Trip Report 3-1-00 to 3-11-00 Very detailed !!

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Posted by Dawn on March 16, 2000 at 19:41:14:

I hope this isn't too long and boring. DMC

First, I’d like to say both of the newsgroups/message forums I found were a great help. It helped me a lot to read and learn about the not-so-good stuff along with all the good stuff. I feel all honest trip reports are worth being read! All of the web sites available are worth the time to search and learn they are very detailed and thorough. I was a little apprehensive of how secure/comfortable I would feel in Mexico, since it was my first trip, and I know 3 phrases in Spanish, but once we landed and got to our resort El Presidente - that feeling was gone. I don’t know the word for Unbelievable in Spanish but that is how I feel it’s truly UNBELIEVABLE -the first time!
Ok, here we go…….
Day 1- arrived 3/1 -2:30 pm cleared immigrations (got the green light) Once at the El Presidente’ of course we dropped our baggage and ran to the ocean. I’ve never been in such a rough body of water before, and we didn’t observe the FLAG color (it was red). With in minutes we were whipped so hard (wave bashed we called it) I thought I was coming up dead. But that wasn’t the case and I didn’t venture back into the ocean for days. Ixtapa is true “touristy” compared to Zihua, but very beautiful with lush green trees, colorful flora, indifferent structure, and is also very clean and safe. We did a little walking around at night across the blvd. Senior Frog’s was just a hopping so we popped in and within minutes met new friends and were dancing on the tables etc. A lot of fun!! A little lady dressed up like a nun walks around selling some kind of shot she pours into your mouth. I didn’t try it that but it looked interesting!

Day 2 Thurs. 3/2 we walked the long stretch of beach down to the breaker wall of the marina. It took a good two hours there and back, since we had to look at all the other Resorts/hotels, and partial built structures, and of course the waves/surf, they were huge. Thursday is Beach night at El President; it’s a lot of fun. They start setting up early morning and it takes all day to complete the setup for the festivities. They have fun activities to get everyone involved and moving. It’s a great way to get to know other people, especially if you’re trying to smash a balloon tied to their ankle. They have 4 great activity people, may be more, but I remember 2 girls, (Stephanie & Julie) & 2 guys (didn’t catch their names) they really get you moving. They had great performers too. Some type of Aztec dance with beautiful dresses – being on vacation for 11 days we got to go to Beach Night twice and enjoyed it just as much the 2nd time as the 1st. Oh the food was good too, but I’m just a meat person, no fish so food really isn’t a big priority for me but I know others said it was good.

Day 3 Fri. 3/3 Sorry to say I wasted the day under one of the Blue Umbrella’s (too many tequila poppers etc at beach night L L) But it still was a beautiful cloud free day.
We did a little shopping in the shopping center across the blvd. There is this guy Jorge, he paints with his finger –just his finger, we went to his shop a couple of days waiting for a specific scene he was to paint for my friend. He is very talented and very busy. Each day we went there, he had fewer and fewer paintings left in his shop. Some said they seen him doing his work on the beach by the Sheridan about mid day. He’ll paint on the back of his business card a little scene! What great advertising! His shop is open 6-9 pm – It’s worth the stop!

Day 4 Sat. 3/4 about 9:30 am we took a taxi (40 peso’s) to Zihua. What a great town!!! We got dropped off at the open market-- and shopped, and shopped, and bargained etc. It is truly amazing to see the people and the culture. Everyone is so talented. The merchants are painting the pottery wares they sell, this one guy made me 10 bracelets with colorful string/floss each one with a specific name on it and in the colors I chose. They crochet the purses and knapsacks. I am so amazed of the craftsmanship and authenticity of their work. We were some what over whelmed at the quantities of everything and so much the same but a little different. AND SILVER oh my God the amount of Silver I never imagined. I’m a “gold” person but did buy a few pieces and am really enjoying them. Some of the merchants sit there and polish the silver all day. After a while, I hated to pick it up just to look at it, but you could see the difference in those who polished and those who didn’t. We enjoyed a light lunch at JJ’s about 2:30 pm since it was siesta time some of the stores were closed but not all of them so we did get a lot of area covered before heading back to our resort. Even though we took our “town” map, we got a little lost, but still felt comfortable and safe off the beaten path and eventually found our way back on track. J

Sat. night is Vegas Night at El Presidente’ they set up the front of the open foyer/garden area with tables for gambling along with 3 or 4 different Mexican food stands – the cooks do a great job. You get to gamble for a while, w/ fun money, then there is entertainment that was very entertaining, then they auction off door prizes with the winnings you made at the gaming tables- very amusing I might say!!

