Bahía Tenacatita y La Manzanilla

After nearly 3 weeks in Barra de Navidad (which we love, love, loved), we decided to spend some time with Jenn and Jason of S/V Danika at the cruiser’s mecca that is Tenacatita Bay. This big, beautiful bay becomes home to at least a couple dozen cruising boats for months at a time. They elect a mayor for the season, hold a daily cruiser’s net (except Sunday), have organized events – such as daily swims to the beach, very competitive bocce ball games, and drinking at the only palapa ashore – and everyone just helps each other out and has a really good time. The water was warm (enough), the snorkeling was wonderful, and the Rollo del Mar (shrimp/veggie/herbs wrapped in a fish filet that’s wrapped in bacon and fried) available at the palapa was to die for.

Unfortunately, Jody had a long bout with the Mexican “flu” and was down for a lot of the week we were there. Wah wah. But Rand sure had a blast – he was a blur of activity – swimming, partaking in bocce, snorkeling, sailing CD, SUPing, swimming, bocce, SUPing, running on the beach, etc. There was even a weekly dinghy raft-up, where everyone brought an appetizer to share and each person shared their particular talent (Rand’s was marrying above his station – haha!); Brian from Cat2Fold and a handful of others entertained the group with their musical talents. Fun times!

We also took a day trip down to La Manzanilla with the group to provision, check out the crocodile preserve, go on our usual walkabout town, and eat “the best fish tacos in the universe.” Jeanette aboard S/V Shazam organized it by hiring a panga driver to pick-up and deliver two boat-loads of cruisers to the south end of the bay, but Rand and I missed the net the morning she took roll, so we just took FL down, dropped the hook, and braved the beach landing. No problemo. It was a super fun day that started out with Jody forgetting her flip-flops on FL, so she had to wander around barefooted to find some replacements. It was the first time she attempted to haggle over the price of something (normally, she asks how much and pays what they ask), not recognizing that, standing there barefooted, she didn’t have much bargaining power. She was unsuccessful at the market, so she bought a pair at the little grocery store at full price. But the croc preserve was awesome!

We enjoyed a day sail on FL to the western part of the bay to an area referred to as the Aquarium because of the spectacular snorkeling. While it was quite lovely, the wind and swell were up a bit that day, so the visibility was a bit limited. Nevertheless, we enjoyed the day with Olivia, who was visiting her parents, Robert (the mayor) and Virginia aboard S/V Harmony, Tom (Barb opted to lounge and read) from S/V Ellie, and Jenn and Jas.

Finally, we took a dinghy parade up the estuary to check out the mangroves and look for birds and crocs. It was a beautiful day if a bit quiet from the wildlife perspective, but there was a nice breeze and we had great company (same crew as above, plus Barb). At the end of the estuary, you can land the dinghy and walk across the road to the beach at the Aquarium and have some noms at the palapa there. The crew we were with opted to go ashore, but Jody was still recovering, so we chose to head back to da boat. Another lovely day and week in Tenacatita – except for the Mexican flu part. Onward and upward 😉 !


  1. Tom & Barb

    You guys are about the most awsomest cruisers
    on this blue planet. Keep it up. Oh yeah, PS and all of that stuff, we love hanging out with u guys! Tom and Barb

    1. Jody Fraser

      No, YOU’re the awesomest! Now git yer butts back down here!

Comments are closed.