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Old 12-24-2008, 10:36 AM
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Join a tour or do yourself? Which tour?
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Old 12-25-2008, 07:16 AM
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Welcome to cruise-chat.

Let us know some of what you would like to do in Mazatlan so we can help you narrow your choices.
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Old 12-26-2008, 03:33 PM
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There are some very good guided tours in Mazatlan; ones that visit colonial villages in the Sierra Madere can be very interesting if you want to get into Mexican culture. We did a walking tour of Old Mazatlan on our last trip that was very enjoyable. There are some that I think are real rip-offs, such as tequila factories, sandal and tile makers, glass blowers, breweries; while mildly interesting, they are little more than selling opportunities.

Two of the best things to do in Mazatlan are to take an open-air taxi to the Golden Zone for shopping, beaches and good food. The deluxe resorts like El Cid will let you use their facilities right on the beach for no charge. Or take a water taxi to Stone Island for great beaches and very reasonable shrimp feasts and beer.
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Old 01-25-2009, 02:38 PM
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My husband and I visited Mazatlan in Dec 08 on HAL and had not booked any tours through the ship. We decided to get off the ship and just see what we could find to do. After running the gauntlet of VERY aggressive vendors inside the Port building we exited to the outdoor shops. We spoke with a tour operator that was offering 2-3 hours in an air-conditioned van for $10 per person and he would take us where we wanted to go. None of the 3 couples in the van were really interested in shopping so he took us sight seeing, stopping anywhere we wanted to get out and take pictures. He drove us through Old Mazatlan giving us lots of history and photo opportunities. We stopped for a bathroom break at a friends business where we were offered free beer, soft drinks or water, and absolutely no pressure to buy. He took us to a huge market place, where the locals shop, containing lots of clothes, food, and knick knacks. From there he took us by the cliff divers and offered to get someone to dive if we wanted to "donate" to the cause. We all chose not to. From there he continued on to the Golden Zone where he again offered us time to shop if we wanted (none of us did). He ended the tour by taking us through a gated community for the very wealthy, showing us multi-million dollar homes, before heading back to the cruise terminal. All in all this was very much worth the $10. A far cry from what some of the other tour operators were offering at $35 per person and on their schedule not ours. My suggestion is to talk to a few operators before choosing what you want to do as well as waiting a little while until the bulk of the passengers are off the ship and on their way. That way the operators that are left are a little hungrier for business and more willing to negotiate on prices and itinerary.
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Old 02-01-2009, 05:43 PM
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We made the short walk to the water taxi, spent 2.00 each for a round trip ticket and spent the day at Stone Island. Rented an ATV for an hour and drove up the beach 5 or 6 miles. Had a wonderful time.
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