I had such a good ride on my last Baja California adventure that I am planning on going back this December. My DRZ400 is in storage in San Diego. I am going to fly down to San Diego to pick up my bike and then spend a week or so riding back down the Baja. I plan on taking the ferry from La Paz back to the mainland and leaving my bike in Puerto Vallarta while I fly back to Calgary to work for a week. Then I fly back and ride from Puerto Vallarta to Cancun over the Christmas holidays. I will leave my bike in Cancun where it will await my return in February for a proper exploration of the Yucatan peninsula and the Maya ruins. The ride from Puerto Vallarta to Cancun is a 2500+ km ride that I will only have 7 days for. It will be a tight schedule and it is a busy time of year so I have done something that I have never done on these types of trips: I have actually planned out an itinerary and booked hotels in advance along the way. The problem is that this does not allow for much spontaneity or time for punctures, etc. However it will be good to know that I have nice places waiting for me along the way. I plan to ride south along the Pacific coast all the way to Puerto Escondido to avoid the cold in the mountains before heading east. I will post my reviews of the places I stay once I return. I will be a guest at the hotels listed below.
Day 1: Puerto Vallarta
Hacienda Alemano is a boutique hotel run by a German/Mexican couple located in the colonial heart of old Puerto Vallarta. Apparently you can get German beer, and the Schnitzel and German sausage has been highly recommended.
Day 2: Zihuatanejo. 711 km.
This is the town where Andy and Red ultimately escape to at the end of “The Shawshank Redemption”. I will be staying at Villa Carolina guesthouse.
Day 3. Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca. 633 km.
This is a lovely little town with a fantastic beach that I vowed to return to one day after having ridden through it without stopping on my way from Canada to Argentina while on the Americas trip of 2007. Now I finally get my chance. I will be staying at a bed & breakfast called Villa Lili.
Day 4. San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas. 618 km.
This is a colonial town nestled in the mountains. I will be staying at Casa Felipe Flores (pictured in the bottom image).
Day 5. Calakmul Biosphere Reserve, Yucatan Peninsula. 523 km.
I had envisioned spending days wandering around the jungle covered Mayan ruins in this area, but alas I will probably only have time to ride down to see Calakmul before moving on. I will have to save the rest of the exploration for the next trip. I will be staying in Hotel Puerta Calakmul, an eco-retreat deep in the jungle of the Calakmul Biosphere Reserve. It is rustic but comfortable according to the reviews, although probably not worth the $170/night. Unfortunately there is nothing else within miles that I can find. There is no internet or cell service.
Day 6. Bacular, Quintana Roo. 175 km.
I had a difficult time finding anything available in the Mayan Riviera. Not only is almost everything already booked, but there is also usually a 3 or even 5 night minimum stay. I eventually found Hotel Laguna Bacular on the shore of Bacular Lagoon. According to reviews it is showing it’s age but is clean with friendly service.
Day 7. Cancun. 342 km.
I tried finding a room for one night on the glitzy tourist beaches, but everything was either booked or way too expensive. I resorted to Frommer’s, which has done well for me in the past in Mexico, and they recommended Eco-Hotel Rey Del Caribe in downtown Cancun. It is not on the beach, but apparently they have created an urban oasis with lush courtyards and friendly service right in the heart of the city. Best of all it is reasonably priced. I am still in the process of finding out if I can leave my motorcycle there until I return in February, which would be ideal.