The Alternative World of the Punta de Zicatela

By Madeleine Maraboli. Photos: Ernesto J. Torres

Madeleine Maraboli
Madeleine Maraboli

Madeleine Maraboli was on her way to Palenque in Chiapas, when she and her boyfriend arrived in La Punta in July. Now they have put future travels on hold. They had left Mexico City in mid-June for a drive down the Pacific coast looking for good places for surfing and just getting away from everything. They started in San Pancho (San Francisco,) Nayarit and then on to La Tica, Michoacán. They spent four days in Playa Michigan in Guerrero before coming to Puerto.

The 24-year-old native of Cancún has been around. After leaving the Universidad Iberoamericana, where she studied communications, she traveled to Thailand and Myanmar. She was also an exchange student in Japan. She likes to point out that her mother is from Chihuahua and her father from Chile, while her Mexican boyfriend’s mother is a native of Brazil and his father is Taiwanese.

BETWEEN THE MYSTICISM, the waves and the flow of people, the Punta keeps on moving along even in the time of the covid pandemic. Everyday there are events, the travelers, now transformed into locals, run into each other on the street and ask, “Where is today’s party?” How is it that while the world is on “stand-by” that social activities in the Punta continue as if nothing has changed?

Lorenzo, who is from England, was an exchange student at UNAM, when classes ended because of the pandemic. He has started taking yoga classes in the Punta.
Katia, a native of Mexico City, had been travelling through Mexico for the last three years. Puerto Escondido was her first stop on a planned trip to Costa Rica, which has now been put on hold. She sells her kombucha and ginger beer.

In fact, a new community has begun to form – the “stuck”, foreigners, who can’t easily return to their home countries, or dreamers from Mexico City, tired of staying home, who come here in search of a new social life and a connection with nature.

On October 12, the municipio of Colotepec closed all its beaches includingthe Punta, Zicatela and the Bahia Principal. It also prohibited the sale of all alcoholic beverages and cracked down on parties. These measures were scheduled to end on Nov 1.


Many travelers left for beach towns like Mazunte and Zipolite or went to San José del Pacífico in the mountains. One hostel went from full occupancy (35 guests)in August and September to only nine guests in October.

Word was that the parties had moved to Bacocho on the other side of town.

San Pedro Mixtepec’s beaches (Puerto Angelito, Carrizalillo, y Bacocho) remained open but on October 16 it started fining people 150 pesos for not wearing a mask in public places, including the streets.

Food Court El Arbol, La Punta en septiembre.
Food Court El Arbol, La Punta en septiembre.

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