Is Sayulita Worth Visiting (the Complete Guide to the Perfect Vacation)?

Surf-worthy beaches and laid-back living, Sayulita tops lists of some of Mexico’s magical towns that are not just worthy of visiting but living in as well. Sayulita has earned its growing fame from its relaxed, hippie, vibrant, surfing town vibe that appeals to people from far and wide looking for a quaint escape.
Is Sayulita Worth Visiting
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From a happening nightlife, funky atmosphere, and a beautiful natural backdrop, Sayulita, despite its size, has amassed quite a reputation. Not only a surfer’s haven, but a backpackers, solo travelers, and even digital nomads’ haven as well.

What is Sayulita Known for?

Sayulita is a chic, chill, and laid-back beach town known for its friendly locals, good people, thriving surfing culture, and laid-back living. One of Mexico’s pueblos magicos or magic towns, Sayulita offers quiet living with a tinge of beachside fun and Mexican authenticity.

This growing haven has seen rapid growth over the years as many of Mexico’s magic towns, especially the beachside wonders have been put at the forefront of a certain trend in traveling – slow travel. Mainly frequented by millennials, Sayulita is everything you could ever ask for a chill slice of Mexican heaven.

Where in Mexico is Sayulita?

Sitting at the western coasts of Mexico, in the Riviera Nayarit, south of the state of Nayarit. Sayulita has an amazing backdrop of lovely beaches with enticing surf-worthy waves and sunny skies. This beachside magic has a colorful, thriving town, and an interesting local scene.

Sayulita’s location is ideal, because of its proximity to major towns and cities on this side of Mexico. For one, Puerto Vallarta is just further south of the town, in Banderas Bay, neighboring the Riviera Nayarit. Guadalajara is also a 4-hour drive away from Sayulita, and Tepic, further northeast, is just 2 hours away.

What is the Population of Sayulita?

Sayulita currently has a population of fewer than 5,000 residents. However, at certain seasons of the year, that population balloons as many Mexicans move to the town, as well as expats and tourists.

Many tourists who frequent Sayulita has become so fond of the town’s magic and beauty that they decided to live there, further boosting the town’s reputation.

What Does Sayulita Mean?

There are many accounts of the origins and the meaning of the name of Sayulita. The name was thought to come from the town’s founding families’ place of origin named Sayula. Sayulita, with the emphasis on the -ita suffix, denotes the place’s relatively smaller size.

There are also accounts saying that “Sayulita” means “place of mosquitoes” in Nahuatl, the language of the ancient Aztecs. Sayulita may be named after the marshes and estuaries around the area, which has many mosquitoes.

Is It Safe for Tourists to Go to Sayulita?

This small Mexican town has long been a favorite spot for backpackers, surfers, digital nomads, and many more, thereby showing its safety and travel-worthy status. With the increasing number of direct flights to Puerto Vallarta, safety and accessibility is undoubtedly Sayulita’s priority.

Can You Drink the Water in Sayulita?

Despite its developments, Sayulita doesn’t have the same well-renowned municipal water treatment system as Puerto Vallarta, so it’s best to stay out of drinking straight from the tap. However, purified water is served in bars and restaurants, even the ice is made from them.

Are There Mosquitoes in Sayulita?

Mosquitoes increase during wet seasons, and in wet areas like the beach but only at night. The summer season in Sayulita brings in the most number of rains, showering the forests that surround the town, so it’s best to bring mosquito repellent if you’re visiting during the summer.

Is Sayulita Dangerous in Any Way?

Apart from the potentially dangerous wild animals in the surrounding forest, Sayulita is perfectly safe for those who are cautious and careful. Petty crimes like pickpocketing might still happen but they can always be prevented.

It’s still better to err on the side of caution, and take smart considerations.

What is High Season in Sayulita?

With its milder temperatures, perfect for beach activities and enjoying everything the town has to offer, December through February is Sayulita’s high season. The average highs during these months play around 26.1 C or 79 F to 28.2 C or 82.8 F, making a perfect setting for sightseeing, and other various interesting activities.

December to February is the winter season on this side of Mexico, its perfect temperatures, make the Sayulita experience more enjoyable, drawing the largest number of tourists. Prices usually go up at their most expensive during this season.

When Should I Visit Sayulita?

The high season is a go-to choice if you like to experience the perfect temperatures in Sayulita, and don’t mind the crowds and pricier rates. However, the Summer, June to August, is the cheapest and lowest tourism season in Sayulita, this is good for those who don’t mind the heat, the rain, and the lowest prices.

Other than the high and low season, the off-seasons of Fall and Spring are also ideal, depending on what kind of experience you want to have in Sayulita. September through November’s fall season is still warm enough and have lower rates.

The spring is the second busiest season in Sayulita, as the visitors start to wane down from the previous season’s high. Prices during March through May are cheaper than the winter it still has that mild temperature perfect for a plethora of activities.

How Many Days Do You Need in Sayulita?

The ideal time duration you have to stay in Sayulita is a week or 7 full days. Sayulita and its nearby beaches offer so much to anyone who comes to revel in the magic of its town and surrounding nature.

A full week will allow you to see the best beaches around Sayulita like the Playa Sayulita, the main beach, Carricitos beach, Mal Paso Beach, famous for being a frequent camping spot, Los Muertos Beach, a crowd favorite, and a day trip to the famous Islas Marietas.

Not to mention you can also take a quick day trip to neighboring towns along the Riviera Nayarit, like San Pancho, Punta Mita, Bucerias, and many more.

How Expensive is Sayulita?

