Posted by: vlbyers | May 11, 2011

Bahia del Sol, El Salvador

Larry enjoying the cool weather


making the 'sorprisas'


enjoying the wine and tapas


guitar player at Las Alemendras


Lane is ready for lunch


Woman working in Herradura


Just takin' a walk


Dock and restaurant area on Estuary at Herradura


Street scene in Herradura


Mural on a school wall in Herradura, Education is important


We are here in Bahia del Sol, El Salvador. Actually Bahia del Sol is the name of the hotel, there isn’t really a town attached to the marina and hotel, just a few small restaurants and very small tiendas along the road leading to the main highway. This hotel stretches from the estuary on one side to the ocean side, with opportunity to stay on either side. All of the rooms that we have seen have individual pools at every room, they are not hot tubs because they are cold but they are jetted. The grounds are very well-kept and the staff are friendly, this is one of the easiest countries to check into also, it is becoming a very popular place for cruisers.
The first week here Vicki and Lane were still with us and we took an inland trip to Ilibasko, and Suchitoto, this would be an overnight trip taken by a private bus and our tour guide Jorge. Ilibasko is a small town which is known for its pottery. They make what is called ‘sorprisas’ or surprises. It is a very small plate, maybe 1 inch across with a lid, when you open the lid there is a little miniature scene, some are religious, some are families and some are XXX rated. While we were here we walked to the market and saw all the delicious meats hanging in the sun, fruits and vegetables galore and of course the typical tourist stuff. We were able to get a wooden cup with a parrot made out of ceramic and glued on the outside. This is to hold our pencils and pens on the navigation station.
The next town we went to was Suchitoto, another small town reportedly the cultural center in the hills with a view of Lake Suchitlan. We would stay the night in this sleepy town, have a gourmet dinner with a wine tasting, swimming, breakfast and then a tour of the lake. The hotel we stayed in was called Las Almendras, which means Almonds, and was a very quaint 8 room hotel, the owner was catering to our group since we were the only ones there. We had the pool to ourselves and an air-conditioner! Believe me in this heat and humidity we were all looking forward to that. One of the most interesting facts we were told was that the lake was man-made, before the dam was in place and the area was flooded the owners of the farmland, soon to be bottom of the lake land, were given opportunities to sell. Because this land was handed down to them they felt an obligation to keep the land, maybe they thought if they didn’t sell they would force the government to allow them to keep the land. Well they held out a bit too long and in the end they owned some very wet farmland.
One other trip we have done is to see a little town up the estuary called Herradura. This is a very typical El Salvadorian town, quite poor, women making the ‘pupusas’ over a wood fire grill on the sidewalk. Pupusas are a type of tortilla, thicker and with the stuff usually in a taco on the inside and then grilled. So you can have pupusas with cheese, beans or meat or a combo of the above. 14 of us went to a pupuseria and spent 26 dollars for all our food and drinks. That’s a deal!!
Herradura has a little bit of everything, even a central market. There is nothing modern and spacious about this market but it is the closest place to buy food, fresh fruits and veges. The people here are quite outgoing and friendly, many times I am not the first to initiate a wave a smile or a ‘bueno’, they don’t say ‘hola’ much although they respond when I do. We have nice conversations at the market, on the street and just about wherever we go. Some people will talk with us in Spanish, asking if we speak English or Spanish and after we talk with them a bit in Spanish, they come out with their fluent English conversation and tell us they live in Toronto or Dallas, it is quite funny.
Yesterday we had the ending party for the El Salvador Rally. This is a rally put together by Bill and Jean on Mita Kulu. This is the second annual and they had over 50 boats this year participate. It is loosely constructed, there is no particular place everyone leaves from, there is no time to leave or arrive, there is no entry fee and there are a lot of perks to joining. Lots of good information regarding the area as you head south, checking in and out, weather, places to stay, discounts on marina fees and restaurant food. There are enough organized activities like pool parties, raft ups, bonfires complete with roasted marshmallows, happy hours, boci ball tournaments…..that you can participate in or not as you choose. We have had a great time hanging around all the cruisers and learning the culture and the people of El Salvador. Next post-our great Tical trip.
Vicki


Responses

  1. Wow! I am so glad you guys made it safely. I just read your last few posts and grateful to know all is well and adventures are ensuing. Sorry about Caley, I have actually shared stories about what a great cat she was! Sad. Anxious to hear what’s next. Steve and Edmund (a 14 yr old novice sailor) leave Guyamus today. The boat has a newly painted bottom and apparently is bug free and in ship shape for the overnight journey. I fly into Loredo on the 21st and home on the 5th of June. Love to you both and many blessings of health & pure fun!
    Rita


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