Tepic, Nayarit, Mexico
If you live in the San Blas area, or even visit San Blas, there is a good chance your will end up spending a day in Tepic. As the capital of Nayarit, you might have to go up there for your FM3 or other papers, and many people like to shop there because there is a Walmart and several large Mexican supermarkets including Suryans and Leh. These stores are all located near the bus station on Insurgentes. There is a movie theater in the Suryans complex across from the bus station with matinees on Sundays and Wednesdays. The tickets are cheap - around 35 pesos but the snackbar makes up for it - very expensive.
The area around the main plaza (Plaza Principal) is attractive with an old cathedral and Huichol venders selling beaded jewelry and artwork made with strings. There is also a museum for the State or Nayayit located on Avenida Mexico, a block from the plaza. About 2 blocks from Plaza Principal is another attractive plaza - Plaza Municipal - where you will find the municipal building. During the Christmas season they have a flea market with Christmas handicrafts. They say Parque de la Loma is very nice but I have never been there.
There is a first class hotel on the Plaza, Frey Junipero Sera, which costs about $50 a night - some of the rooms even have bathtubs but you have to ask. There are also 2 cheaper but adequate hotels behind the bus station for around 270 pesos for a double (Hotel Tepic and Hotel Nayar).
There are several good restaurants - my favorite being El Farallon on Insurgentes 3 blocks past the park as you are leaving Tepic. (They have a big sign and a very steep driveway leading to a parking lot in the back). Their speciality is a half pineapple stuffed with seafood and cheese. One order could be enough for 2. Another great place is Restaurant Altamarano on Plaza Municipal a few blocks down from Plaza Principal. A great place for a cheap snack is Barragan in the market - they have some of the best tortas I have ever had. Across the street from the Suryans complex (near the bus staion) there is a fast food Japanese place. I thought they did a good job with the sushi - especially the Philidelphia Rolls. Another great place is the Chil Quil Grill specializing in chilaquiles a Mexican dish made up of tortilla chips covered in a variety of sauces, meat or eggs. They are located on the corner of Allende and Queretaro (217-66-63).
Right down the street from the Chil Quil is the highly recommended state of the art dental center run by Dr. Maria Gabrieta. Dr Gabrieta specializes root canals and can be reached at 331 212 8388 - Ave Allenede No 216 pts.
Buses leave every hour on the hour from San Blas to Tepic and cost 42 pesos. The return bus leaves at quarter till the hour and I think the last bus leaves at 6:45.
There is an airport with direct flights to Tijuana and Mexico City. Aerocalifonia, Avolar and AeroMexico fly into Tepic.
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