Mexico Native Dolores del Rio Honored by Google

Durango city at night with Urkiola mountainsMexico is a top destination for people looking for world-class entertainment. The country has a long, rich history of producing notable stars in entertainment, including Ricardo Montalban, Carlos Santana, and Dolores del Rio. In fact, Dolores del Rio was widely regarded as being the first Latino woman to make it in Hollywood. Google Doodle honored her recently by showcasing an illustration of del Rio surrounded by flowers on Google’s homepage. If you’re a film buff, consider visiting del Rio’s birthplace during your visit to Mexico. Durango City is impressive any time of the year, but consider planning your trip during mid-to late-July to early August for the annual festival, and be sure to check out other exciting festivals happening around the country.

Explore Dolores del Rio’s birthplace: Durango City

Durango City, also known as Victoria de Durango and Ciudad de Durango, is the capital of the Mexican state of Durango. This historic city of about half a million people was founded in 1563 by explorer Francisco de Ibarra. It’s a beautiful area to stroll through, with historic architecture that speaks to the city’s Barcelona, Florence, Madrid, and Paris influences. The richly styled Catedral Basilica de Durango (cathedral), which dates back to 1695, is widely considered to be among the most impressive architectural wonders in northern Mexico.

National Festival of Durango

Each summer, Durango City’s population swells to about 1.5 million, as visitors flock here for the renowned Feria Nacional de Durango (National Festival of Durango). This month-long event has been held here every year since 1929, which means it’s extremely likely that Dolores del Rio would have enjoyed the festivities. The schedule of events is subject to change each year, but generally includes music concerts, equestrian events, and other cultural attractions.

Mexican Film Festival

Earlier in the summer, from late June to the beginning of July, Durango City holds its annual Mexican Film Festival. Shorts, documentaries, and feature-length films compete for top honors. There’s also a category exclusively for short films produced within the state of Durango, called “Made in Durango.”

Popular events in the surrounding areas

Anxious for more exciting festival options? Take a short, three-hour trip from Durango and head south to Zacatecas in central Mexico. Zacatecas is an enchanting, historic town with roots as a 16th century silver mining town. It’s also famed for its lovely pink quarry stone, and it’s been designated as a World Heritage Site.

If you visit in April, check out the Festival Cultural de Zacatecas. It’s an exuberant celebration of Mexico’s cultural heritage, featuring music, dance, films, art exhibits, theatrical performances, and much more. If you visit in August, you can attend the international folklore festival—the Festival Zacatecas del Folclor Internacional, which features traditional dance, cuisine, and crafts from various states in Mexico and countries around the world.

Plan your trip with Sea Side Reservations

Sea Side Reservations invites Mexican culture aficionados, festival enthusiasts, and sun lovers alike to plan the trip of a lifetime with our luxury accommodation services. We connect vacationers to top resorts, hotels, and villa rentals around the country, and our onsite property managers are always available to support the comfort and safety of our guests.

Wednesday, August 9th, 2017
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Archaeological Mysteries at the Ruins of Teotihuacan

Pyramids of the Sun and Moon on the Avenue of the Dead, Teotihuacan ancient historic cultural city, old ruins of Aztec civilization, Mexico, North America, world travelTorrential rains saturated the grounds at Teotihuacan (pronounce it tay-oh-tee-wah-KAHN) on an autumn day in 2003. The pre-Aztec ruins, located just 30 miles from Mexico City, became so waterlogged that a gapping sinkhole opened up at the dig site at the base of the Temple of the Plumed Serpent—a large pyramid at the southeast sector of Teotihuacan. Sergio Gomez, the archaeologist who discovered the mess, later recalled thinking, “How exactly are we going to fix this?” After lowering himself down into the hole via rope, Gomez realized that the “mess” he’d been fretting over was actually one of the most significant discoveries at Teotihuacan. The painstaking explorations that would follow yielded a few puzzles that have yet to be solved—namely, the existence of liquid mercury and the formation of hundreds of mysterious yellow orbs.

