The jet set capital of Acapulco became famous in the 1950s with many Hollywood celebrities visiting the city.
The resort began to get tired with competition from new areas in Mexico, but more recently much new building has taken place, partially on the hillside around the city and a programme called ‘Aca-Limpia’ (clean Acapulco) has cleaned up the bay and the main area of Costera. You are most likely to visit this resort as part of a cruise through the Panama Canal.
Acapulco stretches for more than four miles around a huge bay. The main boulevard is called Costera Miguel Aleman (the Costera) where most hotels are situated and follows the outline of the bay from downtown, old Acapulco on the west to the Hyatt Regency Hotel in the east. The original Fuerte De San Diego Costera Aleman east of Zocalo (downtown) was built in 1616 to protect the town from pirates’ attacks. The fort was rebuilt after an earthquake in 1776 and it now houses the Museo Historico De Acapulco filled with exhibits recording the history of Acapulco, including artifacts from the Aztec Templo Mayor Excavation in Mexico City and the coming of the Spanish Conquistadors, complete with Spanish armour. Other displays include articles from China and a six foot model of the Manila Galleon when the Spanish invaded the South Seas from the city. The Cathedral is also downtown near Zocalo and Paza Avatrez with its bulbous blue onion domes which was originally designed as a cinema. A marvellous view of Acapulco can be had from the hill behind the Cathedral following the sign to La Mirador.
Beaches and the Famous Cliff Divers
It is said that there are forty beaches around Acapulco but pay careful attention to the warning flags. South of downtown is Caleta Beach and Caletilla Beach. You can reach Roqueta Island with its small Zoo and lighthouse by boat which runs from Caletilla Beach roughly every half an hour. Pleasure boats leave from Playa Larga south of downtown, west of the downtown area is Playa La Augosto (a small cove) and close by La Quebrada where the famous cliff divers normally perform. These divers can be viewed from the lobby bar of the Hotel Plaza Las Glorias/El Mirador and there’s normally a cover charge.
More Beaches and Fairmont Acapulco Princess Hotel built to resemble an Aztec Pyramid
Going east from the downtown area there are beaches: Hornos near Pagagayo Park, Hornitos, Condesa, Icacos and Punta Del Guitarron. Further on are beaches at Puerto Marques and Punta Diamante. The sheltered bay of Puerto Marques is an attractive area for swimming where the water is calm. Further on still is the famous Acapulco Princess Hotel (Fairmont) near Revolcadero Beach constructed to resemble an Aztec pyramid. The complex consists of a system of waterfalls, fountains and pools set amid tropical trees, flowers and shrubs, with swans, peacocks and flamingos. Though its beach looks inviting it is not safe to swim here.
Places to Visit
Fort Museum – Cathedral (Viewpoint) – Divers at Quebrada – beaches including Puerto Marques and Acapulco Princess Hotel
Contact Simon at Designer Travel Tailor-made Holidays & Cruises
All details quoted are thought to be correct at time of posting but are always subject to confirmation at time of booking
Photo: Acapulco Bay (RG) 144