Jan 11, 2003, 7:40 PM
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We recently visited Mazatlan in our RV (Dec 15 to Jan 10) and were very pleased with the experience. We travelled from Vancouver, BC and the trip down took us 9 days but the return trip was a little shorter, 7 days.
We crossed over at Nogales, Arizona thru the truck crossing on Dec 21 and arrived in Mazatlan on Dec 23. Next time we will remember not to drive in Mexico that week as lot of Mexican nationals return home from the USA for the Christmas holidays and the highways are very busy. At one toll booth (north of Los Mochis) it took us 3 hours just to go thru it as there is only 3 lanes open and too many vehicles are going at the same time. On the return trip we left Mazatlan on Jan 4 and it was a lot faster. Generally, the toll highways are quite good, a bit rough in some places and bumpy in others which makes driving a RV (motor home) a bit tiring but we found similar road surface in some parts of California and Oregon states as well.
The toll one way was 540 pesos not including the toll highway from Culiacan to Mazatlan. The free (libre) highway is quite good between these 2 towns but a bit too bumpy in some parts.
The campground we stayed at in Mazatlan is on the main drag (Carmen Sabalo) golden zone /zona daroda district but the front buildings do shield the street noise and you hardly know that are so close to the main street. Bus fares to central (centro) Mazatlan is 7.50 pesos on the nice buses. The market in central Mazatlan is a very interesting place tp visit and we never got tired of going there. Daily rate for camping was 150 pesos/night. Conversion rate is 10 pesos to 1 US$.
We stayed a total of 12 days in Mazatlan and wished we could stay longer. However, both of us have to get back to work and the kids were missing school as well.
On the return trip from Mazatlan to Nogales, we stayed overnight at one of the Pemmex gas stations. We felt pretty safe and the station attendants were very helpful to find us a suitable site away from the trucks that run all night.
I highly recommend this road trip as you see quite a bit of the country that you will miss if you travel by airline. It is hard to get lost as the highway signs are quite good even thru the towns we drove thru.
None of got sick eating the local food. While going thru the various towns and villages, I would stop whenever we saw anybody cooking anything and buy something to eat. The kids did quite well and bottled water was readily available.
Best Regards and a Happy, Healthy and Safe New Year.
Vancouver, BC Canada