Why liquid mercury is significant

Gomez and his team of archaeologists found traces of liquid mercury in the main tunnel underneath the Temple of the Plumed Serpent. The odds are strongly against that being a natural phenomenon. In nature, mercury exists in cinnabar rock, aka mercury ore. The mercury has to be extracted from the rock and purified to eliminate the sulfur. The easiest way to accomplish this is to heat the cinnabar to 674 degrees Fahrenheit—the boiling point of mercury—and collect the mercury vapors. The vapors are then condensed and what’s left is liquid mercury.

This is significant because in nature, mercury exists primarily in the cinnabar rock, and rarely as a native metal. This means the ancient civilization who built Teotihuacan had to have gone through the laborious process of creating liquid mercury. Archaeologists have theorized that the mercury served some symbolic or ritualistic purpose, but it’s likely that we’ll never know for sure exactly why the ancients made it and kept it under a temple.

What purpose could the orbs have had?

The hundreds of small, metallic orbs—which researchers have named “disco balls”—have been equally puzzling. In an unusual turn of events worthy of an Indiana Jones movie, the archaeologists working under the temple used two robotic probes to poke around some of the rooms. These probes found the orbs, which range from four to 12 centimeters in diameter. Researchers found the orbs were made from clay, and then were covered with pyrite, or fool’s gold. Over the millennia, the pyrite oxidized and became jarosite—a crusty amber mineral. It’s been suggested that the orbs served some sort of religious or ritualistic purpose, but this is only speculation.

Sheets of mica

Teotihuacan is puzzling for another reason. On top of the Pyramid of the Sun, researchers found a thick sheet of mica. Mica was also present on the floors of subterranean chambers at that pyramid. No other archaeological sites in the country or, for that matter, the continent, are known to have been built with mica. What makes this feature curious is that the mica appears to have originated in Brazil. How it found its way to present-day Mexico City and why it was used are questions that may never be answered.

Experience the mystery of the ancient past for yourself. Sea Side Reservations makes it easy to book comfortable, safe accommodations throughout Mexico. Since 2001, we’ve been rated #1 for owner and guest satisfaction. Our professional property managers validate all properties with our certified 5 star rating system. Get started planning your next adventure today!

More on the mysteries of Teotihuacan:

  1. Smithsonian, A Secret Tunnel Found in Mexico May Finally Solve the Mysteries of Teotihuacán,
  2. Archaeology, Mythological Mercury Pool,
Monday, July 31st, 2017
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Top 5 Things to Do in San Carlos, Mexico

LIZARD ROCK IN SAN CARLOSWith its stunning desert-meets-sea landscape, San Carlos is a haven for vacationers who want to immerse themselves in one of Mexico’s most beautiful resort towns. San Carlos is brimming with dozens of natural attractions, and is renowned for its magnificent snorkeling, diving and whale watching opportunities.

If you are planning a San Carlos vacation, be sure to add these excursions to your itinerary!

Spend a day at Playa Algodones

Famed for its soft, powdery white sands and rolling dunes that set the backdrop in the film Catch 22, Playa Algodones is aptly named (Algodon is Spanish for ‘cotton’). This quiet stretch of coastline is one of northern Mexico’s most striking beaches, and is the perfect place to enjoy a wide range of water sports. Windsurfing, snorkeling and fishing are popular activities along this pristine cove that boasts turquoise waters. Intrepid travelers can even camp along certain parts of the beach, but there are numerous resorts and hotels for those yearning for a bit more comfort and luxury.

Hike Cerro Tetawaki

Feeling up for some adventure? Grab your camera, your hiking boots and a full canteen of water for a strenuous yet rewarding hike up Mount Tetawaki. There are two well-manicured trails up each side of the peak, which offers a mirador with spectacular 360-degree views of the bay and surrounding countryside. The climb is quite steep in parts, so go prepared to sweat. Most visitors can summit Mt. Tetawaki in just over an hour and rave about the incredible vistas!

