Travel Blog 25: Oaxaca’s Pacific Coast: Chacahua
Chacahua is a pretty famous traveler town, requiring a boat to reach the beach. The more normal route is to take the 400 peso boat ride directly to the tourist area from a small town near the main road.
Then there’s the route Blaze and I took; 18 miles on a beaten down, washed out, dirt road. Cars sped over the bumps while trucks rattled like crazy, but Blaze took a slow pace of nearly an hour. Arriving to town was overwhelming as a community greeter started laying down information that I need to pay for (parking, accommodation, boat, food, etc) in which I responded, “Can’t I just sleep in my car at the end of the road? It’s on the traveler app.” The man was shocked, agreeing to let me continue my path. I parked beside a giant boulder rock with a body of water on each side, one being the lagoon river and the other being the Pacific Ocean. The waves were crashing so I was happy. I parked outside Posada del Tigre, owned by Hector. The black haired man with a mustache and bright blue shorts spoke the most unclear speedy spanish I have ever come across. Literally no words were understood, but a genuine connection grew. Hector was so welcoming, expressing friendly vibes.
My favorite characteristic of Chacahua was the Vegetable Truck that sold me goods right at the car. I looked around the truck, ordering a potato, onion, carrot, tomato, squash, jalapeño, avocado, 2 bananas, 1 mango, and 2 eggs. He weighed it on the scale to declare price. Great system for this town!
The sunset was pretty spectacular as well. Walking up a trail to “El Faro” (The Lighthouse), the top of the lighthouse displayed the most incredible 360 degree view of the entire area. Boats streak the water while surfers patiently waited on waves. Families swam in the river while travelers sat along the shore. The adventurists that crave nature-art sat on the roof of the building beside the lighthouse. We packed about 20 of us onto the tight surface with no rails to stop anyone from falling off. The sun drifted perfectly towards the Pacific Ocean horizon, closing out yet another amazing day.
The thought of swimming across the river to the other side sounded exciting, but the reality of it was way less fun. For 10 pesos, I hired a boat to lift me across the water. I stepped to land, helping a woman carry her buckets of fish, to see a long jetty with a few shops and houses set up along it. There was a small plaza square with a few options to buy things. Otherwise, everything took place around the beach. During the heat of the day, everyone relaxed as cocktails were poured and shrimp plates were served. With no cars or planes in sight, it’s one of the most pure and authentic places still existing on the planet. Then nighttime becomes a loud party with electronic dance music. I caught a boat back to the local side where the sound of roosters and dogs barking filled the ears. Cooking dinner near Blaze, I listened to the waves crash. With only a few nighttime fisherman around, Chacahua is one of the most peaceful places I’ve slept in Mexico.
Exiting town, Blaze and I stopped halfway at a village named El Azufre where there isn’t much to do. With only one shop in town, the community congregated outside with cold Coronas. Looking for a parking space, I found the perfect spot on the “Rio Verde” (Green River). I asked a woman if she lives in the house adjacent, in which she does and agreed for me to park there for the night. It was perfect, and couldn’t be more calm and quiet. The next day, her husband Roberto was fascinated by me. I didn’t understand any of his words, but I learned he is friends with Hector from Chacahua, has a son and granddaughter, and invited me to stay one more night to eat iguana fresh off the grill. Assuming it’s probably the only time I’ll ever eat iguana, I spent the day swaying in a hammock trying to communicate with this man while helping on his farm. It’s pretty wild to feed corn to the chicken who laid the eggs that are being placed in front of me to eat. Their lives are rustic and fascinating. They grow everything they eat. The elderly couple looked so content in their lives, which was comforting to observe. The iguana was quite tasty, but I must warn about the bones. They’re incredibly sharp and jab your cheek. It didn’t seem to bother the couple as they pulled the meat right off to enjoy their special feast.
Leaving Chacahua, I reflected on these educations in human life. Oaxaca had been a wonderful month that fulfilled more than my imagination could’ve predicted. Up next: A journey along the Pacific Coast!