Cities on Mexico's west coast
North America > Mexico > Mexican Riviera

The Mexican Riviera is a beach resort region on Mexico's Pacific Coast. It should not be confused with the Mayan Riviera, in the Yucatán Peninsula on the Caribbean Sea. Although much of Mexico's beach traffic has moved to the Yucatán, the Mexican Riviera receives millions of visitors each year and is particularly popular with cruise ships operating from U.S. west coast ports (particularly Los Angeles and Long Beach). Cruises marketed as "Mexican Riviera" may include any subset of the destinations listed below.


Map of Mexican Riviera

The Mexican Riviera is not a specific place, but instead a group of cities which are popular travel destinations along Mexico's Pacific Coast. These cities are known for their beautiful beaches and other shoreline features.

Some of the many areas that are considered part of the Mexican Riviera, listed in order from north to south:

Other destinations




The Mexican Riviera refers collectively to 20 cities and lagoons lying on the western coast of Mexico. Although there are long distances between these cities, they are often collectively referred to as the Mexican Riviera because of their many oceanfront resorts and their popularity among tourists. Cruise ships often visit three or four of these destinations on their longer cruises.

The name "Mexican Riviera" was coined by the tourist industry promote the area for cruises because of the association with the French and Italian Riviera.

In 2011, several cruise lines dropped Mazatlán port calls from their itineraries, citing concerns over an increase in drug gang turf war there. Royal Caribbean cancelled a lot of its cruises through the region in 2011. Mexican Riviera cruises may sometimes also include a port of call in Ensenada.


Temperatures are comfortable (low 20s to low 30s °C, in the 70s and 80s °F) most of the year. August and September can be hot, with temperatures rising to the mid-high 30s °C, in the 90s °F), and high humidity. The area has many problems with hurricanes - the hurricane with the highest sustained winds ever, Hurricane Patricia, reached one-minute sustained wind speeds of 346 km/h (215 mph) and hit Jalisco as a Category 3 Hurricane.

Get in


Get around


Cruises are a common way of seeing the Mexican Riviera. Flights and intercity coaches are also available.

  • Water activities: snorkeling, paddleboarding, kayaking, fishing and scuba diving
  • Beaches
  • Mazatlan has a historic center
  • Puerto Vallarta for food, parties, and beaches



Stay safe


Exercise caution, especially in Mazatlán. The more touristy areas of the city are reported to be quite safe (Nov 2017), but as elsewhere, don't wear flashy jewelry or carry a lot of cash.

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