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safety in Los Cabos or Puerto Vallarta

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Nov 18th, 2010, 01:46 PM
  #1
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safety in Los Cabos or Puerto Vallarta

An acquaintance, a well-traveled Israeli businessman temporarily living in the US, warned us that Mexico is NO place to go for a family vacation at the current time (we're thinking first week of January). Too much instability, dangerous things erupting. We were thinking of Los Cabos or PV. We'd be interested in what others think: any differences in safety? and other advantages with one place or another? Group includes parents (us) and four young-twenty somethings.
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Nov 18th, 2010, 02:00 PM
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I have been to both places (Vallarta 19 times, Cabo San Lucas for the 1st time last year). I think there are both safe for tourists doing normal tourist things. There have never been reports either place of violence or influence of the drug cartels which are causing problems (and which people mistakenly think are everywhere) in either of these two places.

That said, they are completely different. Cabo is a tiny town at the tip of a desert peninsula. It is rough and rugged there. You can't swim in the ocean most places (a few beaches are the exception) as it is too dangerous. People enjoy Cabo for outdoor activities, deep sea fishing, etc. It has *excellent* restaurants. It's more "americanized".

Puerto Vallarta is a large city (250,000+ pop) and a working city besides the tourist infrastructure and ammenities. It feels "more Mexican" there. It is tropical and sits on the Bay of Banderas surrounded by jungley mountains. The city has loads of great shopping, art galleries, entertainment, restaurants, bars, some theater, home tours, etc. It also offers the sporty stuff like ziplines, horseback riding, parasailing, snorkeling, cruises.

Either would be a great place for your family vacation imo.
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Nov 18th, 2010, 03:32 PM
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I cannot speak about Puerto Vallarta with recent information but suggest that your friend is woefully misinformed, at best, about Los Cabos. The greatest danger there is being snagged by a timeshare salesman at the airport (where you must exit through the "shark pool") or while picking up your rental car.

Cabo San Lucas is, IMHO, a better place for families than San Jose del Cabo. It is a little more developed, offers dinner a bit earlier outside of the resorts, and has a well developed waterfront with a dolphin encounter, America's Cup sailboats you can go out on, and has many whale watching tours available. OTOH, I depending on when in January you are there, I would go to the Plaza in San Jose for the religious processions.

As recently as a few months ago, we had no problem parking the car near the plaza and then walking along the streets to enjoy Gallery Night (Thursday) in San Jose. To be sure, the past is no guarantee of the future, as the stock brokers will tell you, but I have been aware of any significant problem in Los Cabos over the last 25 years.
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Nov 18th, 2010, 03:34 PM
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Jeff I think you mean "I have NEVER been aware..." right?
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Nov 18th, 2010, 03:47 PM
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In 25 years of Mexican travel I have never been a victim of a crime. Not only that but I have never seen a violent act traveling alone or with my spouse by car, bus & shanks-mare. I have been in Cities such as Toluca, L. Cardenas, Uruapan & others without seeing another gringo. I have never felt in danger. I have 3 rules
1. I am polite to all
2. I never flash money
3. I stay out of areas I do NOT belong.
As a non drinker I would add one more for my drinking friends
If you drink NEVER get drunk & wander the streets of ANY city.
That's it.
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Nov 19th, 2010, 07:50 AM
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I wonder if your "well-traveled Israeli businessman " has actually ever been here, or is just listening to the biased media reports ?
Many of the comments I've heard published on-line, which say that Mexico is a very dangerous place, come from people who have never left their home country.
It's called Xenophobia.
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Nov 19th, 2010, 01:54 PM
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Go to Cabo or PV and have a great time. I wish we were there right now.
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Nov 20th, 2010, 10:27 PM
  #8
 
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My family has been to PV several times and have never felt unsafe. We travel to and from the town by public bus, walk the malecon in the early mornings and evenings, and walk the beaches. We have never felt threatened or seen any sign of danger. We absolutely love it there! Go and have a great time.
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Nov 30th, 2010, 07:30 PM
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3 years ago this week in my home town, 9 people were gunned down in a suburban shopping mall. A bank was robbed recently 1 mile from my house. A pizza delivery boy was recently stabbed to death. Our city's murder rate is skyrocketing. 2 weeks ago, a 17 year-old randomly killed convenience store clerks in small towns in Iowa. I hope your friend never has to come to the Midwest.
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Dec 1st, 2010, 05:59 AM
  #10
 
