Thursday, February 17, 2011

More Road Tripping, this time to Puerto Vallarta

AH, Puerto Vallarta......

The view from the Malecon looking north towards La Cruz
Lying at the head of Banderas Bay, like a crown jewel, Puerto Vallarta is a sophisicated city rich with history, fine art galleries, modern bronze sculptures stretching the distance of the Malecon, and an array of restaurants that can keep even the most discerning Berkeley Gourmet Ghetto Foodie fat and happy.

Norm and Beth; "Future Puddle Jumpers"
 On this road expedition we took our Canadian friends from Sarah Jean II along to help navigate our way through the busy cobblestone streets of Old Town in PV and later, down the south coast in search of their favorite restaurant, Le Kliff.

Norm leads the parade down the Malecon 
 One of our favorite events in Mexico is Sunday afternoon strolls along the beach. Family time is sacred everyday in Mexico, but Sundays are fun-filled days spent enjoying the near perfect weather outdoors. Even teenagers spend the day with their families. I must also note that nowhere have I ever seen such happy children; no arguing, no whining, no complaining, just simply shrieks of laughter and joy from both parents and the children, and not just on Sundays.

Happy Kiddos


This mermaid was accompanied by a merman, but I liked her as is

Mexican Dancers
Beth and I could not resist sitting down in the laps of these creatures from outerspace, and well, Spark can never resist a photo opt.

Sitting Pretty
While modern bronze sculptures are an important part of any Malecon in Mexican beach communities, in Puerto Vallarta artists without the funding for bronze as a media for their creativity use sand to sculpt their works of art. These sand sculptures are constantly misted with water to stay fresh and a collection box is available for tourists to express their appreciation of the artists talents.

A Touch of Egypt
A Living Breathing Sandman
The two sand scupltures above are examples of artist's work that earned my donations. I cannot imagine how hot and itchy it must be to have your body caked with sand all day - talk about a dedicated artist!

I have been making a habit of going to the Central Plazas in each town we visit. I like to sit under the huge shade trees to enjoy the flower gardens and snap a few pictures. When I was young my mother taught me the "art of people watching" and Mexican Plazas are wonderful settings for observing human nature. The other thing that I love to do is visit the church that always faces the plaza. In big cities the church is a magnificant cathedral standing tall on the town square, and in small fishing villages the churches are more intimate and humble, but no less beautiful places of worship. The welcoming atmosphere of the Catholic churches in Mexico are the perfect place to give thanks, light a candle for a loved one, and rest inside the cool stucco walls away from the fray of the city.

Our Lady of Guadalupe
Construction of Our Lady of Guadalupe Cathedral was started in 1929 and it took 12 years to complete. Note the large crown that stands high on the steeple.

After my mission to the Plaza and Cathedral was finished it was time for our group to head south in pursuit of Beth and Norm's choice for dinner on the coast.  Several years before they had enjoyed dinner at Le Kliff restaurant and we wanted to arrive for cocktails and dinner in time for the sunset. We were not to be disappointed. The long and winding coast road followed the Sierra Madre Occidental mountains tumbling into the aquamarine Pacific. Large palms decorated with big leafy vines and tropical flowers clung to the hillsides on both sides of the road. In the small village of Mismaloya we passed a sad and tired sign that read "Night of the Iguana".  In honor of my image of the mystic mood of the movie I deleted it's picture.

Tropical jungle on the south coast
Le Kliff restaurant in Boca de Tomatlan lived up to all our expectations. The bamboo and thatched roof palapa precariously perched on the cliff offered the most romantic view and spectacular sunset we have seen in Mexico! And the food, no less spectacular; coconut shrimp, crab potstickers with mango sauce, and organic field greens with fresh pears, apples, pecans, and goat cheese.  Add mariachis playing in the background, and we had a perfect ending to a perfect day. We'll be back.

 The sunset begining to fade as we look south towards Yelapa. In a couple days we will begin our sailing trip south around this magnificant cape known as, Cabo Corrientes.

1 comment:

  1. Looks like you two are enjoying the adventure and the local scenery. Hope to see you soon!