The thing in Mexico is that small touristy towns might be more expensive than bigger cities. Certain prices in Sayulita tend to be a peso more expensive than, say, Guadalajara or Mexico City.

fA cup of coffee might be priced at 3 US dollars in Sayulita, where you can buy the same cup of coffee for 2 US dollars in Mexico City. Products that have varying prices might be more expensive because of the transport and the supply they get it from.

A budget of 100 US dollars or 130 Canadian dollars a day in Sayulita is enough.

How Much is the Food in Sayulita?

It depends on which establishment you’re getting food from. Food from street carts may cost 100 Mexican pesos and above, or less than a dollar. While fancy restaurants a shrimp dinner might go from 250 Mexican pesos and above.

You have to be willing to explore food places in town to be able to weigh in the prices that fit your budget, and appetite.

How Much is a Beer in Sayulita?

Depending on where you go to get a beer, prices vary from 25 to 40 Mexican pesos, some might even go as high as 60.

Just like any town and city in Mexico with a good nightlife and bar scene, check out happy hours for even cheaper deals. Happy hour beers usually cost around 15 to 25 Mexican pesos.

Where Should I Go Out in Sayulita?

From Monday to Sunday, day and night, there’s always something to do and somewhere to go for everyone in Sayulita. Apart from lovely beaches, and thriving surfing culture, there are also places in town to check out especially at night.

Don Pato is everyone’s go-to in Sayulita where there’s always something happening at night, from Mondays’ Salsa Nights, to Sundays’ Reggae. If you’re one for a chill ambiance with a rustic flavor, go to Atico for a “sort-of” al fresco drinking experience.

Foodies come to Mary’s for their authentic Mexican food. Mary’s menu is packed with traditional Mexican dishes that are reasonably priced. And if you’re a coffee-lover, grab a cup at At Another One Coffee, taste their own roasted coffees, and cozy up with exquisite interiors.

Going slightly outside town are also popular things to do in Sayulita, especially outside the main beach. You can camp out at Mal Paso Beach, just make sure you bring necessities like food and drinks. Spend an afternoon at Los Muertos Beach, famous for drinking micheladas while lounging by the beach.

Are There All-Inclusive Resorts in Sayulita?

Sayulita only has small boutique hotels, inns, and hostels fit for backpackers, all of which do not have any All-Inclusive services. Hotels and resorts that offer them are outside of the town, the nearest is in Nuevo Vallarta further south of Sayulita.

What Should I Bring to Sayulita?

Beachwear and cool, thin-fabric clothes are ideal as it tends to be warm and sunny throughout the day. If mosquitoes at night bother you, especially if you stay near the beach, it’s best to bring mosquito repellents and nets – if it’s not provided by the hotel.

It’s also recommended bringing Mexican pesos, to avoid hassles and other unexpected mishaps. Having Mexican pesos on hand on your way to Sayulita will give you advantages, financially, especially in transportation.

What Do You Wear to Sayulita?

Aside from the usual bikinis, boardshorts, and swimming trunks, it’s best to wear thin-fabric clothes, appropriate for warmer temperatures and sunny weather.

Sundresses, simple shirts, and cool button-downs are ideal for tops, and shorts, and skirts for bottoms for women. Plus, a good pair of flip-flops or sandals are go-to options.

As for men, button-downs, shirts, and tank tops are go-to options for hotter temperatures. Shorts or a pair of pants at night, depending on the season you’re going are ideal.

Is Sayulita Beach Clean?

The ocean and the sea in Sayulita are clean and are good for swimming. There have been no reports of health problems caused by dirty water in the area recently. With its surfing culture still at the top of globetrotters lists, Sayulita has always been safe for surfers and swimmers.

Does Sayulita Have a Sewage Problem?

With the extension of the existing Sayulita Waste Water Treatment Plant in 2019, Sayulita has experiences clean beaches and no sewage smell since.

Is Sayulita Beach Contaminated?

Now with the newly extended Sayulita Waste Water Treatment Plant, the beaches of Sayulita are free of contamination and smell, making it safe and enjoyable to swim in.

Can You Swim in the Water in Sayulita?

The water in Sayulita can be rough for inexperienced swimmers and non-beach loving folk, as strong currents and undertows can be experienced here. However, this is the reason why surfers love to ride waves in Sayulita.

Aside from its rough waters, the consistent surf breaks and waves in Sayulita make it the ideal surfing locale. This town has long been a frequent surfing destination for surfers all over the world, mainly coming from Canada and the US.

Is It Safe to Swim in Sayulita?

It’s relatively safe to swim in Sayulita, however, caution is advised as the currents can be rough, and waves are bigger and can be unpleasant.

What is Water Temperature in Sayulita?

The average water temperature in Sayulita varies in different seasons. During winter, temperatures are at 25 C or 77 F. In the summer, the water temperature rises to an average of 30 C or 86 F.

Can You Surf in Sayulita?

Sayulita is a surfer’s haven. Being famous for its consistent surf breaks all year, Sayulita has long been on surfers’ radars since the ’60s. While it may not have the best-quality waves going, but they’re enough to give surfers’ that surfing high.

Where Can You Surf in Sayulita?

Right in the Sayulita beach, you can enjoy surf depending on the level you’re at. The sandbar is perfect for beginners, and the reason why there are so many surfing lessons that are offered here.

Sayulita Right breaks at the river mouth on the main beachfront over a rocky sand bottom with a few patches of reef. And the Sayulita Left, on another river mouth, located north-east along the beach, but is still right next door to the Sayulita Right.

Other notable nearby spots that have better breaks than the ones in Sayulita Beach are, San Pancho, just up north, Litibu Beach, The Cove, and La Lancha, which are all further down south, in Banderas Bay.