Tuesday, November 18, 2014


So, we are just thrilled to be back in Zihuatanejo.

If you are late to the party, this is where we plan to spend our winter. We aren't sure exactly when we'll be heading home but we'll be here until about two or three weeks before we plan to be back in BC, Canada for work.

If you have been following us for more than one winter you'll know that we are fairly restless and tend to spend our winters constantly on the move. Which has been fun and we've seen and done a lot. However, it is very tiring. Last year did us in on the constant moving.

When Derek and I decided to come south for this winter we promised each other and ourselves that we would spend most of our time in one place. And - because we feel like we've been cold for about a year and a half - it wasn't a stretch for us to return to Mexico this year. Last years trip over to North Carolina and back was just to darn cold.

After all - we - the four of us - live in a camper van - all 98 sq ft of it. In order for that to work we need to spend most of our time outside - or we just get on each others nerves.

With that decision made - we thought about where in Mexico we could spend roughly three months. The place has to be good since that it is a longgggggg time for us - the restless Wood Clan.

Although there are many beautiful places in Mexico that we enjoyed visiting on our first Mexico trip two years ago - we chose Zihuatanejo. It has everything for a long term stay - a nice and reasonable priced RV park about two minutes from the beach, walking areas for Rufus, good restaurants near by, shopping close by with the bus or taxis, a calm and safe swimming area, and a clean beach. There are a ton of more reasons that will show themselves in our posts over the next three months.

Boy - I hope you don't get bored! Life here is about to become very slow paced. Not much gets done in  these hot temperatures.

I'll try to find ways to keep you interested and entertained - not so difficult with my traveling partners around.

Word on the street is that Derek is going to go parasailing this year - that will be something to see.

Anyway, I've been really slow with the camera these last few days. The heat was a bit challenging at first but we've become used to it a bit more now.

Shortly after we arrived at El Manglar we headed to the beach for a swim to cool off. One of the Owners - Edmundo - had to come and show us where we could park. Looks like the park is going to be full this year. Although right now it is quiet - we were the second to show up - after Keith, also from BC. A new rig came in today - from Quebec - I'll post pictures of this place next post.

One of our traditions now is to go to the restaurant the first night. Here's Cassia watching the crocodiles that live in the canal right beside the restaurant. A bit daunting but after our three week stay last time we are ok with them - they appear to be well fed.

In addition to great service and food - El Manglar has great Limonades - addicting actually.

 Because we were a little low in funds we stuck to burgers rather than seafood. El Manglar offers American/Canadian style hamburgers and fries which is much appreciated here in Mexico. I had the Cheeseburger and Derek the Bacon Cheeseburger - we also had an order of deep fried fish tacos. We'll head back there soon for their seafood combo which is amazing.

After dinner we headed to the beach for a walk. We'll probably walk the beach every night while we are here - it's one of our favourite things.

I'm sure I'll be getting some great sunset shots this year.

At the far end of the beach we were surprised to find the releasing of the turtles. During our last trip to Mexico we were able to watch this at Playa Troncones. 

There was quite a group to watch and participate. Sadly, my battery died just after this next picture so I didn't get a chance to take a picture of Cassia holding and releasing a turtle.

I'm thinking that there will be more chances for that.

Monday morning we needed to go grocery shopping at the Commercial Mexicana. We really should have stopped there as we drove right by it on our way in, however none of us felt like shopping after our four hour drive.

Since this is how we will be getting our groceries for the rest of our time here we may as well get used to the trip. First, we walk about a block from El Manglar to get on the bus. Things have changed here - last time there were large buses - now smaller vans or colectivos. I should have taken a picture of the exterior.

Anyway, for $15 pesos - just over $1 - we get a ride to the glorietta. That's for Derek and I - Cas rides for free. Then we need to walk along the canal. It's a bit of a distance and we really felt it with the heat - even though it was around 10:30 am.

This strip is all new - exercise equipment and…..

a playground. I can see this as a regular stop.

About 1,200 pesos later and we were done. That's huge for us about $100. However, I bought a bathing suit and Derek stocked up on beer. Actually, beer prices are good for us here - Derek drinks Buenos Noches with a bottle of beer at less than $1 - much better than Canada at more than $2. Plus we stocked up on some staple type items that will last for quite a while. The problem with the Commercial Mexicana is that we can get anything. Not so good for our budget. It is better for us to stick to basic foods because many American/Canadian items that are brought in for the tourists are higher priced. 

