Mazatlan seems to get low marks as a port of call on cruise sites. Many people state that they stay on board their ship and do not even disembark. My first experience with Mazatlan will be this mid-October. Is this port that unattractive? It does appear that the beach vendors and junk peddlers are a bit overbearing. This seems to be supported by travel handbooks and travel articles as well. If all this is true, why not take Mazatlan off the tour itinerary and substitue another port? Wouldn't this benefit both the cruiselines and the passengers? Or, am I hearing just from one side on experiences related to the area?
We didn't do any shopping in town or anything when we were in Mazatlan so I can't really say but we did book with Randi's Happy Horses and went riding. Randi was great, we had a nice lunch on the beach and had a really wonderful afternoon.
Paradise - January 2009
Paradise - April 2008
Carnival Pride - Nov 2007
Paradise - Sept 2005
Carnival Pride - Nov 2004
Ecstasy - Jan 2004
Carnival Pride - Nov 2003
Elation - Nov 2002
I was going to reserve this excursion and then I noticed two different tours that both list the colonial villages as a destination. One is approximately 5 1/2 hrs long, the other 7hrs. Which one is the recommended one?
Mel, are you just finding this info out on the Carnival Shore Excursions page? Maybe I need to look a little closer but I didn't see any horse tours or colonial tours. Is there someone else we can get a more detailed list of what's available?
Mazatlan to me is more of a fishing type town,kind of like Ensenada but the market towards downtown is lots of fun to browse through.....also go to the Shrimp Bucket and have lunch there, it is owned by the same people who own Senor Frogs, but it is nice and quiet, not such a zoo! The bacon/cheese stuffed Shrimp are very good!
You can get some very good deals on silver jewelry there, if you go along the main boulevard, and they are some nice gifts and fashions.
We even rented a jeep there and took off on our own, it was very enjoyable.....we ended our day at Senor Frogs, with some huge margaritas.......and great memories. Don't be afraid to branch out and not take a tour.
I took a Sierra Madre Tour. It went to Concordia and Copalla. Had a fantastic time. The actual port area is not very eye appealing, but up in the mountains was beautiful. I had a great time that port day, well on all three, but I highly sugest this tour. (Carnival Elation Sept. 2003) Email me if you have any questions.
The Stone Island tour was fun. We did a 25min horseback ride. They served us lunch and they had a full open bar. All included in your tour price. If you want to add on anything once you reach the island it is only $5.00. Which we did, we had fun riding the banana boat.
Enjoy your cruise!
First time we did the Deer Island trip, would not recomended it unless you have nothing else to do (including taking a nap).
The second time, we took a taxi to the "Golden Zone" to walk around. Never again. We could have stayed in Los Angeles and walked around downtown. I know because of rains, the streets were fairly clean, but because of all the concrete, the place just looks dirty. . Since it's about a 20 minute ride from the ship to downtown, you don't want to waste the time and money you invested in the side trip. I say this since I wanted to tell the taxi driver to take us back to the ship once we arrived downtown. Anyway, what I WANT to try is the sea food resturant right by the ship. The first time we were to tired to go anywhere and the second time we were to stressed out from our walk to deal with people in general.
We went on the Sierra Madre tour and I didn't care for it much, but it was just too hot to enjoy it in late Sept. Part of our tour was a shopping stop in the Golden Zone and it didn't impress us too much either but we aren't really shoppers.
Check out www.mazinfo.com for more things to do in Mazatlan. There is a section for cruiseship visitors and links to various independent vendors. Even a link to Randi's Happy Horses I think.
I am so sorry to hear all the sad things they mention about my city. This is funny because in my 20 years of tour guiding, I have heard so few bad things about Mazatlan. Actually the people I take on the tours tend to come back and even move down here as they retire. Mazatlan is becoming a favorite destination for retired Americans and Canadians. So what is wrong? People are so friendly down here, the city is beautiful, but everybody has the right to think as they want. By the way the Sierra Madre tour is 7 hours and the Colonial is 5 1/2, both similar but not the same. FELIZ NAVIDAD FROM MAZATLAN
I would not say Senor Frogs in Mazatlan is a Zoo. We went and had a very nice time. The air conditioning felt great. The tables all had white linen tables clothes on them in the dining room which was very, very nice. It was not what I though it would be, thank heavens!