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Published: November 15th 2014
Mazatlan appears to be one of the fittest cities we've visited outside the States. There are hundreds of people running, walking, cycling, and roller blading along the malecon every morning and evening. There are open air cross fit and aerobics classes. There are people (old people!) swimming laps across the immense bay. There is a body-builder public open air gym on the malecon. There are people doing yoga on the beach and mothers pushing strollers while roller-blading! Large groups of teens come down and ride the waves every day after school.
There is almost no litter on the streets and beaches...and yesterday a crew was washing down the malecon with soapy water and brushes! The cleanup work seems to be a collaboration between the city and volunteers.
On Wednesday night we ate the old Mazatlan institution, the Topolo Restaurant. It is located in a beautiful old house not far from the center plaza, and the food was delicious...
We took the ferry (5 minutes) across to Stone Island on Thursday, and walked a few minutes to the beach there. Stone Island is really a peninsula and a very pleasant tourist place. We camped out in a palapa restaurant
and spent the day people watching and swimming. We did see beach vendors with something we've seen in Mexico before: live, very large snakes and iguanas being carried around. The handlers charged for photos...
Thursday evening, again following suggestions from Loa, the owner of Nid Art cooperative, we ate in the former cistern turned restaurant by a Spanish chef (El Aljibe). This was one of the best meals I've had. Great service..cash only, and no margaritas! (But a delicious sangria....)
Thursday night I lost my fight with the cold virus, and woke up feeling less than energized...so we decided to rent bikes and leisurely cycle the length of the malecon and swim at the the big beach on the way back....it was a great idea, and I felt better being out in the breeze and sun. The water is a perfect temperature, and the waves were moderate today....
On Friday, we ate at yet another great restaurant, which had just opened, after moving from another location. Hector's Bistro has good meals and even better desserts....
We had heard that the opera was sold out but decided to try for last minute tickets and were
successful. It was the debut of an American/Mexican opera about the last weeks of the "Mexican Nightingale", Angela Peralta, who died of yellow fever in Mazatlan in 1883. The cast lead a parade around the plaza, complete with fireworks before the show. It was quite good, with talented singers. The only unfortunate part was the couple next to us who texted throughout the entire performance (except intermission...!)
We returned to our hotel to find the formerly quiet courtyard filling up with motorcycles, some from Arizona....! This turned out to be a bad thing, as more and more arrived over the next day...we decided to change hotels on Saturday. It was the last straw, since we already had street noise, a very loud disco down the beach, and several live music venues nearby...
We are now staying at the Machado, right on the plaza by the teatro where we saw the opera last night...very old style, but quiet and pleasant.
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