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Playa el Cuco

Written on: Tuesday September 8th, 2009

A journal entry from: Cycle Mexico - Panama

August 31st - September 5th

After being in chaotic towns with lots of traffic, noise and dirt for quite some time we decided that we wanted to head to the beach. We checked the internet and decided on Playa Las Tunas. Unfortunately when we got there (after hitching a lift part of the way) the hotel we wanted to stay in was shut, the rest were a joke. For example one hotel wanted to charge $45 for something that made the other rooms that we had stayed in look like the Hilton. There was a dodgy feeling to the whole place and most of the buildings around were shacks. We had to get out of there.

We managed to negotiate a lift to another beach 40km away that was our second choice. The guy that we got a lift with was a drunk and had been in jail in the US. Fortunately he wasn´t driving! We couldn´t find the hotel we wanted but luckily stumbled across an American run surf hotel that looked great. It even had two tourists staying in it! They were the first ones we had seen so far in El Salvador.

It was our first view of the Pacific ocean on this trip. It looked beautiful but different to the Carribean Coast. It seemed more wild, remote, with darker sand and the ocean was rougher and less turqoise blue than the Carribean. The beach was almost deserted with only a few fishermen about.

The room was really nice and the hotel was on the beach. It was the nicest building and location that we had seen in El Salvador. We spent some days doing nothing but reading in hammocks and swimming in the pool and sea. It was just what we wanted. We shared our experiences in El Salvador with the two British sisters who were also staying there. They were a bit surprised about what we told them as they had had quite different experiences in the moutains up north. However they told us that a hotel owner there, that they had become friends with, had big difficulties finding good staff as there is such a brain drain to the US from El Salvador. Most people with any ambition and skills head to the US for a better standard of living. It wasn´t the first time that we had heard about this. It seems sad that this is the case, and it is not helping the country.

We also got to know Lisette, the owner of the hotel, who was an American-Cuban with family connections to El Salvador. 10% of the money from the hotel goes to help local children with education, food and health care. We thought that she was doing an admirable job.

After the two English girls left, two Californian surfers called Gary and Richard arrived. We spent some interesting evenings chatting to them, learning a bit about surfing and American politics from a Californian perspective, quite similar to ours and different to much of the US.

Km cycled = 33

Total km = 750.7


From Gary Goerss/ Cal Surfer on Sep 11th, 2009

Had a great time with you in El Cuco ...so glad we could solve the worlds problems over a few beers and shots...We're home now but plan to return in the spring...ride on

From Andy & Yasmin on Sep 14th, 2009

Cheers Gary, Great that you had a look at our blog! Hope that the surf improved for Richard and you, and you managed to catch some waves!