We left Teotihuacan to go meet our friends Kevin and Dani (British/Swiss couple who have been on the road in Europe and Africa for many years) in the small coastal town of Casitas near Nautla in the State of Veracruz. We had spent time with them in Baja so it was nice to see them again and catch up on their travels. We camped a few days with them at the Hotel Coco Loco on the Emerald Coast along the Gulf of Mexico. After almost two months inland, being back on the ocean was a nice change but it also meant HEAT!
Martin the Swiss owner of the Hotel Coco Loco took us on a tour of the surrounding area. He has been living in Mexico for over 30 years so he knows the area quite well, and everybody knows him! We stopped in different villages for bananas, cheese, ice-cream, vanilla and ended the day by eating street hotdogs in the small town of San Rafael! Thanks Martin for being such a great host!
Zapotitlan Salinas, Puebla
On our way to Oaxaca we had to cross the state of Puebla through some pretty steep mountain roads. We made a small detour to the village of Zapotitlan Salinas to spend the night at the Botanical Garden Helia Bravo located inside the Tehuacan-Cuicatlan Biosphere Reserve. It houses 200 types of cacti (plural for cactus ha! ha!) most of them endangered species and some more than 800 years old! In the desert the nights are cooler so it was a welcomed change from the heat of the coast. The area is also known for its salt production dating back to pre-Hispanic times. You can also find a multitude of road side stores selling all kinds of things made of the local Onyx and Marble.