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Hound Dog

Sep 12, 2009, 5:53 PM

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Chiapas or Bust

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Normally we drive to San Cristóbal de Las Casas from Lake Chapala via Mexico City, Puebla, Orizaba and Tuxtla Gutierrez but I think this time we will try the considerably longer coastal route through Lázaro Cardenas, Zihuatanejo, the Costa Chica, the Bays of Huatulco, the Isthmus of Tehuantepec and up the mountain just for variety. We will pass on our experiences to those of you who have an interest. Should be a fun drive.



Zorba

Sep 16, 2009, 12:10 AM

Post #2 of 10 (4705 views)

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Re: [Hound Dog] Chiapas or Bust

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Excellent idea. Have you been to Huatulco before? Absolutely stunning. On the way down just before Escondido (I believe) is a little beach called Mazunte where some of the ladies like to go topless. Zipolite turned me off. I am guessing (too young to know) that Mazunte is kind of what Zipolite used to be.

There is also a hotel with a stunning view on the top of a cliff where you can have breakfast.

In Escondido there is a nice little beach down from a cliff. You have to drive out of town a bit to get there. There is a campground up top and then you have to walk down some long stairs to get to the beach. I can't remember the name or really explain how to get there. All I remember is that if you are standing on the main beach facing the ocean, you would need to drive to your right. Ask around, you'll find it. It's a small beach. Mention the steps and the campground and you will probably find it.

In Huatulco, get one of the lancha guys to take you to one of the inaccessible beaches. I spent a day on one with a girlfriend and it was right out of Blue Lagoon. We were the only ones there all day. We were naughty.

If you've been there, you probably already know this though.


(This post was edited by Zorba on Sep 16, 2009, 12:13 AM)


Hound Dog

Sep 16, 2009, 8:01 AM

Post #3 of 10 (4681 views)

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Re: [Zorba] Chiapas or Bust

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Yes indeed, Zorba. A great and mostly deserted and rugged coastline. Last winter we drove from San Cristóbal west to Tehuanepec, Santa Cruz Huatulco (we and our dogs flipped over the Bays at Huatulco which, thank God, never really took off as intended only to be vulgarized the way they did much of the Caribbean coast in parts of Quintana Roo), made a great discovery by taking a dirt road from Highway 200 at Piedra Mora to the beach and ended up at Playa San Agustin, which I recommend unreservedly, then on to Puerto Angel and inland from there on spectacular Highway 175 to Oaxaca City and Teotitlan del Valle before heading through Mexico City and Anganguelo, Michoacan to Lake Chapala. During our stay in Santa Cruz we also visited Mazunte and the Zipolite nude beach where one very healthy young woman practiced her yoga routine in the nude. Good lord I felt old and frail. We never made it north of Puerto Angel which is why we plan to stick to the coast until Lázaro Cardenas the next time we drive back to the lake from Chiapas.

This trip was a tremendous amount of fun and I´ll post some great highlights when I have a little more time.


(This post was edited by Hound Dog on Sep 16, 2009, 8:06 AM)


geri

Sep 16, 2009, 8:21 AM

Post #4 of 10 (4674 views)

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Re: [Zorba] Chiapas or Bust

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Zorba, you are sooooo right. You are talking about Playa Carizzalillo. It is my fav beach in the whole world. But, of course, I've not been to all the beaches in the world. I took a friend there once, and he has been to hundreds of beaches worldwide. He was prepared to be underwhelmed by Playa Carizzalillo, but he said it was in the top three!!! One thing that makes it so special is that the ONLY access is by boat or by 167 steps down to it. That sorts out a lot of folks. I remember when the "down path" was just loose dirt and roots. I slid down on my fanny many times. By the way, the campground is now a housing develoment! Puerto Escondido IS changing, but still no A1s or beachfront high rises.

If you want to splurge, stay at the hotel perched on the cliff. They have done a fab job of renovating it, although one of my fondest beach memories is staying there 12 years ago for 100 pesos a night....really rustic. If you can't stay there, go to the restaurant at sunset. Fantastic !

It's sad for the locals that Bahias de Huatulco never "took off" as the govt. planned. It wasn't suppose to be a copy of Cancun or Puerto Vallarta, however. It was sensibly planned, I think, with very few beachfront hotels. The hotels are back from the beach. Some have a beach club. The 9 bays and 26 beaches are a virtual paradise in my opinion. I don't go there as often as Puerto Escondido, because Huatulco is spread out and to get around you really need a car. Can be done by taxi and a few buses also. Several beaches are accessible only by boat.

The govt. isn't giving up on Huatulco. The "super highway" from the city to the beach is under construction, shovel by shovel. Also, a tip to travelers. Sometimes the air fares from the U.S. to Huatulco are cheaper than to Oaxaca City and you can give yourself a beach vacation, before busing back to the city. It's about 1.5 hours by bus from Huatulco to PE and buses run frequently.


