Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

I don't even know where to begin with my trip to Mexico! My mom decided she wanted to go somewhere warm for a while and since my dad doesn't like to fly very much, she took me! We chose the Dreams Puerto Vallarta resort in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. We got to the airport at 4:00 a.m. Wednesday morning. It was early and a long day of traveling, but worth it! The plane rides didn't seem too long, but long enough! When we first got into the airport in Puerto Vallarta, after going through customs, the first thing they did was give us a shot of tequila! Haha! It was a small flavored shot. Mom had guava and I had pomegranate. It was good and they were trying to get us to take another, but we refused. No need to be drunk right away haha! We found our scheduled ride to our hotel. The road system in downtown Puerto Vallarta is scary! There are hardly any stop lights or stop signs and no lanes. Almost every street is one way and all the drivers just merge and rumble along. It's a bit freaky and I spent most of my time in the cabs (to and from the resort) watching out the window so as not to hyperventilate! The resort was wonderful! The view from our room was amazing! We had just enough of a palm tree in our view to make it nice and tropical without blocking the beautiful sunsets and ocean.

The food on this trip was amazing!! We ate outside the resort and restaurants twice and both times we were not disappointed! We ate at a place called Coexistence the first time we went into town for the flew markets, and the second time at a place called Oscar's. They were both great food and really nice people. Even the food in the resort was amazing! Our favorite place was the Seaside Cafe. The fajitas were incredible! I had them twice! The other really good restaurant in the resort was the fancy dress up one. We ate there twice and both had the same thing each time because it was so good! The only times we didn't have the best food were the night they set up a huge buffet out on the beach because it was so dark you could hardly tell what you were getting and by the time you went through and got back to your table the food was mostly cold, and then the lunch we had the day we went on the day trip, which mom ended up not even eating cause she got seasick. But other than that I was so happy the food was almost always good!!

In the resort we did a lot of just laying around! Haha! We spent a lot of the time on the beach area which was nice....yet not. They had people walking around the beach selling things. We finally came to the conclusion that they are hired by the resort (from what we can tell) to sell things to people on the beach to make more money. It got a bit annoying after a while, but if you said no they would pretty much leave you alone right away. We did lay by the infinity pool one day and then spent another part of one day in the pool with the swim-up bar. But for the most part we wanted the sand between our toes. :) They did always have something for entertainment during the evenings, though it wasn't always something good.... One night was a hypnotist which wasn't so bad. A lot like what I've seen around Bismarck, but since it was kid friendly it wasn't anything sexually orientated or anything, but he was funny. Another night was the Mexican Fiesta which was the night we ate on the beach and they had a mariachi band playing and some Spanish dancing. It was ok, but the band was way better than the dancers! Another night was comedy night but we never made it to that cause we just wanted to lay in bed and watch movies. Another night was casino night (the last night we were there) and we played Texas Hold'em. Mom ended up winning! It was hard to play though because they were playing as if it were a cash game and not playing with the "proper" rules and stuff and it was hard for us to bite our tongues and not speak up to have the game played correctly...but we still had fun! During the day there were lots of different things we could have tried to partake in, but we mostly just wanted to relax while we were in the resort. We did use the gym a couple times (but it was so incredibly hot and stuffy in there it was hard to work out!) and we always went into the little coffee shop each morning to have a cup of coffee. We did get to see one iguana while in the resort! He was walking around in the Seaside Cafe while we were having lunch one day! We also got to sea a humpback whale! We were laying out on the beach in the evening (about 5:30) and could sea a group of whales moving slowly and got to see one jump out of the water! It was so cool!

Out of the resort we went to the flea market twice. The flea market was a lot of fun...but annoying as well!! There were so many shops and they were all smack dab right next to each other so you couldn't tell where one ended and the other began and each and every single shop owner would try to get you to buy things. They wouldn't just ask if you needed help, they would almost badger you about buying something. "What you looking for? Best prices for you. Almost free today. Look around ladies. Lots of nice things; blankets, dresses. " It got annoying really fast....and most of the shops had the same things over and over. Granted some of them were really cool things because they weren't things you normally see around North Dakota...but they were for the most part all the same... We even had to walk across a suspension bridge a couple times to get to another part of the flea market. It was the worst bridge ever!! If I had been drunk, I never would have made it across! Hahaha! It was so difficult to walk across and keep your balance! The boardwalk that was right by the flea market was fun to see because it had so many different sculptures and such on it. Mostly by the same artist. We got to see their cathedral as well which everyone mentioned a lot.