Then we take a taxi back because we can't lug this stuff to the bus stop. It's worth it at about $4.

Last nights sunset walk.

Sorry - no pictures of the beach during the day yet - although we have been there a lot. Since we generally swim at the same time I'm not a fan of taking the camera to the beach. In the meantime you can check out a post from last time with a ton of beach shots. We are still looking for our taco lady!

We walk Rufus in the evenings as it is cooler and quieter on the beach. He always gets a lot of attention. 

We are on Playa La Ropa - across the bay from us is Zihuatanejo.

The lights at El Manglar Restaurant - which has great food by the way and is a must stop when in Zihua, has a white sign on the right that talks about the natural habitat of the crocodiles that live there.

Rufus doesn't really like the water but Derek tries to get him in to cool off. With his winter coat firmly in place, Rufus is having a difficult time getting used the heat also.

Our camera doesn't do really dark well - but I thought this was a pretty neat picture with the squiggles of the lights.

So, in addition to hanging out at the beach, we've been trying to get things set up in our site. We are now pretty much done other than sorting some things out in the van to make living easier. Julia, who lives here full time, was nice enough to give us two water bottles and a pouring stand. This is good because that way when the water truck - which came today thankfully, comes we don't have to pay the deposit for the bottles. Water here is $21 pesos - almost $2 for a 5 gallon bottle. Higher than average but it hasn't gone up in the two years. 

With the 30 amp electricity we don't use our propane - butane here - much, but that will be the next thing to get topped up the next time the truck comes through.

I'll take some photos of the area here for next post.

After that - photos of the downtown market - we are thinking of taking the bus there either Thursday or Friday.



  1. Loved today's blog. Lovely area and beautiful beach. Interesting exercise equipment. You guys are so lucky to be able to spend the winter there. Looking forward to your upcoming blogs. Thanks.

  2. Oh! I am going to luv, luv being here - lol see I have already settled in and can't wait to see more...how about some supermarket pics next time u go? I think it would be interesting to see the products on offer. You will all be brown as berries by the time you all leave..remember to slip, slop, slap in the sun. Cheers from Oz...

    1. Hi Leslie! We are going to love having you along! :) I will definitely get some pics at the grocery store….here is a post I did last time to hold you over...http://alifemadesimple.blogspot.mx/2013/01/a-trip-to-commercial-mexicana.html

  3. We remember the last time you were there looking for and indepth visit this time, enjoy the warmth.

    1. Yup - you've been with us for a while now George and Suzie! We'll enjoy the HEAT - boy it's hot here!

  4. So this is home for the winter of 2014 and spring of 2015, enjoy! Now go find the hammocks, shade trees and the good book...renew the mind.

    I don't need to tell you but I'm going to anyway: stay away from the crocs, they eat anything, hide in the bushes along paths near water and lurk under the water awaiting their next meal. You can see death in their eyes, villains I say, villains! Help control the croc pop by having a croc burger, I hear they taste like lobster. A forest ranger will tell you never feed wild animals.

    Viva la Mexico and Viva the Wood Clan!

    1. You were along with us last time we were here Brian - and no worries with the crocs. I know - I know. We wouldn't actually go down into the canal to pet them! LOL We ate croc in Florida - it's ok….. No trees for hammocks sadly…. but shade we can get with our umbrella. Looks like it will be a relaxing winter….

    2. I meant to say we ate Alligator in Florida.

  5. Looks fantastic! I hope Mazatlan treats us the same in December.

    1. It is Chris! Hopefully you two can make it here one day! Mazatlan will be great!

  6. Nice looking beach area!! And some great pics as always......keep them coming!!

    1. Thanks BlackSheep - yup - I don't have to do much to make this area look good! No worries - we'll all be beached out after three months of it!

  7. Nice - right?! She sure is - they grow so fast!

  8. We know all about that living in 90 sq. ft. Definitely need to be someplace where the outdoors is your living room. Looking forward to learning more about a months long stay in a Mexican city. Pics, pics, pics....:-)

  9. I agree, our trip last year was challenging with the cold temps. Más pics coming !

  10. Nice for you all to settle in one place - now relax and enjoy - making memories is what it's all about! Love your blog!
    Connie in PA


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