Zorba

Sep 16, 2009, 9:12 AM

Post #5 of 10 (4661 views)

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Re: [geri] Chiapas or Bust

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Thanks Geri. Carizallilo eh? Good to know the name of it now. I agree it is/was a great spot. I camped out when it was still a campground. Very few people were there. That whole area down into Huatulco is one of my favourites in all of Mexico because it is still relatively unknown outside of Mexico and undeveloped.

"Playa San Agustin". Yes Houngdog. That is a good one. Actually that is the one where I stayed with my girlfriend. From Playa San Agustin, they took us around the bend on a lancha to a virgin beach where we defiled it all day!

Personally, I am glad Huatulco didn't get too big. It still has some charm. I want it to keep that charm because I have a ranch in Chiapas that is only a 5-6 hour drive to Huatulco, so I plan on being there whenever I can hop over.

No offense to PV peeps, but Carizallilo and Huatulco kick ass on "famous" spots like Mismaloya beach in Puerta Vallarta.

Don't tell too many! Only your bestest friends ! Love love Huatulco.


(This post was edited by Zorba on Sep 16, 2009, 9:17 AM)


Hound Dog

Sep 16, 2009, 12:20 PM

Post #6 of 10 (4634 views)

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Re: [Zorba] Chiapas or Bust

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No offense to PV peeps, but Carizallilo and Huatulco kick ass on "famous" spots like Mismaloya beach in Puerta Vallarta.

Don't tell too many! Only your bestest friends ! Love love Huatulco.


What happened to Mismaloya, historically one of the most beautiful places on the planet, is instructive as to what could have and may yet still happen at Huatulco if developers are allowed to desecrate such places all in the pursuit of filthy lucre at the expense of the planet. It is my opinion that this sort of deprivation at Huatulco is unlikely in our lifetimes for a number of reasons mostly having to do with the area´s isolation and Pacific seas less stunningly gorgeous than Caribbean crystal treasures easily accessed relatively nearby. Unfortunately, the developers have already desecrated Geri´s treasured Oaxaca City - once one of the great urban zones ever laid out by humans but underappreciated by those who came later and who failed to continue to energize the place. Too late to turn that overdeveloped, poorly planned, if planned at all, anarchic urban wasteland and polluted human zoo around.

I think, Zorba, that your Chiapas ranch only five to six hours from Huatulco, sounds OK in my book but we would need to know more about its actual location.


raferguson


Sep 16, 2009, 2:55 PM

Post #7 of 10 (4615 views)

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Oaxaca - getting around

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I am a little confused about getting around. When we went to Puerto Escondido many years ago we flew a prop plane from Oaxaca city, and rented a car to see Huatulco. We were told that it was 8 hours on a twisty road from Oaxaca city to PE.

So how does it make sense to fly to PE when your destination is Oaxaca city? Is the bus ride faster and easier than we were told? Is there a new road? What am I missing?

Thanks,
Richard


http://www.fergusonsculpture.com


geri

Sep 16, 2009, 3:47 PM

Post #8 of 10 (4604 views)

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Re: [raferguson] Oaxaca - getting around

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Nope, if you're destination is Oaxaca City, you fly into the city. At least I do. The bus ride from Oaxaca City to PE, the direct way, is 6 hours, almost to the minute, given no mud slides, blockades, etc., maybe a bit less time by car, but not much. Fare is about 120 pesos.

The first class bus from the city to Huatulco is 8 hours because it goes the long way around .... not over the steeper mountains. The large, deluxe buses don't run down Highway 131 from the city to PE. Then it's another couple of hours into PE from Huatulco, mas o menos.

Some folk who live in Oaxaca City on a tight budget, fly into Huatulco and take the bus back to Oaxaca City (after a stint on the beach of course). I haven't done it, but they claim it's cheaper....better air fare deass from some parts of USA into Huatulco than into Oaxaca City.


Hound Dog

Sep 25, 2009, 2:10 PM

Post #9 of 10 (4468 views)

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Re: [geri] Oaxaca - getting around

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We opted out of driving to San Cristóbal this fall as we intended and will only drive down later than for our normal visit of six months or so and that has nothing to do with Chiapas but everything to do with the Lake Chapala area we call "Lakeside" which has had a terrible uptick in crime including a plague of home burlaries that make it impossible fo us to leav out home here unguarded even though we just put in a very expensive constantly monitored home alarm system just to try to protect our household asvluable from the marauding gangs of yoiung punks plagueing our neighborhood. Who would have thought, three years ago when we bought a home in Chiapas, that the danger would develop at Lakeside and not down there where neighbors protect each other vigilantly from attack or theft.


TIO GREENGLEE


Sep 27, 2009, 5:46 PM

Post #10 of 10 (4400 views)

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Re: [Hound Dog] Chiapas or Bust

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Aw come on, Zipolite is great! (if you don't mind "un poco de mota" and an isolated nude beach on the other side of a big rock formation. I spent a Christmas eve and day there camping on the beach and it wasn't crowded at all. Very peaceful with very few tourists that time of year. If you don't want to camp out there are some nice cabańas to rent and some very good informal eating and drinking places.
 
 
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