South West, Mexico
The State of Guerrero, with almost 3 million of inhabitants, is the second largest of indigenous population. An original settlement of different indigenous groups such as chontales, cuitlatecs, tepoztecs, chichimecas, toltects, and aztecs, the State of Guerrero offers a rich cultural inheritance combined with beaches of magnificent beauty.
The State provides an interesting past full of History, culture, and Nature. Some of the attractive areas of the region are Taxco, better known as "the Capital of Silver", with cobblestone streets and houses with white facade. The Caves of Cacahuamila show beautiful stone figures formed by the erosion process. Nevertheless, the most popular and visited places are its outstanding beaches, situated in the Bay of Acapulco, the tourist resort of Ixtapa and more relaxed and pictoresque town of Zihuatanejo.
The name of Acapulco comes from ancient Nahuatl words which mean "where the reeds stood", or "place of giant reeds". Acapulco is the ideal holiday resort for sun lovers and those who want to relax next to the shore of a beautiful beach. The Acapulco Bay, with 11-km shore long (6.8 mi) is considered one of the world's best natural harbors, featuring sensational deep blue beaches. Diverse activities and sports are available, from waterskiing to snorkeling, diving, fishing trips and motorboat rides.
Around the curve of the Acapulco Bay stretches The Costera Miguel Alemán, the wide boulevard that runs from the Scenic Highway to Caleta Beach (8 km, or 5 mi), is centre of all major beaches, shopping malls, restaurants and big hotels. The most popular beaches are Playas Hornos, Hornitos, Condesa, and Icacos, east of the Bay. Playas Caleta, and Caletilla are very popular among families with children, with calm water and protected in a cove on the south side of the Peninsula de las Playas. The tiny Playa La Angosta is also located on a protected cove on the south side of the peninsula. Some beaches, such Playa Revolcadero and Pie de la Cuesta have very strong undertows. Finally, La Quebrada, is the worldwide known place where the famous cliff divers jump from a height of 130 ft (40 m) daily.
Ixtapa and Zihuatanejo Beaches
Ixtapa and Zihuatanejo are one of the most appealing destinations in the Pacific Coast. The vacation resort of Ixtapa was created in the early 1970s by Fonatur, Mexico's National Fund for Tourism Development. On the contrary, Zihuatanejo is an old fishing pinturesque village. Located only 7 km (4 mi) southeast from Ixtapa, was a sanctuary for indigenous nobility.
There are different options for tourists depending on the type of beach desired. For instance, beaches at Bahía de Zihuatanejo have gentle waves unlike the ones at Ixtapa, which have big ocean waves. On the Bahía de Zihuatanejo, Playa La Ropa is the most beautiful beach, ideal for swimming, waterskiing and jet-skiing. Playa las Gatas, opposite to Zihuatanejo, is a protected beach aimed to children and good for snorkling. Other less popular beaches are Playa Madera and Playa Municipal.
In Ixtapa, Playa del Palmar, constitutes the main beach with 3 km-long (2 mi) of white sand. The west end of this beach is named Playa Escolleras, visited by the locals and a good spot for surfing. Further west, there are the most beautiful beaches, although small, Playa Casa Blanca, Playa San Juan and Playa Cuatas. Past Punta Ixtapa, there are Playa Quieta and Playa Linda, from which there is a boat that runs to Isla Ixtapa every 10 minutes. Isla Ixtapa has four calm water beaches ideal for snorkeling.
Mexico Regional Landmarks
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