San Carlos Journals

San Carlos: our intro to Mexico

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An April 2004 trip to San Carlos by btwood2

·	San Carlos Marina, dominated by Cerro Tetakawi Photo, San Carlos, Mexico More Photos
Quote: Starkly beautiful Cerro Tetakawi rises from the edge of the deep turquoise Sea of Cortez, welcoming us to San Carlos. This little gem, currently a resort community and fishing village, has been in flux since the first people were awed by its forceful peaks and lulled by its tropical climate.

San Carlos: our intro to Mexico

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Overview

·	San Carlos Marina, dominated by Cerro Tetakawi Photo, San Carlos, Mexico
Quote:
This was our first trip to Mexico for longer than a day into anything beyond a border town. Between copious amounts of xylocaine injected into my right lower jaw, generous and strong margaritas, and rapidly warming breezes, I was mostly in altered states of consciousness during our 10-day stay in San Carlos. Much of the sensory input was colors. Adding to the surreal feel were the bright colors of the shops along Boulevard Manlio Fabio Beltrones, the main thoroughfare through town. In particular favor are sunshine yellows, tangerine oranges, lime greens, and intense blues. In the residential districts, however, things are toned down with conservative whites, tans, pinks, and brick, tile and stucco...Read More

Cave Kayaking

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Attraction | "Cave Kayaking on the Sea of Cortez"

Cave Kayaking Photo, San Carlos, Mexico
Quote:
When Mike at Ocean Sports told us his kayaks in these waters were very forgiving, even for inexperienced boaters such as ourselves, we decided to try it. Kayaks made of driftwood and animal skins were developed originally by indigenous peoples of the North, primarily for hunting and transportation. As we carefully stepped down into our two-person non-traditional, long, rigid plastic recreational kayak, it felt good to be so close to the water and not using anything noisy or potentially polluting. Mike said about one third of his customers make "wet exits", that is, capsize. Our waterproof bag held our supplies, including sunscreen, water, first aid kit, and lunch. Although of primary concern to us...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on May 19, 2004

Cave Kayaking
Sea of Cortez
San Carlos, Mexico

Mexico for Dummies (First-Timer Guide)

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Story/Tip

·21 Milepost border checkpoint Photo, San Carlos, Mexico
Quote:
Mexican Car Insurance:: Driving to San Carlos from the Arizona border involves some paperwork. Mexican car insurance is a must in case of accident; we shopped around and got ours at the daily rate at Oldwest Mexico Insurance in Ajo. The full coverage at under $80 for 10 days was even better than some of the "discount" deals on the internet, which were running around $100. Since we didn’t take our motor home, this was for our 2002 Hyundai Elantra. Best place to cross the border: Unless you relish waiting in long lines of cars for hours while street vendors try to sell you things you probably don’t need, the truck crossing in Nogales is the way to...Read More

Requiem for a tooth

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Story/Tip

It’s root canal time Photo, San Carlos, Mexico
Quote:
I did not grow up in the fluoride generation. I was raised by traditional Dutch parents. My school friends were amazed by the sack lunches I used to bring. Boterhammen(open faced sandwiches) spread with butter and brown sugar, or butter and hagelslag (chocolate sprinkles), or muisjes (candy coated anise seed) were cause for wonder, sometimes envy. Dutch relatives used to send us care packages from Holland, with Dutch delicacies like borstplaat (flavored sugar candies that melt in your mouth unlike anything else), marzipan, and best of all, Droste chocolates. Then there were the luscious stroopwafels, a sort of hard waffle sandwich cookie with syrup filling. I b...Read More
·Playa Algodones Photo, San Carlos, Mexico
Quote:
What a perfect place for a walk on the beach! The sand was white, fine and warm between our toes as we walked out on Playa Algodones, so named because of its resemblance to cotton. We walked on the damp, firmer sand by the water, letting the gentle waves of the Sea of Cortez, also warm, wash over our feet. The slight breeze over the water cooled us off just enough in the moist heat of midday. We began our walk at the Plaza San Carlos Hotel, on the south end of the beach. Some call it Catch-22 Beach, because it’s near where the film crew worked back in the 1960’s to film Catch-22, starring Alan Arkin. There are supposedly some old falling apart buildings a ways inland from the beach, all that rem...Read More

Holy Guacamole Noche Mexicana

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Story/Tip

·Veracruz bruja dance      Photo, San Carlos, Mexico
Quote:
No sooner had we arrived at the Plaza San Carlos Hotel, where we had received a four-day/three-night gift stay for buying into a timeshare last year, than we heard about a Noche Mexicana which would be taking place in less than half an hour. It sounded like a good deal, with continuous entertainment and all you can eat and drink for $21 a person, a three-hour event. After quickly taking turns in the shower and putting on clean clothes, we were only a few minutes late as we entered the "ball room". We were directed to seat ourselves anywhere, and we chose the end of a long table near the stage. A server came to us with a pitcher of margarita in one hand and a pitcher of beer in the other, as...Read More
·Tetakawi obscured by mist Photo, San Carlos, Mexico
Quote:
Guaymenas Indians, with a reputation for "fierceness", were the earliest inhabitants of the San Carlos area. Seri Indians, expert fishermen and more recently carvers of ironwood, live to the north, with settlements near Kino Bay. The Yaqui live east and south. In the 1600’s, Jesuit priests and Spanish military forces traveled through the San Carlos region, but it was not until 1769 that Captain Antonio Soto seized Bahia San Carlos for Spain. In the 1780’s the Jesuit order was replaced by the Franciscan order of friars. They noted great hardship, suffering and death among the Indians because of illness, probably imported by the Europeans. Spain began to lose control of the American lands, and Mex...Read More