Welcome to the first of our ‘Monthly Wraps’ whilst on the road.
Sarah correctly pointed out the other day as well, that this is also the longest single period that I’ve actually been out of the country (she still has months to go to catch her own record). Every day thence forth shall be a new PB for me!
This is geared at providing a few quick snapshots from our previous month, and will hopefully help us get our head around what we’ve been up to/achieved!
If you haven’t yet read about some of these places, stay tuned, there will be posts on them all very soon…
Countries Visited: 3 (Australia, United States & Mexico)
Okay, so Australia is home, and technically we didn’t need to travel to get there… but we were most definitely there, and for a brief half an hour (hmmm, it is possible Sarah worried a bit longer), we thought it may be as far as we’d get!
Cheapest Bed: Hotel San Juan, Chihuahua, Mexico 135 Pesos ($11.09 AU)
When you’re paying $5.50 each for a bed, its usually going to be a dorm, but to not only have a double, with private bathroom, air-con and a very trendy bar out the front (So the bar wasn’t part of the hotel, but you did have to walk through it to the hotel)
Most Expensive Bed: Sweden House Hotel, San Francisco, USA $69.94 ($74.56 AU)
We discovered quickly that San Francisco was an expensive place to stay. When the backpackers were either A: Booked out or B: Wouldn’t allow males over 30 to stay there, then this place was our next best option.
It was a bit of a dive, and for a place that didn’t allow smoking, it sure smelt a lot like weed…
Highlight: Copper Canyon (Mexico)
We’d put this down as a must do on our Northern Mexico journey, however this was more due to us being in the area than anything else (I was more looking forward to the train journey to get there).
How much was this place under sold! Easily more impressive than the Grand Canyon north of the border in the US, and with a fraction of the tourists!
Lowlight: Not finding any Whale Sharks in the Sea of Cortez (Mexico)
What can I say. We searched, but there just weren’t any about. At least we got a refund and it’s something we’ll attempt again in the coming months.
Best Meal: Tacos Pescado, Venado’s, Cabo San Lucas (Mexico)
Two and a half weeks after consuming this dish, we both remain unanimous that this is the highlight!
You can read about it (and our other adventures around La Paz) in the coming week or so.
Best Beer: Indio (Mexico)
A lot of the beers over this side of the Pacific Ocean don’t carry a lot of flavour (other than craft beers), but this one is better than most.
I guess the Mexican attitude is you can barely taste a beer anyway when it’s being used to cool the tongue after some delicious Mexican cuisine…
Most impressive Church: Templo de la Purisma Concepcion, Real de Catorce
We didn’t see that many in the US, let’s be honest, however south of the border in Mexico has certainly made up for an shortfall in that department.
It was with some surprise that we found our favourite for the month, in one of the smallest towns (population about 1300 people)…
Bucket List Items: 0
New Bucket List Items: 0
Highest Elevation: 2900m+ Pueblo Fantasmo (Ghost Town) above Real de Catorce, Mexico
When your starting point is already at a height of 2730m and you then hike another hour upwards, you’re generally going to be pretty high.
Sure, we’ll be higher in coming months, but this was it for now.
Days in thongs (flip flops): 25
What can I say, unless we’ve been on a ridiculously cold air-conditioned bus, it’s generally been bloody hot!
UNESCO Sites: 5 (Yosemite N.P, Grand Canyon N.P, Gulf of California, Zacatecas Historical Centre, Camino Real de Tierra Adentro)
Hard to pick a favourite amongst this lot, which is a surprisingly large collection in our first month.
True, we didn’t see all of the Gulf of California, and only 2 of the 3 cities that make up the Camino Real de Tierra Adentro, the ‘Silver Route’, however Guanajuato will be reached in the coming week.
Number of towns: 19
Number of beds: 11
Nights in transit: 5 (4 buses, 1 ferry)
- Most people in the US are very polite
- The Las Vegas Strip is not actually in Las Vegas…
- There are a surprising number of Mexicans with freckles!
- Every Mexican town has the same street names: Hidalgo, Revolucion, Independencia, 5 de Mayo, 20 de Novembre, Juarez & usually several references to Pancho Villa for good measure
- If you want to dress Mexican without a poncho, sombrero, jeans or cowboy boots, it is simple. Just wear a top branded ‘Aeropostale’ (men & women) and bling jeans (women)
- Hamburgers, Pizza & Hot Dogs are a huge part of the Mexican diet!
- Chihuahua is the home of the Corn Dog (not just the Chihuahua)! People were eating them everywhere!!
- Zacatecas is the spiritual home of the VW Beetle… you couldn’t find a street without one (or several)