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The dangers in Mexico are around the borders with the U.S. Don't drive across the border. So many people are questioning the safety of the entire country of Mexico and you have to ask: If there was a killing in Boston, would it stop me from going to Atlanta? For that matter, would it stop you from going to safer areas of Boston, exercising normal caution? This question is going around alot on these online forums and everyone who has been to the tourist towns in Mexico recently unanimously say that it is SAFE! Have a good time!
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Dec 2nd, 2010, 12:20 PM
  #11
 
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This is the third post I've read in less than 10 minutes about safety in Mexico. I've taken my daughter to PV and to Cabo, beginning when she was 7 (she's 16 now). The only times I felt unsafe was swimming in the ocean when the water suddenly got rough. PV and Cabo are fine if you exercise common sense.
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Dec 2nd, 2010, 01:40 PM
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tenthumbs~ It's (unfortunately) an extremely popular question these days. You should see how many over on Trip Advisor! (Fortunately) the answer for all the major resort destinations is still, there are no worries and have been no reported problems (worse than getting your credit card number hacked and used in Texas).
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Dec 4th, 2010, 09:06 PM
  #13
 
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I cannot count the number of times I have traveled to Mexico-with my husband & young daughter. I have also traveled to PV with a girlfriend about 4 times-we will be there in Jan for 2 weeks at the Krystal. NEVER felted compromised. Had a ball-enjoyed good food & WARM weather. Enjoy. When your number is up it doesn';t matter where you are-Enjoy LIFE
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Dec 5th, 2010, 05:44 AM
  #14
 
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I have been to both Cabo and PV and enjoyed and felt very safe at the time. That being said I would not even consider taking my family there with all that is currently going on. Just because they have a lot of deals doesn't mean it's safe, watch the news, this is not an isolated incident. They are not talking about pick pockets or being mugged, they are targeting americans, killing them execution style to make a point.
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Dec 5th, 2010, 08:32 AM
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You're wrong, kellysfamily. Nothing like that has happened in either Cabo or PV or to tourists. I have not read a single news story of "targeting americans, killing them execution style to make a point".

Do you have a specific incident you can give us, as even one example of that?
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Dec 5th, 2010, 08:35 AM
  #16
 
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"they are targeting americans, killing them execution style to make a point."
That's unadulterated rubbish !
Have you been watching Faux News again ?
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Dec 5th, 2010, 08:49 AM
  #17
 
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Generally I love internet travel forums, but there's one huge problem with them... Anyone can post anything. Doesn't have to be true!! And posts like above from kellysfamily can make people afraid for no reason and hurt tourism. No one is executing tourists. That's just crazy.
suze is offline  
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Dec 5th, 2010, 04:42 PM
  #18
 
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I see everyone is passionate about the subject, don't want to ruffle anyones feathers but there was an incident in PV in the last few months. Also several reports on large news networks ABC etc. I am not an extremist and I cannot wait to return to Mexico in the future when their government steps in and does something about the safety. Yes anyone can post but also many people that do post are in the travel industry and trying to push their product/country/tourism etc. I don't think it is unreasonable for the poster to do some actual research on safety boards instead of a travel recommendation site.
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Dec 6th, 2010, 07:47 AM
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Exactly WHAT "incident" in PV in the last few months? Can you please state exactly what you believe happened. Or better yet link a news article.

Because I follow several forums specific to Vallarta on a daily basis, with people who live there posting and have not heard/read anything negative.

And no, I am not in the travel industry of trying to push anything. Except the truth.
suze is offline  
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Dec 6th, 2010, 08:01 AM
  #20
 
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And I live here and object strongly to ridiculous posts like yours from someone who obviously doesn't live here.
Have you ever been here ?
Let's have the information on this 'incident' and where did you get the information ? ABC ? You believe every thing you see on TV ?
I rest my case !
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