BY LAUREN KRAMER
The Vancouver Sun
The word dances from the lips with the promise of flirtatious beauty.
I’d heard about Sayulita for years – little whispers of a town not far from Mexico’s Puerto Vallarta, yet one offering a completely different experience, with none of the city’s towering all-inclusive resorts jostling for space on the beach front. So I followed the flirtation to the shores of Sayulita to attend a retreat that promised sun, surf and the replenishing postures of yoga. I was looking for the sweet simplicity of a Mexican village uncorrupted by tourists, a place where visitors mingled with locals and the beach was devoid of obnoxious noise.
You truly leave the city behind you when you travel to Sayulita. Twenty minutes out of the airport, the convenience stores that dot the highway begin to disappear, replaced by rugged hills thick with tropical foliage. We travel on a highway surrounded by Mexican jungle, a green zone that protects the country’s remaining jaguars and is the breeding ground of crabs who cross that very road in their thousands as they travel to the beach each year. Trees lean over the highway, their branches forming a canopy over passing cars, and the road winds and curves until suddenly we’re on a dirt path and the town feels close.
“We’re taking the long way around town because the main bridge has been washed away,” says my driver, Mario. He’s talking about the four solid days of rain that fell in September, causing floods from which Sayulita is still recovering. The road is narrow, dark and uneven and for a moment I wonder what I’m doing here. Then, suddenly, I hear the whoosh of waves and we’ve arrived. We approach the dim lights of the hotel Villa Amor in the darkness but I can feel the bay wrapped in a gentle semi circle around us.
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