The People's Guide To Mexico

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The People's Guide to Mexico: Articles & Letters, Questions & Answers

New & Updated: Mexico Web Links

Lorena's Note: As we'd hoped, our readers are now sending us excellent website recommendations and useful Mexico internet links. These links will eventually be added to the appropriate topic sections throughout the People's Guide website. To get you started quickly, however, we've gathered the newest website suggestions onto this page: New & Updated: Mexico Web Links.

Mexico: Hot Tips

Say there!... Did you know that the best place to buy shrimp (October to April) is only a hundred feet off Mex Hiway 15 in Empalme, just a little south of Guaymas? Simply make a left and then pull up to the first vendor selling shrimp out of the back of their car. Super fresh camarones at great prices. A tip from El Codo.

"A People's Guide To Mexico" Reader says....

You may or may not be pleased to know that I have dusted off my trusty old copy of the People’s Guide and taken to reading it again during breakfast and quiet moments out at the latrine. The book has been in hibernation for years since my first devouring of its pages in my late adolescence.

Back then I thought your book to be a bible of good words, wise advise and fine tips. But since I'd never travelled in Mexico, what the hell did I know? You could have been making it all up.

But now I've been living deep down in Mexico for a quarter of my life and I know a thing or two about the ways and by ways of the Mexican folks. And one thing I've learned well is the con job, slight of hand, bells and whistles and quick talking sale. And all of that the P's G is NOT! I've been enjoying it all over again and finding it to be as full of wisdom as I did when I didn't know ‘nada’. Eric Mindling, Potterologist

"Dear People's Guide": Letters From Our Readers

How many Americans live in Mexico? Another Perspective from Linda Fox:

I thought your article about the number of US folks living in Mexico was pretty good, but also thought it needed more clarification. I've lived off and on in Zihuatanejo for 30 years. We have our full time US residents that have their migration cards and we have our half-time (usually Canadian) who live in Zihuat about 6 months a year and ..... (more)

Robberies at Toll Booths?
Cost for Tourist Card to Visit Baja & Mexico
Visiting the Virgin of Guadalupe
What to do in Cozumel off a Cruise Ship?
Baja or Cancun: Tours & Wind Surfing
Tlazazalca, Michoacan?
Where to live and work in Mexico
Driving from Nogales to Guadalajara: Is it Safe?

And Here We Are.... RV-ing To Mexico!

•#1) Getting Ready

Since our friends had never been to Mexico while Al and I have been there several times (but never camping), I drew up what I considered to be a very encompassing itinerary.... including some new places for us. But we were also anxious to show off some of our favorite places from past trips, so I included those also.....So, in general, here is our itinerary: Crossing at Laredo, we’ll head to Zacatecas, then the Guadalajara area. From there we’ll visit ..... (more) By Char & Al Bennett

RV Adventures in Mexico with Reta & Dick

•#1) South from Lake Chapala

On, January 4, 2001 we took off from our home on Mexico’s Lake Chapala, for a 3 month trip in our truck & 5th wheel trailer. Is a 29 1/2ft fifth wheel (with slide-out) an ideal RV for Mexico? Probably not, but we already had it from our previous extended travels in the U.S. & Canada, so decided to go for it and see what happens.... (more) by Reta & Dick Bray

•Unusual Treasures of the Sierra Madre: Vampire Guano


My hand started to quiver as I mused possible answers to insert in the space which asked the purpose of my visit on the Mexican Tourist Card:
a. Purchase an entire pickup load of fresh vampire bat guano.
b. Help a Humboldt County “rose” farmer obtain the best fertilizer in the world for his cash crop.
c. Earn several thousand dollars while visiting an obscure part of Mexico.... (another odd adventure) from David "El Codo" Eidell

Mexico in the Midwest

Mexico is not only in Mexico. Of course Mexico was always in the Southwest: a disgruntled hombre in a cantina in Hermosillo made that clear to me 30 years ago when it looked like the situation following the Alamo was going to be my fault solamente. But now - right here in my native Iowa, where everyone was always an 'merican right back to when God invented the world (circa 1848), everyone is not an 'merican anymore. The People's Guide to Mexico can now be a handy reference for life here in the heartland.... (more) by Tom Gibbs

I'm Moving to Ajijic

I just have to tell you....I am moving to Ajijic!.... I even fell and sprained BOTH of my ankles in the middle of the main street in Chapala ....but .... I wrapped them and the next day I walked some more. I told my traveling companion later that my ankles slowing me down some were the reason the place that I found to rent happened.... (more) by Marilyn Geary-Symons

Is There A Cheap Way to Visit the Copper Canyon?

In early November I am planning a last minute trip to Copper Canyon, with a Mexico newbie. We are both hardy outdoor types from New Mexico/Colorado. We cannot afford your tour, but understand we will need a guide. We are taking the train, starting in Chihuahua. I'd like to hit the Falls and also Batopilas.

My question is this; will it be relatively easy to find guides for day hiking, perhaps one overnight in Batopilas -- and is camping easily procured? We have all our own gear and are independent types. If we are tired and worn, will hotels/hostels be easily obtainable in November? The hotels/lodges available on the web are fairly pricey -- I'm looking to scale that down and make this trip affordable. We have 9 days.... (more) from Sheri Lynn.

