For most of our time in Asia we traveled by public transportation. We took boats, trains, buses, tuk-tuks, the backs of motorcycles, and pedi-cabs. It wasn't until we rented a motorcycle for three weeks in Lao that we truly discovered the joy of having your own transportation to be able to explore at will. It's partially what inspired us to do the trip we're on now. And it truly has been an amazing freedom to be able to pick up and move whenever we want without having to negotiate a crowded confusing bus station where everything is in a foreign language. But, for some reason, we've been tending to pick a destination, most often from our guide book or an app we use called iOverlander, and drive until we get there. I guess with all the warnings against driving at night, and the fact that we are looking for places to camp, which are rarer than hotels, it's comforting to have a goal in mind.

We had planned on driving from Oaxaca to the coast to spend my birthday lounging on a beach. To get there we had to cross a long high mountain range; we were generally between eight and ten thousand feet. It was one of the most winding roads I've ever driven. Every curve revealed a new and beautiful view. Driving through small towns with plentiful signs advertising cabañas for rent, we were starting to wonder if we'd made the right decision to abandon the mountains for the beach. Our decision was made for us when we drove through San Jose del Pacifico. It was around lunch time and our stomachs were rumbling, but there was just something else about the place that practically begged us to stop.

From the patio at a little eatery, we had an amazing view of the mountains and valley below, but also of some amazing looking cabañas next door.


After walking the couple hundred yards of road that comprise the town, it took a few minutes of debate, but we decided that although we had plans, we didn't “have” to be anywhere and that where we really wanted to be was in one of those cabanas with a crackling fire. It felt good to just stop on a whim. We spent two nights, had a fantastic birthday dinner at an Italian restaurant, and definitely enjoyed some crackling fires.