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Whalecome to Huatulco

<<< Dec 25th

- Left bright and early in the morning from YYC, connecting in YVR. Landed at HUX 20 minutes ahead of schedule.

We were surprised how mountainous the area looked as we descended.

- Took a taxi to Casa Angelica. Walked 3km into town and had dinner at Terra-Cotta. Pretty good enchiladas.

- Pretty busy in the town square area and everything was open on Christmas Day.

<<< Dec 26th

- Took a taxi to Bahia Canejos. Found some shade at the far end of the beach. Relaxed and read for a bit and then tossed the football around in the water. The water felt warm once we were in it.

- Walked down a short path to Magueyito Beach. We were hoping to be able to get to Playa La Bocana from here, but it did not seem possible.

- Instead we walked along the road, which wasn't so bad (downhill and in the shade).

- At Playa La Bocana we found the ladies offering mud baths. They applied the mud, allowed it to dry a little, and then exfoliated us.

After that we went into the water to rinse off.

- Played in the waves for a while.

- Had late lunch / early dinner and margaritas at Los Güeros. Good guacamole. Great views.

<<< Dec 27th

- Took a taxi to the Santa Cruz Marina to try and find Oceanica, the whale watching company.

Amidst the sea of tourists attempting to board their party boats we finally managed to track down a guy in a Oceanica shirt.

We boarded our 10 passenger boat and headed out of the bay.

It wasn't long before we encountered a solo male humpback. He was 'in transit' and had many dolphin companions swimming alongside him.

Our tour guide Mariano was very excited about this. He lost his mind when the whale gave us a great tail shot.

Next we found a solo Bryde's Whale.

After that we encountered a female humpback with her very young calf (2-3 weeks old). The baby humpback was learning to exercise and slapped its tail quite a bit. And then it went on to excite everyone by practicing its breaching technique a few times. Baby breeches!

After that we saw a set of three large humpbacks.

7 whale sightings, all a little bit different, can't complain!

- Walked over to busy Entrega beach. Decided it looked a little too busy and would probably choose a different beach after lunch.

For lunch we went to Casa del Cafe. Had a nice mango smoothie bowl and waffles.

Walked to Bahia Chahue. Nice looking beach with just a few locals. Found the one palm tree for some shade and played Tribond.

Walked over to the little marina to try and find turtles. No luck.

Went for a large jar of lemonade and guacamole at Bladu’Yú restaurant. Saw a few cats.

Took a taxi back to the hotel and Chris went for a swim in the chilly outdoor pool.

<<< Dec 28th

- Our bus from La Crucecita to Pochutla departed about 40 minutes late, which we learned is pretty typical.

- From Pochutla to Mazunte we had the option of taking a collectivo (pickup truck with a tarp around the box) or a taxi. Opted for the taxi.

- Our taxi driver didn't seem to believe where our hotel was, despite it being clearly marked on Google Maps. Finally convinced him to try driving there.

- Checked into Casa Qi. Very nice hotel with a great swimming pool that had a view of the ocean.

- Walked into town to try and find a grocery store. Ended up buying an apple, some sort of fruit beverage, and a bag of tortilla chips (but couldn't find salsa)

- Checked out the beach. Docked on land there was a boat full of tourists in life jackets. We wondered how they were going to get the thing into the water. It turned out they started the boat first while the brave workers pushed it from the back into the waves that were crashing against shore..

- Had a nice swim back at the hotel pool. Saw a few cats.

- Went back into the room. Tried to have a shower (ouch!). Hadn't ever seen a shower head with holes that small.

The white cat came to visit us for a while.

- Walked into town again, this time to catch the sunset at Playa Cometa. Us and a thousand other tourists.

Walking back from Playa Cometa turned into a sea of cars, people, and noise. So much for what we thought would be a sleepy little beach town.

- Tried to go for dinner at La Palapa Cometa. It was full so we had take out instead. Walked back through the traffic jams and up the hill to our little oasis away from the chaos. The white cat was waiting for us.

<<< Dec 29th

- Woke up early to beat the heat and walked down into San Agustinillo.

- Walked along the beach to the end where the hillside provided some shade.

Sat on a log and watched the waves roll in and also the keeners getting their early morning exercise.

- Walked back along the beach and went for breakfast at La Mora. Got a great seat with shade and an ocean view.

Ordered some waffles and divorciadios. Everything was perfect, until the guitar guy showed up.

- CB went and played in the waves. I sat in the shade with a pink sarong wrapped around me.

At one point CB had to get out of the water because a boat was coming in.

Yesterday we saw how the locals got the boat out into the water.

Today we learned how they got the boat back on shore. First the tourists get out. Then a bunch of logs are set up strategically on shore. The guy on land gives the signal and the boat operator guns it, aiming for shore and hopefully up onto the logs.

- Walked back to the hotel and relaxed by the pool first. Saw some whales spouting off shore. Then we swam in the pool and saw a few more spouting whales.

- Headed into Mazunte for dinner at El Armadillo, a vegan Moroccan restaurant. Had some Mezcal cocktails. Ordered the orange seitan and the golden tangine. Both were delicious.

- Went back to the room. The white cat was waiting for us. He came inside for a short visit and played with the string on our snorkel bag.

<<< Dec 30th

. - Got up and went to the beach. Walked to the end and back.

- Went to Chirincoco Restaurant for breakfast. Shared some tasty waffles.

- Back to the beach for a swim. Started in the 'wave pool' section of the beach. CM got knocked over by a big wave, almost lost his sunglasses.

- Relaxed back at the hotel and then went for lunch at Doba. Bought some Mezcal. Drank it with some guava in the pool and in our room.

- Saw quite a few whales in the distance from our pool again.

- Went to El Navegente for dinner. Nice patio on the upper level overlooking the street. The fettucine with mezcal cream sauce was great.

The green curry was not. My Mezcalita de Frutos Rojos drink was tasty.

<<< Dec 31st

- Got up and went to the beach. Walked to the end and back.

- Went to Temporada Oaxaca for breakfast. The chilaquiles and French toast were both delicious. The only drawback is that our drinks arrived long after our food, which seems to happen often in this area.

- Went swimming in the ocean again. This time it was CB's turn to get knocked over by a large wave. CM also got nailed by one while sitting on the kid's beach.

- Went swimming in the pool. CB's floating chair had a leak. Didn't see many whales today.

- Had dinner at El Armadillo again. Had the Moroccan platter this time. Very filling. Tried to order a non-generic beer but failed.

Learned how to say Happy New Year.