For spring break, a small group of us decided to venture out and explore another state of Mexico, Veracruz. We traveled to Veracruz city and stayed in a hostel that was directly across from the water. The views were amazing. I had never been to the gulf before and the water was incredibly warm. We visited the city center (which included a nighttime double-decker bus ride/tour through the city), the Aquarium, a fort called San Juan de Ulúa (purposes of included, prison and fending-off pirates), went on a boat tour, and relaxed for five wonderful days. The Veracruz Aquarium is hailed to be best aquarium in Latin American and I’ll admit it was pretty impressive. Apparently the port of Veracruz is surrounded by over 20 different coral reef components, which make up the Veracruz Coral Reef System National Park started in the 1990s. There were also manatees at the aquarium, which are one of my favorite animals. Two of the girls decided to take advantage of a pretty neat offer the place has, too, and for not too too much money they were able to feed the sharks in the giant shark tank. They suited up, and with a professional, of course, got in a shark cage and went out to the middle of the tank to feed the sharks. They had an absolute blast.
There were six of us who went, 5 from the group, and then one of our awesome Oaxacan friends. This was his first time traveling to Veracruz, as well. We taught him how to dip French fries in ketchup and he taught us various profanities in Spanish, so you know, a solid amount of cultural exchange was going on. It really was great having him with us, though, and we all had fabulous time learning about the history of Veracruz (the spot we were staying was where the French first invaded Mexico) and enjoying another part of the country we’ve been calling home for the past couple of months.