The Lonely Planet
Guide Book calls the city of Veracruz "one of the most festive Mexican
cities, with a hedonistic, tropical port atmosphere, a zocalo that becomes
a party every evening and one of the biggest Carnivals between Rio de
Janeiro and New Orleans." This will be our base camp, and we will be staying
just a few steps away from the lively zocalo (central square).
Veracruz is a place to have
great fun, and Mexicans have known this for centuries. Americans still
don't know it and this city is as far as can be from being an American
tourist trap. It is a textured, gritty, authentic, steamy, spicy port
where music and seafood are the center of life. Morning and evening the
voice of the jarocho harp and jarana guitar float through the Veracruz
air as minstrels wander the streets playing their tunes. And every evening
there is music: mariachis, jarocho quartets, marimbas and harpists playing
in the zocalo. A seat in one of the park side cafes puts you front row
for an endless show.
Or you can hit the sea front
clubs. You pick your music -there are at least three clubs that just play
salsa, there is rock, rave, ranchera…whatever it takes to get your legs
Veracruz is also proud of
its seawater aquarium with its huge circular tank full of sharks, rays
and turtles. There is also the old Spanish fort begun in the 1530's and
key to fending off Caribbean pirates like Capt'n Morgan. Beneath the stone
fortress are the notorious dungeon cells called Purgatory, Heaven and
Hell. You'll be glad to know they aren't used anymore.
-This site has info about Veracruz
and surroundings as well as Veracruz's February Carnava l- 3rd largest
after Rio and New Orleans
- This site has articles about
Veracruz and information about the surrounding area.
well-done photo essay of Veracruz by Edward