Day 5 Sun. 3/5 Was a great pool lounging day. One of us was a little heat stroked! (Not me this time J-- BUT Drink LOTS of Water. The first few days we bought water across the street, but by Sun 3/5 we just filled up water bottles under the bathroom faucet and we drank those and NEVER felt ill!! El Presidente’s Daiquiri Bar opens at 10 am, (non alcoholic for me ‘till at least noon) the pool bar opens at noon, so there’s plenty of refreshments available all day. The Activity people have a contest each day with door prizes – which I never won. They keep you busy with water aerobics/volleyball, water soccer. bingo --they’re very active – it’s up to YOU if you want to be. There is a lot of great people watching on the beach, you can go parasailing for about $20. some people did bargain for a better price especially if there’s more than one person going in a group. Hair braiding, massage’s , we seen the jet ski’s around but didn’t catch the cost. I didn’t see much boogie boarding – thought what I did see looked like fun. I think it was a BLACK FLAG day and the surf was very dangerous so there wasn’t a lot of water activity. But that’s why there’s the POOL. Right. Later in the afternoon we went to watch the croc’s get fed and seen 4 croc’s but no feeding – it was still neat to see them come around. One of the croc’s looked 10’ long. Sure glad they’re enclosed.. The night life is great all around – there’s entertainment of either the activities crew doing something, or a small band, or just music playing till midnight in the Lobby Bar (which opens 6 pm – Midnight) We made reservations to eat at the Italian Place, it was very good. Lots on the menu to choose from and great dessert. After wards, we went to Carlos & Charlie’s ( it’s a great walk up the beach and on the return trip nice to cool off in the ocean J ankle deep only!!! ) That place was hopping a very mixed crowd!! Young & Old alike doing the Mamba on the floor!! All dancing in sync to the new dance step.

Day 6, Monday 3/6 Resort day, water volleyball with the new check-inn’s from Minnesota ( Hi Christine & Eric and all) then we did some more shopping across the street, great buys at the open market. You can’t do a lot fast in Mexico, it’s too hot! We shopped slow!

Day 7, Tues 3/7 (My B-day) I got my hair braided by one of the braiders on the beach It took about 15 minutes, and was something I’ve never had done before. It’s lasted till 3/15 - 8 days. Tuesday Night is Mexican Fiesta Night at El Presidente’ but We planned the sunset cruise w/ Tristar (4:30 pm to 8:00 pm) $42. The crew was terrific pointing out different places of interest. If you go, sit in the front it’s the best view They cruise out into the ocean around these huge rock formations then head towards Ixtapa’s hotel beach row. You can see your resort from there. Then head out from down by the marina around some more rocks – where some have seen the whales swimming. We didn’t, but we did see dolphin/porpoise (sp?) That was one birthday I’ll never forget!! I shot almost 2 rolls of film it was so awesome!! Back at El Presidente’ Mexican Night was just a roaring, they had the various Mexican food stands and local vendors (I was told the “better” ones) are invited in to set up their stands to sell their merchandise. It was nice to be able to do some one stop shopping.

Day 8, Wed 3/8 - resort day, …

Day 9, Thursday 3/9 Planned the day for snorkeling at Ixtapa Island. That was an experience. We lasted about 2 hours tops. We missed the better calm beach so the visibility wasn’t very good, the wake would topple you over into some reef formations.
I’ve snorkeled in the Caribbean and it’s hard to compete with 100% visibility and no wakes but it still was a great experience. “Come seniorita’s come sit on my chairs, no cost…. Cervesos 10 peso’s …… and on and on. That’s culture

Day 10, Friday 3/10 Our last full day L now we were starting to get real sad L knowing our trip was just about done…… So we went back to Zihua and power shopped!!! We had a list, knew what we wanted and stormed the shops! This time we got dropped off more Up—town, I think the taxi driver called it the “Flea Market” area. (by Elektra) It was store front after store front of merchandise, clothes, shoes, men’s clothing, tennis shoes, chickens roasting on the rotisserie, a warehouse full of fruits, veggies, rice’s… not as “comfortable of a feeling” as down by the beach but still worth the extra walking and shop browsing. Great treasures where Conch Crème ( I hope someone will tell me exactly what’s in it and if it’s effective) Vanilla, leather sandals, painted masks, shell wind chimes, leather covered pots, wood and stone ankle bracelets. beach shells, and way too many other things that I will treasure forever OR till next year when we return to find more treasures!! (350 days and counting!!!!!) It should be two of us next celebrating birthdays!!! Watch out Mexico!

Day 11 Sat. 3/11 Our flight wasn’t ‘til 3:15 pm (we weren’t on a charter ) We started the day with a great “made to order omelet” in our favorite restaurant Fruits Y Flores. We had the made to orders most every day. They have great breakfast buffets—two of the three restaurants were open every day for all meals, and sometimes all three! All about the same for breakfast eggs, pancakes, fruits – great fruits, etc dinners varied by Asian food, fish foods, etc.

On Tuesday 3/7 I sent home a little note to family and friends that we composed and I thought you might enjoy too!
HOLA Family & Friends 3-7-00, 11AM 87+ and getting hotter!
Everything is muy, muy, Bueno (very very good)
· Whale watching,
· Wave bashing,
· Popper drinking,
· Beach combing,
· Hair braiding,
· Sun bathing,
· Disco dancing,
· V-ball playing,
· Street shopping,
· Culture shocking,
· Croc Feeding,
· People partying,
· Sunset cruising!!!!!
And we still have 3 1/2 days more in the MEXICAN RIVIERA.

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