Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Views From the Water

Not only are the views below the water beautiful, so are the views above the water. 

I love the variety of colors and layers in these rock cliffs along the coast north of Loreto.

Unique rock formations rising out of the water. This was one of our dive sites. 

Arroyo Blanca - a great location to drop off snorkelers while we dive nearby and then wander and take photos between dives.

Trying to get decent photos of birds is always a challenge! We love seeing the blue footed booby.

Sea lions doing temperature control . . . 

It's a game to figure out what you can see in the rocks. This one looks like a monkey face. The closeup shows the birds on the nose of the monkey. 

Links to videos of diving and ocean life around Loreto that I did this trip:

Monday, 16 October 2017

More Street Scenes From Loreto

It's always interesting to see just a small part of how life is lived other parts of the world, even when it's really not all that much different than our own. 

Early morning paddle boarding and fishing. 

I don't think fall protection and safety requirements are quite the same in Mexico!

Traffic control, early morning and mid-afternoon, in front of the elementary school while parents drop off and pick up their children. 

Kayak lessons.

Our favourite bartender, Emmanuel, at La Mision Hotel. It was the air conditioning and the great view above the malecon and out to the sea that got us in the door but it was Emmanuel who kept us coming back.

Real fruit popsicles at La Michoacana. We stopped here just a couple times. Ha! :-) 

A live-aboard dive boat overnighting near Loreto. 

The last three times we have been to Loreto, we've stayed at Villas del Santo Niño. Located on a quiet pedestrian street a half block from the malecon, a half block from the town square and 2 blocks from Dolphin Dive, it's the perfect location for us. The owners, Chatto and Oralia, are a lovely couple and have done a wonderful job of upkeep on their property. The beautiful mural below was completed the day we arrived. 

There are three studio suites along the street (pictured above) and a two story house (pictured below) with a "villa" suite on each of the two levels. Chatto and Oralia's house is a third building behind this so they are always around if anything is required. 

Divers walking out to the dock.

Rafael driving the boat over to the dock while the boat operator parks the truck and trailer. 

This juvenile yellow-crowned night heron had a favourite spot near the dock and we saw him almost every day.

When not diving head first for fish (note the splash and feathers in the photo below) . . . 

. . . the brown pelicans observed the rest of the action from the dock. 

More residents of the marina area.

Frigate birds, gracefully soaring over the lighthouse.

Thursday, 12 October 2017

San Javier Mission and Hiking in the Heat

Almost every time we come to Loreto we drive up into the mountains to the San Javier Mission, about 30 km from Loreto. Not so much because of the Mission itself, but the scenic drive is spectacular. Especially this time with the vegetation being so green. 

On the drive up, forgetting what we learned previous times, we wondered aloud why on earth anyone would establish a mission this far back into the mountains (with no paved road as there is today!). But of course it was because of the fresh water and more fertile soil than down near the sea. They built wells, dams and irrigation channels that allowed for growing plants to provide food; the grapes produced the very first wine in the Californias. There are some very old olive trees still standing. 

Olive tree trunks.
Prior to arriving at the Mission, we stopped for a hike along the way. We only lasted a couple hours in the heat but it was a beautiful hike up a valley to find a waterfall and observe the birds along the way. It's too bad that turkey vultures have a face only a mother could love because, otherwise, they really are beautiful birds. 

These little red-spotted toads were everywhere! We had to be careful not to step on them.

Lots of egrets too.

And one lone owl. 

Beautiful flowering vines.

A trail leading to a series of waterfalls and a small dam.

A geologist would have been fascinated by all the volcanic intrusions! 

And then we found a couple places by the water to have a late lunch, relax and read our books for a while. All in all, a lovely day!

Monday, 9 October 2017

Honeymoon Bay

Between dives at Danzante Island, we stopped at Honeymoon Bay. Such a beautiful place! The colors! Gorgeous blue shades of the water depending on what angle you look at it; everything is so green and the flowers are blooming after the recent edge-of-the-hurricane rain. The water is so clear that La Tia looks like she's floating on air.