Gorgeous day in Antalya, Turkiye.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Antalya, Turkiye.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Paris, France on May 1st.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

The most beautiful drive in Mexico?

Monday night we had been parked overnight at the Pemex gas station just south of the town of Jacala. When we got up Tuesday morning, several of us went for a walk in the countryside before heading out.

Even with a 10:00am start to the driving day, we should still arrive at our destination of Matlapa by 2:00pm.

The drive itself was only 122 kms (76 miles), but it is on a very curvy narrow mountain road, and I figured it would take at least 3 hours.

But as I said, we went for a walk first...

The old basketball court!

Scenery along the way.

A random cow along the way.

Looking down on the town of Jacala.

Back from town, we hit the road on schedule at 10:00am.

From the town of Jacala, the road climbs steeply.

It wasn't long before we had a view looking down on the town.

There are lots of little villages.

We have always thought the one of the best drives in Mexico is the old Durango to Mazatlan highway... and it is a fantastic drive. But this one may be better. The views are spectacular, and sometimes you'd think the view was from an airplane, not a road!


The only problem is that there are very few places to stop and enjoy the view. And, it's a tough road to drive so it would have been nice to be able to stop and rest a few times. But even traveling alone there is not much parking along the way.

We managed to find one spot where all five of us could pull over.

The most beautiful drive in Mexico?

Crossing from the state of Hidalgo to the state of San Luis Potosi.

Going through the town of Tamazunchale (pop 25,000)

The last 20 kms (12 mlies) or so were all down hill. In fact, our destination is located at only 500' above sea level.

We pulled into Club Palma Sola at around 1:30pm... with only a short break along the way it had taken us 3 1/2 hours to drive 122kms (76 miles).

Tuesday's drive, 122 kms (76 miles).

But what a fantastic drive it was. Only downside was that there isn't more places to stop along the way. I would have loved to have spent some time up in those hills.

Parked up at Club Palma Sola.
GPS 21.376286, -98.846321

Club Palma Sola is an event salon with a small restaurant and a nice swimming pool. They do not have RV hookups as such, but they can fill your holding tank and run an extension cord if you need some electricity. There is no dump station, but there is talk of putting one in.

The friendly owners are Gabriel, his wife Laura, and son Gabriel.

Lots of pretty birds around.

Wednesday was a do nothing day. Five of us took the local collectivo into the town of Matlapa and picked up a few things. I went to the ATM and took out some cash. The financial turmoil going on in the world has caused the peso to drop vs world currencies and Mexico is now the cheapest it's ever been for Canadians and Americans. Not good for the Mexican people though. 

I took out 7,000 pesos on March 3rd and it cost $494 CAD. That same 7,000 pesos yesterday was only $451 CAD.

Today, we are moving on but only a short distance to the town of Xilitla where we want to visit the famous Las Pozas surrealist art forest.

Record low deal on this small but highly rated Sun Joe Pressure Washer

And in Canada...


  1. Wow! What spectacular scenery. Would love to do that drive one day.
    Enjoyed seeing the Brugmansia (Angel Trumpet) plant growing in its natural surrounding.
    I grow them here in Canada.

    1. The scenery was absolutely fantastic, definitely one of the prettiest drives that we have every done in Mexico and we have certainly done a lot of these kinds of drives here. Those Angel Trumpet plant were beautiful, we saw quite a number of them growing by the road.

  2. Spectacular! Sorry to have missed that drive. Just to let you know that everything is great in Valle de Juarez! The repairs done to the washing machine are holding and I am washing everything. We got the van washed and it looks like new! Video chatted with Garth at happy hour!Missing you guys....

    1. It was gorgeous, we are sorry you missed it too but I think that Roy would have been happy not to have driven it, I think he would have been tried on this section because it was extremely twisty and windy with no where to pull off and take a break, even Kevin was tried when we pulled into our campsite.

      So glad to hear that everything is going well for you in Valle de Juarez, I bet you were so happy to get the washing done and get you unit cleaned after all that dust and dirt. Sorry that Garth didn't stick around any longer with you both.

      Hope you guys are doing well and staying healthy. We miss you as well!

  3. Are you in any way concerned about your health and that of your group in these turbulent times?

    1. We are not in any way concerned about our health. We are always concerned about the health of our group, although the current situation does not seem to be worrying the remaining members. If or when that changes, we will accommodate them accordingly.

  4. According to news which I'm sure you've seen, Mexico/USA are going to close their borders tomorrow (Friday). I'm sure citizens can travel across but not sure.

    1. Better off in smaller less populated and traveled to towns in Mexico at this point. Much greater chance of exposure here in the states. Here in California the Gov issued a state wide stay at home order.

    2. So far that isn't the case and if they do from our understanding it will be closed to non-essential travel, so who knows what they mean by that. However we have read that they will still let Canadians cross through the US in order to get back to Canada. Obviously that could change at anytime and if we get stuck in Mexico then that also isn't a bad thing.

      mrdsee468, is correct that staying in less populated and traveled to towns here in Mexico is probably the best way to insurance that we stay virus free opposed to many parts of the US. However when we do cross into the US we will be staying well away from people as we make our way up to Canada.

  5. Don't you wish you could just pull over on these routes like the Durango/Mazatlan and stay put in the forest for a couple of weeks? If the group has never been to Xilitla, they are in for a surprise.

    1. Yep, we sure do and so did the rest of the group! It is a real shame that there isn't somewhere where we could have done that. It would have been a great place just to hid out and stay away from all the craziness that is happening out there in the world at the moment.

      Nobody in the group has been to Xilitla, including ourselves and yes, we all enjoyed our time there although it was baking hot and extremely humid that we didn't stay the night there and continued on to our next stop just down the road.

  6. That was an amazing drive for sure! Although your photos are gorgeous, I am sure the real thing is 10x better. And the pileated woodpecker and oriole closeups are stunning as well. Thanks for sharing!

    1. It was absolutely a gorgeous drive and yes, real life is even better! :-)

      That woodpecker is actually a Lineated woodpecker not a pileated but they are definitely very similar. There were lots of birds to watch while we stayed at that little "campground", I really enjoyed that.

    2. Oh yes, I forgot about Lineated Woodpeckers! I think we saw one (or more) in Belize. Beautiful bird, and your camera takes such good closeups.

    3. We love the zoom on that camera! :-)


There are more comments on our facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/TravelwithKevinAndRuth

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.