The first stop on my first Mexican road trip was Lagos de Moreno. I arrived yesterday (Sunday) around 1:00, and my Airbnb wasn’t ready yet, so I went for a walk until I could get in. By about 1:30 I was able to check in, and after unloading the car, I set out to explore the city.
The Mesa That Wasn’t is a story from this morning, so I’ll get to that later.
Lagos is a charming city with a lot of pretty churches. Drivers here are more courteous than back home in Ajijic; they often stop and wave pedestrians across the street. There are a lot of topes (speed bumps). There aren’t a lot of tacky souvenir shops, but neither are there a lot of charming gift shops. Sidewalks are very walkable and there is a lot of attention paid to accessibility. There is plenty of attractive colonial-era architecture, lots of parks and public squares with trees for shade, statues and memorials honoring the history and heroes of the city, and signs pointing out landmarks and points of interest.
In other words, Lagos de Moreno feels like what a Pueblo Mágico should be.
For more photos, check out my online album.
With all lodging, things can be hit or miss.
In this case, it was largely miss.
The apartment is clean and in an excellent location. But that’s the all I can say that’s positive. The only windows are sliding glass doors opening onto a tiny courtyard. There is no air circulation, and yesterday it was stifling. I contacted the host and asked if they had a fan, and they brought one over this afternoon, so it was much better today.
Hot water is provided via solar heat. They didn’t communicate this until a few days ago. They said the most hot water is available in the afternoon. What they didn’t say is there is no hot water at all at night or in the morning. I was finally able to take a shower and shave this afternoon.
The kitchen has no microwave, no coffeemaker, no kettle to boil water, just plates and utensils and a few pots and pans.
I hope I’ve selected better for the rest of my trip.
And now, the Mesa
This is La Mesa Redonda (the round mesa). I read about it when I was researching places of interest for my road trip. You can hike to the top for some great views.
I decided the best time to do this hike was early morning. Since I happened to wake up early this morning (6am), I thought I’d head out to the mesa and do the hike. I left at 7am.
I decided to follow Google maps, but it put me onto a dirt road that I didn’t feel comfortable with, so I decided to strike out on the highway to try to find the AllTrails spot.
The highway goes right past the mesa, but there’s no exit there. It seemed the best way was to go to the next exit and double back on a small road paralleling the highway. So I took the exit, paid the toll (about $2 US), and made the suggested U‑turn. What I didn’t realize was that I was U‑turning onto a two-lane highway, and I almost drove right onto the highway without checking the cars that were speeding toward me from the left. At the last instant I realized what was happening and screeched to a stop, barely avoiding being smacked into by a car doing a good 110 Kmph.
So after making the turn safely, I was slightly discombobulated, and I accidentally took the wrong ramp, leading back onto the highway heading further away. I ended up having to drive about 20 miles before I came to another exit where I could turn around and head back. This also involved two tolls for another $15 US. I got back to my Airbnb a little after 9am.
Needless to say, the hike never happened. But the mesa is pretty, isn’t it.
Tomorrow I head to Zacatecas, with a stop on the way at another Pueblo Mágico, Pinos. Zacatecas is not a Pueblo Mágico (I think it’s too big of a city to qualify), but its historic center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. I have five nights there, so much time to see a lot of things. Stay tuned!