Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Exploring Old Town Mazatlan

We’ve spent a bit of time walking around Old Town Mazatlan over the past couple of days and we’re liking it more and more. In fact we think we may come down next winter and stay in the area. It has everything—the beautiful Plazuela Machado with its coffee shops and restaurants and the restored 17th century theatre, the Malecon walkway along the beach, the centro area with its huge market and the department stores. It’s not nearly as touristy as the Zona Dorada where we’re staying now.

Tourists go down there to see the old buildings but not that many of them stay in the area. There are lots of Gringos living there though so there's quite a bit of English-speaking culture. In fact there’s even an English library run by a couple of ex-pats. The beach hotels are mostly older and many of the beach goers are Mexican families. Part of the beach is used for pulling up the little fishing boats and vendors sell fresh fish and shrimp along the Malecon.

On Sunday we took a look at a house for rent up on a hill with a view from its patio of the cathedral and the downtown area and even a glimpse of the water. It’s a cute little place that accepts dogs and it has many more amenities than where we are—including a washer/dryer, cable TV and internet, and even a water purification system. We’re in the process of talking to the owners about booking it for maybe three months next year. Spending time there will be a more authentic experience and even Jamie thinks it would be cool.

Here’s a photo of the patio, which is really the rooftop of the downstairs of the casita.

Today we took the bus down to the central market and scored some fresh prawns at $7 a kilo. So tonight again it’s going to be a feast. We also scoped out the situation for Christmas dinner the day after tomorrow. Mexican families make a bigger deal of having a special dinner on the 24th, the Noche Buena. Many restaurants will be closed for both days but there are some that are hosting a Christmas feast for Gringos and we’ve reserved at one just behind the Plazuela in Old Town. It should be a rollicking good time.

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