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Awesome Acapulco!

Awesome Acapulco!

story by: Tom Ricketts

The beautiful beaches, vibrant nightlife and exotic locale of Acapulco have been attracting tourists to the city for decades. In the 1950’s especially, anyone who was anyone holidayed in Acapulco. The likes of Marilyn Monroe, JFK, Elvis and John Wayne have all graced her shores. While the glitz and glam of Hollywood has now passed the city by, its beaches, nightlife and unique attractions do still remain today.

Acapulco couldn’t have a better location! It’s situated on a circular bay with a narrow channel connecting it to the Pacific Ocean. The circular shape gives its beaches natural protection from the waves so the water is normally calm. Surfers need not despair though, there’s plenty of waves crashing off the heads just outside the bay.

Back inside the bay, there’s miles of golden sand beaches for everyone to work on their tans, and take a dip in the balmy water which hovers around 30 degrees. On the narrow strip of land between the beaches and the surrounding hills are gleaming highrise apartment buildings and hotels, all vying for the best ocean views. If the sea is just not refreshing enough for you, your hotel is equipped with a cooler swimming pool just off the beach and the all important pool bar for your beer and cocktail needs.

Sunsets here are nothing short of spectacular. The sun dips below the vast Pacific Ocean before you in all shades of red, orange and yellow. The palm lined beaches and surrounding highrise buildings make for picturesque silhouettes. But the city doesn’t stop when the sun’s gone. In fact it shifts up a gear! Acapulco has an explosive nightlife which starts as soon as you step out the door. Local taxis and busses are covered in strobe lights, glow sticks and thumping sound systems that must be worth more than the vehicle itself! There’s a full range of bars and nightclubs, from your pulsating trance clubs, to intimate piano bars still playing the same music that must have entertained Elvis and Marilyn in their day.

What’s a party without a show? You won’t be disappointed by the La Quebrada Cliff Divers. Forget Hollywood; these guys are the real celebrities in Acapulco. The trained divers throw themselves headfirst off 115 foot (35 metre) cliffs along the coast to the ominously named ‘Gulch’ below. Timing is everything as the water in the Gulch ebbs and flows between 6 and 16 feet when the waves roll in. If that doesn’t sound crazy enough, they do it at night too, armed only with a torch.

You won’t find any ancient Aztec pyramids here, but the city does have the Spanish Colonial architecture Mexico is famous for. Like every town, the leafy Zocalo (central square) is lined with shops and restaurants, perfect for a long lunch and reprieve from the heat. The city’s main cathedral is located here too, again like every town in Mexico. However this one has a distinctly different story, actually being an old movie set that was retained and later turned into a cathedral. Another prominent site is San Diego Fort, oddly built by the Dutch rather than the Spanish.

Whether you stay in the city, or one of the sleepier towns and resorts further along the coast, Acapulco is sure to entertain and delight. A must visit during your Mexican experience.

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