The day Queen Elizabeth II visited Puerto Vallarta


Queen Elizabeth II of England has been a protagonist in world history of the previous century and the present.

At 94 years old and 68 as sovereign, she has broken the records of many monarchs. Such an important character was in Puerto Vallarta, on February 20 and 21, 1983.

Few Vallartans have a record of the passage of such an illustrious visitor in these lands, 37 years ago.

On that occasion, welcome banners were hung in the streets of the city, with the photograph of Her Majesty and her husband Prince Philip of Edinburgh.

Her arrival was quite an event, as he is the main political figure of the fifty-four member countries of the Commonwealth of Nations, head of the Anglican Church, heir to what was once the empire that dominated the seas of the world.


She was received by then-Governor Flavio Romero de Velasco, in the company of Mayor Jorge Lepe and Chancellor Bernardo Sepúlveda, they took her to see the El Coapinole nursing home, crossing the then-little Pitillal.

In the Municipal Presidency, in a solemn session, Mayor Jorge Lepe handed her the keys to the city and declared her a “distinguished guest”, where the then councilor Rafael Yerena and the municipal vice president, Isabel Pérez Famoso de Gómez, were close to her. remember that event today:

“It was something very beautiful because a character of that category had never come to Puerto Vallarta, always from politics or artists, so when Queen Isabel comes it was something very beautiful,” he said.

She indicated that they prepared for that important day, even she corresponded to give a welcome message, she brings the meeting to her memory:

“When he introduces me, the translator asks me – What’s your name? – Isabel, and she said,” No, what’s your name? Well, Isabel called me, I answered her again. “

He told the Queen, “Her name is Isabel …” and she asked who is she? And when I answered her I am the municipal vice president, then she said that it was an honor to be where women have rights and positions within governments …

Queen Isabel came out to the box to greet the people of Vallarta gathered in the Plaza de Armas. Later he attended a traditional kermes organized in his honor by the town hall in the same square in front of the boardwalk, where he drank beer.


The sovereign arrived on the Britannia, the royal yacht, where she offered a dinner to the mayor, federal and state authorities and invited a couple from Vallarta, businessman Salvador Solorzano and his wife Ofelia Vargas.

Those who were close to the queen say that she loved Puerto Vallarta, especially the benign climate, and even affirmed that she expressed that the landscape had no equal among what she already knew about Mexico

Her passage through this paradisiacal place was replicated in the newspapers and television stations of the world.

There were many anecdotes, such as the one that the mayor forced her to stand up to receive the keys or the message in poor English pronounced by the vice mayor, which was mistaken for an insult. 

They were previously instructed on the protocols:

“Do not shake her hand, or hug her, or anything, be at the distance they put us, period”, was the order of the advance. 

Queen Isabel, was delighted in this Mexican town, she was enchanted with Puerto Vallarta. 

It really was an extraordinary visit, and she happily left for La Paz, Baja California Sur, to continue her tour of the Mexican Pacific.

Photos: Archives of Arturo Pasos and Miguel González Guerra


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