Next Stop: Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo

Dolphins Swim, Sea Kayaking, Walking Tour, Zihuatanejo Market, Coconut Plantation, Clay Tile Making, Las Brisas Ixtapa, Live Music at Bandidos
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00:00-00:05 JON:Ola, I’m Jon Olson, welcome to Next Stop from Mexico, where coast meets culture.
00:06:00:19 NEXT STOP IXTAPA/ZIHUATENEJO Intro rolls
00:20-00:35 JON: Bievenidos to Next Stop from muy benito Mexico. On this episode, we feature IXTAPA ZIHUATENEJO to various state towns in one location. More warm Mexican culture, action and adventure on Next Stop. The fun starts now!
00:35-00:38 Next Stop logo
00:47- 03:24 JON: We’ve just arrived, we’re going to kick our day off with a tour, and from seen so far, we’re in for a treat. Paco, I’m Jon.
PACO: Hello, Ola, my name is Paco, welcome to Zihuatenejo.
JON: This is a beautiful place.
PACO: Oh, si, Zihuatenejo it is a unique place in Mexico, which is a fishing village, a place no one has to miss.
JON: This is a beautiful village, I’ve never seen anything like this, tiled roofs, cobblestone streets.
PACO: Real Mexico.
JON: It’s real Mexico.
PACO: Real Mexico, great weather, great beaches, great people.
JON: Now Zihuatenejo means, it has something with women, right?
PACO: Yeah, Zihuatenejo, yeah, it’s an indian name which according to the language spoken by the Aztecs it mean, place of the women.
JON: Hence the statue of the women.
PACO: That’s why also we have the statues everywhere of the women.
JON: That’s not a bad thing.
PACO: That’s not a bad thing and that’s the reason why I moved down here.
JON: So Paco, I’m going to like this town, we’ve got statues of women everywhere, and you have coconuts! Look at these trees.
PACO: Everywhere. This is by the way the place where you basically most of the coconuts in Mexico.
JON: Really?
PACO: Yeah.
JON:The other thing you’ve got is a lot of artwork and a lot of shops, this is just like a shoppers paradise here.
PACO: This is the best place to come to shop of course.
JON: How are the prices?
PACO: Ah, very reasonable.
JON: They make deals for me?
PACO: They make a lot of deals with you, a lot of them. Just remember something, do you think you are very good? These guys are professionals.
JON: I’ll remember that.
PACO: Of course. So you got to try hard.
JON: So this is where it happens, this is the town square.
PACO: Yes, this is the main Zihuatenejo square and this is where everybody gets together on the weekend, especially on Sunday.
JON: You have basketball hoop here, I like it! Is basketball big in Mexico?
PACO: Of course. Soccer would be number one, and I would say basketball number two.
JON: These guys coming in with their catch?
PACO: These are the real local fishermans, yeah, these guys go out all night long and they go back very much at this time.
JON: They bring the fish in and they line it up up there and people come and then people come and just buy them, just like a local market?
PACO: Exactly right.
JON: So this is what red snapper looks like.
PACO: Yes sir.
JON: I’ve never seen a red snapper out of the water.
PACO: So this is the first time.
JON: It’s red!
PACO. It’s red, completely red as you can see. And this is something you see everyday, and this is something we have done forever.
JON: I love it.
PACO: OK, this is why people like Zihuatenejo.
JON: Keep the tradition going.
PACO: Keep the tradition going, the way it should be.
03:25-03:26 Next Stop logo
03:28-03:47 JON: Both longboard and shortboard surfing are excellent off the beaches of Ixtapa and Zihuatenejo. The water is tropically warm year round so there is no need for a wetsuit. Don’t know how to surf? No problem. Local surf shop experts provide excellent instruction as well as sales and rentals. For more information on surfing and other activities in Ixtapa and Zihuatenejo go to
03:48-03:49 Next Stop logo
03:50-07:01 JON: We are at Peurto Mia, which means My Port, ready to board a sunset cruise. How cool is it that I have my own port in Zihuatenejo.
