The dog and cat stayed in kennels. The direct flight was shorter than the flight to St. John’s.
The all inclusive package included flight, hotel, all meals, all drinks, transport to and from airport to hotel, use of towels, etc.
Which is very nice, because when you get to the hotel you can lock your wallet in the safe and not worry about money or tips. We had lovely drinks like Margarethas, Rum Punch, Cappuccinos, Coronas, Tequilas, etc.
Vallarta is hot with Palm trees, Bougainvilleas, Frangipanis, etc. The hotel was fantastic! There was all you can buffet every day, (the first night’s was on the beach, and unfortunately we didn’t take photos as we thought they would repeat it.) with a big selection of delicious food, Mexican, Italian, Oriental etc. You can eat almost at any time, which makes it easy when you want to go out. There are three restaurants. The staff works very hard, are quick, very friendly and their English is very good.
It was fully booked with some Canadian, some American but mostly South-American guests, although some Canadians and Americans left their children at home, there were beautiful Spanish speaking children. There was always something going on like volleyball, Pilates, water aerobics, very professional concerts, etc.
The weather was hot, although it is Spring, with high humidity, but fantastic, with little wind, clean water, clean beaches and clear skies. There are fantastic hotels which look like Mayan Palaces, with huge Palapas (lapas); one even had its own zoo, with Ostriches, Parrots, Flamingoes, a Panther, Tiger, etc.
We even met Canadians & Americans living there.
Iglesia de Nuestra
Señora de Guadalupe
One washroom looks like a Mayan pyramid.
The beautiful ceramic basins are usually on the outside.
The pavements are narrow, with a step every now and then, which we aren’t used to. When we wish to go use a washroom, or cool off, we go into a restaurant and have a “Sol” Or “Corona” which are light and the price of a cold-drink. But even there a waitress will try to sell tours, for which they get commission. There is a large flea-market, with cool tiled floors, at the river, under trees, on an island, with a shaky suspended bridge.
“Caballeo del Mar” (“The Seahorse”)
Rafel Zamarripa’s 9′ high bronze statue featuring a naked boy riding this larger than life sea creature. The original seahorse sculpture was located at the end of Los Muertos beach, but ended up in the bay after Hurricane Kenna. Zamarripa was commissioned to create the replica you see now.
There were many tourists, people dress very casually, with little make up, simple hairstyles, little jewelry, they wear mostly sarongs, which they even hike with, which is very clever.
I always wore sun-block, tried to sit in the shade and wore a hat, but is difficult when you are shopping or hiking. Fortunately I only tanned my feet and not too badly.
I think everyone realizes tourism is very important, one can get around without speaking Spanish, and the tour leaders’ English is good but with a strange accent.
We rode the Cie-tie busses, which was an experience, the busses are old, hot, the shocks are shot, have hard seats, most streets are narrow with cobble-stoned and the road rules different. There are many taxis and busses; the rates are good.
We also took a water taxi, which is cool and great value for money.
Los Arcos is the name given to the three huge rocks just off shore near Mismaloya. The name Los Arcos (The Arches) comes from the arching caves and grottos that have been carved out by time and the pounding surf. The area is now a federal underwater park and eco-reserve. It sports some of the best underwater exploring along the coast, and several tours take visitors there daily.
We went with a bus tour along the southern Coastline, which has million dollar villas, closer to Los Arcos (small islands with caves), to the place where they shot “Night of the Iguana” with Elizabeth Taylor, there is a restaurant today, which has a beautiful view over Banderas Bay.
A tour of a Tequila factory with tasting, the Chocolate, Coffee & Orange liquors are lovely.
We went where Me-ester Arnold Schwarz-en-egger and Me-ester John Hu-ston shot the movie, “The night of the Igu-ana”.
El Eden & Paradise where the Schwarzenegger movies “Predator” & “Conan” were filmed, which is in the jungle with waterfalls.
Mexico Page 2