Discovering Mexico during covid: The Western Coast + Monterrey + Cabos

Following my Mexican adventures in the central highlands around Mexico city,  I had planned to explore the western coast of mexico, a place that I had very llitle knowledge until now, with the exception of frequent weekend visits to Acapulco with friends when I used to live in Mexico City. But extending on thousands of kilometers, there is a lot to discover and now was the best time to do so. It was mid february and the weather was warming up, enough to enjoy some sunshine and beach time in the pacific ocean.

The Itinerary

My plan was to start on the Guadalajara coast and up to Sinaloa, then enjoy a flight transitin Monterrey to spend a week discovering the rapidly growing city, and then fly to Baja California Sur on time for spring break (even though I didn’t have any plans to party in these pandemic times). There is much more to explore on the coast, but considering I wanted to travel slowly, one week in each place, I felt it was a good itinerary.

Puerto Vallarta

Puerto Vallarta was my first stop in Guadalara state. Arriving there was a surprise, as it was the place with the most relaxed covid measures I had seen soon far. People were on holiday, enjoying a break from home and a break from the pandemic, it seemed. Clubs were packed, masks were left on the shoulder for most people. Puerto Vallarta is a nice place, also call the gay capital of Mexico. A little too much sometimes, for a guy walking alone… Can feel intimidating at times. 

Monterrey

My next stop was Monterrey, and I can say I was happily impressed by the megalopolis, Mexico’s second biggest city and richest in GDP per capita. By far! Things seemed to be doing good for people over there, with expensive cars outdoing the usual “bochos” of mexico city. I had the chace to have contact in the city, to bring me on a Sunday Barbeque on a Ranch in the Sierra Madre. A great experience!

Mazatlan, Sinaloa

Mazatlan was my biggest surprise.  A real Mexican holiday destination, made for Mexicans, with a real mexican taste. Just as I like it! Mazatlan is hardly known outside Mexico, but ranks as one of the top 3 beach destinations for Mexicans for sure. Much more than Puerto Vallarta actually. I really enjoyed the old colonial town, with its amazing night-time lighting infrastructure. Really, the architect who designed the lighting system, creating impressive patterns of shadows on its colonial houses, should win a medal. Colonial towns around the world should inspire themselve from this amazng work! It is worth going to mazatlan just to admire a night stroll around the old town!

Baja California Sur

Cabo was a little disappointing. It felt way too Americanized for me. And being spring break, that made it even worse. It is hard to spend more than 30 minutes in the touristic area without being hassled by some drug dealer or excursion reseller. Really kills the enjoyment of wandering freely, like in Mazatlan. La paz was a little more residential, especially during covid times. But Los Cabos felt like a little more upscale Cancun. Not for me… San Jose del Cabo was nice though, with its artsy style

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