Mazatlan . Mexico 2
Mid week we took a cruise to Deer Island. It’s easy to find tour boats that take you out for a day or half day. We took a taxi down to the marina, and boarded a boat with about six other people, including some girls who or may not have gone wild given the opportunity. Although the liquor was flowing, but considering boats and I have a somewhat queasy history together I chose to wait until we were on terra firma before enjoying some libations. There wasn’t much on the island except for some volleyball net and some wild dogs, but I had snorkeled for an hour and chased some fish.
We had a nice picnic lunch on the island, and we chatted about life and family with the boat captain, who had a large family of his own, with two daughters raising children and his other two daughters attending a nearby technical college. Looking at the coast at the Zona Dorada you can see the tallest hotel, the El Cid Hotel. We were told by our boat captain that a gentleman owned a small cabin we saw on the island, and he said the owner of the El Cid came and took it over.
The last day of our week I was having my daily coffee in the morning and checking out a local bookstore, and decided I wanted to see some country outside of the city. I talked to some taxi drivers who hang out around the Panama restaurant, and met Miguel, a cab driver who spoke English. We headed south on highway 15 past the airport and visited the small village of Villa Union. Villa Union is right off highway 15, but very quiet, with narrow dirt roads and nice houses perched up on hills. There’s a great town center in the middle for relaxing and enjoying the warm air.
I saw many farms scattered around the land, some with large ranches, others with modest concrete homes. If spending some time in Mazatlan it’s definitely a good idea to get out of town and explore the small town culture.
Next Miguel and I headed up 15 again, and northeast of the city into the Sierra Madre mountains, and stopped in a small town (which I can’t recall the name of).
This village was similar to Villa Union, but a little smaller and more trees. I loved the colorful stone wall of the schoolyard. I wish I had gone a bit further into the country, as there are rivers, jungles, and other small towns all over the state of Sinaloa.
We wrapped our week with dinner at the Shrimp Bucket, a nice restaurant on the bay near the centro area. The next morning we headed back to the airport, Caleb and Kara sporting nice tans, myself sunburn only in a few spot.
Here are a few web sites I used when researching things to do, but it’s easy to find activities just by walking on the beach, (jet skies, deep sea fishing, etc). Also many hotels have activity desk, so if you need help planning you can visit any hotel and they will assist.
http://www.mazatlan.com.mx/ Official city site (I think)
Lonely Planet Mexico Board
http://www.maztravel.com/maz/sitemap.html Personal site of a resident