Lake Chapala is a short drive from Guadalajara. If you are from Manitoba, you will understand my comparison of Lake Chapala-Ajijic to Winnipeg Beach-Gimli. Except that the water at Lake Chapala is disappearing from the lake! Three years ago when I first visited this area, it looked like this.
Today it looks like this.
However it is still a lovely place for a day trip from Guadalajara. And Lake Chapala also boasts a large expat community. English is widely spoken here as well. A large WalMart is minutes away, in between Lake Chapala and Ajijic, another large expat community. There are numerous restaurants, shops and businesses. I enjoy walking along the malecon and strolling through the tianguis.
I decided to play tourist on this visit and made my way to the Chapala Inn, my favorite lunch spot right on the lake. Here I purchased a ticket for the Chapala Express, a quaint trolley that tours the streets of Chapala and then proceeds on to Ajijic. The tour is given in Spanish and I was amazed at how much I understood. And the tour went by a sports park and a cultural centre that I had never seen before.
I also spent some time in the church. I love rambling around in old churches in Mexico. The architecture is amazing, as well as the stained glass, art and statues. Fortunately there were few people there so I was able to take quite a few photos. I always limit my photos when there are lots of people focused on prayer.
On my way back to the bus station, I stopped for a quesadilla and a cerveza by the square. The shade was very welcome and I sat for a while, enjoying the scenery.
All too soon it was time to head back to the city. The bus station was bustling with activity and the buses were crowded. I boarded a direct bus and was blessed with air-conditioning. Traffic was surprisingly light and an hour later I was back in Guadalajara.