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by Ian Hodge

Sayulita Beaches: The most beautiful beaches in Riviera Nayarit

The Beaches of Sayulita Mexico

The following descriptions of and directions to Sayulita, Mexico beaches are based on our own research and experience. Please feel free to let us know of any new updates or changes.  (FYI: "playa" is the Spanish word for "beach")

Playa de Los Muertos:

Walk to the south (left when facing the sea) around the curve of Sayulita bay past Villa Amor and follow the dirt road left up the hill, under an arch and through the cemetery. On the far side of the cemetery, turn right to Playa de Los Muertos, which is very popular with Mexican families and a safe swimming beach. Huge rocks protect it on both sides so the waves are usually smaller, and there is a roped off area for swimming and you don't have to worry about fishing boat traffic. Las Cargadas is the tiny beach past the rocks to the south of Playa Los Muertos. There are other little beaches here that are best accessed by kayak or Stand up Paddle board from Sayulita.

Directions:- From the Sayulita plaza there is an inland route to Playa Los Muertos as well. Take Av. Revolucion past El Espresso, take your first right and follow straight for about ½ a mile. The road turns sharply to the right and up a short hill where it turns left and splits. Go straight (take the right fork and follow the road for outstanding views of Sayulita and the bay 5 minutes detour) and the track will start downhill and soon enter the jungle. Two paths go off to the left for Playa Carricitos (SEE BELOW); you continue straight on.

Playa Carricitos:

Here, you'll find huge waves and it's very possible that you'll be alone on this wild, windswept beach. There are homes here but most are well hidden in the wooded hills above the water. There are almost always waves to bodysurf at this beach. Use extreme caution swimming here as there can be large, powerful waves at times.

Directions:- Starting at the Playa de Los Muertos side of the cemetery, follow the dirt road into the jungle and take the second right turn. This is a 20 minute up and downhill walk. From the Sayulita plaza, take Av. Revolucion past El Espresso, then the first right and follow straight for about ½ a mile. The road turns sharply to the right and up a short hill where it turns left and splits. Go straight and the track will start downhill and soon enters the jungle. (Take the right fork and follow the road for outstanding views of Sayulita and the bay; 5 minute detour). Take the first left turn for Playa Carricitos. From the plaza it is a 40 minute up and downhill walk.

Playas Patzcuaro and Patzcuarito:

These are even more remote Sayulita-area beaches that take a bit more effort to get to, but provide stunning beauty and usually isolation

Directions:- From the plaza in Sayulita, these beaches are an hour walk or 10-minute drive from town. Take Av. Revolucion (past Rollie's) out of town and onto the road to Punta de Mita (Camino Punta de Mita); go to the right. At the 5 kms. marker take a right towards Playa Patzcuaro. However, there are no signs. About 1km. down this road you will come to a ranch. Just beyond, there is a creek leading to Playa Patzcuaro. The adventurous can also reach Playa Patzcuaro by climbing the rocks from Carricitos.

Playas Las Cuevas & Playa Malpasos:

These beaches are to the north of Sayulita and offer privacy, jungle hikes, white sand, and beautiful clear water. Two miles north (to the right when facing the sea) of Sayulita, surrounded by rocky cliffs, this tiny horseshoe-shaped bay is perfect for lovers. Pay close attention to the tide so that you do not get washed away. Access is by a path through the jungle.

Directions:- As Sayulita's main beach ends and before the house built into the small headland, walk inland along the right-hand side of the arroyo (river valley) to access the jungle road. Follow this north (left) and shortly you will cross a small river (dry in the winter). The main path looks to follow the river to the right but look straight ahead and you will see several large boulders. Clamber over or go around the rocks and follow the path across a cobblestone road (which is a private road from the beach-house to the main highway) and continue straight. You will go over a small rise and a dirt road will join from the right. Approximately 50 meters further the path splits, take the smaller left fork to Las Cuevas. The path ducks under the trees going downhill and you will come upon a wall; continue to the left past a small, white graffiti-covered concrete block building and over a small bridge. You will see the cove open up before you. To the right of the cove there are poorly-maintained steps which lead up onto the bluff, which overlooks the long, wild beach of Playa Malpasos.

Directions For Playa Malpaso:- If you are at Las Cuevas Cove, either take the steps up the hill or walk up alongside the wall and down onto the long, usually deserted Playa Malpasos. Or, to get there avoiding Las Cuevas back where the path splits, and goes left to Las Cuevas Cove, go straight ahead, down the wide track for 50 meters and through an open gate and follow the path as it angles left and towards the beach.

From Sayulita, walk along Av. del Palmar (which parallels the beach) across the river, past the campsites and school until it ends at a condo complex. The pathway can be clearly seen and easily accessed. Shortly you will cross a small river (dry in the winter); the main path appears to follow the river to the right but look straight ahead and you will see several large boulders. Clamber over or go around the rocks and follow the path across a cobblestone road (which is a private road from the beach-house to the main highway) and continue along the dirt track. You will go over a small rise and a dirt road will join from the right. Approximately 50 meters further the path slits, left goes to Las Cuevas Cove, you go straight ahead down the wide track for 20 meters and through an open gate and follow the path as it angles left and down towards the beach. You will come to a small yellow house in ruins and a cement block building in a clearing beside the beach. Come in the early morning or evening to enjoy solitude. Swimming is not recommended at Playa Malpaso, there is a very strong undertow.

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