Take Care – Short Update on La Costa Michoacana.

Exactly one year ago, I wrote a post on the Michoacán coast. In this post, I extolled the wild beauty of the coast, its pristine beaches and lack of conventional tourist development. The coast has always had a reputation for danger – and it is still advisable not to travel at night – as there is a lot of narcotraficante activity in the area but generally it is believed to have got much safer in recent years.

In May last year, I wrote another post on the Coast based on the Mexican film ‘Amar a Morir’ which had just been released and which was set on the coast near La Ticla at the 180km mark.

Last summer a conflict surfaced over land between the indigenous communities of Santa María de Ostula, Coire and Pómaro and the townspeople of La Placita, around the 185 km mark on the main coastal highway. The situation rapidly became violent, tense and complicated. I wrote about this situation in my blog, but as my blog then became implicated in the conflict, I decided to withdraw the blog post, and the many comments it had generated, that related to the conflict.

One of the actions the indigenous people had taken was to block the main coast road at two strategic points heading south from La Placita. In this period of a few weeks whilst the road was blocked, two women – not Mexicans – were travelling north along the coast and suddenly, without warning, came across one of these road-blocks with armed men guarding it. Believing they were going to be robbed, they turned around and tried to escape back the way they had come from. Shots were fired at the car, aimed at the petrol tank as can be seen in the two photos, and the car was chased and eventually stopped. Fortunately no-one was seriously hurt but the experience was obviously very frightening for the two women

I am writing this now to warn people that the situation in this part of the coast has become tense again. It seems two regidores (elected officials) from the indigenous communities based in the Municipality of Aquila were kidnapped last week, and I was told that it was possible the coast road could be blocked again. I was due to attend an event on the coast last Saturday but because of the difficulties the event was postponed.

Whilst I don’t like to feed the idea that Mexico is a difficult, dangerous, violent place, it is best not to travel in this area whilst this situation persists and if you are have to travel along the coast take extreme care.

When I have more information, I will update this further.

5 comments so far

  1. […] here to see the original: Short Update on La Costa Michoacana « livingandworkinginmexico Share and […]

  2. Abigail E. Blethen on

    I belong to a spiritual organization called Subud in 2010 we held our World Congressin New Zealand – these gatherings occur every 4 years and the next site is in Mexico. I’m not sure where exactly but I will consult our Subud USA web site with that information. Members from, literally all over the world will be attending, including me,if all goes well financially. Should we be concerned about terrorists, fall out from the drug trade.I plan to fly from Sea-Tac directly there. . Presently I live in Seattle but by 2014 I will have moved to Anacortes, WA to go back to WWU in Bellingham for my MA in Anthropology. I was looking forward to meeting curanderos,and ordinary mexicans. Between then and now I will be learning Spanish – presumably 2 years of Latin in highschool will hel! and meeting members of Subud Mexico, so I’m concerned.
    I lived for many year in England, in London & Shrophire – ttfn, AE Blethen . .

  3. paulrobertsmexico on

    Most of Mexico is fine and safer then a lot of the USA. As long as you are not holding your congress in Ciudad Juarez or another one of the US border cities (very unlikely, I’m sure!) you should be fine. At the moment there are no terrorists in Mexico, as the word is usually understood though every now and then one of the drug cartels does something that gets described as an act of terrorism. I hope you get the chance to meet some curanderos and ordinary Mexicans when you are here. In general the people are very warm and friendly.

  4. […] In addition, if you like large beach resorts, Manzanillo is about two hours away. But better still in my view, the lovely small resort of Melaque-Barra de Navidad is less than three hours away, as are the beautiful unspoilt beaches of the Michoacán coast. But be careful if you are thinking of visiting the Michoacán coast as my last post warned. […]

  5. ana lagunas on

    Just like every country all over the world mexico has places that are more dangerous then others. Just be careful and know where you are and who you are with.

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