View from our 8th floor hotel room at Con Cuong, Vietnam.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Vinh, Vietnam.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Ninh Binh, Vietnam.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

What a day...but we made it!

Thrilled to be back at our motorhome Sherman and with our friends at Hacienda Contreras RV Park!

But what a long day it was to get here.

When we left you last, we were on our way to the Cancun airport. It was about 9:30pm and our flight departed at 1:40am. We gave ourselves lots of time because we were taking local transport and weren't sure how that was going to go.

Taxis from the part of the hotel zone where we were staying cost 350 pesos ($30.45) for the one way trip to the airport. That's a tourist rip-off, and we weren't having anything of it. So we hopped on the local bus outside the hotel for 19 pesos ($1.65) for the two of us and took it directly to the ADO long distance bus station in town. I had done some internet research that told me they do an airport express type bus.

When we got there, I asked at a colectivo stop outside if they did a run to the airport, but was told to use the ADO bus. Fair enough, so we went in the terminal and paid 63 pesos each ($5.48) for the tickets to the airport.

We got on the last bus at 10:50pm and made it to the airport at 11:15pm. Total cost for whole trip from the hotel to the airport for the two of us was 145 pesos ($12.62).

Then, we had to wait. Not much going on in the airport at that hour. Our plane left right on time and we managed to get some shuteye during the flight. Before we knew it, we were landing in Mexico City.

Mexico City airport never shuts down. Even at 4:00am there are flights coming and going and lots of people about. Still, we found a quiet looking spot and found some seats that looked comfortable enough to try and sleep for a couple of hours before our connecting flight to Guadalajara took off at 7:53am.

We had paid a total of $86.03 (taxes and everything included for both of us!) for our flights from Cancun to Guadalajara. That's a distance of 1,600 kms (1,000 miles). It was a sale that Volaris had last August and we scooped them up dirt cheap.

Time passed fairly quickly and before we knew it we were getting on the plane. This turned out to be one of the best flights we have ever taken! The skies were clear as can be and the route took us over many of our favorite spots that we have visited in Mexico.

Busy Mexico City airport.

Taking off on a really clear day. You can still see the Mexico City smog though.

The city is huge. Somewhere around 24 million people!!!

Our flight path took us over the 15,000 ft (5,000 meter) high Toluca Volcano. Some of you might remember when we hiked up here last year!

And then, one of our favorite places in Mexico, Valle de Bravo!

And the city of Patzcuaro.

And finally, our destination of Valle de Juarez.

What a great flight it was. Despite how tired we were, we spend most of the hour and a half long flight trying to look out the window.

Even though we flew right by Valle de Juarez, it was still going to take us another 5 hours to get there by land!

When we arrived at Guadalajara airport, we walked the 15 minutes to the main highway. There are a lot of buses that go by there and we needed to find one that would take us to the main bus terminal in the city so we could catch the bus to Mazamitla, which is near Valle de Juarez. 

Several taxis stopped, but the best deal we could work to the main bus terminal was 150 pesos ($13.05) and we knew the local bus would only cost a couple of dollars.

We stopped five or six buses and could find the right one. And we couldn't find a local who could tell us which bus to take.

So we went to plan B.

We had taken a different bus route last time we had come into Guadalajara airport. This involved going through Chapala and Jocotopec and connecting to the Mazamitla bus. We knew how to do it that way, but we figured it would have been easier and faster with Plan A. Oh well.

So we crossed to the other side of the highway and after 15 minutes or so the bus to Jocotopec came along.

This bus cost 40 pesos ($3.48) each. This is a local bus that stops a lot. But it was fun watching the people, and they even have entertainment. The hour or so long ride went by fairly quick.

We love this about Mexico!

We got off in Jocotopec, and then had a 1.5 km walk to the connection point. We would have taken a taxi had one stopped to get us, but by the time one did we were almost there! Then, it was another half hour wait for the right bus to come along.

The Mazamitla bus cost 90 pesos ($7.83) each and the driver told us he would drop us off right at the RV Park.

A bus stop along the way.

