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  • Writer's pictureUrsula

Chihuahua to Oaxaca 16.10.-24.11.22

Updated: Jan 25, 2023

From New Mexico we cross the Mexican border to Ciudad Juarez. We are quite excited to see if we have obtained all the necessary documents to import the car. Everything goes well, only the receipt that we bought the personal visa is not printed what causes a small delay. We learn that here only what is on paper is valid. In Ciudad Juarez, the entertainment evening in the restaurant 'Viva Mexicana' with quite good food and a folklore show is the ideal introduction to the country.

In Chihuahua, with a small pedestrian zone and some antique buildings, we purchase a pair of jeans for Thomas for 35 francs.

In Durango we also make only a short stop, stroll through the pretty old town and marvel at the imposing cathedral.

We then travel through a varied green landscape, over the mountains and through a spectacular valley to Mazatlan on the Atlantic coast.

The historic old town of Mazatlan is very authentic, tourists are not to be seen and the colorful two-story buildings are well preserved. We linger at the beautiful plaza with pretty restaurants and stroll through the almost car-free alleys. Back to the hotel we take a pulmonia, an open-air cab invented here based on a golf cart.

In Puerto Vallarta we spend three weeks in a vacation apartment directly at the sea, where we swim every morning and let our souls dangle besides further planning.

In the first week of November, Dia de Muertos is celebrated with a colorful parade. Many people, even pets and tourists, have elaborately made up for this.

Every evening, the newly hatched turtles are released on the beach very close to our apartment. And every Saturday evening there's a fireworks display which we admire from the balcony.

The three weeks pass quickly. We finally drive on to Ajijic, which is located on the largest lake in Mexico. Ajijic is a pretty tourist town with a pleasant climate all year round, where mainly Mexicans spend their vacations, with a lake promenade and a small center with narrow streets and colorful houses.

The cemetery is also very colorful and still decorated from the holiday Dia de Muertos. On the graves you can often find something to eat and drink or other gifts that say something about the deceased.

Our next stop is Morelia, with an architecturally impressive, large old town from the colonial era which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We take a private tour of the city with a Spanish-speaking guide (we understand about half of it 😊) where we are introduced to hidden tourist gems, among others:

Into some of the former Jesuit monasteries, which are repurposed as schools or museums and often have beautiful murals ...

... or a pharmacy from ancient times and an impressive antique library that is still used, especially by students.

We visit the Aequaduct on our own and then look forward to the beautiful hotel and rooms in colonial style.

In Valle de Bravo we move into the modern small hotel Casa Roventa with only 7 suites, which is nicely integrated into the old town. We take a rather sweaty walk up to the exposed viewpoint and then stroll through the pretty rural old town.

Taxco, the silver city, literally sticks to the mountain and the many narrow and often steep cobblestone streets require some skill of the road users. The cabs are all old VW Beetles and must sometimes back up in the curves to master the streets, of course we with our huge 4Runner all the more. The lively city pleases us exceptionally well with the beautiful architecture, the cheerful people, nice restaurants and beautiful (silver) stores.

In the big city of Puebla we especially like the beautiful artists' quarter, the farmers' market and the flea market.

There is also an antique library to see in Puebla, where some artists are currently showing off their skills in the same building.

Of course, the visit to some cathedrals must not be missed.

A trip to the suburb of Cholula brings us to a church built on an overgrown pyramid of the indigenous people with a magnificent view of the volcano 'El Popo'.

Shortly before Oaxaca we cross the impressive Tehuacàn-Culcatlàn Biosphere Reserve with one of the world's largest numbers of columnar cacti.

Oaxaca also has a charming old town like all the other cities visited so far.

Everywhere we encounter outstanding colorful murals.

About 30 minutes from the center of Oaxaca, we visit the Zapotec ruined city on the artificially flattened hilltop of Monte Alban.

The food in Mexico is very good and is also presented with much love...

.... and still needs a change now and then after all the tacos and moles.

The cities visited so far are all very beautiful, clean, well preserved and give a different but always coherent picture. There are of course many churches and cathedrals everywhere, which we have not documented here all photographically. At no time did we feel uncomfortable anywhere, even when we got into lonely dark alleys.

Now we continue through the southern part of the state of Oaxaca and the other, touristically better known states such as Chiapas, Campeche, Yucatlan and Quintana Roo from which we will report at the end of the year.

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