We are settling in to life at Lake Chapala

July 1, 2018

It’s been two weeks since we made the move to San Antonio Tlayacapan in the Lake Chapala area.  We’ve had some adjustments but all in all things have gone very easily and we are happy with the move.  Here’s our first impressions:

The community – We had never really considered this area as a place to live until recently – but it has surprised us and likely will continue to.  Yes, there are lots of gringos here – and a lot of English spoken – but everyone can choose the extent of their immersion into the local life.  Lakeside is just a group of small villages, really – except for Chapala which is a small town.  We have found everyone to be very friendly and welcoming so far. Our little town is has cobblestone roads and you are almost as likely to meet a horse coming the other way as a car!

The natural environment – I imagine most know that Lake Chapala was very polluted some years ago and there has been an effort to clean it up, with progress made according to various articles I’ve read.  There are several malecóns along the lake and various places that have been set aside as bird and wildlife viewing areas/protected zones.  Today we walked along the little malecón in San Antonio and then did a few exercises on the outdoor equipment there.  That’s a picture from our walk this morning at the top of the post, and below is a fabulous crop of pomegranates hanging out over the sidewalk!

Our home – Our little rented place is suiting us well.  We like the rural feeling of the area – there are so many birds that we always find something interesting to watch.  Yesterday a random cat climbed up the willow tree in our yard and totally freaked out the family of woodpeckers living there.  A couple days ago an egret landed in a tree right in front of us – check out the picture below!

We love that between us and the lake there is a large mostly open field with a few trees.  It is a great place to let the dogs out to run and they really feel like they are exploring the wilderness by the way they sniff around.  That’s them, below.

Below is a picture from the lake side looking back at the house.  Cozy, isn’t it?  I think we’ll love that fireplace in the wintertime, too.

Here is a picture of our combined kitchen/dining/living room.  You can see we brought all our favorite artworks.

Chapala is East of San Antonio just a couple of miles.  Last Sunday we drove down to Chapala to take a walk on their malecón and enjoy the beautiful day.  There is a pier you can fish off, boats to take you on a tour of the lake, and we even saw the Danza de los Voladores performed!  There was lots of good food and little shops to browse, too.  Below is a picture of the voladores as they almost reached the ground.

And here are a few of the boats offering rides.

We’ve been lucky with fun things to do, too!  A group of ten former and current Mazatlán residents got together for dinner one evening.  One afternoon we went to a play reading at The Naked Stage – it was a truly excellent performance and we will be regular patrons.  A picture of the stage is below.

Our social life is kind of quiet right now, but we are looking forward to several meals this month with friends coming into town from Mazatlán and CDMX.  All in all, life is good and we are happy.  Hasta pronto!

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More about Nancy

I'm Nancy, a US expat living in San Antonio Tlayacapan, Jalisco after 11 years in Mazatlán, México.

    1. So happy to hear you are happy and settling in. Moving is hard no matter what. It is always nice when it works out. Miss you and Paul here in Mazatlan. Getting pretty hot now and still no rain. We are waiting! Sending besos y abrazos across the miles. Bunny

      1. We miss you and all our friends in Maz but we are having fun. Hope the rain comes soon for you! xoxo N.

    1. Nancy,

      Have you found the local fruit/vegetable stand yet? It is open on Friday mornings and located just off of the plaza on the same street as the school and church, right before you get to Adelita’s. It is wonderful. The family that runs it is very nice and friendly. I can also recommend a good jugoeria. It is on Ramon Corona and is called Tito’s. Tito and his tia, Maria run it. Very, very nice people. Kind of hard to find as it doesn’t have a sign over the sidewalk. It is in the first block west of the plaza on the south side of the street.


      1. Thanks, Troy! We have seen the fruit and vegetable people but didn’t buy at the time, but we will. Thanks so much! Nancy

    1. A long time ago, I took Ken and Judith to the Naked Stage. The rest is history!

    1. Thanks for sharing this and so much about your & Paul’s life – and I’m glad you’ve found and settled in to your new home! What a long & winding road to get there, eh?! Please consider coming to visit some time when you’re missing the ocean – I’m not too far away! Abrazos!

      1. Hi Janet! Thanks for commenting! We will come see you one day for sure, and we’d love to have you come and stay with us, too! xoxo N.

    1. It looks lovely – is your house a furnished house? To me bright, hot colors always look better in Mexico? I love the outside photos and the mountain looks so green – so have the rains started for you, yet? Enjoy that area – it is lovely there.

      1. Hi Sandy! Yes, we rented a furnished place… although we did bring a few tables and chairs with us that we didn’t want to let go. The rains have started, it is really wonderful. Usually an hour or two at a time, then the sun comes out. We are having fun.

    1. Glad you are liking it! You make it sounds terrific….

      1. Hi Kathi, It is fun to explore a new place and to not be too hot, too! xoxo N.

    1. I’m so happy to hear this Nancy! I’ll see you in a month or so!!

      1. Hi Jan, Sounds like things are moving along for you, that’s awesome! See you soon! xoxo N.

    1. Nice to see that you have adapted to the quantity of Gringos and enjoy the wide open spaces especially compared to Mazatlan, I am sure the doggies love it, being able to romp away without worry of cars etc. The location of Chapala certainly does put it into a best of both worlds category especially when you consider a trip to the big city, GDL is not a chore and can be accomplished with plenty of time to make it home in time for dinner after a full day of wandering around “the malls and such”. We’ll have to come look at the lake again, the last time was probably about 20 years ago, so I am sure it has changed a lot.

      1. Hi Tancho, Well it is off season here so not sure I have adjusted to the quantity of gringos, but so far so good. I love being able to bop over to Guadalajara and still be within the dogs’ bladder range! Our place is really nice for us right now… come on over, we would love to see you guys! xoxo

    1. So happy for you that you are settling in so fast. Beautiful house you are renting! Quite a contrast to Mazatlan, back to the countryside. Seems you appreciate the climate and the nature that surrounds you. Great for your doggies! We have a similar situation in San Miguel de Allende. I love it and Chip, our dog who has a great park/old garden nearby where he can run free and catch his frizbees.

      1. Hi Edwige! It sure is nice when the pups like a place as much as we do, isn’t it? Have a nice summer in SMA and hopefully we’ll see you sometime next winter in Maz. xoxo

    1. Hola Nancy!
      Sounds like you all are settling in nicely. I’m looking forward to my next visit to Ajijic, no less because I’ll be able to see you and Paul again.

      So Chapala is where the boat tours depart? The entire time I was there, I kept saying to “A,” that it’d be so nice to take a boat tour, but none seemed to be available at the Ajijic Malecón. Next time we’ll know where to look.

      Saludos y un gran abrazo,

      Kim G
      Redding, CA
      Where the infernal temperatures make us long for the highlands of Mexico lindo.

      1. Hi Kim, Are you planning your next trip yet? I’m still hoping you’ll blog about your last trip down… We didn’t go talk to the boat operators at Chapala but there was lots of coming and going and loading and unloading going on.

        I hope you survive the heat wave and come back down soon! xoxo N.

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