It was 3:00pm when we arrived at Hacienda Contreras. What a long day we had! Barb and Sal came out to greet us, and then we said hello to Heinz and Uli, and Paula and Jerry, and Pete and Madeline. All regulars here at Hacienda Contreras.

Then, we walked down to see Whiskey. When our dog Whiskey passed away in the fall of 2011, she was buried here at Hacienda Contreras and we planted a bottle brush tree to mark the spot.

Whiskey was happy to see us too, and her tree is in full bloom!

Beautiful blossoms on Whiskey's tree.

We sat around at happy hour and enjoyed talking with our Mexico RV'ing friends. But we were beat! Paula was nice enough to save us a pot of chile for dinner so we didn't have to do any cooking! Thanks Paula!

We spent a bit of time getting Sherman back into shape and putting things away. Got the fridge burner cleaned and lit, and the water hooked up. Batteries seem fine, but they need a little water.

That was enough for yesterday and we hit the sack around 9:30pm.

Slept for 10 hours!

Today will be a busy day. Sherman needs a big cleanup and we need to buy some groceries and other supplies. 

We've missed our motorthome and are totally looking forward to the next month living the RV lifestyle again!


  1. Glad you made it back to Sherman and he's in good shape. I'm a little confused. I thought Barb and Sal sold the park. Can you update us on what's happening with the RV park? I'm excited to see what you'll be up to for the next month. Yea! Mexico!!!! Grace (in Tucson)

    1. Hi Grace! Yes, Barb and Sal sold the park, but they happen to be campers! There are some changes though. We'll tell you all about things in tomorrow's post.

  2. Carumba! That was a long day. I can't quite imagine doing that myself, that's for sure. You guys always seem to have a plan though. In my defense, I did once hitch hike up the E35 Autobahn in Germany. Mind you, that was about 1979. That was just about as adventuresome as it ever got though.
    Enjoy your time back home.

    1. Yep, it was a long day but it was only a day, we look at it as part of the traveling and we love to travel. We wouldn't want to deal with too many days like that but the odd one here and there isn't so bad.

      Sounds like you had quite a few adventures back in the day! ;-)

  3. A truly neat reward for enduring a long, hard day of travel!

  4. So glad that all was well with Sherman. Glad you got there safely.

    1. Thank you Contessa, we are happy everything went well too!

    2. Thank you Contessa, we are happy everything went well too!

  5. Nice to see you "home" again. Neat that you flew over all those places you have been to. I can't even do that sort of pin pointing geography in Canada! (we did "fly over canada" and I was totally lost!).
    Can't wait to see Sherman all cleaned up and ready to roll. You sure you can still drive it? It's quite a longer vehicle than what you are used to now! :)

    1. We thought that it was pretty neat too! It helped that we knew more or less the flight plan that we would be taking so we knew what to keep our eyes out for. When we plan our driving days we use Google Maps so that also helped us spot the locations, especially when we use the satellite version on Google Maps.

  6. Whiskey's blooms are beautiful. What a great welcome home. Not sure you guys are going to know how to relax and catch up after this last journey. But it was fantastic.

    1. Whiskey's tree is doing so well and we were so happy to see it in bloom. When we left last year it was almost ready to bloom but not quite. No worries, it won't take us long to learn how to relax, we are really overdo for some R and R!

  7. What a long journey! I once went to NYC on an overnight bus and said never again!

    1. It was definitely a long day but as I said earlier it is only a day!

  8. I know that bus stop! Isn't Paula something! Glad you're back. Mexico missed you guys!

    1. That was so sweet of Paula to think of us and offer to give us chili that she had set aside for us. it was so nice not to have to worry about dinner, seeing that there was nothing for us to eat in Sherman.

      We're happy to be back and we missed Mexico too!

  9. Welcome "home" to Sherman. Imagine, two weeks ago you were in Africa!

    1. Thanks Peter, and yes it is hard to believe, where does the time go?!

  10. Pictures of everything but Sherman! :cO

    1. He didn't want his picture taken yet, he was embarrassed because he was so dusty and dirty.


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