A Quick Update

In 2010, we moved back to the small town in Colorado that I never stopped missing while we lived in Mexico. Now I sometimes miss Mexico, but I wouldn't travel as freely as we did when we were there, camping out in remote areas and so forth.

Mexico today is in a period of change, and in many ways it is more dangerous now. That said, I have plenty of American friends who still live there very happily, just taking a few more precautions than they did in the past.

Just to say!

Rosana

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July 17, 2008 – We had such a good time in Sayulita recently that we can really see how people love to go there. Sayulita is up the coast a ways from Puerto Vallarta, and right on the beach.

But would we want to live there permanently? No, thanks, and here is why:

  • We are much happier at over five thousand feet elevation here at Lake Chapala, as the climate is more comfortable. It was quite muggy when we were at the coast, though admittedly July through September is said to be the worst time of year for heat there. Our worst heat is March to May, and it is dry heat, much easier to take.
  • We like being tucked in between mountains that take a lot of the bite out of Pacific hurricanes. Sure, we can get a lot of wind and rain — this month, we have already had all of the nine inches that are the average July total. But hurricanes on the coast can do a lot of damage, and if the ocean level does rise even a little, it wouldn’t take much to devastate a lot of beachfront.
  • Our Lake Chapala area is more economical, at least in real estate. While Kelly’s sister Alexandra was here, we were trying to get her interested in living here. I don’t know if she ever will, but she did get a sense that she could find a nice rental in Ajijic that would suit her (and she has very good taste) for $400 to $600 a month. In Sayulita, it seemed that very few were available and that the prices might be as much as double what they are here.

This area and Sayulita are probably pretty comparable in terms of ease of access when flying in or out. The Guadalajara airport is about an hour’s drive from our house, on this side of the city. I don’t know exactly how far the Puerto Vallarta airport is from Sayulita, but it’s not too far either.

I would give both the two areas top marks in terms of shopping, culture, access to really good medical care in the nearby cities, etc. With an edge to Guadalajara there.

Readers, if you have opinions on coast-vs-highlands, or related topics, please chime in!

6 Comments from the old blog:

  • At July 17, 2008 1:13 PM,  Catalyst said…

    I’m with you. When we lived in Guadalajara, we went to Cuyutlan, below Manzanillo, to spend the entire month of May. It was so hot we came home after about two weeks.

  • At July 18, 2008 8:58 AM,  Barbara said…

    I prefer living on the coast. I know the real estate cost more but it is worth it. All over the world beach property cost more. We built a guest house for family, and it is full almost all season. The humidity is what makes everything look so beautiful. I do not like big cities, such as Guadalajara.

  • At July 19, 2008 9:31 AM,  Anonymous said…

    We opted for inland and mountain views (and a water fall) ;-). The beach always seems like a better place to visit than to live for us.

    That said maybe one day a second home in Puerto Escondido. But first we are happy with our two places in the Xalapa area.

    Viva Veracruz
    John

  • At July 23, 2008 10:06 AM,  Deb Hall ~ Zocalo Folk Art said…

    I’m with you in choosing the highlands over the beach for the same reasons outlined, plus, the beach is relatively folk art free which is definitely not for us. Funny thing though. Now that the cuota runs between Morelia and the coast (3 hours or less from our PATZ apt to a hamaca beside the Pacific), I feel we no longer must choose. We can now visit the beach easily and often. Perfect!

  • At July 25, 2008 7:04 AM,  John W said…

    I retired in San Miguel de Allende, altitude 6,400′, because the climate is nearly perfect for me, I like all the culture, and the beauty of a colonial town founded less than 50 years after Columbus’s first voyage to America.

  • At August 08, 2008 7:20 PM,  American Mommy in Mexico said…

    We are on the Coast with our 2 small children and really love it. It is a great lifestyle for kiddos.

    We are only here for 1 year but I could see living inland for the next big experience … but of course, if we did decide to stay, we would have to stay put to give kids another year in same Mexican school.

One Response to “Would You Retire to the Mexican Coast or Inland and Higher?”

  • MexicoShowroom says:

    What about Mayan Riviera? There’s a nearly unexplored piece of land called Majahual (I think that’s the spelling), to my surprise it is the second largest coral reef in the world (after the australian one).
    I’ve seen so much beauty in the caribbean that makes me want to stay there. I find the shore very relaxing and peaceful don’t you think?

    On the other hand, I guess towns like San Miguel or even Taxco are pintoresque and great choices, sadly, I can’t speak for Chapala because I don’t know it…

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