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Loco Gringo Mexico

LocoGringo Mexico gives you local insights, vacation tips and stories from people who live and work in the Riviera Maya and Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico. Our host Kay Walten, will introduce you to people in Mexico who tell of their journey to the Yucatan, their local scoop on the people, the Mexico and Mayan culture, places not to miss on your next vacation, food and more. LocoGringo gives you travel info that you won’t find in a travel guidebook. Discover Mexico for your next vacation on a more intimate level than a typical tourist. As an expat, Kay has been working in vacation and tourism in Mexico since 1992. She is also co-founder of the vacation rental site LocoGringo.com.
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Now displaying: October, 2016
Oct 25, 2016

My guest on today’s podcast, Lia Evans, has a passport full of stamps, is a self-proclaimed foodie and loves her new home of Tulum.

Lia and her husband managed a diving resort in Belize, shortly before arriving in the Riviera Maya in 2015. They found Belize to be expensive, so they decided to travel around a bit. Playa del Carmen wasn’t exactly what they were looking for, so they made their way to Tulum. Lia says, “It immediately felt like home.” So, they rented a cheap room in the center of town, and found a dive shop that needed an experienced diver.

Lia’s big plan is to have her own company one day, but she realizes there is a lot of competition in the area. Many of her previous diving students are contacting her, now that she lives in the Riviera Maya -- or what she calls one of the most amazing places to cavern dive, in the world. The cenotes are so big, her clients don’t need to be certified cavern divers to enjoy them.

During her free time, Lia takes long walks through the jungle and into the Sian Ka’an reserve. She enjoys watching monkeys in the trees, large bird migrations, and the colorful parrots.

She and her husband make the most of the dining scene in Tulum, by finding restaurants that specialize in the foods they love to eat. Her husband believes that great service is just as important as great food, making all of the secret spots she shares, must-visits.

 

Lia’s Secret Spots:

Dos Ojos Lodge - For Amazing Cenote Diving

La Eufemia Taqueria - For Really, Really Good Tacos

La Siesta Tulum - Italian Food with Great Service and Delivery

Azafran - For a Proper English Breakfast

 

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Email Kay: askkay@locogringo.com

Loco Gringo Mexico Vacation Free E-books

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Oct 18, 2016

My longtime friends, Laura and Perry, are calling in from Iowa to join me as my guests on today’s podcast. They are the couple responsible for Cancun Map and MapChick maps, and travel guides of the Yucatan Peninsula.

Perry shares the amusing story of how a waiter friend had won an obstacle course contest for a free trip to a little-known place called Cancun, Mexico. When he returned from the trip he told Laura and Perry, they must visit. This was in the 80’s when hotels were so far apart it was a 2-3 minute plane ride between them. The couple loved the area so much they would visit over and over even though they didn’t have it in their budget. They would sleep on the beach in a tent, and buy a loaf of bread with some butter, and rough it for a couple of weeks. 

They knew they had to share the information they were collecting with others. This is when they started their map projects. In the early days, they would pay someone to show them local swimming spots, local life events, and remnants of the ancient people. Perry also used a bicycle equipped with a compass and an odometer and pinpointed every last turn through small towns. And, all with little to no Spanish. 

The couple muses about writing a book about their experiences over the last 20 years but with the annual updates to their seven sets of maps, they may not find the time.

Be sure to catch the story of the night time fish dinner!

 

Laura and Perry’s Secret Spots:

Chamikos - Always the Best Food

El Galeon del Caribe - Fresh Fish Over Hot Coals

 

Use these Resources to Continue Your Journey:

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Email Kay: askkay@locogringo.com

LocoGringo Mexico Vacation Free E-books

Loco Gringo Valladolid E-books Available on Amazon

Cancun Map

Map Chick

Laura@cancunmap.com

Oct 11, 2016

My guest, Yasmin Vera, and I only recently met. We were both at the airport in Houston, Texas, waiting for our flight to Cancun. It turns out she has lived in Playa del Carmen for two years. She owns the luxury fitness based vacation company, Fun Fitness Globetrotters.

Yasmin is a licensed attorney, and worked as an in-house security litigator for ten years. Why would an attorney from California found a fitness vacation company in the Riviera Maya? Yasmin says she has a couple of professional athletes in her family, and has always been interested in fitness. When she decided to make it her full-time career, she knew Mexico would be where it would start.

Yasmin’s client signs up for the complete curriculum of fitness plus vacation fun. Classes include high-intensity cardio in the mornings, yoga and beach time. Her packages even include a staff masseuse, a physical therapist and electro muscle stimulation. Yasmin says her clients may sign up to tone a specific part of their body, but healing their bodies is the main focus.

There is also a nutritional component to the vacation, and Yasmin says that is where Mexico really shines. Fish, fresh unprocessed foods and amazing flavors make it easy for clients to learn lifelong eating habits they can take back home with them.

 

Yasmin’s Secret Spots:

Playacar Beach - Beautiful Clear Water

Playa Punta Esmeralda - Cenote at the Beach

El Fogon - Best Tacos Ever

 

Use these Resources to Continue Your Journey:

Loco Gringo

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Email Kay: askkay@locogringo.com

LocoGringo Mexico Vacation Free E-books

Loco Gringo Valladolid E-books Available on Amazon

Fun Fitness Globetrotters

Fun Fitness Globetrotters on Facebook

Fun Fitness Globetrotters on Instagram

Fun Fitness Globetrotters on Yelp

Oct 4, 2016

Gerardo and I have been friends for well over a decade. Originally from Argentina near Patagonia, Gerardo arrived in the Riviera Maya to work in the hotel business. The job offer he received was to work at a large hotel in Playa del Carmen. Gerardo says working for big corporations didn’t suit him because he didn’t feel he was able to express himself fully. Then, he met the owners of the local Lol-Ha restaurant. They asked him to join them in changing the face of their establishment. He was finally able to express himself creatively and he loved the town of Akumal. After a walk to the Caribbean on his very first day in town, he called his family in Argentina and told them to sell all of his belongings because he wouldn’t be returning.

Gerardo knew he wanted to become part of the real estate market in Mexico. He became a Mexican citizen and learned everything he could about the area. He says, the real estate environment in the Riviera Maya has very mature markets to the North in Cancun and developing markets near Tulum. Tulum is a wonderful place to invest because the atmosphere is laid back and relaxed. You can have a better lifestyle for less money. 

Gerardo’s favorite places in Mexico, in addition to the Riviera Maya, are Chiapas, Zacatecas and the bustling, Mexico City. He visits annually to visit the museums and great restaurants, all of which are easy to get to from the new larger airport and improved roads.

 

Gerardo’s Secret Spots:

La Floresta — It’s a surprise for everyone who goes there

Dos Brot German Bakery

DAC — Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

NAO — Portuguese Cuisine with an International Flair

Lol-Ha — Re-designed by Gerardo

La Azotea en El Punto Hotel — Rooftop Views for Evening Drinks

La Lunita — A Quiet Dinner with a Great Wine Selection

 

Use these Resources to Continue Your Journey:

Loco Gringo

Loco Gringo on Facebook

Email Kay: askkay@locogringo.com

LocoGringo Mexico Vacation Free E-books

Buy Playa

Email Gerardo: Gerardo@Buyplaya.com

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