Mexico Highway Routes: Driving from Nogales to Uruapan

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Posting: margarite mumford – 5/19/97

Hi, my family and I are traveling to Mexico in a few weeks. We are entering through Nogales and traveling to Uruapan, Michoacan. I have been trying (unsuccesfully) for several weeks to find a map of Mexico that has the new highways (cuotas?) shown. I know from past experience that the smaller highways are just too nerve-wrecking. Do you know if there is anywhere that I could get my hands on this type of map? Does the government even produce one? I appreciate your help.

Response: jennifer j. rose – 18/05/97

Check out these websites

Mexico Maps to Go
https://www.employnow.com/mexmaps.htm

Adventurous Traveler Bookstore
https://www.adventuroustraveler.com/atb/mexico.htm

Sanborn’s Mexico Club
https://www.hiline.net/sanborns/smc.html

If you purchase your automobile insurance from Sanborn’s, they will give you an itinerary much like AAA’s TripTik. However, Sanborn’s is not always the cheapest place to purchase your car insurance. If you belong to AAA, you can usually obtain maps of Mexico for a very nominal fee.

Many of the new cuotas (limited access tollroads) will not be shown on these maps, but they are usually merely extensions of the existing numbered highway system. When given the opportunity, definitely take the cuota. It’s well worth the price….if only for the respite from scenic potholed backgrounds.

Mexican maps are not as frequently updated to show new road construction as those might be in the U.S. Like other print media, maps are expensive in Mexico. Perhaps the most worthwhile map purchase I’ve made in Mexico was a Rand-McNallyesque atlas of the republic, large trade paper….but it cost around $35. The Mexican government maps are not impressive, and the ones I’ve seen produced by Turismo in Michoacan leave a lot to be desired. I wouldn’t make the effort to find one if I were you.

Now, you do not need a map to travel from Nogales to Uruapan. You’ll take Highway 15 from Nogales to Guadalajara. Perhaps 75% of the road is cuota. Nogales to Hermosillo, Hermosillo to Guaymas, Guaymas to Cd. Obregon, Navajoa, Los Mochis, Culiacan, Mazatlan, Tepic, Guadalajara. Once you reach Guadalajara, there are a couple of options to reach Uruapan…all of which, ahem, are very scenic (that’s code for two-lane blacktop).

BTW, unlike the US, where highways are referred to as I-5 or I-80, in Mexico you may seldom see a numbered highway sign. Highway directions always refer to the next major town down the road.

Absolutely do not drive at night in Mexico. I drive the cuotas at night, but I’ve driven them so frequently that I know the road.

Your e-mail address indicates that you may be in central Washington State. There is another individual whose posts appear in the archives (look for Patzcuaro) who is an avid enthusiast of that region; find him and write him for suggestions.

Please drive carefully and enjoy your trip to Mexico. When you return, please share your experiences at the Mexico Connect Forum.

Published or Updated on: May 19, 1997 by Discussion Thread Forum © 2009

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