Reason #4 happens to be our favorite- we love seeing new places and traveling abroad. We've both been to Mexico before, I mean we're in Arizona for cryin' out loud, and it used to be that you could cross the border without a passport on a weekend trip without much worry of safety. Sadly it's a little harder to travel there these days, but we felt safe with our cruise. We both speak Spanish, yes, we are this white, and we BOTH speak Spanish! You should see the looks Jacob gets from any native speakers when he opens his mouth- Sorpresa! Jacob lived in Boliva for 2 years and I did a travel study in Mexico through college after a lot of intensive classes and living in foreign language housing (you have to prove procficient in another language to get an English degree at BYU). It was tough, I'm still afraid to speak it in public, but at least puedo entender! When we talk about it, we have no idea why we don't go to Central and South America more often. This was our first step in changing that!
Our first stop was Puerto Vallarta.
It's a funny place to stop on the boat becasue you pull up to an industrialized bay that shows a Wal-mart and a shopping mall with nearly all American chain stores. It's not exactley that different from the U.S. at first glance. However, when one leaves the port and heads to the mountains on the other side of the area, there are beautiful jungles, seaside mansions (owned by many celebrites), and a beautiful animals and scenary.
We took a decent drive through Old Town and went into the jungle to go ziplining. We're pretty big adventure seekers, so this fit the bill for both of us! Our friends Jake and Karen are the same, they were perfect traveling buddies!
If you go on a cruise I would think twice before booking an excursions through them. Sometimes it's necessary, because if the boat is leaving and you aren't back they will leave you. However, if you have two days in one place like we did, there were no worries on timing for us. Jacob is a crafty one, always finding the best deal on everything. That boy always does his homework with bargain shopping- I thought I was good, then I got married! He was able to book 2 for $60 (versus $144 a person through our cruise line) through a great company we totally recommend. The people were so funny, knowledgable, and encouraging. We'd totally book through them again.
Ziplining takes some hiking, wearing a harness, and enjoyng the ride!
The scenary really was beautiful, clearly one us couldn't take our eyes off the view (um the one with the long, dark, ponytail that is)
And we had a 9 year old, and a 91 year old come along. The 91-year-old (a month shy of 92) was such an inspiration! We asked her secret, she told us "Don't listen to Doctors!" Everyone cheered for her when we finished. We were lucky enough to snag a picture with her.
The experience was one of a kind, and something we'd defnitely recommend doing!