By: Jody Reed – Jody Reed is formerly a writer at the White House and TV Consumer Reporter. A 15-year veteran travel writer, she is published regionally and nationally and is a member of the International Food, Wine and Travel Writers Association.
If you’re seeking a divine enchanting great escape in Mexico, look no further, welcome to the rich tapestry of Ixtapa Zihuatanejo. There is something for every budget, every taste from pure luxury to Bohemian….It is two destinations in one. There has never been a better, safer time to experience this Mexican paradise. For this Travel Columnist, Ixtapa Zihuatanejo is the most authentic destination you will find.
Known for decades as the crown jewel of Mexico’s Beach communities, Ixtapa Zihuatanejo on the Pacific Coast is also a haven for nature lovers. If you’re seeking an ecological escape for serenity, tranquility and a rich rainbow parfait of flora and fauna, this is the destination for the entire family. Harmony embraces you as emerald waters lap sugar soft beaches and verdant palm trees sway melodically. New on the horizon for ecotourism and volunteerism is EL REFUGIO DE POTOSI, an innovative “Garden of Eden” near Zihuatanejo…Don’t miss it! Sugar soft pristine beaches meet azure waters in an area jam-packed with lush mangroves, rainforests, lagoons and a treasure chest bounty of birds, plants and animals.
Just down the road from Zihuatanejo is Barra de Potosi and Playa Blanca, an enchanting ecotourism heaven. I cherished traveling green and recommend the following:
- Discover over 320 species of birds with a local naturalist.
- Imbibe in the education of Iguana breeding and rehabilitation.
- Escape to a butterfly biodiversity center…great for the entire family.
- Book a tour of turtle nesting and release…guaranteed to open your heart and soul.
Following are a few of the highlights from my Travel Diary:
Day 1: Stop at a fruit plantation and tour the charming puebla of Petatlan. Top off this day with a sunset cruise on the Picante Catamaran or the Dancer, for stunning, panoramic views of the Bay.
Day 2: Try a canopy tour or go deep sea fishing for cutting-edge ecotourism. Bonita, yellow fin tuna and snapper abound. Go to the Dolphinarium for a unique encounter.
Day 3: Following your divine biking and kayaking adventure, check out Mother Nature’s finest with some snorkeling you will long treasure. In the evening, hop an ATV tour for a rose-hued sunset.
Day 4: Just down the road…For those of us who cherish the colonial treasure of San Miguel de Allende, as well as a new tourism program, combines shuttle buses and cooperative packages to showcase both stunning communities, only five hours apart. The harmonious marriage of these two gems makes you the traveler the winner. And if that is not enough, be a pseudo-archeologist for a day with the excavation (“DIGS”) at La Chole, a newly-discovered, massive pyramid complex nearby.
Day 5: Take a water taxi to Ixtapa Island and have a local lunch at Princess Rebeca’s on the beach.
Day 6: See the newly renovated downtown Zihuatanejo, a lovely fishing village that has boutiques, unique charming restaurants and magical people.
This hidden paradise of the Mexican Pacific Coast has never been safer and more affordable…Be inspired by Mother Nature, just down the road in Ixtapa Zihuatanejo.
WHERE TO STAY: There are resorts for all budgets and tastes. Here are a few of my favorites…Hotel Emporio Ixtapa, Barcelo Ixtapa, Azul Ixtapa Hotel, Las Brisas Ixtapa and the Presidente Intercontinental Hotel. Don’t miss the raw fish tiritas in lime and the tasty pescadillas, available throughout the area. The magic of Ixtapa Zihuatanejo will linger as memory insurance for years to come.
ESCAPE TO ENCHANTING IXTAPA ZIHUATANEJO
** Tranquil environment with natural beauty and serenity, rich biodiversity, mangroves, rainforests, divine Mother Nature.
** Kayaking, biking, hiking, naturalist tours.
** A wide variety of accommodations, from bungalows to five-star properties to meet every budget and palette.
** Land lovers’ option…turtle nesting, bird watching, iguana rehabilitation.