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Traveling to Mexico Again in 2008
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San Jose del Tajo RV Park in Guadalajara
We said goodbye to the beautiful El Refugio RV park in Lo de Marcos just before 9 in the a.m. Did not hook up the jeep until we were out of there. One of the young men from the office came out and stopped traffic so The Driver could maneuver Alfie out of the park onto the narrow road. I followed in the jeep. He slowly made his way up the street until almost out of town and where the street was wide enough for him to pull over without blocking up the whole road.
Hooked up the Jeep and we were on our way back up Mexico 200 - such fun. There didn’t seem to be as much traffic, probably because it was Saturday. We didn’t take 200 all the way to Tepic. About 20 miles south of Tepic at Compostela we got on 68D a toll road that joins 15D about 30 miles southeast of Tepic. It was shorter and a good two lane highway with shoulders but it still had its share of curves and hills. Went by lots of agave and cane fields. But for the most part the scenery was dry grasses and low bushes. As we climbed and could see the valley below we noticed a lot of patches of smoke, burning the cane fields probably. Once back on 15D it was four-lane divided highway.
We passed from the state of Nayarit into Jalisco as we climbed high into the mountains. Arrived in Guadalajara around 1:30 - 220 miles and US$44 later.
This time I was paying close attention and we did not miss the Periferico Sur so we didn’t end up driving through downtown. Thank goodness. From the Periferico we turned west on 54 towards Colima. This is also called Avenida Adolfo Lopez Mateos. Now to find the campground. According to the book it was right past the Gigante supermarket - Luckily I remembered that all the Gigantes are now Sorianas. We turned off the main road and found the sign for the RV park - San Jose del Tajo Trailer Park Resort. About a half mile up a cobblestone road through a tunnel of big trees we found the “resort”. Plenty of room here - no Norte Americanos. The place didn’t offer much less then 15amp electricity. The water pressure was very low. Did have a sewer and was behind gates and only US$14 per night. Just across the main street was a Wal*Mart Supercenter and an Applebee’s.
We didn’t spend a lot of time in Guadalajara as we’ve been there a couple of times before and explored the area.
Did drive to the main plaza. Could not open the windows in the car the exhaust from the zillions of busses was so bad. And as always the traffic was horrendous. They still have the white and gold horse drawn carriages to take people on rides through the main historic area by the Cathedral. Thirty years ago our kids took a ride in one.
While driving around we did see some interesting things. Had to stop at one intersection and wait for a huge number of bicycle riders to pass through. All ages were riding. Lots of families. At another intersection a thin girl about 11 or 12 came out into the street when we were stopped for a red light. She turned several cartwheels in front of us then came up to the cars with her hand out. A couple of people gave her money. Kind of makes you stop and think.
A couple of the main roads now travel underground so the intersections are easier to navigate and there is a light rail system. The jacaranda trees were blooming a beautiful purple giving some streets a pretty purple glow.
Graffiti was all over. On new buildings and old.
We did look up my cousin Jeff who now lives in Zapopan, one of the suburbs of Guadalajara. We called him and got his address programmed it into Gypsy and she took us right there. Well almost she did want us to turn the wrong way on one one-way street. But we just had to go around the block while she “recalculated.” Haven’t seen him for two years since we were in Mexico last (If you read about our last trip in 2007 he was with us part of the way.) He loves living in Mexico but is talking about moving back to Ajijic on Lake Chapala. Says there are more things to do and more English speaking residents there.
We left the next morning. Took Mateos to the Periferico Sur again followed it around the city and joined up with Mexico 15D near Tonalá with no problems - there is a real nice new section of it since we last drove it - four lanes one-way. Makes it easier with all the truck traffic. Did get behind a big truck carrying pigs - The Driver got around it as quick as he could. Whew!
About eight miles out of town we connected up with Mexico 80D and turned towards Leon. Again it was a very good road. If someone just dropped you on the road in a car you might think you were driving through Southern California in August. A couple of small towns off in the distance. Not much else.
We were on our way to Guanajuato.
A few more pictures from Guadalajara Click Here
Road into RV Park
Tajo RV Resort
She turned cartwheels