Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Exploring Isla Mujeres!

Charlie's sailboat right there in the background!

After catching up on sleep from our 3-day passage from Key West & checking into Mexico (how-to post here), we began to explore the island by dinghy. Although this was our 4th visit to Isla Mujeres, Ken & I were able to view the little island from a whole new perspective this time around! It was fun riding through the mangroves & around the lagoon in the dinghy. We found waterfront bars & marinas that we never knew existed before. Isla Mujeres is a small island, but we always find something new every time we visit!

In the photo above, you can see how close Charlie's boat was anchored. Most of the time, we motored the dinghy just a minute away to a tiny beach just to the left of the famous fish sign. A short walk brought us to the main part of town. When docking in the main (Northern) area of town, we'd dock the dinghy just a little further away .. maybe a 3-minute ride? It was so convenient to get around town.

Here we are, just after docking in the main part of town ..

Just across the street from the fish sign ... the entrance to a beautiful walk along the sea!

We enjoyed walking along the east side of the coast, and eventually ended up at the Northern tip of the island at the beach of Playa Norte. That evening found us back where we started, and at a bar called "Tiny Iguana". The views were spectacular, and we reminisced about the days prior when we were in those waters on Charlie's sailboat .. so surreal!

I even ran into a "Facebook friend" at the bar, and we enjoyed a drink together .. small world!  Dody lives on the island for about 6 months a year on her sailboat with her guy, and she was just about to head back to Canada for the Summer .. not a bad life!

Speaking of meeting other sailors, we dinghied to Skull's Landing for dinner with Desiree & Jordan of "Project Atticus". They've been living on Isla Mujeres for almost a year, after sailing from Key West (with a stop at Cuba) on their 30 ft sailboat. After boat projects & making some extra income, they're about to set sail for Cuba again! It was great meeting another couple sailing on a smaller boat, and we're looking forward to keeping up with them & their sailing adventures. They were a lotta fun! Maybe I should start a YouTube channel?  Hmmm .. we don't have their video skills, but it's something I ponder every now & then.

As if meeting Dody, Desiree & Jordan weren't enough, it turned out that we were anchored right next to one of our blog followers! Tamera & Scott of "svKooky Dance" reached out to us and after meeting them at Scorpion's for cruiser's "happy hour" (killer chicken wings on Thursdays), we then enjoyed sundowners on their gorgeous Caliber 40 sailboat!

Tamera (to my right) & Pam at "Scorpion's". We met so many great folks that day, and these two ladies were planning a passage to Belize together with their husbands!

While on the island, we also found a little beach by dinghy with a sign saying "Soggy Peso". We docked and wound up staying at this lil bar for hours .. really enjoying the vibe & their "happy hour". While there, we met Jeff, the owner of Isla Brewery. We visited this tiny brewery when we visited last year, and it was really interesting to hear Jeff's story. He's been living on the island for a few years, after moving from North Carolina with his wife & young daughter. Jeff's a real nice guy, and I think he's got a bright future with his beer!

We stayed a week on Isla Mujeres before catching a plane home. During this time we explored several marinas, and our favorite was El Milagro. It had tropical foilage, an outdoor kitchen, a huge indoor kitchen with all the pots & pans you'd need, a laundry room, showers, a large covered patio, a small beach .. what more could you ask for?! This is the marina we'd like to stay at .. if we were staying at a marina!

We also found so many cool restaurants tucked away .. including this zen restaurant serving organic, healthy meals. I loved the outdoor garden & dining area!

The guys had a little fun there too ...

We happened to be on the island for St. Patrick's Day .. yes, it was a celebration!

We also had laundry done while on the island. Laundromats were everywhere, and for about $8 bucks we dropped off our laundry and picked it up the next day .. all neatly folded & wrapped in plastic for the dinghy ride! What a deal .. especially since this was not just Ken & I's laundry, but Charlie's too!

On our last day, we rented a golf cart and the three of us toured the island. There's so much more to the island than the popular "downtown" on the Northern part of the island! We enjoyed the views of the Southern tip ..

and found a place to lounge with a beer for a while on the West coast.

I fear this island will become too well-known in the near future. It's already gotten more crowded the past several years, and the prices are inching up. For now, Isla Mujeres is still a great place for the best margarita you'll ever have .. for only about $4 bucks! Three tacos & two beers for about $6 bucks too .. we love this place! It's beautiful, inexpensive, and everyone is so friendly!

As the sun set on our adventure, we thanked our friend Charlie for giving us such a great opportunity. We had a blast, and we're motivated to take Nirvana to places further South! This was our last sunset with Charlie's boat. Damn, I hate this blurry phone camera!

When I saw this sign at a little bar on the main drag, I had to take a photo!

Hasta luego .. until then. Mid-Life Cruising!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Congrats on your trip to Isla! Haven’t read any blogs for quite a while, been busy working in the Keys. Looks like you’re getting closer to leaving the dock, best of luck when you do.


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