We stopped by a beach and did some snorkeling. We had a great time!
star-5
Loved it
Julie_A, Dec 2021
Small Group Snorkeling in Los Arcos, Puerto Vallarta
Was really grateful that we had our particular marine biologist guide and that we left at 9 o’clock in the morning to get to los Arcos before the hordes of people who got there at 11 o’clock. Loved it.
star-5
Fantastic Experience
Ingrid_B, Jun 2021
Small Group Snorkeling in Los Arcos, Puerto Vallarta
This was an amazing time! Our guide was knowledgeable and the captain was really nice. They were on time and answered all of our questions. Very knowledgeable about what we were seeing and each step of the trip.
star-5
The largest number and variety of sea life I have ever seen snorkeling
Debra_B, Mar 2021
Private Snorkeling Tour to Los Arcos
Our boat crew was wonderful. Lovely handmade margaritas, handmade guacamole. The largest number and variety of sea life I have ever seen snorkeling
star-5
Great Tour!
Gretchen_H, Feb 2022
Half day - Wild dolphins encounter & snorkeling at Los Arcos
My husband and I went on this tour with our 16 year old daughter. Maggie was our guide. She was very helpful and made sure everyone was included and had a good time. The dolphins weren't interested in swimming with us the day we went, although we did get close to them and they swam below and around us (quickly.) I have ethical concerns about swimming with captive dolphins, and part of the reason I liked this tour is that if the dolphins didn't feel like swimming with us, they had the choice to leave. We tried with several different groups of them, and none were interested. Maggie said they don't harass the dolphins, and if they don't want to swim the boat does not chase them around their area. We also did not go in the water with mothers/babies because the mothers are protective and therefore potentially dangerous. We did see a lot of dolphins from the boat, which was fun. After that, we had the choice of snorkeling or whale watching. Our group voted for whale watching. There were several different mother/baby whale pairs, so we watched a couple different ones. We did not get close to them, and Maggie was very concerned about the jet skiiers that were getting close to the whales. Jet skis aren't large enough or loud enough for the whales to know they are on the surface, and people on them are easily killed if a whale comes up for water. We saw the mother and baby pairs playing in the water and flapping their fins. It was wonderful. We had a great time, the weather was good, and Maggie made sure we had snacks, lunch, and plenty of water. We wanted to avoid the sort of snorkeling/boat tour we have had on other vacations where the people on board are mostly interested in drinking and listening to loud music. This tour suited our taste. No alcohol, no music, and a guide with a scientific background. Thanks so much!
star-5
The best experience of our trip!
William_E, Aug 2021
Half day - Wild dolphins encounter & snorkeling at Los Arcos
Cynthia was incredible and highly educated in the field of marine biology. We had the experience of a lifetime thanks to her. I’d come back again 1000 times!
star-5
Relax and unmask
Jeanette_G, Jul 2020
Private Snorkeling Tour to Los Arcos
What an amazing way to spend a morning! Beautiful views and peaceful waters allowed the cares of today’s world drift away. A much needed break! Our captain Fernando was wonderful! Best trip!
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Things to Know Before You Go

  • Los Arcos is a must-see for nature and wildlife lovers, and first-time visitors to Puerto Vallarta.

  • Bring sunblock and a hat or sunglasses, as there’s little shade out on the bay. Also wear comfortable clothing, and tote a bathing suit, towel, and change of clothes.

  • Snorkeling gear is provided on most Puerto Vallarta boat tours; bring your own if visiting independently.

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How to Get There

Los Arcos lies off the coast of Mismaloya, in the south of Banderas Bay. The easiest way to reach Los Arcos is on a snorkeling or sightseeing tour. Cruise boats head out to Los Arcos from the Puerto Vallarta malecon and Marine Terminal.

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When to Get There

Los Arcos Marine Park is lovely year-round. Arrive early if you want to beat the crowds, especially during Puerto Vallarta’s high season (winter). Spring and fall strike a nice balance between pleasant weather and manageable crowds. Wet weather is likely from July through September.

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Mismaloya Beach

A small sandy beach on a picturesque jungle-fringed cove, Mismaloya sits just south of Puerto Vallarta along the coast of Banderas Bay. In 1964, John Huston’s movie The Night of the Iguana put this now-famous beach town on the map. A popular day trip from Puerto Vallarta, it offers several seafood restaurants, thatched-roof palapas, and one large resort.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What are the nearest attractions to Los Arcos National Marine Park?
Q:
What else should I know about attractions in Puerto Vallarta?
A:
As well as visiting the Los Arcos National Marine Park, check out these trip ideas to make the most of your visit: