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Some scenery on the way to Patzcuaro from Zihuatanejo

Notice it is getting drier. We went from sea level in jungle to 7000 ft surrounded by orchards and pine trees. It was beautiful

 

We stayed at the Villa Patzcuaro Hotel & RV park

http://www.villapatzcuaro.com/eng/inicenglish.htm

 

 

Below is a link to a very good description of Patzcuaro and its history

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pátzcuaro

 

This map gives you an idea of where Patzcuaro is located and many people travel around the exterior of the lake to see the many communities that specialize in copper, pottery, weaving and many other crafts.

Below is a map of Patzcuaro itself showing the many points of interest

Basilica De La Salud

John and I spent a few mornings walking through the many churches, the market and the town squares. Lots to see and do

You will notice that the buildings exteriors are all preserved, but modern stores, hotels and services exist within the buildings. An example is the veterinary service n this building below.

Doctor, specialist anyone??

Beautiful wall paintings inside this restaurant

 

A Colectivo is a form of transportation in Mexico that is generally geared towards moving the population around Mexico's vast labyrinth of roads and highways. Quite often the colectivo is a mini-van.

In tourist zones such as the Mayan Riviera the colectivos are new vans with air-conditioning. Get out of the tourist zones and some of the vans are pretty reggae-muffin. The cost for a colectivo in Patzcuaro was 4 pesos ( 40 cents), a regular taxi ride will cost you 20 pesos ($2)

The main square is extremely busy on Fridays and the weekend with many wares for sale

Lots of stalls under these tarps. You don't want to be claustrophobic or hate crowds

Great food!!!!!

John and I decided to eat out at one of the wonderful restaurants that line the market square. We both ordered Huevos Mexicana. The meal came with coffee, freshly squeezed orange juice, buns and of course the eggs with frijoles for 30 pesos each

We stopped at a bakery on the way home. the best baked goods were the cookies shaped liked pigs, very soft and tasted like gingerbread

After a hard day it must be time to rest and then go out for dinner. We got a lift out to this wonderful restaurant on the hill above the city.

Rancho La Mesa

We ran into friends from home: Wayne & Donna

We made new friends

There were a lot of us and it was lots of fun. Each couple paid 100 pesos to the Mariachi band and they played our choice of 10 songs. It was a blast! John and I drank a few margaritas or more.

The restaurant decor

Sitting at our table we had a wonderful view of the valley

The food was excellent. John ordered Ostrich in red wine sauce and I ordered an Ostrich burger. I can't say it tasted like chicken, the meat texture was more like hamburger and it had a mild flavor. John and I spent about 300 pesos for the meal and drinks. There were at least 4 drinks!!!

A visit to Patzcuaro is not complete without visiting "Isla de Janitzio"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janitzio

"Isla de Janitzio is the main island of Lake Patzcuaro in the state of Michoacán, Mexico.

The town of Janitzio, which means "where it rains", is located atop the hill. Janitzio can only be reached by boats which run regularly back and forth from about 7:30 am to 6 pm, accessible from Pátzcuaro's pier (embarcadero). These boats can be hired to take you around other parts of the lake. The town is famous for the butterfly fishermen who are skilled at lowering their butterfly-shaped nets to catch the local famous cuisine "pescado blanco". The butterfly fisherman were also located on the back side of the 50 peso Mexican banknote."

 

John and I had to stop on the way to the dock to get a taco or two:

These were cows head tacos. A little fattier than the standard beef taco, but still tasty

We found the dock where the boats leave from and more Mexican souvenirs are sold. The cost for the boat to the island and back was 40 pesos each

Mariachi band that plays all the way to the island and back.( they work for tips)

The island

Butterfly fishermen

"Statue of José Maria Morelos

A 40-meter statue of José María Morelos, a great hero of Mexico's independence, started in 1933, is found on the island's highest point. Visitors can climb to the top of the statue by way of a staircase that spirals up the inside. Along the interior walls, the life of Morelos is depicted in murals painted by Ramon Alba de la Canal and other great Mexican muralists. Although the steep stairway can become congested and distract one's attention, it is a good Mexican history lesson. At the top, one can peer through peepholes in the giant raised fist of Morelos, giving a spectacular view of the island, lake and surroundings."

 

The shops and the restaurants on the island

They are famous for their fried whitefish. they are eaten like we eat french fries

The local church

Did I mention you have to climb many many..... steep stairs to get to the top of the island!!!!! and the statue!!!

The construction of the statue took three years and everything was brought to the island by boat.

The inside of the statue. There was a small fee to see the inside. This is looking up from the ground floor. There is a circular stairwell to climb to get to the top and you get to see the wonderful paintings depicting Mexican history along the way

Looking from the top down. You are up there!!!! Hope you don't have vertigo!

We made it to the top!!!

 

I am actually gripping very tight to that metal pipe!!

I couldn't lean off and look down for very long. Call me chicken.

What a view!!

It took a lot less time to walk down the staircases, but our legs were wobbly from exertion. We needed calories!! 

Time to eat.

Well we spent 4 days in Patzcuaro and it is time to move on to our next destination. We heard we should stop and see the pyramids on the way to Lake Chapala. We did just that. 

Click on this link to see the next pictures in our travel log

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