Zip-lining in Nacapule Canyon

Situated just outside of San Carlos, Nacapule Canyon is a great destination for families who want to hike, go rock climbing, or get a bird’s eye view of the tropical desert landscape. Experienced tour operators offer several different zip-line canopy tours (appropriate for all ages), as well as rappelling along the rugged rock formations. 

Fishing with the kids

Fishing is excellent year-round in San Carlos, where the waters are rife with marlin, sailfish, tuna and mahi mahi. If you’re itching to reel in the big one, book a sportfishing charter for the day.  If you have small children in tow and just want to have some fun, you can enjoy some bottom fishing off the marina docks or in front of Fiesta Hotel. Common catches include croaker, red snapper and bass.

Horseback riding at El Rancho Del Desierto

Take in the Sonoran Desert beauty on a guided horseback ride geared to all ages and levels. There are several guided trail rides to choose from that meander along backcountry roads, by lapping waves or include both desert and beach. Horses are well-trained and riders are matched to steed according to skill level. Wear long pants and bring your sense of adventure!

Additional San Carlos Resources:

  1. Zona Turistica, Playa Los Algodones
  2. What’s Up San Carlos, Tetawaki
  3. Trip Advisor, Nacapule Canyon
  4. San Carlos Mexico Guide, Fun for Kids
Friday, July 28th, 2017
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Mexico’s Famous Soccer Stadiums

mexico soccer futbol fansFor most Mexicans, futbol (soccer in the U.S.) is a way of life. Indeed, soccer is the veritable king of sports south of the border, where passionate fans flock to support their favorite leagues, whether playing in a qualifying match or a friendly. Either way, expect lots of heated cheering, jeering and rapid-fire commentary if you’re lucky enough to be in the stands.

You don’t have to be a die-hard sports fan to appreciate the athletic prowess (and crazed fervor) on display during a soccer match, and there are plenty of impressive stadiums to catch the action. For the uninitiated, the Mexican football league system has four divisions and dozens of clubs, including the ever-popular Club America, Chivas, Cruz Azul and Pachuco.

Here’s a shortlist of some of the best (and biggest) places to see a soccer game in Mexico:

Estadio Azteca

Located in Mexico City. This legendary stadium is home to Club America and the Mexican national team is the first stadium in history to host two FIFA finals. With a seating capacity of more than 100,000, Estadio Azteca is one of the world’s 18 largest stadiums.

Estadio Olimpico Universitario

Famously hosted the 1968 Summer Olympics in addition to several FIFA World Cup games. Olimpico Universitario is the place to watch Pumas de la UNAM and is located about 8 miles from the historic center of Mexico City.

Estadio Jalisco

Seats 54,963 spectators making this the country’s third largest stadium. It is the home stadium for fan favorites Liga MX, Club Atlas, and Ascenso MX.  

Estadio Chivas

Seats nearly 50,000 and is Mexico’s fourth largest stadium. Located in Zapopan, Jalisco, this massive venue is mostly used for home matches for Club Chivas, which boasts dozens of top players and 12 championships.

If you are interested in taking in some local sporting culture during your holidays, here are some helpful tips to know:

  • Tickets sell out fast for big games, plan ahead!
  • Leave extra time to arrive to account for traffic delays
  • Belts, water bottles, lighters and aerosols are not permitted inside
  • Keep some pesos handy for purchasing snacks and beverages
  • Be prepared for some strong language
  • Even if you’re not a soccer fan, enjoy the atmosphere and people!

