Mazatlan Travel Guide

Photo of Mazatlan

Mazatlan Overview

Effervescent Mazatlan exudes all of the magnetic qualities that tourists have become accustomed to of a Mexican beach resort; bathed in sunshine, blessed with glorious beaches and home to a captivating colonial old town. Commonly known as the Pearl of the Pacific it is one of the closest resorts to the USA and therefore a popular destination for all classes of traveler, from groups of college students enjoying the lively nightlife to families taking advantage of the beach based activities to couples savoring the romance of Plazuela Machado to surfers in search of the breaks at Playa Olas Atlas.

Life in Mazatlan is pretty much split between the beach and historic centre and those that are not at one are likely to be found at the other. The main attractions of the town itself are Zona Dorada (Golden Zone) and Pueblo Viejo (OldTown). Although possessing plenty of character, Zona Dorada has witnessed a serious amount of commercialization and now the place to find popular resort hotels and souvenir stores. For the real colonial experience, wander over to Pueblo Viejo and soak up the timeless atmosphere of the cobblestone streets punctuated by fading mansions and vibrant local cantinas.
As infectious as the town may be, visitors to Mazatlan never lose sight of the fact that they have 17-miles of glorious coastline at their disposal. The beaches stretching along Mexico’s PacificCoast are the place for high adrenalin sports, childrens activities, casual boat rides, sun-worshipping and sipping tequila doused cocktails whilst watching spectacular tropical sunsets. Moreover, as the hot days turn into mild evenings the mariachi bands strike up signaling the start of another night of eternal entertainment.

Things to do in Mazatlan

Mazatlan Beaches - Fronting Mazatlan are 17-miles of gorgeous white sandy beach that are the main attraction of town and home to the expected amount of beach cafés and water based activities. The most popular beaches are Playa Sabola and Playa Las Gaviotas, ideal for swimming, sunbathing and grabbing a cold beer whilst watching the people at play. Mazatlan is also a good spot for surfing with good waves to be found at Playa Olas Atlas and Playa Los Pinos. Surf lessons and equipment hire are available from Mazatlan Surf Center and East Pacific Surf Camp. Those interested in snorkelling, parasailing, banana-boat rides and the like should head to Aqua Sports Centre at Playa Sabalo.

Isla de la Pierda - A great day trip is to head south from Old Mazatlan to StoneIsland, much loved for its vast stretch of beach fringed by a coconut orchard. This is the place to sample the local cuisine at beachside food shacks and enjoy traditional music and dance performances. The beach is within easy reach of the town either by local bus or water-taxi. Youll also find touts promoting packages that entail all-inclusive food, drink and water sport activities.
Museo de Arte Mazatlan - Small museum and gallery showcasing the talents of contemporary Mexican artists with some excellent exhibitions of paintings and sculptures. Open Tuesday to Saturday 10am - 2pm & 4pm - 7pm.
Museo Arquelogico - Rotating exhibitions on pre-Hispanic artefacts with a major focus on Sinaloan culture. Open Tuesday to Sunday, 10am to 6pm. Check out Casa de la Cultura opposite for the occasional art exhibition.
Clavadistas - In an attempt to rival the cliff divers at La Quebrada in Acapulco, divers launch themselves spectacularly off a cliff platform into the choppy waters below. Dives take place at lunchtime and late afternoon to hoards of astonished onlookers.
Acuario Mazatlan - The town aquarium is one of Mexicos finest oceanic education and entertainment centres housing up to 250 species of fish that include sharks, seahorses and stingrays. There is also a small aviary and crocodile farm. Open daily from 9am to 6pm.
Mazatlan Nightlife - Beachfront clubs and bars with free flowing tequila and local old town taverns alive with Mariachi bands all make for a vibrant night scene. Whether at the beach, Old Mazatlan or the Golden Zone a lively night of entertainment is guaranteed every night of the week.
Bars in Mazatlan
Café Pacifico - Tasty Mexican fare and superb beer from the Pacifico brewery.
Edgars Bar - Atmospheric tavern in Old Mazatlan, ideal for tequila tasting and plates of giant sized shrimp.
Senor Frogs - The original of the famous Mexican restaurants and party bars that is particularly busy on weekends.
Clubs in Mazatlan
Bora Bora - When everywhere else closes up head to the FiestaLand complex and this no-limits club with beachside dance floor.
Coliseos Disco - Huge coliseum-styled nightclub attracting Mexicos best DJs.
Joes Oyster Bar - Stop by for a sundown cocktail then stick around for Mazatlans wildest night of partying.

Hotels in Mazatlan

Budget Hotels Mazatlan

Hotel El Bucanero - Centrally located hotel geared towards backpackers. Tel (52) 669 176 0561.
Hotel Celta - Commendable budget hotel a short walk from Playa Norte and the esplanade. Tel (52) 669 136 0041.
Midrange Hotels Mazatlan
Hotel Aguamarina - Medium sized resort with excellent pool, restaurant and bar on the seafront. Tel (52) 669 981 7080.
Hotel La Siesta - Pleasant hotel in the heart of Mazatlans historical quarter. Rooms at the front have ocean facing balconies. Tel (52) 669 981 2640.
Hotel Playa Mazatlan - All-inclusive resort fronting a large stretch of beach and popular with families. Tel (52) 669 989 0555.
Luxury Hotels Mazatlan
El Cid Resort - Mazatlans premier resort boasting fine suites, extensive drinking and dining options and a bundle of sporting activities including golf course. Tel (52) 669 913 333.
Pueblo Bonito - Luxury colonial-styled resort set in stunning gardens of the Golden Zone. Tel (52) 669 989 8900.

Mazatlan Weather

Mazatlan Travel Resources



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