A Year Already???

It’s been over a year since we arrived in Mexico and as of this writing we have left the country and made our way to Costa Rica. However, after spending that much time in Mexico it will always have a place in our hearts. We would say it feels like our second home but, since we also lived in Sydney, Australia for a year, Miami for 4 years, L.A. for 4 years, and spent a 1-year sabbatical in the Bahamas, that may be stretching it. But, no matter where we’ve lived or end up living, we’ll always treasure the time we spent there.
Auds and Richard at Bahia San Francisco

Our previous posts are wonderful snapshots of the year we spent lollygagging like a couple of beach bums in Mexico but since leaving La Paz and the Sea of Cortez on October 20, we have been hauling ass to get to Costa Rica. We’ve essentially been doing a “delivery” and though it’s been a great experience, it’s also been a lot less fun with a lot less Happy Hours and more overnight sails than we’ve ever done in our lives.

Here’s the rundown of what we’ve been doing for the last 6 weeks:
La Paz to Muertos – 60 nautical miles (nm) – 1 day
Muertos to Mazatlan – 190 nm – 2 days/1 overnight
Mazatlan to La Cruz/Puerto Vallarta – 180 nm – 2 days/1 overnight
Puerto Vallarta to Barra de Navidad – 150 nm – 2 days/1 overnight
Barra de Navidad to Manzanillo – 25 nm – 1 day
Manzanillo to Zehuatanejo – 190 nm – 2 days/1 overnight
Zehuatanejo to Papanoa – 37 nm – 1 day
Papanoa to Acapulco – 77 nm – 1 day
Acapulco to Puerto Angel – 212 nm – 2 days/1 overnight
Puerto Angel to Huatulco – 25 nm – 1 day
Huatulco to Chiapas (our last port in Mexico) – 250 nm – 3 days/2 overnights
Chiapas, Mexico to Bahia Santa Elena, Costa Rica – 475 nm – 4 days/3 overnights

Keep in mind that these are nautical miles (nm), which are 1.15 statute miles, and that we are travelling by sailboat which means we have to “sail” off the wind, when there is any, and that we are moving at approximately 6 nm per hour. However, if we have good winds we can travel faster. We even hit 9.4 knots on our approach to Bahia Santa Elena!! In short, we’ve travelled approximately 1,900 nm in 25 days including 10 overnights with only 17 rest days.

The rest stops were as follows:
– Puerto Vallarta, where we spoiled ourselves at beautiful Paradise Village Marina and Resort – mainly because they still had their summer rate, which was half the regular rate.

– Barra de Navidad, where we spent a night at the spectacular Grand Bay Resort and Marina, and had dinner with our friend Steve from Starfishette, who we met on the Baja-Ha-Ha.
Barra de Navidad2

– Zehuatanejo, where we spent 3 nights at anchor off this eclectic little resort village. We wish we could have stayed there longer but the weather was cooperating so we had to move on.

– Acapulco, where we stayed at Marina Acapulco because there was nowhere to anchor safely in this very crowded, very deep and very busy port. Plus, we wanted to be able to see the city and the cliff divers without the hassle of trying to find a place to safely land and lock the dinghy.
Acapulco Divers
Auds Acapulco Cab

– Huatulco, where we spent 2 nights at anchor then went to Marina Chahue while waiting for a window to cross the infamous Gulf of Tehuantepec.

– Chiapas, our last stop in Mexico, where we spent a couple of nights at Marina Chiapas before leaving on the long, non-stop 475-mile “travel odyssea” to Costa Rica. By the way, for you sailors that are planning to depart Mexico, we highly recommend this marina and the dockmaster, Guillermo aka Memo, as a great place for clearing out of the country. It was not only a new marina with first class facilities and wonderful bathrooms (very important to cruisers), but Memo also acted as an agent taking us to the Port Captain, Immigration and Customs to clear out at no charge.


OK, OK, we do have one last issue before we officially say goodbye to Mexico. I know I said that we wouldn’t be leaving Mexico until I could speak Spanish and half-joked that we may have to become citizens because it could take so long. Well, my Spanish has improved (Audrey’s is much better) but nowhere near what it should be. Not that we haven’t tried but the reality is that we spent most of our time with fellow sailors/cruisers who are all “gringos” and the time we spent with locals tended to be in restaurants, bars and stores where it’s difficult to befriend someone with a conversation that starts with “Tiene Vodka?”.
Happy Hour

So, we’ve now gone to Plan B which is taking Spanish lessons in Costa Rica where we hope to further improve and make friends with people who speak Spanish or want to improve theirs to more than “dos mas cervezas por favor”…