40 minutes by plane from Mexico City,
Acapulco is like a neighborhood of the capital where the golden
youth meets. Nothing is missing. It is the resort the most known
in Mexico. During the forties, under the impulse
of the President of the Republic Miguel Alemán, this small
fishing port was converted into a vacation place for the international
jet-set. During the sixties and seventies, the hotels invaded one
of the most beautiful bays in the world.
Acapulco became the resort of American and Canadian tourists.
During the seventies and eighties, the city was on the verge of
going bankrupt : with the demographic explosion, the dirtiness,
the pollution and the child prostitution forced the government to
expand great efforts to give back an attractive aspect to the city.
Now, Acapulco is a huge city with one and a half million inhabitants,
but it is above all an entertainment place : the night life is really
busy. Everything was changed to benefit the city tourist : the fishermen
houses were converted in 25 floor hotels, the rowboats were replaced
by speedboats. The stores, mainly luxury shops, are inserted between
restaurants and pizzerias. The beaches are not recommended to swimmers
who instead prefer the clear and non polluted water of the swimming
pools. There are about 3 million tourists during the high season
– from December to April.
wonder what the Marquis Hernán
Cortès, who named the Bay, would have thought of this
kind of activities organized at the very place where he built boats
for his adventurous explorations.
If there is a place in the world where just anybody, disembarking
from a plane, can get the illusion of being part of the "jet
set", as any celebrity, this place is Acapulco. Here, the bikini
or the swimming suit is the day suit of everyone. It helps a lot
to erase the social differences. The golden beaches are for everyone,
the sun doesn’t have any favorite and the Bay offers its magic
water rug to every water skier, wave runner, diver, surfer or sailor.
The many hotels offer rooms for any taste and any
budget. From the luxury palaces to the budget hotels, there is a
room for everyone wishing a good atmosphere and good company. If
you plan on staying more than one week, you might want to rent a
villa or a condo. Whatever your choice, you want to enjoy your vacations
to the maximum. So you might want to know ahead how to dress, what
has to be seen, what not to be missed…
One day in Paradise
Creator did a good job when he took car of Acapulco. Thanks to a
faithful sun and to many beaches and swimming pools, the people
in vacation can hang out in beachwear from morning to evening, even
for lunch, around 1:30 PM at the earliest and often one hour later.
Don’t try to avoid the nap. Whenever you choose to nap, after
lunch or after sunset, as most of the tourists do, it is essential
to your survival.
After your 8 PM nap, you need to select your clothes. When opening
your suitcase or armoire, you don’t have to ask yourself about
what to wear. You have to think about who you want to be this night.
The nights in Acapulco are under the sign of fashion fantasy. You
will more disguise than dress yourself. Everything is allowed, everything
is wearable as soon as it is not conventional. According to the
spur-of-the-moment, the young and less young women will adopt the
Indian or Gypsy dress and the men will be able to wear light clothes,
light weight pants, nice long sleeve printed, embroidered or pleated
shirt made in very thin linen. So, around 9 PM at the earliest,
you will lazily go to the restaurant of your choice as if you were
a local inhabitant of Acapulco. After diner, you tour the different
clubs because you don’t go to bed before dawn. There are not
many resorts which can compete with Acapulco for night animation
: music, dance, disco and shows. Nothing stops at midnight and there
are taxis all night long to take you back to your hotel. If you
are looking for a quieter evening, you can go to folkloric dance
show or voladores or acrobats shows.
The high season goes from December 15 to Easter Sunday. But the
other part of the year is not a close season. It is pleasant and
less expensive. The hotels lower their prices at least 20%; you
don’t have to fight for a room, the staff is more attentive
and the atmosphere is quieter. Outside, the sky is more blue and
the hills greener. The flowers open at every possible opportunity,
happy to be cooled by this night rain that also reminds the privileged
of this Eden that Acapulco is a tropical paradise.
Acapulco offers 148 sunny days among the 150 winter days (December
1st, April 30th). At this time the temperature is about 26°C
and the breeze refreshes the atmosphere. During the rainy season
(June to September) it rains generally at night.
skiing was invented in Acapulco. The diving spots are around Roqueta
Island. In Acapulco, deep sea fishing is excellent to catch whiting
and tuna but angling is also good all year long to catch barracudas,
mackerel and perch. You can rent a boat to go deep sea fishing.
You have a huge choice for activities : golf, tennis, parasailing
and horse riding.
worldwide known curiosity of Acapulco is the show of the divers
of La Quebrada, every evening. You don’t need to go to the
top floor of the El Mirador Plaza hotel to have a nice view. You
can see the show from well laid platforms facing the cliff of the
divers. The bay of Acapulco rounds off the curb between two oblong
peninsulas. The western one faces the impressing cliffs of la Quebrada.
There, 40m (131 feet) above the ocean, intrepid divers practice
defying death. The word death is not too strong ! Not only do they
have to dive into the narrow gorge down the rocks but they have
to do it when the wave arrives : the slightest mistake of path or
timing could be fatal. This show has an admission fee now (37 pesos).
You can see it at 12:45 noon, 7:30 PM, 8:30 PM, 9:30 PM and 10:30
PM (with lighted torches during this last show). You can also watch
the show from the restaurant La Perla; you won’t have to buy
a ticket but you’ll have to have dinner there !
If you go along the Avenue Lopez Mateos, you will
go up a hill where are located some old hotels, then you’ll
reach the two most famous beaches in Acapulco, Caleta and Caletilla,
with the Mágico Mundo Marino (open 9AM-6PM) on one of them.
