This trip is at least a few years in the future. But I’m already starting a to-go list, because it’s fun and optimistic. That this might happen, someday, when I have money.
Paricutin is in Michoacan. It is a very new volcano…and very accessible. With a few hours on horseback and foot, you can visit a church buried several meters deep in solid igneous rock, the base of the cone, and with some climbing, the rim of the cone.
If you go in the winter, Michoacan is also where the monarch butterflies winter. We went last time, and it’s worth seeing again…and maybe getting a bit closer. Again, requires horseback riding.
Papantla, and El Tajin, are in Veracruz. It’s mountainous and hot and tropical, and the original home of vanilla orchids. El Tajin are ancient ruins – pyramids, ball courts, a whole city – and because they are out of the way, aren’t overrun with tourists or vendors. We got there early in the morning and were the only people there. We finished seeing and climbing and exploring by midafternoon and returned to Papantla or Poza Rica, I can’t remember, and got vanilla ice cream. It was the best I’ve ever had. Riding in the bus with the windows open, eating that ice cream with my best friend…it was one of the most perfect moments in my life. So I’d like to do it again.
Oaxaca is a must-see. We went last time for Dia de Muertos, so it was a bit nuts…I’d kind of like to see it as it is normally, a European city transported to Mexico. Either way, masks, rugs, ruins, an ancient tree…
Puerto Arista is the vacation part. Tiny town with 1 phone and a few fish shacks. We were the only gringas on the beach. Univ. of Oaxaca helps the sea turtles hatch their eggs (by protecting the nests and making sure all the turtles get out of the nest). Clear blue water, soft white sand, fresh seafood, and pure solitude. I’d like to spend more than 2 days there.
Taxco is the obligatory silver stop. I was broken into twice since my last trip to Mexico…I have no more Mexican jewelry. So you go.