Since leaving Baja California one month ago, we’ve visited both familiar territory and some new areas as we head south on the Pacific coast of mainland Mexico. Several other cruisers had told me how much they enjoyed this stretch of Mexico but I couldn’t fathom why until we got here. We share some of our best pictures from our winter run and wish you many blessings in the new year.
Isla Isabel offered amazing snorkeling and unexpected close encounters with humpback whales (at anchor thankfully), but the land exploration filled with bluefooted boobies, frigate birds, and iguanas who were all completely undaunted by our presence, took the cake for making this a unique experience.
La Cruz offered nightly live music and good food as well as a reunion with two of the Baja-HaHa kid boats whom we are now spending time with (S/V Kyrie and S/V Descanso). Now exploring the many diverse anchorages of Bahia Tenacatita, I can see how cruisers spend a lot of time here. The cruising community is very welcoming and informative with a daily morning net on the VHF radio. Off the main bay is the entrance to the jungle cruise where you load in your own dinghy to navigate the narrow mangroves of the river in search of crocodiles. Other than one quick glimpse, we saw mostly “crocosticks” and saved the big boys for the cocodrilario (crocodile sanctuary) in La Manzanilla. If standing on a platform only to hear the hiss of crocodiles bubbling to the surface in the murky water below, hoping to be fed is your cup of tea – this place is for you! It is right in the city and to wander along the bridges and see these huge creatures swimming towards you, I couldn’t decide if I felt more like I was on the set of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, Romancing the Stone, or Live and Let Die. This of course shows the cinematic influence on my thought process, not to mention my age…but I digress. The experience is well worth it and incredibly cheap. The sanctuary boasts one of the largest populations of American Crocodiles in Mexico and serves to provide awareness and conservation as well as an up-close appreciation for these gargantuan beauties. La Manzanilla is a very colorful, lively, quaint beachside town that I would love to explore with more time and less COVID – here’s looking at you 2021!
On the other side of the bay, there is a Raicilla distillery which sells a 19-year aged Raicilla (from agave plants not unlike Tequilla and Mezcal, roasted as Mezcal is, but from Jalisco and therefore outside the official Mezcal region). This historic spirit was smooth and smoky and somehow found its way back to Tulum V. With crowded long beaches filled with colorful umbrellas and vendors with pounding surf for the kids to play in, this place is a stark contrast to the tranquil and mostly deserted bays of Baja where we spent last summer. Both hold a special place in my heart and for now, we’re enjoying the tropics.
With that, we plan to hunker down on the boat to bring in the New Year. We hope this next year brings you all much health and happiness. Thank you for following our adventures, keep following your dreams in 2021.
As the editor, writer and blogist…I just gotta say I’m glad to get this year over…between political and social discord and COVID-19…it’s been a bear of a year. But for the blog and our family, we’ve managed to leverage our cruising to allow us to isolate and socially distance but still continue to cruise to the loose plan we had upon leaving the US. Now into our second year of cruising by just two months…we’re going to continue our loose plan…cruise the Mexican Riviera till spring, slowly work our way back up to Baja in spring and spend the summer (hurricane season) in Baja this coming year. Once hurricane season is over, we’ll make the decision about heading south to Panama and more distant ports of call.
Hurray for our first post of 2021 and THANK YOU to ALL of our readers…the blog is now in it’s 7th year and we grew by 29% over last year. This is a huge amount of growth for a small niche blog like mine….because of all of you.