On our recent trip to Puerto Vallarta with my husband’s company, we were offered a sunset cruise and a zip lining tour. Very nonchalantly, I said, “Sure, sign us up!”
And that was that.
I didn’t google it or look into any details. I just knew we had to meet in the lobby at 8:00 a.m. and that we’d be back around 3 p.m.
At the Vallarta Adventures office, we all had to be weighed…
All the women were having a bit of panic after a couple days of margaritas and tacos. Then they gave us a wrist band with our weight on it! Thankfully it was in kilograms so I really didn’t know the conversion, and I told myself I wouldn’t look it up. We were on vacation after all. This must done, because if you are too light, you need sandbags to get you through one of the zip lines. If you are over 260 pounds, you cannot go on the zip lining portion.
We were ushered in a van for the hour drive to the Mexican jungle. This was the scariest part of the whole trip. Our driver kept trying to pass other cars on a two lane street without properly checking to make sure that another car wasn’t going to hit us head on. What is it with taxi drivers being hell bent on ending all of our lives?! No one needs to get anywhere that fast.
We made it safely to the location. At this point we were told there would be no bathrooms and we couldn’t bring anything with us. No water, snacks, sunscreen, etc. They did offer some filtered water and bananas throughout, but if you have low blood sugar, you might want to sneak a snack or ask in you can bring something extra. So we lathered up on sunscreen and bug spray, and put all of our belongings in a locker. From there we got fitted for our harnesses and had a little lesson about how to position our bodies while zip lining.
Next we started the tour with a couple of small zip lines to get all used to it. The tour guides do a set of seven safety checks before each person is off. They communicate on each side to let you know when to go and if you need to try and brake yourself. This tour has two cords on each zip line providing a safer experience. They pride themselves on their safety measures, and I truly felt very safe the whole time.
Now to the part that I wasn’t expecting. This was a full day of all sorts of activities-not just zip lining. After a few zip lines, we got to the top of a tree where we just jumped off backwards. There was a few seconds of free fall before the line caught us, and we were lowered down. Some people were a little hesitant, and the guides would just push them off.
They called this “helping”.
Ropes Course and Tarzan Swing
Next was a ropes course. We climbed a 65 foot net, walked across a rope at this height, then walked across a bridge made up of unstable poles. Again, I wasn’t expecting this piece and a number of people did opt out of this portion.
At this point, my legs are shaking, and I’m freaking out a little. Of course things are just ramping up.
We found ourselves at the top of a tree and had the option to do a Tarzan swing or a zip line. It is exactly like it sounds. You just jump off the tree and swing back and forth until you get to the ground. I thought, “When in Puerto Vallarta” and did the Tarzan swing.
I needed a break. I had to sit down for a minute to make my body stop shaking from all the nerves. Thankfully this is where we hopped into ATV’s.
Phew. A rest.
I was pretty nervous about this, because everyone kept talking about going over a suspension bridge. I hate all kinds of bridges, even very stable ones so this sounded really terrifying. It was actually pretty stable and not that far off the ground. The ATV course wasn’t all that crazy, and it really felt like a much needed break from the constant adrenaline.
From here we took a fifteen minute hike through the forest to the Superman.
What is the Superman you ask?
You get into a special harness. The harness hooks up to the zip line on your back, and you catapult head first for about a mile going 60 mph.
It looks absolutely insane.
However, I hadn’t gone to the restroom all day, and the first bathroom on the tour was at the other end. My need to pee overcame my fear, and I was one of the first to volunteer.
I got in position and was off.
Flying through the Mexican jungle, I was trying to take it all in, and just like that it was over in about a minute. It felt so safe that it wasn’t that scary, and was just a cool experience.
Alas, the first restroom of the day!
As our tour guide would say, “Next activity!” Now we were onto the indoor flight experience. By now, I was ready for a cold beer and some lunch, and just generally ready this adventure to be over. Not that I wasn’t having fun, I was just hungry, borderline hangry.
We all suited up into our “flight suit” and received some instruction on the optimal flying position. Each person went one by one and stayed in the simulator for 60 seconds. A person was inside helping guide us and a person outside correcting our position. I wasn’t expecting much from this part, but it was really fun. I was just laughing and smiling the whole time. In the simulator, I could feel myself getting really high and feeling like the flying tunnel scene from Willy Wanka that I just kind of crumpled my body to get lower.
I would totally do this again.
The last part of the adventure day was a water slide to the bottom. I’ve never been on such a fast water slide. We even had to wear a helmet for this part, and I can see why. My head was whipped back at one of the turns, and I banged it pretty hard. Just like that the adventure day was over.
Back at the base camp, we all did a Mexican cheer and had a tequila shot to wrap up the day. This is where we looked at the pictures and had lunch before heading back to town.
Remember how I said, we weren’t allowed to bring anything with us?
This means all the pictures taken were by Vallarta Adventures, and if we wanted any of them, we had to pay for them.
I know, eye roll.
But the pictures of us zip lining through the Mexican jungle were really good, and I wanted to savory this memory for $99.
All in all, I felt very safe, had a ton fun, and experienced something new. Is this something you would try?