Ixtapa, Zihuatanejo, and Acapulco Recap
We just wanted to write a quick recap of the places we visited the first several days of our trip.
This is purely a tourist town over the hill from Zihuatanejo. You will pay tourist prices for food and drinks. The beaches are pretty and quiet, but if you leave the resort be prepared to get hassled while eating overpriced food to buy trinkets. We aren’t huge fans of Ixtapa because there is no surf especially this time of year (you can go north for 20 minutes or so to Troncones, but we are heading south so we didn’t make it there) and there is no local culture. Ixtapa is great if you want to go lay on the beach or at the pool and do nothing.
We recommend “The Blue Shrimp” (El Camaron Azul) to eat. It is reasonably priced and they have 2 for 1 beers all day. It is located on the main drag behind Armando’s Blue Lobster.
On the north end of Ixtapa is a beach called Playa Linda which supposedly has some surf. We took a 9 peso bus ride up there, saw crocodiles, lots of locals and no waves to speak of. I did see the skankiest bathroom I’ve seen in a while. As soon as we got off the bus we were being hassled to sit down and eat at a beach restaurant. After a walk down the beach we decided to sit down for a couple of beers at the restaurant before we headed back to town. They handed us the gringo menu in English with higher prices. 20 pesos for a beer is kind of high especially for locals. Then the guy tried to overcharge us and told us they were 30 pesos each until I pointed at the menu and said, “Um, yeah they are 20 pesos.” Of course he pretended it was an accident, right. We may look like stupid Americans with money, but we’re not. Lame.
This town feels more authentic than Ixtapa. You can get 3 tacos for 25 pesos there (about $2 US). It used to be a little fishing village and now there are quite a few accomodations/bars, etc. We went to the market, talked to a local bodyboarder in Spanish (or tried to anyway), and found a local surf shop. It’s not a bad little stop. In the right season, there are surf spots south of here accesible my car.
Basically it’s a big city with a beach. I think it had its heyday in the 50s and 60s. All along the beach are people peddling fruit and wares and asking you if you want to ride on a jet ski. Acapulco was hectic and we were happy to only stop through for a couple of nights. We took a mediocre glass bottom boat tour for 100 pesos each. One of the boat guys would do tricks like jump off of a cliff or dive and get a sea urchin to show you and then solicit tips from you. If you didn’t tip much, they would call you out on the mic. Wow. Talk about touristy B.S.
We did find a nice little local restaurant/taco stand with 5 tacos for 25 pesos. We even got to see them washing and cutting up a cow head. I’ve never seen that before, especially while eating. The picture of the naked lady next to the Virgin Mary was also interesting/distracting.
Now that we’re heading away from the bigger cities and total tourist traps, the trip is getting better by the day.
1 week down, 30 more to go!