Puerto Escondido -
Awesome spot to learn to surf and beautiful area.
Suggestions upon arrival -
1. Make sure your bus arrives during open hostel or hotel hours
For a vacation two other girls and I decided it would be fun to go to Puerto Escondido. However, one was going to be in Mexico city at the start of the trip so we made a meeting point in Oaxaca - (Also another beautiful city to visit in Mexico if you have the chance CHOCOLATE center of Mexico), My friend and I got there a few days early and stayed at the Casa Angel Youth Hostel (very good hostel and highly recommended) We wanted to get to Puerto Escondido as early as possible so that we could hit the beach, so as soon as our other friend arrived we took a smaller bus out at 7pm to get to Puerto Escondido. Wellll.... it is about a 6 hour drive because of all the switchbacks in the mountains. Annnddd then it started raining... thus we arrived in Puerto Escondido at 3 am. So we found out 4 things when we arrived
1. It was hard to catch a cab
2. The hostel (cause we wanted to be cheap) that we wanted to get to stay at was full and reception was closed
3. We ended up sleeping in plastic chairs... (me giving up and taking my towel out to sleep on the sand)
4. There were Mosquitos... lots of mosquitos
so try to arrive during daylight hours
So next suggestion
2. BRING MOSQUITO REPELLANT - or you WILL be eaten alive
3. Unless you are in a 4 star hotel there is not air conditioners... It is very hot and sticky even at night. So try to stick it out or pay 700 pesos for air conditioning. It is possible for a cheap stay at a hostel just be prepared for the heat.
4. If you want good swimming and/or surfing Carcizalillo Cove is the one to go to. Pack light because it is a long way down the stairs. - There are lunch and surf shops down there. (The waves are really good for beginners as well as more advanced surfers.)
5. For surfers, stick to the center main surf shop beginners especially... please.
Last day I went to that beach I wasn't quite sure if I was going to surf so I swam for a little while then reconsidered and went to go rent for an hour. However, they had just given the last rentals to some people taking surfing lessons, they sent me to the other side of the beach where there was another shop. They charged 10 pesos more for an hour making it 80 but I just wanted to surf so I gave them 100 to get the change back on my and the boards "safe" return. I'm still a bit of a beginner but I didn't see any problems.
10 minutes after getting in the water and swimming out a large wave crashes over me and the board is drug from my hands, thus pulls my ankle for a while. Well whatever floats usually comes back up... Only problem was that it was in two pieces. (An oh f#ck moment) this leads to suggestion number 6
6. Be careful with a broken surfboard the plastic will cut you but try to be quick about it. The longer it takes for you to get back in, the harder it is to not get overly smashed by waves and cut up in the process of not losing it . Oh and don't use a Styrofoam surfboard w only one rod of wood that supports the back wrapped in plastic.
However, you have to drag it back in to return it, this took me quite a while in the last 10 feet because 1. the board was in two and 2. There is a swell until the last 2 feet of the water meeting the beach where you can not touch. yay me...
7. When returning the board DO NOT agree to the first price that the vendors ask you to pay. Mine asked for 500 pesos which I honestly did not have...
I basically ended up paying an extra 100 pesos to pay for the broken board.
8. You can surprisingly find a friend when you get into this kind of situation
Some Mexican women had seen my plight and offered to help me with talking to the vendors about the price. (I was at that point crying my eyes out in frustration) And then offered me a beer and some cocoanut to help me calm down. For this I am eternally greatful to them. We then talked for a while and exchanged names so we could find each other on facebook, with the offer to come visit any time.
9. Do not leave any of your stuff you do not want to get went on the sand.
The waves literally come up to the restaurant tables, I had left my towel and stuff at the highest point of the beach so that I could lie on my towel if I wanted to. Bad plan... Water completely washed up all my stuff which included my phone. (Luckily for me it was off and I bought a bag of rice to put it in. It still works though now tends to malfunction on a few things)
10. Make sure to buy your bus tickets ahead of time when you are heading back.
This way you don't have to wait a few hours because all the early buses have filled up.
Overall the trip was great, just had some amusing (though not amusing at the time) crappy moments. You can't prepare for all of the things that will happen on trips in Mexico but hopefully this list can help you prepare at least a little more. :)