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Old 07-03-2006, 09:34 AM
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Thinking of doing the San Diego/Mazatlan 7 day in November. Any comments or suggestions either positive or negative would be very much appreciated. I'm a past HAL traveler,but I've never been south of Ensenada so it will all be new and unseen. Thanks.
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Old 07-04-2006, 01:30 PM
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I'm surprised no one has responded yet. I have done a Mexico cruise, though on a different cruise line. Found it a change from the Caribbean; in a way it felt weird to be always in the same country each time we stopped! Each area has its own scenery and attractions, though, each unique.
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Old 08-08-2006, 04:03 PM
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Yes, I was curious to see what the replies would be. We have cruised the Caribbean three times and are considering the Mexican Riviera for our next.
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Old 08-09-2006, 09:22 AM
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Mexico is a third world nation, and should be approached as such. The Mexican people are warm and friendly, but do be prepared to lots of poverty, with the attendant beggers. Bring nothing larger than $10 bills, keeping mostly to $5s and $1s. If you do believe you must give money to a begger, DO NOT give bills - you will be besieged afterward. Don't try to pay for a $5 trinket or cab ride with a large bill, you won't get change. Depending on how far south you go, in November, you should have beautiful weather - warmer and more humid as you go south, but not bad. Puerta Vallarta is a beautiful town. Cabo San Lucas is great. Didn't much like Mazatlan - it's a commercial city with much of the city problems. Haven't been south of PV - so can't help you with anything down thataway.
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Old 08-09-2006, 09:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by susanmaz:
Mexico is a third world nation, and should be approached as such. The Mexican people are warm and friendly, but do be prepared to lots of poverty, with the attendant beggers. Bring nothing larger than $10 bills, keeping mostly to $5s and $1s. If you do believe you must give money to a begger, DO NOT give bills - you will be besieged afterward. Don't try to pay for a $5 trinket or cab ride with a large bill, you won't get change. Depending on how far south you go, in November, you should have beautiful weather - warmer and more humid as you go south, but not bad. Puerta Vallarta is a beautiful town. Cabo San Lucas is great. Didn't much like Mazatlan - it's a commercial city with much of the city problems. Haven't been south of PV - so can't help you with anything down thataway.
WHAT??? Third World?!?!?! I can't believe I'm reading this! These comments are absolutely LUDICROUS!
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Old 08-09-2006, 10:30 AM
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If not beggars, there are many, many sellers of little trinkets and souvenir items; it was a bit of a gauntlet walking into Cabo from the dock where the tender landed. However, a polite "no, gracias" worked well, and the people were humble and polite. Parts of Mexico could probably be described as "third world," and you do want to be careful to use a legitimate taxi service, etc. If you've been to Ensenada, you probably have a good idea what to expect of the culture; scenery will be different, though. In November you may be able to do some whale-watching in Puerto Vallarta or Cabo, though that month might be just a bit early for it.

I enjoyed Mazatlan; we went on a walking tour of the old part of the city, and it was charming, with cobblestone streets and very narrow, high sidewalks (I don't recommend this tour for anyone with mobility issues!) Delightful old buildings, very interesting place. Puerto Vallarta, unlike the other two ports, was developed as a tourist town, and has all kinds of services (even a Walmart, with cash registers that read in both pesos and dollars). All 3 towns have good beach areas, though they will for the most part be quite some distance from the dock. All very different places, with different terrain and atmosphere.
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Old 08-09-2006, 04:55 PM
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We loved our Mexican Riviera cruise, and never felt uncomfortable. We were on a different cruise line, but visited many of the same ports that you will.

Mazatlan was my favorite. We took the Colonial Villages tour -- superb. I'd rank it very highly compared to all the excursions we've taken over the years. We visited several small towns in the Sierra Madres, and then enjoyed a cultural dance performance afterward. Within the towns, we visited various locales where native artisans made bricks, furniture, and beautiful tiles. We booked through the cruise line, and felt it was very much worth the price.

The Cabo San Lucas stop was short, but we still had enough time to view Los Arcos rock formations. This is not to be missed, IMO. There is a large structure set up near the tender pier in which many vendors sell the usual tourist trinkets. I agree that small bills are best here.

We did a City Tour in Puerto Vallarta, and while it acclimated us to the area, I wouldn't necessarily recommend it. Next time, I think we'll take a taxi or bus into town and walk along the Malecon alongside the water. There are many interesting statues, and the people were very nice and friendly.

Enjoy your cruise!
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