Oct 24, 2008, 11:05 AM
Post #2 of 9
No, you are NOT crazy. Have fun.
Aticama, Nayarit is a wonderful beach. Not the town itself but just around the hill on the San Blas side across from the School for Engineers. Long, wide, level, and a nice gentle wave action. Daily readings of bacterial count as well. Your dogs will love it as will you, yourselves. The beach at the vlillage of Aticama itself is short rocky and not really worth visiting.
I don't know where you are staying but I recommend the first night at http://www.aticamabedbreakfast.com with Kennethandsheila@yahoo.com They have a wonderful cottage on the beach with queen size bed and full breakfast at $75 usd a night. Tell them Mel King sent you. The Dolphin View Bed and Breakfast on Aticama Hill (near the village beach) but with pool offers bed and continental breakfast for a couple at $48 usd a night.
I would be very much interested in where you are staying for three months in Aticama. I too want to do exactly that but have not found reasonable accomodations. I can't afford more than $500-$700 usd a month. San Blas is not an option because of the jejunes. Please send me a private message.
Now to answer your questions about maps and route: First of all pick up a Guia Roji. Absoloutely the best highway mapping of Mexico. They have a web site. The Guia comes in both English and Spanish. If you can read Spanish buy the Spanish edition, it is more complete than the English edition.
Recommend you cross at Colombia (note spelling) rather than Laredo. Check postings here on the forum to find out why.
Colombia periferico of Nuevo Laredo to Monterrey periferico (toll-cuota) to Ramos Arizpe. There at the top of the canyon make the decision to go to San Luis Potosí via Matehuala and then on to Guadalajara or go on to Saltillo (the Saltillo periferico Luis Echeverría is nearly finished with construction at only one point) and then on to Zacatecas and (toll-cuota) to Aguascalientes and then on to Guadalajara. My preferred route. Many tolls from Saltillo to Guadalajara. As you enter Guadalajara go straight on to Nogales, Colima or Tepic (signage is good but lane changes can be tight) and from Guadalajara take the toll road to Tepic and from Tepic to San Blas and from San Blas to Aticama. The Aticama Bed and Breakfast with Ken and Sheila is just before you enter Aticama (don't go around the hill) across the street (beach side) from the engineering school. Time from Colombia to Ramos Arizpe about 3-1/2 to 4 hours. Time from Ramos Arizpe to Zacatecas about 5 hours. Time from Zacatecas to Guadalajara about 7-1/2 hours. Time through Guadalajara and on to Tepic about 3-1/2 hours. Roll back watches one hour at Nayarit border. Time from Tepic to San Blas about an hour. Time from San Blas to Aticama about 20 minutes.
Where you stop and eat and overnight depends on the time you hit the border. If you leave Colombia (Laredo) at 7 AM you should be in Ramos Arizpe (depending on crossing hassles) about 11AM to 12 AM. That should get you into Zacatecas (lots of hotels) around 5-6 but you could go on to Aguascalientes another hour and a half or so and overnight there. That would put you into Tepic for overnighting, although you could really make Aticama before dark. If you overnight in Guadalajara then you would arrive in Aticama in the early afternoon. (Time change)
Dogs can be a problem at the frontier depending on the attitude of the customs and migra agents. Cars too can be a problem. Read up on these foro about these problems. You two, yourselves, will have no problem. Tourist permits FMT's cost some $20 usd per peson, I am told. They will be issued for 180 days but make sure the migra does so. Be sure and take your passports so you can get back into the USA without problems. For the car you will need a US credit card or you will be faced with a refundable deposit in the hundreds of dollars.
Unfortunately the roads from Laredo west to coastal Highway 15 (Nogales to Tepic) cannot be considered both because of condition and desert and mountain (Sierra Madre Occidental) problems. If you could cross at Nogales then no problem but probably a much longer route although on US interstates.