Additional Mexican Futbol Resources:

  1. TheTopTen, Top Ten Best Mexican Soccer Teams,
  2. The Stadium Guide, Mexico City Football Guide
Wednesday, July 19th, 2017
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Explore Coral Reefs in Mexico

Sergeant Major fishes in caribbean reef Mexico Mayan RivieraCoral reefs are some of the most astounding natural features on Earth. Healthy reefs are teaming with activity, with all sorts of fish and marine life going about their business. But the coral itself is also alive. Corals look like pretty rocks and they act like plants, since they’re attached to the ocean floor, but they’re actually animals. Each coral branch contains thousands of small invertebrates called polyps, and these tiny creatures thrive in warm, tropical waters. Mexico is a favorite destination for snorkelers, divers, and coral reef enthusiasts because it offers the perfect environment for coral to flourish. When you book your next trip to Mexico, consider including some of these top diving spots in your itinerary.

Mesoamerican Reef

Also called the Great Mayan Reef, this is the second largest reef in the world, after the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. The Great Mayan Reef extends for longer than 600 miles from Quintana Roo to Honduras, Guatemala, and Belize. Researchers have documented 65 types of coral, and five hundred species of fish and crustaceans. Some of the best areas to take in the beauty of the Great Mayan Reef are in Cancun, Xcalak, Cozumel, Puerto Morelos, Puerto Aventuras, and Punta Maroma.

Tormentos Reef

Also in Cozumel, the Tormentos Reef is an ideal destination for divers who have attained at least an intermediate level. This is because there are some strong currents in this area. The depths range from about 50 to 70 feet. The Tormentos Reef is known for its plethora of brain and whip corals, along with an incredible diversity of sea life, including seahorses, angelfish, groupers, eels, triggerfish, and grunts.

Chunzumbul Reef

Visit the Playa del Carmen dive site to take in the natural wonders of the Chunzumbul Reef. Playa del Carmen is located in the Riviera Maya area in the state of Quintana Roo. Thanks to the relatively shallow water, snorkelers can enjoy the beauty of the reef, and it’s an ideal spot for beginning divers. The reef features a stunning coral cavern and vibrant schools of fish. Look for sea turtles, lovely lavender sea fans, rays, moray eels, and barracuda.

Playa del Carmen is a great choice for other reasons. It’s conveniently close to the international airport in Cancun, and it’s now considered one of the trendiest cities in Mexico. Here, you’ll find high-quality accommodations, along with plenty of shopping, fine dining, and nightlife destinations for when you’re not in the water.

Cerebros Reef

If you do visit Playa del Carmen, check out Cerebros Reef in addition to Chunzumbul. Cerebros has depths ranging from 20 to 50 feet, making it perfect for beginning divers and snorkelers. This reef’s defining characteristic is its stunning array of brain coral. Shrimp, lobster, scorpion fish, and moray eels are some of the marine denizens that make Cerebros their home.

How to get there

For years, savvy nature lovers have been booking accommodations in Mexico through Sea Side Reservations. The safety and comfort of travelers are our highest priorities, which is why we scour the country to find the best accommodations available. Get in touch with us to discuss accommodations near your favorite diving spots in Mexico.

Friday, July 14th, 2017
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5 Mexican Dishes You’ve Never Heard Of

Mexican Cochinita pibil with tortillaFine food is as good a reason to visit the Yucatan Peninsula as any! The culinary delights of this region borrow influence from Mayan, Caribbean, Spanish, African, Middle Eastern, and Mexican cuisines. The corn, chocolate, honey, venison, wild turkey, squash, cucumbers, chiles, and tomatoes you see in many Yucatan dishes are remnants of traditional Mayan cooking. Pork and Seville oranges worked their way into the cuisine much later, when Spanish settlers arrived in the 16th century. Edam and Gouda cheese can be owed to trade with the Dutch in the 19th century.

Some restaurant offerings — like ceviche – are common among other Mexican, Caribbean, and Latin American locales, but seasonings like achiote, a peppery red sauce derived from the tropical annatto plant, and Spanish sour orange are unique to the region, and offer a distinctive flavor profile to Yucatan dishes.

Other common seasonings in Yucatan cooking include: pumpkin seed, xcatic chile pepper, habaneros, sweet chili, red onion, tomato, and oregano. Like any coastal environment, seafood is a big part of the cuisine in Baja Mexico and the surrounding area, but turkey, chicken, and pork are prominent proteins.

