John Wayne would take his boat Wild Goose to Mexico every winter to bask on the wonderful beaches and enjoy the small towns of Mexico ports. In the summer he would head north to the San Juan Islands. For three months he cruised in some of the most beautiful spots imaginable. That was in the 60’s and 70’s. Today we have many, many customers who join us in an adventure that was once available to only a select few. In 2006 we cruised to Juno Alaska—and this year we will be going to the Northwest with a host of our customers. There are far too many great spots to take you through here. But talk to us and we will help you plan your next trip. We show you itineraries to the populated local ports like Victoria, Roche Harbor or Rosario Resort, or remote getaways like Princess Louisa Inlet, Chatterbox Falls or the Campbell River.
Erle Stanley Gardner described this region best when he said, “There is no use describing the inlet. Perhaps an atheist could view it and remain and atheist but I doubt it… There is no scenery in the world that can beat it. Not that I’ve seen the rest of the world. I don’t need to; I’ve seen Princess Louisa Inlet.”
Our favorite trip is Barra de Navidad, surely the most beautiful and exclusive resort in Mexico. The accommodations feature a hotel and marina without compare, filled with Southern California yachtsmen and some incredible yachts. You’ll see anything from 200′ to small fishing boats. Across the little bay is the village of Barra de Navidad. It’s like something Walt Disney would have designed. Good restaurants, a little shopping and the opportunity to be in very old Mexico. Our trip usually last 5 to 7 days at a time (we still have to work). We fly in to Manzanillo and take the 30 minute cab ride to the Grand Bay Hotel, a Wyndham Luxury Resort. The first night is spent opening the boat up and settling in. Dinner is at the hotel or we have it delivered down to the boat.
Before we head out the next morning, the French baker comes around in his Panga to delivery fresh baked goods to the swim step of our boat. If we’re headed south, it’s a 20 mile trip to Manzanillo. We anchor in front of the Los Hadas Hotel, in a wonderful protected area with beautiful beaches and great facilities. Manzanillo is a large city and has every convenience, including huge grocery stores and lots of great restaurants. Days are spent on the dinghy, jet ski or kayaking. The Las Hadas Hotel offers a good dinghy dock and accommodations for getting around the city. Evenings are spent barbecuing on the boat or dining in the restaurants along the beach.
If we head north it is 14 miles to a wonderful bay called Tenacatita where good anchoring is available. We’ve had porpoise come swim around our anchor chain, and whales breach right inside the bay. One of the highlights is taking your dinghy up the river. It’s about a 3 mile trip and about half is under canopy. At the end you come out in a little clearing on the beach with a number of restaurants and bars. (I’m not sure why the bars are there; it’s a long way from any town.) This is one of those trips you will want to take every time you go to Tenacatita. There are a number of resorts along the beach, but mostly we treat this part of the trip as a boating adventure and try to get the full use of our accommodations and equipment. This is boating.
After a few days we head back to Barra and spend the rest of the trip in the marina, enjoying the great pool and facilities of the hotel. We try the different restaurants in town, shop the local stores, and just kick back.
One of the overlooked joys of boating in Mexico is the companionship and conversation you experience with other families sharing the same adventures. I can tell you about similar journeys to Puerto Vallarta, Ixtapa, La Paz and many other locations in Mexico. I don’t know where else you can get as much adventure and welcome comfort as in Mexico.