And we can bet you will want to spend at least some of your vacation time here. Get your passport ready and come see it for yourself.
Pack your bags, ILP Mexico volunteers. We have another vacation spot you can check out. If you’ve done just a little research on this country, you’ll quickly figure out that Mexico pretty much has it all. Ziplining through the jungle? Check. Dreamy beaches? Check. European cathedrals and painted mural streets? Yes! And that’s not even talking about the food … or this rad new yoga town.
See what else Mexico is hiding with this Mexico Destination Guide — you’ll find our favorite tips, recommendations, and spots most tourists miss.
San Pancho is that it’s a total hidden gem. Most tourists flock to the nearby Sayulita (a hip surfer town), but come on, who doesn’t love the secluded beaches and the quiet city streets you’ll find in San Pancho? Here’s what you need to know about your newest vacation spot:
- Where Is It?
- Do All The Things!
- Here’s How To Get Here
Where Is It?
San Pancho (and Sayulita) aren’t too far from another favorite vacation spot, Puerto Vallarta (it’s on the West coast of Mexico). This popular tourist attraction has lots of things to do (like whale watching and pirates) but it does get crowded.
From Puerto Vallarta, you'll first run into the larger surfer town of Sayulita. From there, it's just a short trip to San Pancho which is the city we're currently in love with.
What To Do In San Pancho
San Pancho is chill, with pretty painted city streets and a sleepy town feel but there’s still lots and lots to do.
Plan on basking in the sun on sandy beaches, soaking up those amazing Mexico sunrises and sunsets or surfing. Maybe you’ll want to take a Pilates class (an hour class is around $5!), catch a live concert in the Plaza or see baby turtles hatch and crawl into the ocean at the turtle nursery.
Perhaps you’ll be in the mood to take a hike in the jungle for a soak in warm mineral pools, or hang out with bohemian yogis and find your center with a class or two.
All of San Pancho is very small, and very walkable; you will only need to be dropped off int eh city center and can easily navigate
+ Take a day trip to Sayulita
If you want less of sleepy town experience, take a day trip to Sayulita — it’s about 20 minutes by taxi. In Sayulita, you can explore the dense jungles, take a horse on a jungle tour, or rent mountain bikes in town. Or, see another beach by kayak (or surf board) and take a taco lunch after seeing the markets and art studios. Either city will keep you busy, busy!
If you'd like to stay overnight, some ILP groups in the past have recommended. La Redonda.
Here’s How To Get Here
Probably the easiest way would be to first travel to Puerto Vallarta — it's very well connected via airports so you can get here no matter where you are in Mexico.
From Puerto Vallarta, time to take a taxi or a bus to get to Sayulita. Buses are very cheap (35 pesos) — look for buses that say "Compostela" on the side (they may also say Sayulita on the front window). Get ready for an hour-long ride through a lush jungle.
Buses run every 20 minutes on the hour beginning at 6:00 in the morning until the last one leaves Sayulita at 9:20 pm.
Once you get to Sayulita, hail a cab to get to San Pancho.
Easy, right? You can definitely head to Puerto Vallarta for a couple days, then sneak up north for a bit for a chill day or two in San Pancho.
So … planned out when you’ll be volunteering with ILP in Mexico? Come teach English here! There's not experience necessary, you're only teaching part time which means lots of free time in your home-city, and weekends off (Plus vacation days) to finish your Mexico bucket list.
More info and cutie pictures ahead: