The state Veracruz is known as a coffee-growing region and is home to the highest peak in Mexico “Pico de Orizaba” (5611 meter). We stopped in Coatepec, which is known for gourmet coffee. Coatepec was founded in 1701 and the coffee has been grown in the surrounding cloud forests for almost as long. In 2006 Coatepec was nominated as a “pueblo mágico” (magical village). The Mexico Tourism Board created the “Pueblos Mágicos” program to recognize places across Mexico that imbue certain characteristics that make them unique and historically significant. This promotes a series of towns around the country that offer visitors a “magical” experience – by reason of their natural beauty, cultural riches, or historical relevance.
We just wanted to camp for the night, and in my tourist book I had found a Hostel were we could camp for 100 pesos. BUT… were we came to the hostel the price was 185 pesos per person for a campsite. Instead we found a hotel in the center of town for 300 pesos. We walked to the mail square “Pargue Miguel Hidalgo” and bought dinner.
YES – I had a grilled corn with mayonnaise and added chili powder (not spicy)
Esben had “Doritos con esquites” – a bag of Doritos with boiled corn kernels, cheese, mayo, lime and chili powder (not spicy).
The next day we were back on the motorcycles riding on the twisting mountain roads… looking out for at coffee break.
We stopped in a tiny town in the mountains were we had coffee and three pieces of sweet bread. We only paid 36 pesos (2 USD or 14 DDK). Before we got back on the motorcycles the nice lady who owned the restaurant gave us a bag with ground coffee.
Back on the motorcycles we drove to Orizaba were we found some kind of motel where we had to pay 150 pesos per person per night. Sometimes you pay the for room, sometimes you pay per person and sometimes you pay per hour for the room (auto hotels). The next day we visited the free zoo in Orizaba.
What is special about the zoo is that it is located on both sides of the river “Rio Orizaba”, which runs through town
Several places you can walk across the river… just stay on the yellow path
And watch your head – or Esben watch your head
It was a nice walk with statues of Cri-Cri cartoon characters (“The singing cricket”) in 1934. Here in Mexico the inventor of Cri-Cri, Francisco Soler, is compared to Walt Disney and Walt Disney’s Jiminy Cricket was inspired by this famous Mexican character.
We had coffee in the center of town were you can visit the “Gran Café de Orizaba”, what is special about this place is that it is designed by Gustave Eiffel, who build the Eiffel tower in Paris from 1887 to 1889. Like the Eiffel tower the “Gran Café de Orizaba” is built in iron.
For lunch we found a family run restaurant that offered “comida corrida”, which is a set menu for just 30 pesos person. It is the cheapest “comida corrida” we have had. The dishes came with a jug of melonwater. Including tips we paid 70 pesos (7 USD or 50 DDK). This is what we got:
Two entrees for each. To the left a bullion soup with pasta and to the right rice in green tomato sauce with tortilla
For main dish, to the left chicken with plantains and tortilla, to the right enchilada with salad on the side
We were so full after all the food and went for a walk in the local park, were we saw performing dancers with their band. Always visit the local parks or markets, because here in Mexico something is always going on. Some of the local parks also have exercise equipment, which is a great opportunity for us to do strength training.
Next stop “Hierve el Agua”