While in Mexico, you’ll be treated to a multitude of fresh, locally grown spices, fruits, and vegetables that excite the senses. Maybe you’ll taste guacamole and flan like you’ve never tasted before while visiting the Yucatan Peninsula, but here are five local Mexican dishes you’ve never heard of that will be worth trying.

Pibil (pronounced “PEE-beel)

The Yucatan’s most famous local dish translates to “cooked under ground.” In a land of dense jungle and high humidity, the Ancient Mayans had to figure out preservation methods to preserve the wild game they needed to transport home from the hunt. Their version of barbecue involves a spice rub and pit smoke. Modern cooks marinate chicken (Pollo), pork (Puerco), or a whole suckling pig (Cochinita) in achiote paste, onions, and sour orange juice overnight before wrapping the meat in banana leaves and slow-roasting over charcoal. This dish may be served on rolls or tortillas, accompanied by refried beans and pickled red onion relish.

Papadzules (pronounced papa-TSU-les)

Papadzules are simply described as “small egg tacos” smothered in tomato sauce. You can think of it as the Yucatan’s version of the central Mexican taquito, flauta, or enchilada. To make this dish, chefs concoct a sauce by toasting Mayan xt’op or Spanish pepita gruesa pumpkin seeds, grinding them, and extracting the paste. The paste is then blended with epazote, a sharp herb similar to oregano. A fresh corn tortilla is dipped in this sauce and stuffed with chopped hard-boiled egg. The tortilla is deep-fried and simmered in a tomato and habanero chile sauce.

Queso Relleno (pronounced CAY-so re-LAY-nyo)

Hollowed-out Edam cheese is at the heart of this Mexican dish. In the past, “the boss” was fed the soft part of the cheese and left the hard rinds to the servants. They stuffed these cheese rinds with a near-black mixture of caper olives, raisins, Bell peppers, almonds, hardboiled egg, spices, and ground beef or pork – fried until nearly carmelized. The stuffed rinds were then wrapped in cheesecloth and banana leaves, steamed to a molten consistency, and topped with a red tomato sauce and a white gravy called k’ool.

Sopa de Lima (pronounced SOAP-a day LEE-ma)

Lime soup is a broth-based hot soup made with chicken or turkey stock simmered for hours, and combined with shredded chicken, garlic, onion, tomatoes, dried oregano, and (of course) lots of lime juice. This tasty soup is served with fresh garnishes of scallions, cilantro, habanero chiles, and citrus juice – a side known as xnipek, which translates to “dog’s nose” because it’s so spicy, one’s nose starts to run after one taste! Strips of crunchy fried tortilla are often served on top.

Panuchos (pronounced pan-OO-choss)

In America, hotdogs are the traditional “street meat” food cart fare. In the Yucatan Peninsula, Panuchos are the snack of choice, found in food carts, fast food joints, cantinas, and restaurant appetizer menus alike. Handmade corn tortillas are stuffed with refried back beans and shredded chicken marinated in peppery achiote seed paste and dissolved juice of sour orange. Sometimes you’ll see turkey, fish, or pork in place of the chicken, making it a great way to re-use leftovers. Toppings of choice include: pickled red onions and jalapeno pepper, fresh avocados, chopped plum tomato, and chopped lettuce or cabbage. Salbutes are very similar, except that the tortillas are made of corn and flour, not just corn, and are fried until very crispy.

Want to learn more about visiting the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico? Contact Sea Side Reservations to book your local accommodations and gain insights from experienced travel coordinators who have the inside scoop on the region!

