Huatulco and Santa Cruz
Trip Start Jan 04, 2008
27Trip End Apr 01, 2008
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We arrived at the Bahias de Huatulco area fairly early and soon found the only RV park recommended in the Church guidebook at Tangolunda. It's just a flat area with bathrooms, non-private (and with no hot water) outdoor showers (bathe in your swimsuit) and the beach is a minor hike of about 300+ yards away. On top of that there were jellyfish in the water, so it was not an ideal place, not even for the US$10 daily rate.
We soon started to explore around and found the 'shopping' area first, then the village of Santa Cruz. We soon found a place where we could park the RV (along with some other RVs) on the back lot of the small, but very nice, Hotel Marlin for US$13 p. day that included plugging into their electricity (the best we'd found up to that point...most places the electricity is weak). The other RV couples there were from BC, Canada and are spending the winter there
The couple that we had met at Winter Haven in Brownsville, Tom and Myrna, who first told us about Huatulco/Santa Cruz and who have spent about 7-8 years in Santa Cruz for the winters, have a great set-up there. They park their big RV behind locked gates, next to a small building that used to be a business. Their location is about as good as anyone could get in that town, where the beaches are not very easy to get to. Their spot is across the street from some restaurants that face the only easily accessible beach and the harbor. Although, we soon discovered that they will be losing their spot in March or April because the property is being sold. I don't know any details, but they will probably move over to where we stayed just a couple of blocks away.
We originally planned to stay in Huatulco/Santa Cruz for about a month to enjoy the fishing and beaches, etc. However, it's not what we expected at all. The Mexican tourist company, Fonatur, has developed Huatulco like they did at Cancun and Ixtapa, with fancy hotels and all the shops are higher priced, etc. In fact, it's a lot like Ka'anapali and not what we wanted at all.
Prices throughout Mexico, in general, are much higher than we expected (even allowing for inflation) and not as many real good bargains, etc
The hills around this part of the coastline come right to the ocean (for those of you that know Maui, sort of like the Maui Pali or north shore, only with less ocean views, but with better beaches) and most of the roads are up on the hills with few access roads down to the beaches and no RV parking anywhere near them! A lot of the beaches could only be accessed by boat, which again wasn't cheap.
The Santa Cruz harbor area reminds me of a small size Lahaina, Maui. It consists of lots of pricey tourist shops and restaurants (most everything is about at least 50 to 100 % higher than on the Emerald
Coast where we found prices higher than we expected but still not unreasonable). The dock area has
guys out on the street trying to get you interested in using one their boats for fishing or sightseeing and snorkeling, again reminiscent of Lahaina.
The fishing boats are expensive for nothing fancy, a panga-type (large row boat with canopy and motor) boat costs US$30-35 per hour (the same kind of thing in Baja [not around touristic Cabo], used to cost less than that for the whole day)
Terry also finally got to discuss fishing with our friends, who have their own boat, and found out that fishing had been lousy around there lately, which was a bummer, since that was one of the main reasons for going there in the first place.
Although where we were parked at the Hotel Marlin was not very expensive and was convenient, only 2-3 blocks from the harbor and/or beach, and the people were nice, we decided to only stay there for a couple more days, before moving on to try to find something more to our liking.
I had meanwhile found a good (with A/C) public internet place that also had telephone booths and calls were somewhat reasonably priced. So on Monday, I tried to call the US Embassy in Mexico City, only to discover that it was the Martin Luther King holiday and they were closed. So Tuesday, I finally got through to them, however, the lady I talked to about my lost passport, wasn't very helpful, except to give me the phone number for the Consulate in Acapulco.
So I called there and after 2-3 transfers, I talked to a nice lady named Carlina, who gave me the necessary information and I will see her when we get to Acapulco. She informed me that I cannot get a replacement passport immediately, unless I go in person, to the Embassy in Mexico City and I would have to show an airline ticket, or otherwise prove that I have to leave Mexico right away. So I will have to apply, in person, at the Consulate and then it's processed somewhere else, then it is sent back to the Consulate (in a few weeks). Then, if I cannot pick it up personally there, they can send it to me, wherever I might be at that time. Probably, if the timing works, I'll have it sent to another Consulate, perhaps in Cabo San Lucas. Along our route, there's one in Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cabo, so it's a matter of where I'll be when it's ready, etc.
Right after that, we headed on up the coast towards Puerto Escondido.