The Storm Has Passed Troncones

Hurricane Patricia came and went without damage to Troncones.  

Escape Winter Chill in Sunny Troncones

Escape Winter Chill in Sunny Troncones

There aren't many places like Troncones on the Pacific coast of Mexico.

Located about a 40 minute drive north of the Zihuatanejo-Ixtapa airport, Troncones is expanding from a small fishing village into a small community of B&B's and now includes a new yoga retreat center built around cozy gardens.
Troncones itself boasts a beach about two miles long that offers swimming, surfing or, safer yet, tide-pooling along the shore dotted with rocks.
I've watched Troncones grow from a handful of accommodations in the year 2000 to more than 32 today. Each new building seems to be a bit more elegant than the one built before.
One of the earliest is Casa Ki, with three bungalows for rent and a house that sleeps six. The garden compound gets lusher with every summer rainy season.
At the Hotel Eden the restaurant Cocina del Sol is still the place to be for Sunday brunch. The open-air restaurant continues to offer free-range chicken, tasty ribs and fresh seafood.
And the Casa Manzanillo, a three-minute walk from the Hotel Eden, provides air-conditioned rooms and the best view of Troncones from its infinity swimming pool. I stayed there on my last visit in February and liked the friendliness of the place. Farrar Rose is the hands-on manager who provides for his guests' many needs.
Today the little hamlet of Troncones long nestled in the shadow of Ixtapa is finally earning a spot on the tourist map. But make no mistake, Troncones is a different kind of mango. There are no high-rise hotels here, no oversized swimming pools and no discos. So what's the big attraction? Well, just a long beach with a cove at the far end that offers warm water waves, one section with rocks and tide pools that kids and adults may love to explore together and more birds than your run-of-the-mill beach bum can identify. Simply said, there is little here that hampers serenity.
Teri Terry, Julianne Hogue and Patti Dooley, three friends from Central California visited Troncones and were pleasantly surprised. They had reservations to stay three days in Troncones and then moved to an expensive Zihuatanejo beachfront hotel. After the trip, Terry told me she wished that they had stayed in tiny Troncones.
The yoga retreat, The Present Moment, is the new kid turning three-years-old last November.
One guest said he found it to be the closest thing to heaven on earth.
"Imagine doing yoga each day, all day, on a bluff overlooking the sea."
The Burro Borracho or drunken donkey is the granddaddy of the beachfront restaurants in Troncones. The Burro is a simple thatched roofed restaurant where a half-dozen early morning risers, both locals and tourists sip coffee, eat breakfast, trade local news like who happens to be back in town and then map out another day of perpetual siesta — some of it spent in the shade and some spent tanning under the heat of the Mexican sun.
Troncones is laid-back but not without amenities. There are screens to keep insects out of the rooms, fans to keep cool and some inns have swimming pools and air conditioning. Bathrooms are clean and colorfully decorated with local Mexican hand-crafted tiles. Hammocks adorn most porches.
Dewey McMillan, a Seattle native and ex-Alaska fisherman, founded the beach front Burro Borracho restaurant in 1992. At that time he had to hustle to keep it open.

He would drive into Ixtapa and bring guests back with him for the afternoon. He advertised complete fish and lobster lunches, unlimited beer and return transportation for $10.
McMillan was such a good salesman that people came for the afternoon got the Troncones bug and then returned to buy land. McMillan sold that too.
The same thing happened to Ed and Ellen Weston of Santa Cruz, Calif., present-day owners of Casa Ki, a complex of several well-appointed bungalows and a house all set under a grove of coconut trees just steps from the Pacific Ocean.
They came out with McMillan, fell in love with the town and one month later returned to Mexico to begin building in a dream setting. In the years they have operated Casa Ki, the Westons say they have had more than two dozen guests who returned to build homes or B&Bs along the beach.
To view some of the B&Bs in town just type the words Troncones, Mexico in your computer Web browser.
Part of the attraction of Troncones is the tranquillo feeling between the village population and the newcomers. And that is due to the people who have located there. McMillan set the standard early on. Each year he throws a Christmas Party for the Mexican residents of the town, which number about 400. He provides 30 pinatas for the community's children. Other members of this small American and Canadian community have built a library for local children in town.
Longtime Santa Cruz resident Glen Novey owns the Smiling dolphin. Located about a half-mile north of Casa Ki, The Smiling Dolphin was the first B&B with a swimming pool. Up until a few years ago Novey was the self-described King of the Road but the road keeps expanding in Troncones. Novey is well known for the personal attention he shows his guests going so far as organizing side trips in the area and volunteering as the chauffeur and guide if they so desire.
Troncones might not be for everybody. The beachfront road, though improved, can still be dusty. Few places offer TV. There's a lack of night life though the Casa Manzanillo has live music on Thursdays and Sundays.
But there are other activities here besides reading, swimming and the worship of the sun. The area is renown for surfing and several places offer lessons. There is horseback riding and a few years ago entrepreneurs opened a zip line in the forested mountains above Troncones.
With a car Troncones. can be seen in an afternoon on a journey from Zihuatanejo or Ixtapa. But an overnight stay affords the time for an early morning or late afternoon walk along the coast. The overnight rates, which range from $80 to $150 a night, might not be any higher than a high-rise glass enclosed hotel in Ixtapa. And look at what you get — peace and tranquility, which some people call priceless.
To Go: Many airlines now fly directly to (ZIH) Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo
International Airport. Troncones is just a short bus trip or car rental ride away.
Several of the Inns and B&B's will arrange taxi pick-up for guests.
Stuart Wasserman is a freelance travel writer based in Portland, Ore. To read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at