More on Yucatan cuisine:

  1. The Yucatan Times – Top 10 Authentic Regional Dishes of Yucatan,
  2. Goats on the Road – Eating Our Way Through the Yucatan Peninsula,
  3. Chowhound – How To Pronounce Pibil,
  4. Bacon Is Magic – Must Try Street Food in the Yucatan Peninsula,
  5. Food and Wine – A Yucatan Adventure,
  6. Loco Gringo – 10 Iconic Yucatan Foods To Try,
  7. Backyard Nature – Yucatan,
  8. Eat Your World – What To Eat: Queso Relleno,
Friday, July 7th, 2017
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Mexico’s Best Mountain Hikes

mexico mountain hikerThere’s good reason why so many outdoor enthusiasts flock to Mexico: the country’s diverse landscapes offer epic hiking opportunities through pine woods, mountain passes and sultry jungles. Even more exciting is the fact that pristine wilderness, snow capped peaks and lush rainforests are all within a three-hour drive from the sprawling metropolis of Mexico City.

While temperatures are moderate year-round, the best time to book a hiking vacation to Mexico is during the dry season months of November-April, when thunderstorms are less likely to dampen your adventure. If you’re itching to stretch your legs and hit some exciting mountain trails, here are some destinations worth checking out!

Paso de Cortes

Situated roughly three hours from Mexico City, between the volcanoes Iztaccihuatl and Popocatépetl, Paso de Cortes offers spectacular vistas from its high-altitude perch. Named after the Spanish conquistador Hernan Córtes, this snowy mountain pass is recommended for the more experienced hiker who wants to get off the tourist trail.


Meaning “white woman” in the native Nahuatl, Iztaccíhuatl sits some 17,000 feet above sea level, which is roughly two miles above Mexico City. While this snowy mountain pass isn’t considered technical, it is a challenging two-day hike best reserved for the serious outdoor explorer. Due to weather concerns, this mountain should only be climbed from late October through May, as summer time rains can melt glacier snow, making trails unsafe.  

Friar’s Peak, Nevado de Toluca

Friar’s Peak floats more than a mile (15,354 feet) above sea level and is Mexico’s 4th tallest mountain. This awe-inspiring summit is the centerpiece of Nevado de Toluca — a massive extinct stratovolcano noted for its beautiful but chilling alpine climate and scenery. This is also a popular spot for amateurs, who can tailor a day hike to Nevado de Toluca, which is about a 50 mile drive from Mexico City. You can park your vehicle along any number of spots and climb to the aquamarine waters of the twin lagoons (the Lake of the Sun and Moon).


Discover amazing views as you climb to the Aztec pyramid of Tepozteco, situated atop a small peak in Morelos, Mexico. The steep walking path is a combination of natural rocks and man-made stairs, and depending on your fitness level, the uphill journey can take between 1 and 2 hours. By all accounts, the trek is well worth the effort for chances to explore sculpted glyphs in this archeological site and take in the panoramas below. Bring plenty of water, and plan to arrive at 9AM when the park opens, to avoid heavy crowds.

Additional “Mexico Mountain Hikes” Resources:

  1. Outdoor Active, Mountain Hikes in Mexico
  2. Culture Trip, Most Epic Hikes to Take in Mexico
  3. NBC News, 5 Great Day Hikes from Mexico City
Thursday, June 29th, 2017
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Off the Beaten Path in Riviera Nayarit

Breakwater at el Anclote beach in Punta MitaRiviera Nayarit itself is an “off-the-beaten-path” destination within Mexico. Scarcely a decade ago, the 190 miles just north of bustling Puerto Vallarta was a hideaway for surfers and Hollywood A-listers looking to stay under the radar. “Travelers seeking a more immersive experience of authentic Mexico will certainly find a trip to northern Nayarit to be a breath of fresh air,” describes Marc Murphy, managing director of the Riviera Nayarit Convention & Visitors Bureau. Here are some of our travel coordinators’ favorite hidden gems.

