For me, no road trip to Mexico would be complete without a visit to Zihuatenejo. That being said, I did very little this time in the way of taking pictures, due in part I think to my need to remember it the way it was rather than the way it is. With somewhere close to 100 times the population that it had on my first visit more than 40-years ago, it is hard not to be nostalgic.
Even my old friend Tania, who has lived here for nearly as long as I've been coming, is so caught up in the bustle of the place that she was as hard to pin down for a photo as were her high-strung hairless Aztec temple dogs. Even their solitary tufts of hair have gone completely gray.
about seventy-five meters above the far end of Play La Ropa, the walk
up to Tania's once was the highest viewpoint on this end of the beach.
There is now a road that goes more than a kilometer up to huge gated
estates. The bay which would perhaps draw the occasional yacht once or
twice a month now has a half dozen or more at any given time. The
hilsides beyond the town in the distance once a verdant green, are now
covered with houses to near the very tops.
Some things though still remain. Although her husband Sylviano has long since parted, my old friend Ernestina still presides over the restaurant named for her daughter Elvira at right. When we first met, Ernestina and Sylviano were divers selling oysters and clams each day from on top of an orange crate on the beach. Elvira, now 43, was just four-years-old. There restaurant is one of the mainstays here on La Ropa.
|Food is one of
the few things left here that get me worked up enough to photograph. On
top are coconut crusted shrimp with tamarind sauce, and shrimp diablo
on the bottom.
south from Zihuat we would typically break the trip to Puerto Escondido
up with a stop in Pie de la Cuesta. This time however we decided to go
little farther to Playa Ventura which is a little closer to half way.
Although the beach is perfect for anyone who seeks total solitude the
town has almost no amenities. Karen stops to point out her namesake
super liquor store. This place should not be confused with the equally
pink Hotel Doña Celsa across the street, which is run by a
perfectly rude and genuinely unpleasant old lady. We did however happen
upon a pizza place completely by chance. It was totally dark by 7:30
but when we pulled into the driveway of this place about a
mile-and-a-half out of town, the lights came on as soon as we blew the
horn and the proprieter rushed out to wave us in. The picture of this
place (below) was downloaded off their Facebook page. Il Giardino was
not just one of the best pizzas in Mexico, its one of the best I've had
only was the pizza outstanding but these friendly siblings perched
themselves on the windowsill next to our table much to Karen's delight.
Puerto Escondido it is mostly surfers that rule the waves. Click on the image above to watch him
beach front road at Playa Zicatela is mostly motorscooters and a
variety of surf buggies
like this 55 above. It was just a few days of relaxed unwinding
before heading a few klicks farther south to San Agustinillo.
is a spot a few miles from here that is the southernmost point in the
state of Oaxaca. It is a little disorienting to see the sun rise in the
Pacific Ocean, but that is exactly what is happening here in this shot
facing east from the porch of our hotel room. The waves here are a
little more user frienndly then those at Puerto Escondido up the coast.
splurged a bit on the room here for its premium location and attentive
staff. The fact that the place had an Italian chef who also road a
V-Strom didn't hurt either.
the seafood doesn't get much fresher than this. This guy was selling
prawns as big as the palm of your hand, while later in the day we
watched fishermen unload wheelbarrows full of meter long dorado.
inland toward the town of Pochutla the meat contingent was not to be
outdone. Known far and wide around here this restaurant La Finca del
Vaquero does a parillada that includes an Argentine sausage, a smoked
pork chop, juicy arrachera, and some of the best ribs I've ever eaten
without any sauce at all to help them.