Ameca River


A prime birding spot and complex coastal ecosystem, the Ameca River forms the boundary between the states of Jalisco and Nayarit on its way to the Pacific Ocean, where it drains into the Bahía de Banderas. It is well known for the migrants it attracts and the many shorebirds that use the beach year round, and for nesting in summer months. Nests for the endangered Least Tern, and American Oystercatcher have been documented here. Following arrival in the parking area you will walk the sandy beach scanning for shore birds, peeps (sandpipers) and waders like curlews. We will also scan the vegetation for raptors, migrant warblers and flycatchers. The tidal and freshwater wetlands often have Limpkins, Roseate Spoonbills, night herons, ibis, Black-necked Stilts, and sometimes a crocodile. You can see Fidler Crabs feeding and excavating here in the sand. This area is home to a community of fishermen and beach-front family run Mexican restaurants. The beachfront offers a panoramic view towards the south of Banderas Bay and Cabo Corrientes.

Itinerary: Depart the Hyatt Ziva at 7 am

Ameca River – Learn To Look

Leader: Richard Crossley
Leader: Cynthia Macuilxochitl Martinez

Date: Saturday, February 25

Group Size: Limited to 8 people

Duration: 7 am – 12 noon

Language: English and Spanish

$650 MXN

Festival Registration Required

Explore Nature in a New Way

Passing by mangrove wetlands and a well-known resting spot for American Crocodiles, you will come upon a small fishing village next to the Ameca River, called Boca de Tomates. This is not your usual tourist stop, but is home to a community of fishermen and beachfront family-run ramadas that have been there for more than 70 years. The beach offers a spectacular panoramic view towards the south of Banderas Bay and Cabo Corrientes.

From here you will walk the beach and nearby lagoon lined with mangroves and vegetation that are home to Black- and Yellow-crowned Night Herons, and there are reports of Boat-billed Herons. Also very likely are sightings of Green, Little Blue and Tricolored Herons, Great and Snowy Egrets, and often Roseate Spoonbills and Limpkins; the list goes on! Gulls, pelicans, cormorants and a variety of shorebirds also frequent the area. With your world-class guide you will have a rare and valuable opportunity to learn how to observe these beautiful creatures and perhaps develop a stronger understanding of your connections to nature.

Payment Options

We will gladly accept online payment in the methods below, as well as cash in person.

Have a Question?

Feel free to reach out and we’re happy to answer any questions you may have.
  • No children less than 12 and must be accompanied by an adult
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Fitness level: ability to walk along a sandy beach

What to Bring

  • Binoculars
  • Insect repellent
  • Camera
  • Sunscreen
  • Water
  • Hat
  • Snacks