The Copper Canyon : Cheap & Easy (Trip Report)

We took the bus from El Paso across the border to Juarez.... At the border, we received verbal assurance from the bus driver that he would wait for us as we did the paperwork. We came back outside to find our packs on the ground, no bus. On the bus we had left two small bags of relative importance. ALWAYS STAY WITH ALL YOUR BELONGINGS.... (more) by Sheri Lynn

Winnie the Winnebago Goes To Mexico

We headed through the Mexican customs checkpoint with the ‘random’ red or green light. Of course we got the red light. They asked for our import permit, passport and vehicle registration. The customs man began looking Winnie over....but, it seemed to be taking a little too long. I was starting to wonder if something might be wrong. I saw a grim look on his face. Then he hit us with the bad news. “This is not this car.” (in Spanish).

....My heart started pounding hard; my fluent Spanish was reduced to dribble and I could not speak.....Winnie's troubles had just begun: (more) by Paige & Rich Demuth

Bounce Strips Beat Biting Bugs

I have found "Bounce" strips work quite well for keeping away mosquitos and no-see-ums. They are those sheets you put in clothes dryers for softening clothes and preventing static cling. You can put one in your pocket, pants cuff or pin it on your shirt if necessary.... (more) by Joann Kobus

Ride the Green Tortoise to Mexico

Last winter, I (a 46 year old gringo), my Significant Other (a 52 year old gringa), and our 9 year old adopted nephew (nickname "Changito") took a 2 1/2 week trip down Baja, across to Mazatlan via ferry and down to San Blas.... It was a fantastic trip, and my first time in Mexico, other than Tijuana when I was 10 years old.... My S.O. had been to Mexico several times before, and tried to reassure me that "you won't get sick, you won't run into banditos, and the people are very friendly and helpful." How very true that is, as you know!... (more) from Shawn Dougherty

Winnie the Winnebago Goes To Mexico

We headed through the customs checkpoint with the ‘random’ red or green light. Of course we got the red light. They asked for our import permit, passport and vehiclecar registration. The customs man began looking things over....but, it seemed to be taking a little too long. I was starting to wonder if something might be wrong. I saw a grim look on his face. Then he hit us with the bad news. “This is not this car.” (in Spanish).

What is he talking about?! Or course it is this car!

He then showed us the VIN on the registration and then the VIN on the door panel. They did not match up. They weren’t even close! My heart started pounding hard; my fluent Spanish was reduced to dribble and I could not speak..... (more) by Paige & Rich Demuth

Hotels & Restaurants between Oaxaca and Puerto Angel

There are now decent hotels and restaurants between Oaxaca and Puerto Angel. Generally what you want to do when you are on the road from Oaxaca to the coast is GET TO THE COAST. But, should circumstances arise, flat tires, late starts, etc. there are a couple of options for places to stay that are worth considering.... (more) by Eric Mindling

Vipassana Meditation

We now have a Vipassana application up on our site, to make it easier to apply for a Vipassana Meditation course in Mexico.

There Is Another Side To Chiapas!

I stumbled into your site almost by accident. I'd like to say the presentation and easiness is surprising and welcoming. The content, though, I found to be interesting yet offensive in ways. In particular Luis Barton's impression of our area. It leads readers to believe that Chiapas and rural Mexico are highly dangerous, unhealthy and precarious areas, unsuitable for living let alone traveling. I don't mean to say that the Mexico described by Barton is nonexistent. Yet, I do feel the need to point out that there also IS another Mexico.... (more) Letter from Robert Rivas-Bastedas

San Cristobal de las Casas: What About Living There?

Living in San Cristobal is a great experience. The city is truly a jewel. It's peaceful and offers all modern conveniences. It's relatively well connected and will be even more in the near future with two new roads under construction (Tuxtla-San Cristobal and Tuxtla-Mexico City)..... There are plenty of schools. In particular there is a grade school that warmly welcomes foreign children. Middle and upper education is offered through the government education system and at least a dozen private institutions. San Cristobal has historically been an educational and cultural center. (more) by Robert Rivas-Bastedas

I just read your new section on Ladatel calling cards in Mexico. It's very helpful. I've used these calling cards in Oaxaca to make local and in-country long-distance calls. They are really life savers. I too remember the nightmare of making long-distance calls. In 1974 I was trying to make a call to Mexico City from Oaxaca. Every time I tried I was told the circuits were busy. My frustration hit its peak when I went into the small telephone office on the North side of the zocalo..... (more) by P.G. Meier

#1: Eric in Oaxaca

I first came to Oaxaca eight years ago as a wide eyed student of pottery and Spanish while working on my B.A. at Humboldt State U. in California. I didn't know where the heck Oaxaca was nor could I pronounce it (wah-HA-ka), but didn't care I knew it was in Mexico, I knew I hadn't been there. I was doing studio art, and having just recently muddied my hands for the first time in the ceramics studio, I was an avid and fervent convert to the clayway. I have always been partial to that which is raw, basic, utilitarian and beautiful. Pottery hit that place in me immediately. I went to Oaxaca ignorant of what I would find, only vaguely aware that there was some pottery there. So I designed my project around that. I proposed to look at a potter, how she lived in brief, and how she made a pot.... (more) by Eric Mindling

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