TONY: Hey guys, welcome aboard Picante, welcome to the bay of Zihuatenejo. I’m your skipper and host back here Captain Tony. Because yeah we are a little cruise around the bay of Zihuatenejo and out to the hotel zone of Ixtapa. We just left our home port of Puerto Mia back there, over here to the left hand side is the town of Zihuatenejo, charming romantic place, and there is some phenomenal architecture here, it is a very unique form of architecture that was developed specifically in Zihuatenejo.
JON: Captain Tony, nice to meet you man, a pleasure to be on your boat.
TONY: Good meeting you, great to have you here.
JON: How long have you been here, because you are not from these parts.
TONY: No, I’ve been here about 21 years, in Zihuatenejo. What brought me here was the lifestyle, it’s just such a fantastic place. I had young kids, I wanted to raise them.
JON: I think a lot of Americans envy you being down here, what is the lifestyle like versus the hustle bustle back in the states?
TONY: Besides the physical beauty of this place, it is the people that are here, so pleasing, or willing to please you, just their nature, it’s just a family oriented place.
JON: We have honeymooners from Southern California, what are your names:
KATIE: Katie.
CHRIS: And Chris.
JON: Congratulations.
KATIE: Thank you very much.
JON: So what is this place like as a honeymoon destination?
KATIE: It’s perfect, it’s away from the hustle and bustle of normal Mexico, but it’s romantic and perfect weather.
JON: Let’s test your knowledge about the area. What does Zihuatenejo mean?
KATIE: It means the land of the woman.
JON: She’s right!
JON: So what does Zihuatenejo mean?
DOUG: I don’t know.
HEATHER: Sounds like confusion.
JON: It’s the place of women. You’re probably going to know all these answers because you are a local, your kind of a local. What does Zihuatenejo mean?
DAVID: It means friendliness to me. It means warmth, I’ve often said to my wife, because we are from the northwest, that I would rather be uncomfortably warm than uncomfortably cold.
JON: There is an actual meaning of the word Zihuatenejo.
DAVID: Thank you.
JON: Do you know what the actual meaning of the word is?
DAVID: You know, now you are going to embarrass me Jon, because I do not!
JON: OK, my last question, and this is important. What is the traditional chant here in Mexico after you do a shot of tequila?
CHRIS: Aye yi yi yi yi! Ariba ariba ariba!
HEATHER: Pull ya ya ya ya!
JON: That’s the best you’ve got? I know you can do more.
HEATHER: No, he can do more.
DOUG: Ariba! Wooo weee!
JON: What’s the typical chant here in Mexico after you do a shot or a popper of tequila.
DAVID: Oh Jon, you are the right age for the answer to that question.
JON: There is no right or wrong age for this David, you know this.
DAVID: And I don’t, and I’m embarrassed because you nailed me, which is…
JON: Arrryiyiyiyi yaaaa!
07:07-07:10 Next Stop logo
07:11-07:16 JON: Up next, sea kayaking, swimming with dolphins, and a market that defines local.
07:17-07:19 Next Stop logo
07:20-07:43 JON: Ixtapa’s two world class 18 hole golf courses make this tropical destination a haven for golf enthusiasts. They are located at opposite ends of Ixtapa’s main hotel strip, about a five minute taxi ride so they are very close and very convenient. The courses are well groomed and maintained all year long, you combine that with the amazing weather here and it’s always a great time for golf in Ixtapa. For more information, go to
07:44-07:46 Next Stop logo
07:47-09:42 JON: We’re up for another fun day on the water, we kick our day off in the authentic Mexican village of Bara des Porto with my boy Paco to go sea kayaking, followed by swimming with dolphins.
PACO: OK, we will be riding this beautiful lagoon which is about 40 miles long, as you can see it is surrounded by mangroves. And well, we will see everything regarding the ecological of Zihuatenejo and Ixtapa.
JON: Let’s get this show on the road.
PACO: OK. This is not the sea, yeah?
JON: It’s a very peaceful lagoon.
PACO: It’s a very peaceful place. And you see on the mangroves, you know branches hold that…
JON: Are these all mango trees?
PACO: Yeah, they are all mango trees.
JON: This a good workout for the upper body.
PACO: Yeah, it’s a good workout.
JON: Good way to kick off the day.
PACO: Overnight you be looking like Sylvester Stallone 20 years ago. This place has about 150 families ok, and they all make a living out of the fishing.
JON: All of them?
