Mazatlan Tourist Attractions
How to get thereFrom Mexico City by air about 1.5 hours (also flights from other Mexican and U.S. airports); by rail in about 23 hours; by bus in about 17 hours.Mazatlán lies on a natural bay on a projecting tongue of land just to the south of the Tropic of Cancer. It is the major Mexican commercial and fishing port on the Pacific, with the world's largest shrimping fleet, and in recent years has become a very popular beach resort.HistoryMazatlán (Náhuatl: "Place of the Deer") was an area of Indian settlement long before the Conquest. The Spaniards, led by Hernando de Bazán, arrived here in 1576, but it was 1806 before the town was founded. Mazatlán and the surrounding area had previously been exposed to frequent pirate raids, and at times served as a buccaneers' lair. The foundations of the town's subsequent development were laid in the mid 19th c. by German settlers, who improved the harbour in order to facilitate the export of their agricultural produce and the import of farming equipment.SightsThere are few buildings in Mazatlán which can be described as outstanding. Features of interest, however, include the lighthouse (El Faro), towering 154 m (505 ft), and the historic Teatro Angela Peralta, a pretty building named after a famous diva, victim of a cholera epidemic in 1863. Other attractions include the "Death Divers" who launch themselves into the sea from the Mirador, the Cerro del Vigia with its observatory, from where pirates once kept watch, and the Cerro del Neveria, also a look-out point, which gets its name from the tunnels in the mountain used for storage of ice for refrigerating fish.
The well-equipped Aquarium, together with the zoo and small botanical gardens (Av. de los Deportes III), is the largest of its kind in Mexico. Shells from seas all over the world are displayed in the "Seashell City" Museum (Rudolfo Loaiza 407). The massive Monumento al Pescador reminds the visitor of Mazatlán's fishing tradition.
The main attractions for visitors are the excellent facilities for all kinds of water sports, chief among them being deep-sea fishing (sailfish, fanfish, shark, swordfish, tarpon, etc.). Among the most popular beaches, to the north of the town, are Olas Noltas, Norte Camarón, Las Gaviotas, Sábalo, Los Cerritos and El Delfín.Also very popular are trips to the offshore islands, used as nesting places by large numbers of birds. Boats ply from the hotels on the "Zona Dorada" to Isla Pájaros and Isla Venados, and from the ferry terminal to Isla de la Piedra.
From Mazatlán the MEX 15 heads south to Villa Unión. Here the Durango road branches off, first passing through Concordia with its charming 18th c. parish church, then continuing to the picturesque old mining town of Copala where narrow alleyways, colourful house façades and wrought-iron balconies evoke a Mexico of times past.
There is a daily ferry service between Mazatlán and La Paz, capital of Baja California Sur.
This museum features relics from pre-Hispanic times of the people who once lived in the state.
Address: Calle Sixto Osuna, #76, Mexico
Opening hours: 8am-3pm
Always closed on: New Year's Day (Jan 1), Mexican Constitution Day (Día de la Constititución) (Feb 5), Mexico - Benito Juárez Birthday (Mar 21), Mexico - Battle of Pueblo Day (May 5), Mexico National Day (Sep 1), Mexican Independence Day (Sep 16), Mexican Revolution Day (Nov 20), Feast of the Virgin of Guadalupe (Dec 12), Christmas - Christian (Dec 25)
Entrance fee: FREE