Adventures in Mazatlan: 5 Ways to Get Lost on the Mexican Pacific

Adventure Travel, Featured, Mexico — By on August 31, 2011 at 10:06 am

Mexican SunsetMazatlan, the pearl of the Pacific, is a historic port city nestled on Mexico’s western coast, and an ideal destination for a weekend of getting lost.

While it first rose to fame in the 1920’s as a chic tropical hideaway of the Hollywood elite, the Mazatlan of today is part-bustling port city, part sun-washed vacation paradise. While its still a major vacation destination, the city offers so much more than fiery flamingo sunsets, sandy beaches and minty mojitos. It is a cultural, historical, adventure hub, a youthful and engaging town that will keep you enchanted from dawn ’till dusk.

With so much happening in Mazatlan, it’s hard to know what to do first; here are five exciting activities that can’t be missed.

Zipline Huana CoaZipline Over the Jungle

There’s almost no better way to get your blood flowing than by soaring through the air over acres of lush jungle at the Huana Coa Canopy Adventure park, 45 minutes outside of Mazatlan. The experience begins with a nerve-racking ride up the mountain in the company’s pinzgau, a 6ft by 6ft Swiss-terrain vehicle. Though the route up get your heart racing, the team at Huana Coa is all about safety, and will make sure your day is exciting, but never dangerous.

As you zip across miles of jungle, soak in the awesome views and keep an eye out for jaguars, tarantulas and gila monsters. If heights aren’t your thing, Huana Coa also offers ATV and horseback riding. No matter what you do, make sure to come prepared with sneakers, insect repellant and sunscreen.

Tequila AgaveTour an Agave Liquor Factory

Once your toes are firmly planted on solid ground again, reward your fearlessness with a tour of the Los Osuna distillery, just minutes away from the Huana Coa Adventure Park. Mexican law requires that liquors bearing the name tequila must be produced in the Mexican state of Jalisco. So, even though Los Osuna’s agave liquor is 100 percent organic blue agave, and is produced using the same tequila making process, it cannot be called tequila.

That doesn’t stop it from winning awards however: In 2009, Los Osuna’s Reposada won the double gold medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition. To best appreciate and taste the champion liquor, spend some time touring the Los Osuna factory and its sweeping Agave fields, learn exactly how the fragrant spirit is made, taste the sweet agave nectar, and if you’re courageous, taste the caustic yet aromatic, just-distilled white product, nicknamed: “to-kill-you.” After your tour, pick up a bottle of Agave Liquor, and bring some Sinaloese spirit home with you.

Surf the Ocean Waters

Spend an afternoon riding the cobalt waves off the Mazatlan coast. Beaches in Mazatlan are exquisite, spacious and provide ample space for novices and experts alike. If you’ve never surfed before, spend an afternoon with one of the surf masters at Los Pinos, Norte or Bruja Beaches. They will provide you with equipment, and guide you as you paddle, spot and ride waves. You’ll be carving up the surf in no time.

el meson de los laureanos Check Out El Quelite

When you visit El Quelite, a colonial-style town 25 miles outside of Mazatlan, you’ll step into a world of brilliant colors and storybook scenery. The people of El Quelite strive year round to preserve the traditions and flavor of the past. The village offers visitors an experience that is at once calming, mysterious and historically nostalgic. While in El Quelite, explore the village but make sure to have lunch at El Meson de Los Laureanos, and meet the tirelessly passionate Dr. Marcos Gabriel Osuna, also known as “the Father of Rural Tourism in Sinalao,” and the person responsible for continuing, and preserving the wonder and magic of El Quelite. Dr.Osuna provides residents of the rural village and the surrounding areas, with free medical and recreational services in exchange for help in protecting and sustaining the town’s historic structures and ancestral traditions. This fall, Osuna is hosting a stargazing evening where astronomers will bring telescopes to El Quelite in order to instruct local children and their families about the galaxies.

Watch Traditional Mazatlan Cliff Divers

Spend an afternoon meandering down Mazatlan’s Malecon, a 13-mile seaside pier that stretches from the Zona Dorada, Golden Zone, to El Centro, the Old Town. While on the Malecon, seek out the traditional cliff divers of Mazatlan. Since 1961, the divers have leapt from a 45 ft. platform, plunging into a 15 square foot area of salty sea. Cliff diving is incredibly dangerous and mistakes could be fatal; at times the water is only 5 feet deep. Be sure to bring along a few pesos to tip the divers.


  • Emily Wallace says:

    very tempting!!

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