PACO: Ok, all of them., They supply a lot of the fish to Ixtapa and Zihuatenejo.
JON: It’s a cute little village, I mean this is authentic Mexican village, this area.
PACO: It is, it is. If anybody would like to have the chance to see the real Mexico this is one of the places where they must come if they have the chance to come to Ixtapa. So you ever want to go back to the primitive life of Mexico, this is the place.
JON: That’s great, father can go out with his sons and daughters, and moms there too. I think my favorite part of this morning is seeing all the locals out doing their thing, you know? I think we all, especially in our busy lives aspire to a simple life like this.
PACO: Right. that is why we want invite all the people to come to this place.
JON: Now they know who to hook up with, Paco knows it all!
09:47-10:22 JON: Now it is time to swim with the dolphins with Aidan and Emma. Let’s hop in.
OSCAR: OK, this is the mini motorcycle. Check it out. And they have some kind of whistle. Do you want to meet a superstar? Jojo is a movie star.
JON: What’s up Jojo?
10:40-11:21 JON: Well I’ve danced with the dolphin, now it’s time to ride her belly.
OSCAR: Ok you guys, now say goodbye
ALL: Bye bye!
11:23-11:25 Next Stop logo
11:26-13:50 JON: The food scene is off the charts here. Today we are going shopping downtown at the Zihuatenejo market with Chef Paco, we’re going to buy some ingredients, take them back to his kitchen and make some magic.
JON: What are we making today and what do we need to get?
PACO: For today I prepare one restapa with chicharon sauce and prepare the sauce with the cerano chile, tomato, onion, and fresh sea bass.
JON: That sounds simple.
PACO: Yeas, very simple.
JON: So this is the place that everybody comes everyday to shop and get all their ingredients fresh, everything is fresh here.
PACO: Very very fresh ingredients.
JON: Gosh, you can get everything here, bowls, mops, sponges, video games, got some musician serenaders too. We’ve been here 5 minutes and my mind is blown, this place is awesome.
PACO: This is the local fish.
JON: That’s a good looking fish.
PACO: Good looking fish.
JON: We’ve got our potatoes, we’ve got our veggies.
PACO: Mahi mahi, or sea bass fillet?
JON: I’d go with mahi mahi
PACO: Mahi mahi? Ok, this is mahi mahi.
JON: We’re set man. Ready to cook? Let’s go baby!
PACO: Yeah. Let’s go.
JON: What an amazing place to cook Chef Paco.
PACO: Oh, it’s very nice.
JON: The Tides Hotel, this place is gorgeous, you’ve got the tides rolling in, how appropriate, you’ve got the beach, very nice place. What are we going to do here?
PACO: Ok, today is mahi mahi in chicharone, chop parmesan cheese.
JON: Chef Paco definitely has his own way of doing things, I think the best advide for me is to just stay out of the way and help when asked.
14:01-14:08 PACO:It’s ready. it is very easy.
JON: Anyone can do it, right?
PACO: Yep.
JON: And it tastes really good!
14:09-14:11 Next Stop logo
14:13-14:19 JON: Coming up on Next Stop we visit a working coconut plantation, learn how to make rooftop tiles and more.
14:20-14:22 Next Stop logo
14:23-14:56 JON: Ixtapa and Zihuatenejo is arguably the most romantic destination in Mexico, we see honeymooners everywhere, and the food scene is amazing. In fact, a couple nights ago our lovely hostess, Ana Luisa, took us to a restaurant El Faro, built into the side of a cliff. The sunset was muy romantico, the food was amazingly prepared. Last night we had dinner on a boat in the harbor, amazing, the food again was incredible. Today we are having lunch on the beach at the Tides, there is something for everybody. If you really want to dig into the food scene here come in March for their annual food and wine festival. For more information visit
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15:00-17:27 JON: Before tourism became the main industry here, fruit plantations and tile making ruled the day.
MIGUEL: This is an 80 year old plantation. That is the new coconut, that is what happens when the coconut falls from the tree. If we leave it there in 5-7 more years it will be that tall, in 5 years.
JON: That one, ok.
MIGUEL: This is basically a sword, we use it to peel the coconuts. We put it on the sword, and basically we use the weight of the body very carefully. there we go. This is the coconut meat, and the coconut milk, but normally it’s solid, really solid. If it is not used to prepare as a coconut, we use it to feed the chickens in the chicken coop and they love it. If you like a drink of fresh coconut it is very easy, don’t think anybody knows how to cut the coconut open. taste it.
