Immerse Yourself in the San Francisco (San Pancho) Mexico Culture

When you think of a vacation in Mexico you immediately think of Cozumel or Cancun or some resort. In February, my global outreach class took a trip over spring break to San Francisco (or as the locals call it San Pancho) Mexico. Located in the state of Nayarit, this area was absolutely beautiful. Think about a small little tourist area, where everything is in walking distance. And I mean everything from the beach to the bars to the shops to everything. You don’t need a car and can even take a cooking class and make your own tortillas. Here you can really immerse yourself in the culture of Mexico.

There’s tons of restaurants and bars that have all the food you could think of from the traditional Mexican food to sushi and seafood and everything in-between. There are even little street vendors that have some of the best food for really really cheap. And I mean 20 pesos for a taco (20 pesos is about $1). If you live in south Florida like me, then most things are going to be cheaper.

Of course, while in Mexico you need to have a few margaritas. The tequila here is the best tequila I’ve ever had in my life. And if you’re like me, then you’ll also love the daiquiris and all of the different mixed drinks the restaurants and bars have. My group tried to go to a different bar every night we were there. There are tons of options. Some are right on the beach so you can have a drink and watch the sunset. The sunsets are beautiful there and you might even get to see some humpback whales jumping in the background.

If you go in the winter months, then you can go whale watching. This was one of the most amazing experiences I’ve ever had in my life. We went on a small boat and not too far from the shore in the bay, found a momma and 1 week old baby humpback whale. The baby was putting on a show for us jumping left and right and the momma was huge. This endangered species comes down to Mexico to mate and have their babies in the winter months. If you’re an adventure freak like me then you should also go on a hike. We hiked monkey island, and the views were amazing. We went up so we could watch the sunset and our guide was great giving us the history and taking us to all the best view spots.

The culture and way of life in this little town is something so inspiring. You don’t have to worry about being pickpocketed or anything. These people know your tourists but are so grateful that you are staying in their town as most of them make their living off of tourists buying their products. Everyone is happy and not in a rush. Here in America, we get caught up in everything and are always in a rush no matter where we are going and of course we are all stressed.

In San Pancho it is the complete opposite. It makes you realize that you need to take a step back and realize how fortunate you are for the life you have and that everything will be okay. Enjoy the moments and take it all in. I mean some of these people don’t even have running water and they are the happiest most grateful and giving people you will ever meet. So, stop getting caught up in the moment and being greedy wanting more and just be happy for what you have, what you have done and who you have become. Strive to be happy and enjoy everything even the little things.

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