Zihuatanejo – Authentic and Inexpensive Paradise

By Natalie Compagno – Travel Expert

Contributor’s Website – Traveler’s Bookcase

I just got back from an incredibly relaxing and gluttonous trip to Zihuatanejo, Mexico. I split my time between sipping margaritas in the infinity pool at Hotel Irma overlooking the Bay, and lolling in the ocean waves watching sunsets and pelicans. Very few Americans were there (it’s off-season now and pretty warm), but there were plenty of Central and South American vacationers to add some festivity to the town. Looking out on the view from my hotel room I envisioned the Zihuatanejo Bay of years past when pirates waited ominously to attack ships heading back and forth to the Philippines carrying riches and exotic treasure.

Zihuatanejo conjures up images of freedom and pristine beaches from the famed film “Shawshank Redemption”. Seemingly remote and secluded, many Angelenos have overlooked it as a quick and easy vacation destination. The great part about Zihuatenejo is that because it is sheltered/over-shadowed by nearby Acapulco, it has remained an authentic fishing village and is relatively tourist-trap free. There is also a direct three hour flight to Zihuatanejo from Los Angeles on Alaska Airlines. The food is fantastic and the prices even better (no ridiculous Cabo/Los Angeles mark-ups here!). So don’t wait to be an escaped convict to finally walk on the sandy beaches of Zihuat. Book yourself a few days, or the rest of your life, in this authentic, inexpensive paradise.


Hotel Irma
Amazing views, $80 a night, infinity pool and happy hour. Book Now.


Any’s Tamales y Atoles
Authentic Mexican cuisine in a fun decorative atmosphere. I watched Mexico play Japan in football there with a cheering crowd.

Best. Coconut Shrimp. Ever. I tried to swing back around for one last shrimp dish before the airport but ran out of time. Big mistake. Should have missed my flight.


El Embarcadero. There are a few great shops with handicraft art and clothing right in a row “downtown”. If you’re going to buy souvenirs, buy the good stuff and pay for it.

The book that made it all happen:

Moon Ixatapa and Zihatanejo

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Contributor’s Website – Traveler’s Bookcase

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