After spending a couple more days in Oaxaca, we drove south on the long, winding, nausea inducing, road to Playa Zipolite. This beach is by far the best we've been to. A tropical paradise complete with palm trees and thatch roof cabanas lining the beach. We planned to snatch up one of said cabanas, but realized quickly that our plans were foiled: it was the weekend before NYE and the beach was packed! No big, we scored a parking spot in the shade, popped the tent and grabbed a cold cerveza from the bar within spitting distance of our new home. It was clear that we would stay a while.
[Cabanas la Habana at Playa Zipolite]
Playa Zipolite is a "clothing optional" beach that feels very free and laid back without the hedonistic aspect that one might expect. It's very gay, family, young and old friendly, and very popular with the French hippie crowd. As our new friend Jesus said, "...it doesn't matter what you are. At Zipolite, nobody cares." We met Jesus one afternoon when he, his cousin Angel, and the rest of their crew (a Ska-Punk band/graffiti crew) were catching some shade behind our jeep. They, invited us to hang out and have a couple beers. Jesus spoke decent English and was the translator for the night, which was more and more hilarious as the night went on. Brian introduced them to Bourbon, which they did not like, and they invited us to visit them in Mexico City on our way back north. We ended up spending the next couple of nights with them, drinking, laughing and trading stories in broken English and Spanish.
[GSM Crew plus Conchit y Ralf aka Carley and Brian]
In the days leading up to the New Year, there was a huge 3-day full on hippie fest/rave. Tons of French speaking dready kids running around, partying on who knows what, until 5 or 6am. We crashed their party on NYE and did our best to speak to them, but our French is pretty nonexistent. Luckily, we met a couple of dudes from Quebec who spoke English, so we hung out with them a bit. It was a good time! Fireworks (obviously) and glittery naked people everywhere.
[Cabanas at night]
Each day after that, we would say, "maybe we will leave tomorrow." It has been a week and we're still here. It's too easy to stay! In the morning, vendors make their rounds with chocolate croissants and other delicious treats. Around noon, they come round again with pizza and "Coco Locos" (a fresh coconut with Mezcal or tequila). After that, grab a piña colada and soak up the sun at Cafe Maya or Lola's.
The town, just behind the restaurants and hotels lining the beach, is small but has a lot to offer. Every night, the main street closes to vehicle traffic, and the local artisans (mostly young, dreadlocked, and tattooed) set up their tables to sell their wares. You can find some great handmade jewelry, clothes, art prints, and food. Carley had the best burger she's ever had and, since there is a huge Italian presence here, we got some excellent pizza, gnocchi and ravioli.
[Sunset soccer match on the beach]
So, after spending almost two weeks indulging in beach life, we have reached our limit. The plan is to leave tomorrow morning and head to San Cristobal de las Casas. We'll just have to see if we actually make it out of here.