The other thing we did outside the resort was one day trip. We chose on that went to Majahuitas and Yelapa. The day started off ok, we got to the port and right away though there were people trying to get money from you...they had a sea lion you could take photos with and then two guys walking around with a parrot taking photos with you. They of course would just print out the photos and wanted you to buy them when you got back. I did end up buying the one with the sea lion just because it was something I know I'll never do again. I got to hug him and he kissed my cheek, haha! It was pretty cute! I just hope the animals get treated ok when not in the public eye....Once we got on the boat they did a bit of a guided tour along the shoreline as we went to Majahuitas. Mom and I both ended up seasick...we weren't aware we were supposed to come in our suits and had just brought them with us so we had to change while the boat was going over waves in the tiny bathroom on the catamaran....mom got really seasick and I got it a little bit. Once we got to Majahuitas we just stayed in the bay so we couldn't even get on land for a little bit. You could snorkel or kayak in the bay but neither of us did. Mom still didn't feel good and my water fears kicked in and people said they weren't seeing anything anyway because the water was so unclear because of the weather changing. After an hour there we went to Yelapa. This was actually cool because we hiked through this little town that only got electricity 8 years ago! It was interesting to go through and see how people lived there. We passed one guy who made gorgeous things out of rosewood but of course because it was rosewood it was really expensive. Once we got to the top there was a waterfall! It was so cool! It wasn't huge by any means but it was really cool and we got to go in the little pool and wade over to it if we wanted! I figured I wasn't sure when I would get to do it again so I did! The water was so cold!! It took my breath away but I got to go under the waterfall and my mom took a couple photos for me. It was such a rush!! Mostly cause the water was so cold, but it was the first waterfall I had ever been in! I loved it!! Then after that we hiked back down and through a different part of the village and saw their grocery store (which was crazy!) and their church. We kept going until we got to a river. It wasn't very wide, but we ended up have to wade across it to get back to the beach where the boat was going to be. I thought they were joking!!! But they weren't! It never went higher than our belly buttons, but it was a bit freaky for me with my water fears! We got down to our swimsuits to keep our clothes dry so I didn't have my shoes on and started panicking at the end a little bit but mom talked me through it and I was ok. Still freaky and crazy though!!! Then we got to the beach on Yelapa and were there for about 45 minutes before heading back onto the boat. On the beach there were two guys walking around with these huge iguanas! They were about 6-7 feet long including their tails! You could take pictures with them with your camera if you wanted, but you had to pay them $5 to do it. I got a picture of the iguana on the beach and that was good enough for me. Mom was a bit freaked out by them! Haha! Once we got back on the boat things were much smoother on the way back so we were both ok. And the crew put on a hilarious show towards the end of the ride! The photos are hilarious and I got a couple videos!!!
On the way there we saw dolphins swimming just a few feet away, on the beach we saw a sea turtle jump out of the water from a wave, then on the way back I saw a sea turtle swimming in the water by the boat! It was pretty cool!!
The crew was amazing! All of them at least once if not twice checked on my mom to make sure she was ok and still enjoying herself! They were awesome!

We ended up just having one of the best vacations we have ever had! We have both had great vacations, but this one was just perfect! We got the right amount of time in the resort and away from it. We had amazing food practically the entire time! The weather was great! And it was nice to not get sick of each other and be away from the normal drama and stress in day to day lives. We were actually sad to leave and it was really bittersweet to come home.

The only thing I would have changed was the ocean. It was great to be by it, but according to my mom it is much calmer on the other side of Mexico. The waves were so rough by our resort that at night it sounded like a blizzard or huge wind storm, so we didn't get the best sleep while we were there. It was also pretty fishy smelling. Not the worst thing for the vacation, but not the best either. It was truly a fantastic vacation! I wish I could have brought the weather back with me! It makes me even more excited for summer!!!

The trip home seemed longer than the trip there, but as soon as we got to MN we got a "normal" beer haha! It was so good to have a bud light again (even if it didn't have clamato! Haha!). And it was good to be home. Back to my bed and the familiar things around me. Vacation is always fun, but it's always good to be home!