January 21-28, 2014 Waterfalls, iguanas & butterflies, and a stunning sunrise!
21.01.2014 - 28.01.2014 37 °C
My first trip of 2014 was to Huatulco, Mexico. I was hired to photograph a Destination Wedding there The bride & groom put me up at the amazing Dreams Huatulco Resort. As I was going through my photos to select ones for this blog post, I realized I didnt actually take that many of the resort itself, but this was my room.
View from the beach bar
One of 6 pools (3 of which were infinity pools).
The resort was located on Tangolunda Bay, one of nine bays in Huatulco.
I went for a walk to the other end of the beach where there was a pier (above photos), lots of birds fishing, local fisherman, and loads of tropical flowers/plants.
I only had 2 days of 'work' while there, one day to shoot the wedding, and a second day to do more family photos, otherwise the rest of the days were mine to do as I wanted. So one day I headed to the Yee-lo-bee Butterfly Farm. I just took a taxi and paid the entrance fee once there. Taxi & admission was around $30. Much cheaper than the $80 the resort wanted for a tour! I met 3 Canadians ladies there, and we toured the place together, then stopped for freshed squeezed lemonade afterwards
The 'farm' is a giant greenhouse dome filled with tropical plants and 100s, if not 1000s of butterflies! I think I spent about 1hr in there, trying to photograph each kind of butterfly. If your patient they will eventually land on you
Also at the butterfly farm was an iguana hatchery! Bonus! They had Black Iguanas & Green Iguanas of various ages. They breed them here, then release them into the wild ... or so they say.
They asked if I wanted to hold them ... of course!
The baby Green Iguanas were my favorite! So cute! They look like the little Giecko gecko from the commercials, lol!
Colorful bougainvillea were everywhere!
There was also a pond area at the butterfly farm with these odd looking ducks.
After a few lemonades, I hopped back in my cab, which had waited for me, and headed back to the resort. Its really only a 10min drive or so, so dont let a cabbie charge you a ton of money! So on the drive back my cabbie decided to hit on me. First he asked if I liked Huatulco. I said yes. Then he asked if I'd like to move here. I saw where this was going right away, lol! This isnt my first time out of the country, I'm no fool. So I answered him with a big NO. But that didnt deter him. He then asked if I liked dancing. NO. He still proceded to ask if I wanted to go to a disco with him that night. No deal. And then finally he asked if I'd like to go to a nude beach with him! Hahahahaaaa, no thank you greasey Mexican, no thank you!!
Back safely at the resort I enjoyed a beautiful sunset.
The next day I took a stroll through town and found a little spa and got a 1/2hr massage for a fraction of the cost of one at the resort's spa. I also came across a local tour agency offering all the same excursions that the resort was. I booked a tour to a waterfall. Resort's price ... $85. Local agency price ... $40! If you've never been on an all-inclusive vacation before, my #1 tip would be to never ever book excursions through your resort. Just walk across the street to a local agency and get the same tour for half the price. Literally. Resorts always tell you that the local places will rip you off. Not so. I use local agencies wherever I travel. Its the big resorts that are ripping people off!
The drive to the waterfall, however, is brutal! Long, potholes, twisty & turny, up & down! If you get motion sickness easily, take Gravol beforehand, and try to sit in front of you can.
The walk from the parking lot to the falls is easy, but theres is 2 sets of steep stairs.
But the walk back was a different route along the river with no steep stairs.
The waterfall is named Cascada Magica. It has many tiers, a rope swing, and shallow areas for safe swimming. But my favorite part was that there were only 5 other people there!
After a few hours at the falls, lunch was at a coffee plantation. I'm not one for trying new food, but I did try fried cactus (yuck), and hibiscus juice (yum). They actually put the flowers in water. Let it sit overnight. Then drain the water out & add sugar. It tastes a bit like fruit punch, but not as sweet.
On the last day I got up at the butt crack of dawn to watch the sunrise. The sun doesnt rise at my beach, so I hitched a ride with the front desk girl's surfer boyfriend to a place called La Bocana.
The sunrise was the best I've ever seen!
There was a little pond/pool of water where the river ended with a perfect little boat with peeling turqoise paint floating on it. It was just screaming for a photoshoot
After taking more than enough photos of the little boat, I walked across the beach to the ocean where there was a giant piece of driftwood covered in birds sunning themselves as the sun came up.
I was the only one on this beach, other than the friend that came with me, and a local surfer girl.
2 birdies gossiping
So many birds!!
I took a walk to the far end of the beach where there was a massive flock of American Black Vultures. No one else was on this beach, just me & the vultures! In that moment I forgot I was in one of the most touristy countries in the world!
I walked very slowly amongst the vultures. They didnt fly away, not even one.
But they all had their beady little eyes on me! Every time I took a step they'd turn their heads collectively as one, and stare at me. I'd stand still and wait for them to go back to feeding, then take another step ... and they'd all turn & look at me again.
They were busy feeding on a stingray carcass.
Not gonna lie, I was nervous that'd they'd attack me. But they didnt. One thing I learnt in Africa is to give wildlife space, move slowly, and they'll mind their own business.
Cute little hut on the beach.
After 6hrs at this awesome beach, I had no choice but to head back to my resort. It was time to checkout and head to the airport But not before I found a cute little parrot!
Thats it for Mexico. Next up will be Indonesia