Bahia Tangolunda

Tangolunda Bay There is only so much that can be said about Tangolunda Bay, because if you're staying there at a resort you have everything you need to know about it in front of you, and if you're not staying there you don't have many reasons to go there. This isn't to take away anything from the beauty of the bay, but an acknowledgement that it is the first and only fully developed bay with mega-resorts which are primarily for the guests of those resorts. You can boat in or walk in from various places, but with so many other gorgeous beaches in Huatulco, there's little reason to do so. (Unless you have a particular attraction to hanging out at resorts you're not a guest at. There may be something to be said for this if you're a feral traveler and can figure out what color wristbands the all-inclusives use and crash their party.) The west end of the bay is dominated by Las Brisas, a huge resort that took over the facilities of the old Club Med. They have pretty, sheltered beaches with roped off areas for swimming and snorkeling. In the middle of the bay is the very high end Quinta Real, along with the huge, all-inclusives Barcelo and Dreams, with Camino Real Zaashila at the east end. A word of warning for guests at the all-inclusives - there are a couple of "fleece the tourist" operations that guests in Tangolunda tend to get hit the worst by. One of them is the overpriced beach restaurants they get herded into on boat tours and the other is grossly overpriced medical care from resort doctors. Be aware that there are a wealth of cheaper, better alternatives to both.

Out in the middle of the bay is Isla Montosa, around which there are a number of good dive spots. On the inside edge of the island is a little hidden beach and a gorgeous shallow swimming area that you can kayak to or get dropped off by boat. Running up the Tangolunda Valley is the impressive Tangolunda 18 hole golf course, the best golf course in Oaxaca, if you have an attraction to the links. Wedged in amidst all this luxury is a trailer park, which at first seems at odds with its surroundings. More common on the Gulf Coast of Mexico and in the north, trailer parks are surprisingly common throughout coastal Mexico for the ambitious brand of RV-er who doesn't mind taking their rig south of the border. Though Huatulco is a little further afield than many RV-ers usually go, the trailer park still has a surprising number of Canadian residents in winter. The lack of facilities - no electric, no water - offered for the 50 peso per person tariff, however, seems to be leading many RV-ers to look elsewhere.

While thousands of vacationers every year pass exceedingly pleasant times staying in Tangolunda, everything tends to be a little too packaged. With a little motivation and disregard for the in-house offerings of tours (or anything else for that matter), a Tangolunda vacationer can still experience all the wonders Huatulco has to offer on their own. One of the main complaints of restaurants and bar owners in La Crucecita is that people who stay in Tangolunda never leave the bay. While on the one hand it's somewhat nice that one bay has absorbed almost all the mega-resort packaged tourism, it's a shame that a substantial number of visitors to Huatulco who stay there are unaware of how much more the area has to offer. While this had been a concern of the owners of the Tipsy Blowfish bar and restaurant, they practically reasoned, if you can't beat em, join em, and moved their establishment over to Tangolunda in the fall of 2009. It's a welcome addition to livening up what has been a somewhat stagnant commercial row outside the resorts.

Tangolunda Overview