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Beautiful day exploring the city of San Luis Potosi, Mexico.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? El Faro de Peter RV Park just west of San Luis Potosi, San Luis Potosi, Mexico.

Where are they going next? Guanajuato, Guanajuato, Mexico.

Monday, January 22, 2018

RV Caravan Travel Day... Mexico City to the Emerald Coast

One of the things that we love about Mexico is that you can be from the mountains to the beach in under four hours from anywhere in the country. Well, it takes slightly longer than that when you're traveling with 12 rigs in an RV Caravan, but you get the idea.

Yesterday, we did 352 kms (218 miles) from the outskirts of Mexico City to the Emerald Coast north of Veracruz on the Gulf of Mexico.

In planning the route, I knew that we had some Mexico City congestion to get through so we started out at 7:00am. On a Sunday morning at that hour traffic shouldn't be a problem. And it wasn't. However I had three route choices to get out of the city and none of them were ideal. Either drive 17 kms (11 miles) out of our way, or take a more direct route at a slower speed.

But it turned out to be a much slower speed! Not because of traffic, but because of topes.... Mexican speed bumps. I bet we crossed 50 topes in 13 kms (8 miles)!

No traffic. But you can see an upcoming tope (speed bump). Pronounced "tow-pay".

Well, there was a little bit of traffic.

On the main toll road past the Teotihuacan ruins. Lots of food stands.

Once we passed Teotihuacan, we were on the Mex 130D cuota highway. This is a relatively new (four years old, maybe?)  major toll highway to the Gulf coast between Mexico City and Tuxpan. 

Quite a large section of it runs through the mountains, and it used to take six hours to do the drive. The new toll road cut that down to two hours and forty five minutes! And what a beautiful drive it is!

Nice highway, and beautiful scenery.

We would like to visit some of these little villages.

Hey, there's a nice lake!

I bet we could find somewhere to park on that lake.

It's fun doing the caravan, but it means that we have a schedule to keep. If we were traveling on our own, we would have stopped at some of these places.

Lots of bridges and tunnels on the toll highway.

Scenery along the way.

Beautiful.

Another tunnel.

 More scenery.

Wow. Looking back at where we came from.

More scenery.

Crossing from the state of Puebla to the state of Veracruz.

Lots of oranges grown here.

A truck being loaded with oranges.

More scenery.

Arrived at Mar Esmeralda Trailer Park at about 2:15pm.

Nice pool here.

Not bad, for around 300 pesos ($21 CAD, $17 USD) per night!
GPS 20.299856, -96.844667

Happy hour at the beach!

Temperatures here are daytime highs of about 27C (81F) and lows of around 16C (61F). But while yesterday was a nice day, they're calling for clouds and even possible showers the next three days. Oh well. Not really beach weather, but while today is a day off, tomorrow we go to the El Tajin ruins.

Yesterday's drive, 352 kms.

A beautiful drive, but high toll costs. For Sherman, it was 806 pesos ($55 CAD, $45 USD) in toll fees.

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27 comments:

  1. Expensive tolls, but then that highway wasn't cheap to build, obviously.

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    1. Exactly! The toll roads are definitely nice to have when you are traveling with a caravan. Especially after having spent that morning on a road full of topes that took more than an hour to go 13km (8 miles)!

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  2. I'm not adverse to tolls, if the road is worth it. In your case, totally worth it.

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    1. I agree with you. Those who use the roads, should pay for them. So provided there is a corresponding reduction in taxes (as there is in Mexico), I don't have a problem with them.

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  3. Very nice scenery and pictures. Tolls are a pain but the highway looked worth it. Enjoy the beach.

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    1. The scenery was gorgeous! Everyone on the caravan loved it and couldn't believe how beautiful it was. Yes, tolls are a pain but sometimes they are worth it when you have a good road to drive on and this road certainly was a nice one and not a cheap one to build.

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  4. Nice scenery and a great beach! Enjoy.

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    1. Gorgeous scenery and the beach is nice but we really were only able to enjoy it that first afternoon because yesterday was overcast all day and today is drizzly. :-(

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  5. In the BVI those speed bumps are known as Sleeping Policemen. They do the trick.

    Very nice views, the toll was worth it from what you've said. Love the tunnel picture. The park looks very nice.

    Enjoy your time there.

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    1. It was the same in Barbados and a few other places we have been too but no one does it as well as Mexico or has as many!

      Beautiful views and yes, it was worth the price of the toll. However, if it had been just Kevin and I, we would have taken the free road and also taken a lot more time and stopped and overnighted in some of the areas.

      The park looks nice but the facilities are worn down and not really looked after but not a bad stop for a few days.

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  6. A route we have never taken. Very nice. Tolls are a fact of life on Mexican highways but there is always an alternate route you can take if you choose. However, the free routes is where the topes live!

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    1. We had never taken it either, it was beautiful! Yes, there are lots of toll roads and some times they are definitely a better alternative than the free road but generally with us we love to explore and the free roads are great for that.

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  7. Your route near CDMX looks like it came very close to the Hoy No Circula zone. Or did you manage to avoid it?

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    1. Yes, we were in the zone, however we arrived after 11:00am, and we departed on a Sunday. So both times the restrictions were not in effect.

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    2. Good timing! It would have made it very difficult it it was in effect.

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  8. Tajin has the voladores. Great place to walk around, I hope there is internet at the park and people in the caravan study up a bit brfore going.

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    1. Yep, it does and we have some arranged to fly for the group when we go today. We will have a guide so I am sure that he/she will explain everything to the group about the ruins and the voladores.

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  9. Wow.. following along on your trip is a real eye opener. Mexico is beautiful.

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    1. Looks like we are doing a good job then showing people what Mexico has to offer. Hopefully we are changing people's perception of Mexico from what the media spurts out! It is a gorgeous country and this is only the start, there is so much more to come. :-)

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  10. Replies
    1. Yes, was such a nice change, unfortunately that was our only nice weather, since yesterday was overcast and today it is even drizzling. :-(

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  11. I am with the companies other caravan (14 rigs). It was below freezing on Sunday when we left Nogales. -5 Brrrrrr

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    1. You can have the cold! At least where we are now is warm but unfortunately it is very windy and wet. :-(

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  12. Very lovely scenery! Can hardly wait to do it next year! Thanks for the great pics and narratives.

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    1. So glad that you are enjoying the post and being able to see what you will have ahead of you for next winter.

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  13. Gotta be careful of those topes. My back was injured when the tour bus we were on in India two months ago hit one of those monsters at a high speed and bounced me to the ceiling and back down HARD. On a better note ... what a lovely campground.

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    1. We are always on the lookout for topes. We say that it takes to people to drive in Mexico, one to actually drive and the other to watch for topes, animals, potholes and anything else that may be along the road. We have hit one fairly hard in our second or third year traveling in Mexico and it wasn't fun!

      It is a pretty spot but like many places here it could use a little more upkeep!

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