JON: Oh, that does taste good. So coconut has many more uses?
MIGUEL: Nothing gets wasted on the coconut, we can use everything. We use it to make earrings, toys, bracelets, necklaces, different things. the next place we are going to stop, at the tile makers, they use it as a fuel.Ok, so this is the tile maker. Today, that is what we are going to learn, how to make a roof tile. We would put some sand in the bottom, we have to spread it, don’t roll it.
JON: So how many of these can he put out a day? Like if he is working hard how many of these does he make a day?
MIGUEL: This guy can make up to 500 a day. Well, this is the time we need a volunteer.
MIGUEL: Muscles! That will hold it, the other way, there we go.
JON: Voila!
17:28-17:30 Next Stop logo
17:31-19:22 JON: You will find both romance and luxury here at the Las Brisas Ixtapa, our Ixtapa resort. Soraida, we love this place, thank you so much for hosting us.
SORAIDA: Thank you for being here.
JON: The location is amazing, we feel like we are steeped into the side of a hill here, we feel like we are walking through the jungle.
SORAIDA: Yes, because the architect respect very well the mountain so they left a very good vegetation around.
JON: You walk in and there is a beautiful big lobby where a lot of people congregate.
SORAIDA: Yes, this lobby is perfect use because everything is a marvelous experience about the sunset, because you can see the sunset since it is coming down, to the end.
JON: It’s also a bar at night, and there is a lot of people that come down there and congregate, the other night it was packed, there was a big boxing match on. The rooms are beautiful too, this is one of your suites, you have got your own private pool out here, how many different room styles are there?
SORAIDA: We have six master suites like this, with one bedroom, two bedroom and the presidential suite that has three bedrooms.
JON: How many restaurants do you have, because the food is bueno.
SORAIDA: Yes, very good restaurants, we have five restaurants, two of them are especiality restaurants, one is mexican and the other one is el portofino.
JON: You’re right on the beach, obviously with some crazy waves.
SORAIDA: This is only hotel that has their own beach.
JON: But if you don’t want to get all sandy, you have got a really nice pool as well.
SORAIDA: Yes we do. We have a very especial swimming pool area and it is fairly distributed, because two are for families, one for adults only and one for the little kids so everyone has their own place.
JON: There is something for everybody at Las Brisas Ixtapa, and I want to say mucho, mucho gracias for having us, very nice to meet you.
SORAIDA: Very nice to meet you too, and thank you for being here.
19:24-19:26 Next Stop logo
19:27-19:33 JON: Coming up on Next Stop, we hang out in beautiful Zihuatenejo for some live music.
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19:36- 20:06 MUSIC
20:07-20:21 JON: It’s off the hook tonight, it’s a Friday night in downtown Zihuatenejo, this place is pretty cool Alberto.
ALBERTO: Zihuatenejo, exactly. This is Banditos place, this is a very great place, Zihuatenejo like this much all the time.
20:22-20:36 MUSIC
20:37-21:05 JON: Tonight is very special here at Banditos. But you do more than this though, we are coming here tomorrow night to watch some games, like, you guys are like kind of the action nightlife spot, you are kind of Cheers of Zihuatenejo.
ALBERTO: Do you like to watch american football>
JON: I love to watch american football.
ALBERTO: Banditos is for you. For all the watch any sport you want and have fun.
21:06-21:21 MUSIC
21:22-21:24 Next Stop logo
21:25-21:51 JON: Thanks for tuning into Next Stop, from beautiful, romantic Ixtapa/Zihuatenejo. Gracias to our show sponsors, The Las Brisas Ixtapa and the Ixtapa Zihuatenejo CVB. Mucho, mucho gracias to Ana Luisa and Paco, we love you guys, we had a great time with you this week, we are going to miss you. Gracias to our shows title sponsors, Alaska Airlines and the Alaska Airlines Visa signature card. Thanks for your partnership. Next Stop, where will we take you next? We actually know, but you’re going to have to tune in and find out. Make good memories everybody!
21:52-21:54 Next Stop logo
21:55 Credits roll