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Enjoy Mazatlan, Mexico: The Pearl of the Pacific

Mazatlan

Photos Credit: Shutterstock

Located roughly 225 miles east of the southern tip of Baja Peninsula, Mazatlan or the "Pearl of the Pacific" is an important port city on Mexico’s west coast. This city experienced an all-time low in the 1970s and 1980s, but today, is back to being an envied beach retreat.

Home to contemporary buildings, a historic colonial core, as well as miles of golden sand beaches, Mazatlan is a major tourist destination with lots to see and do.

Mazatlan

OLD MAZATLAN

Some of Mazatlan’s most cherished colonial mansions are focused in the Centro Historico or Old Mazatlan. If you are in the city for only a day, this is the place you must visit.

Liven up your taste buds withtaco de cabeza (tacos made from the head of a cow),papas locos (giant baked potatoes) or scrumptious shrimp tacos available with the street side vendors or at one of the cafes.

Burn off your heavenly meal with a tour of the Teatro Angela Peralta—the only opera house in any coastal vacation spot of Mexico.

MALECON

Mazatlan’s magnificent four-mile walkway could give any other boardwalk a run for its money! This Malecon is adorned with various unique and alluring statues and monuments.

This is also a busy area with most of the daytime activity starting around the hotel zone orZona Dorada, moving along the Paseo Claussen, through Old Mazatlan before finishing at Playa Olas Atlas. This stretch is favored by tourists and locals for strolling, jogging and cycling.

Mazatlan

THE MAZATLAN AQUARIUM

The largest in Mexico, the Mazatlan Aquarium is located across the street from the main beach. In addition to displaying more than 50 saltwater and freshwater aquariums that can challenge the ecology of the Sea of Cortez and the Pacific Ocean, the aquarium houses a botanical garden and a planetarium.

Do not miss the sea lion show or the bird theater where macaws and cockatoos display acrobatics! Adventurous visitors can put on diving gear and enter the central fishbowl aquarium to swim with a pair of Nurse Sharks.

BASILICA OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION

Balanced out by canary-colored spires and Italian marble, this 19th-century cathedral acclaimed by its bright yellow towers, makes for quite a spectacular sight. This is the only Catholic Church adorned with a Star of David and holds services several times each day. A good idea is to visit at night when there are fewer masses and also evening lighting.

THE EL FARO

At an elevation of 515 feet, Mazatlan’s El Faro is the highest operating lighthouse in the world. Moving up to the structure, which takes about 45 minutes, can be exhausting, but the effort seems all worth it once you reach the top and experience the far-reaching and breathtaking views of the city and harbor. If you plan to watch the sunset from here, carry a flashlight as you will need it on your way back.

Last but not the least, while exploring Mazatlan, do not miss out on tasting Pacifico, a pilsner brewed locally. Order it in any of the restaurants around the city or sample some on a brewery tour!

Rick Kang

I am solo traveler and always looking for best moments for photography. I wish travel the world with someone special. ...(Read More)

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