Hidden Beach on the Marieta Islands

Marietas Islands National Park is a small group of protected volcanic islands off the coast of Punta Mita. The former government bombing test site was saved by a group of environmentalists that included famed Sea Explorer Jacques Cousteau. Hidden caverns, natural archways, and an abundance of marinelife attract snorkelers and divers. The hidden gem here is appropriately named “Hidden Beach,” as you can only access the warm, turquoise, waters and pristine sandy cavern by swimming through a long tunnel from the Pacific Ocean. Thrillist named Hidden Beach one of the “Top 25 Beaches in the World,” alongside well-known paradises like Brazil’s Ipanema, Jamaica’s 7-Mile Beach, and Miami’s South Beach.

La Tovara Springs in San Blas

If you’ve ever been on Disney’s “Jungle Cruise” and longed for the real deal, you’ll find it in San Blas. The town itself consists of not much more than an old fort, a church, and a few restaurants with tasty seafood. A guided boat ride through La Tovara takes you beneath jungle canopy, through an endless maze of mangroves, and past nesting sites for egrets and spoonbills. You may spot crocodiles, turtles, and jaguars if you’re lucky. Guests are transported to a clear swimming spring visited by tropical parrots.

The Petroglyphs at Alta Vista

Alta Vista is one of the most sacred places in Riviera Nayarit. Down a winding dirt road, past farm fields and cow pastures, shaded by Papelillo and Kapok trees, you’ll park your car where the road is washed out and walk down a cobblestone path and dry river beds for 20 minutes to reach the discreet entrance of Alta Vista. Here you can hike the ancient trails of the Huichol Indians at “The King’s Fountain” (La Pila del Rey), a place where local Mestizos and Huichol Indians still worship. The petroglyph carvings imprinted on the slopes of the Copo volcano have been wonderfully preserved, tucked beneath dense forest canopy and surrounded by rich flora. You may spot sacrificial sites as well. Visitors say the best part of hiking Alta Vista is the quiet and ideal picnic sites alongside fresh mountain water pools and small waterfalls.

The Tianguis in La Peñita

La Peñita is one of the three small, friendly towns packed with “real Mexican flavor” in Jaltemba Bay, in the heart of Riviera Nayarit. An open-air market, The Tianguis, is this sleepy town’s main draw. Every Thursday, pickup trucks overflow with watermelons, poblano peppers, and seasonal produce. You can buy everything from just-caught Jumbo shrimp to fresh-baked pastries, Mexican table linens to Oaxacan wool rugs, handmade pottery to Huichol Indian art. If you love to shop artisan goods you won’t find elsewhere, the Tianguis is a must-see!

Monkey Mountain in Sayulita

Monkey Mountain sits high above the horizon as a standout geological feature in the area, promising spectacular views of San Pancho, Punta de Mita, and the Bay of Banderas from its summit — for those who are adventurous enough to make the arduous 1,200-foot trek. We recommend stopping at Painted Ponies, a horseback riding tour operator at the foot of Cerro Mono in Higuera Blanca. Saddle up for a three-hour adventure through the jungle. Unfortunately, the mountain’s resident monkeys were hunted to extinction long ago, so their presence remains in one’s imagination.

Need a place to stay?

Sea Side Reservations has been placing visitors in safe, comfortable, and convenient accommodations in Riviera Nayarit for nearly two decades. We enjoy high satisfaction ratings among guests and property owners alike. You can be rest assured your home-away-from-home will be well-appointed and ready upon your arrival. Contact us to learn more about booking your stay in Riviera Nayarit and about great places to see on your trip.

Additional “Off-The-Beaten Path in Riviera Nayarit” resources:

Tuesday, June 20th, 2017
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4th of July Celebrations in Mexico

Starfish on beach during July fourthFor many Americans, Independence Day conjures up images of backyard barbecues, hot dog eating contests, cookouts with family and friends, and spectacular firework displays. If you happen to find yourself south of the border this 4th of July, you will be in the good company of other vacationers who cherish the time-honored traditions of this national holiday.

Whether you’re vacationing in one of the oceanfront resorts of Cancun or a luxury condo in Los Cabos, there are tons of exciting festivities planned this Fourth of July, including themed pool parties, music concerts, family-friendly games, cookouts and more.  

