My Travels in Mexico

Puebla to Lake Chapala, Mexico: A Place Worthy of Return

Jet Metier at Ajijic street with balloonsFrom Puebla, it’s only about 80 miles to Mexico City, and there were plenty of signs encouraging us to visit.  However, with over 21 million people in the metro area and us being on a tight schedule on our way to Lake Chapala more than 420 miles away, we decided it would be better to see Mexico City some other time, and instead pointed our van to the Northern Arc, which, true to its name, curves around the fourth most populous city in the world.

The scenery to each side of the...

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Cordoba to Puebla, Mexico: Soaring Mountains and Lots of Gastronomy

Jet Metier on the sidewalk on downtown Puebla,MexicoWe were looking forward to visiting Puebla again, so as one of our few extravagances while returning to Lake Chapala as quickly as possible, we booked two nights at the hotel in Puebla we had enjoyed so much.  Staying there an extra night would also make it possible for us to see a bit of the city.

Starting in Cordoba, Puebla is less than three hours by car, but what a breathtakingly scenic three hours it is! Even before leaving Cordoba, we could see towering snowcapped...

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Chetumal to Cordoba, Mexico: More Ease and a New Cooking Style, But Watch Out for the Kids!

Dog looks at fish in a tank at aquaculture restaurant in Veracruz, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingHere was our situation:
  • It was the middle of the Christmas High Season, when house rental prices are the highest and house rental vacancies are the lowest. (The euphemistic term for this is “Landlord’s Market.”)
  • My wife, Jet, our two dogs and I we were in Chetumal, about as far south as you can go and still be in Mexico.

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Potholes, Detours and Other Driving Challenges Southeast of Cordoba, Mexico: Just Follow the Pigs, Keep Calm, and Have Faith

Easy driving southeast of Cordoba, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingIt all started so innocently.
It was mid-November, overcast, 72 degrees, with just a hint of rain in the air. On the highway a few hours after leaving Cordoba and headed southeast to our planned destination of Palenque, there were literally no other cars within sight in either direction.  The road was high quality and safe.  Even the shoulders were full width, as opposed to ¾ width shoulders we had seen so many times before, that were used for...

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The Road from Puebla to Cordoba, Mexico: Otherworldly Canyons, Meeting Celebrities, and the Cordoba Gift Exchange

Jet Metier at HB hotel in Cordoba, MexicoGiven that our planned drive from Puebla to Orizaba was only a little more than three hours, that our combination Puebla hotel / restaurant / fraccionamiento was so pleasant, and that the restaurant had an all you can eat Mexican buffet breakfast, we saw no compelling reason to refuse the beautifully arranged food we found so temptingly arranged before us.   Even in this upscale restaurant with impeccable service and sophisticated ambiance, they allowed us to dine...

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The Road from San Miguel de Allende to Puebla: Undiminished Anticipation and an Unexpected Oasis

Jet Metier with two dogs at a restaurant in Puebla – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingA fine mist began to fall in San Miguel de Allende on a cool November morning as we maneuvered our fully packed, big white van on a familiar cobblestone road in Los Labradores, up to the smiling guards we had come to know by name.  The gate was raised and through it we went, returning our protectors' well wishes and hearty waves in kind.  Onto the highway, we turned east, to places we had never been.
We were six months into our Mexico road trip, with...

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Fort San Juan de Ulúa, Veracruz, Mexico

Fort San Juan de Ulúa, Veracruz, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingThe old Spanish Fort San Juan de Ulúa still stands watch over the bustling port of Veracruz, Mexico, but it is no longer filled with many tons of silver and gold.

This fort was built in 1565 on the island where the Spanish first landed in their conquest of Mexico in 1518. And it was the last place held by Spain in Mexico. Although independence was granted in 1821. Spanish troops remained until 1825. For most of the 300 year period of Spanish rule, it was the main center...

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El Pinacate and Gran Altar Desert Ecosystem --- a World Heritage Site

A cactus in the El Pinacate World Heritage Site – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingThree years ago UNESCO recognized two of my favorite places as World Heritage Sites.


One was a mountain in Italy and the other an ecosystem in Northern Mexico. Both places have something in common besides being favorites of mine. They both have a volcanic ancestry.


The mountain, Mt Etna, is a volcano on the east coast of Sicily that I once climbed during an eruption.


El Pinacate World Heritage Site – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingEl Pinacate and Gran Altar Desert is an ecosystem...

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My travels in Mexico --- Chapel of the Rosary, La Antigua, Mexico --- The First Church Built in America

The first Christian worship service in Mexico was in 

Ermita del Rosario, First Church Built in the Americas, La Antigua, Mexico – Best Places In The World To Retire – International Living1519 in La Antigua, Veracruz. Four years later the first chapel in the Americas was built by Hernán Cortés and is named the Chapel of the Rosary (Ermita del Rosario). It is a picturesque tiny church in the beautiful lush green setting of the tropical rain forest.



The town of La Antigua is considered to be the first real Spanish town in the country and was established...

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Driving from Ajijic and Arriving in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico: Cornfields, Transcendence, and a Nice, Planned Housing Development

Jet Metier at Los Labradores, San Miguel de Allende cobblestone streetAs we left the tropical splendor of the Ajijic area and drove generally east, it didn’t take long to be surrounded by farmland. Gently rolling hills dotted with trees reminiscent of Northern California chaparral lightly embraced vast, shallow valleys covered mainly with immense cornfields.
Consistent with a recurring theme for much of our road trip through Mexico, what we encountered on our drive from Ajijic through the Central Mexican Highlands was...

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