The morning ride from Monte Pio out to Angel Cabrada was similar to the ride in, tight curves, lush tropical green mountain landscape, and plenty of topes.
Topes is the mexican term for each of the multitude of speed bumps placed across any populated section of road. They must be quite severe for cars and trucks, because drivers slow to a virtual stop to pass over them, creating long lines of traffic behind. Our bikes barely notice the bumps, and if we stand on the pegs, we can ride across them at 60kmh. At first a nuisance, the topes quickly became our allies in passing buses, trucks, and other vehicles – as they’d slow we would sail past them unhindered – especially useful given that most of the trucks are double length trailers. We rode through Boca del Rio and Veracruz around lunchtime with little trouble. They are beautiful and modern cities with a mix of new and colonial buildings, and a long beach waterfront.Lunch was in a roadside restaurant outside of Los Palmas. I had a delicious Pulpos (octopus) Veracruz. The sauce was tomato based with onions and tarragon, and a delicious chile picante on the side.
We stopped for the night in Nautla, at the Hotel Istirincha. The hotel has a number of crocodiles on the grounds, as well as Toucans. We’re heading to see the ruins of El Tajin in the morning.