It is a theme park with toboggans, kayaks, restaurants, swimming
pools, museum and a sea-lion show. Caleta and Caletilla are also
the “morning beaches”, because they are bathed in sunlight
in the morning.
They are busy with Mexicans and Americans who don’t
belong to the "jet society". The ocean is quiet but not
Facing these beaches, Roqueta Island and its nice beach are easily
accessible by boats from Caletilla Beach. Many restaurants make
the tourists happy. You will sure be entertained since you can snorkel
or visit the small zoo open from 9 AM to 5 PM.
Between Roqueta and Caletilla, the bronze statue
of the Virgin of Guadalupe, set in 1959, is on the program of most
of the organized tours. You can sail to the Island in a transparent-floor
boat which lets you appreciate the marine fauna and flora as well
as the statue of the Virgin under the waters. You board in front
of the Zócalo ( Playa Tlacopanecha); the ride costs 85 pesos
and lasts over one hour if you don’t stop on the Island (you
can come back with any other boat; the last one leaves the island
at 5 PM). You have a little speech from the guide and a diver. Without
being exceptional, it is refreshing. Reservations at (744) 482 24
68 / 62 09. Departures at 11AM and 0130PM (1h30 time for visit).
Going back to Acapulco along the coast, via the
Gran Via Tropical, you’ll reach the Costa Alemán, by
the Yacht Club, that services the remaining part of the bay. So,
you reach downtown and the Zócalo via the Costera. The Zócalo,
a little bit back from the water front, is the barrier between the
east and west of the city.
On one side of the Zócalo, the cathedral Nuestra Señora
de la Soledad, edifice dating from the thirties was built on the
site of an older church, in a hybrid style that dared to have two
byzantine towers with a dome like in a mosque and bright blue-white-gold
A few blocks east of the Zócalo (15 min walking), is Fort
San Diego, the only historic relic of Acapulco. It sits on a hill
overlooking the Costera. There is a very nice view of the Bay from
the Fort. The original building, built in 1616, didn’t resist
the earthquake of 1776. It was rebuilt and was the setting of a
Spanish defeat during the war of Independence of Mexico. Now, it
houses the Museum of History of Acapulco, consecrated to the history
of the area (open 9:30 AM-6 PM, Tue-Sun, $41).
The old city is also where the municipal market is held daily. It
is an important craft market open daily from 9 AM to 6 PM: sarapes
(blankets), huaraches, silver jewels....etc.. This neighborhood
is swarming with small excellent seafood restaurants. Be aware that
the day the cruise boats land the market is packed with tourists
Many possibilities of day or night cruises around the bay are available
in front of the Zócalo.
If you stay on the Costera, you’ll reach
Hornos, the third big beach. It is the “afternoon beach”
because it is bathed in sunlight during the afternoon like the Caleta-Caletilla
beach in the morning.
There is another smaller craft market, El Pueblito (Playa Bahia),
by the Papagayo Park.
Beyond there, starts a set of many restaurants,
boutiques, rental offices, huge unsightly waterfront palaces, along
the beaches Francia, Icacos and the Beach “in” of la
Condesa – meeting place of conventional people as well as
gay people at the western end. The International Center of Acapulco,
by playa Icacos, organizes, several times a week, a Mexican fiesta
mexicana with folkloric dance and "voladores" or acrobats shows. Next
door, the CICI (International Center Convivencia Infantil) is a
huge water park with many amusements for children. It is open daily
from 10 AM to 6 PM, www.cici.com.mx,
(744) 484 1970 / 01 800 701 41 86.
Here is the beginning of the peninsula closing the eastern part
of Acapulco Bay. The Carretera Escénica crosses the naval
base and goes up to the luxurious private palaces and hotels of
Las Brisas and the residential neighborhood.
From here, there is a fantastic view of the bay, especially by night
with the lights all over the bay.
East of Acapulco, the Tres Palos lagoon refers to an even
more primitive world than the one of Coyuca. Follow the Costera
beyond the naval base and Las Brisas. It is the road leading to
the airport. Before the airport, after 15 kilometers (9 miles) along
the sea, you’ll see the lagoon on your left. Drive to the
few cabins by the sea : here are set the fishing tours and the boat
rides. The setting is so perfectly tropical that it is used as an
African set for some movies. It is also the perfect spot for bird-watching.
Another entertainment place is the village and the Bay of Puerto
Marqués. This bay is smaller and more sheltered than the
Acapulco bay and offers a beach as safe as la Caleta but a lot cleaner.
Completely built for the tourists, this village of Puerto Marqués
consists only of a line of stalls offering beer, fruit juice, fruits
and seafood to the bathers of the bay. Possibility of renting wave
runners, pedal boats, canoes, sail boats and water skis.
Quiet as a placid lake, Puerto Marqués Bay is located less
than 2km (1.2 mile) from Revolcadero, another paradise for surfers
as are the beaches Punta Diamante and Condesa. On playa Barra Vieja,
a little further, you can ride horses, ATV’s or bikes.
Huge hotel complexes were built in this area closer to the airport
than to downtown Acapulco. We can mention Acapulco Princess, Pierre
Marquès, Vidafel Mayan Palace, Camino Real, all with nice
sporting equipment, golf courses, tennis courts and sumptuous swimming
Acapulco is one of those ugly sea resorts, with too many unstylish
buildings, that we prefer to avoid.
Acapulco map :
State of Guerrero map :
Acapulco and its points of interest on our interactive map
See the pages about the sea resorts on the Pacific coast :
Puerto Vallarta & Costalegre
Puerto Escondido-Huatulco-Puerto Angel
Aucun produit culturel dans la boutique
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