This July 4th, get ready to enjoy some stars and stripes celebrations in paradise!

Las Vegas Charity Night in Rocky Point, Mexico

This 4th of July, Sonoran Resorts in Puerto Peñasco is gearing up for their annual Las Vegas Night for Charity!  This popular event is a great excuse to brush up on your poker and Black Jack skills as you help raise money for the less privileged children and families in Rocky Point. A $35 ticket includes a delicious buffet, $300 in charity chips and raffle tickets for chances to win cool prizes. This 4th of July event draws hundreds of Rocky Point locals and visitors who want to have fun while helping a good cause.

4th of July Music Weekend at Banditos

Banditos cantina is a popular concert venue in Rocky Point, and each year this beachfront sports bar and outdoor patio hosts a music weekend festival featuring rock, funk, reggae and other genres. The party starts Friday June 30 and runs through Sunday July 2. Past lineups have included headliners like Japhy’s Descent, Sara Robinson, Stone Mary, and Mob versus Ballot Box.

Los Cabos 4th of July Parties

Cabo San Lucas is home to some of the most beautiful ocean view resorts, many of which plan amazing 4th of July activities for guests. If you happen to be staying in Los Cabos over the holiday weekend, you’re in for a treat. Poolside cookouts will be serving up American favorites like hamburgers, ribs and hot dogs. Visitors can even partake in classic games like horseshoes and beer pong! Many hotels will be throwing beach parties into the evening, complete with music, dancing, specialty cocktails and even a fire show.  Some resorts are planning nighttime fireworks displays, so be sure to ask about starting times.

Independence Day in Playa del Carmen

The beautiful community of Playa del Carmen boasts a huge population of American expats who embrace their patriotic spirit every Fourth of July. If you’re looking for some family fun, head to Wah Wah Beach Bar, which prides itself on throwing the biggest party south of the border. There is usually face painting and a bouncy house for the kids, as well as drink specials on margaritas plus a mouthwatering all-American buffet with all the traditional 4th of July eats including hamburgers, chili, hotdogs and onion rings! Dress in your finest red, white and blue outfit for a chance to win a prize!

More on spending the 4th of July in Mexico:

Thursday, June 15th, 2017
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Take a Swim in Hidden Rivers in Cenotes

Sea level on the beaches of Cancun and Playa del Carmen offers clear blue expanses of water but a secret escape lets you swim underground in cool, clear waters of subterranean caves once revered by the Mayans. The Mayans referred to these spots as cenotes, or “sacred wells” and even settled their villages around them to tap into a spirit connection. Even today, the cenotes hold a mystic beauty.

The groundwork of the Yucatan Peninsula is structured a bit like a solidified porous sponge that was created where limestone collapsed or was eroded to reveal giant crevices. In spots where there were especially large holes, groundwater that has been filtered by the ground collects in crystal pools. In some, you can see straight through the purified water to the fish swimming at the bottom. In others, you can dodge stalactites and stalagmites. Some of the holes in the vast underground networks can only be reached by scuba diving.

Plan a cenote escape

Entering a cenote can be as calm or adventure-filled as you wish. Some have stairs that even grandma can traverse. For others, be ready to rappel. The cenotes that are open to the public are privately owned so there will be a fee to enter and life jackets will be provided.

Not far from Cancun, along Riviera Maya, there are several choices for a cenote experience. Some of the nearest include:

  • Less than an hour away in Boca del Puma, an eco-park offers zip line tours, ATV rides, and a cenote to explore.
  • Cenote Verde Lucero in Puerto Moreles is a smaller cenote so it has less traffic but still offers a lot of extras like a zip line and diving opportunities.
  • Sistema Xcaret is located in the Xcaret Eco-Park near Playa del Carmen and after snorkeling in the underground river, take a full menu of attractions including ruins, a dolphin attraction, and a farm.
Sunday, October 23rd, 2016
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