Cruising the West Coast — Last Stop, Ensenada

Today I present the last stop on our most recent West Coast cruise.  We’ve seen San Francisco, the Golden Gate, Alcatraz, Muir Woods, Sausalito, Santa Barbara, Santa Catalina Island, the USS Midway in San Diego, and today we’ll close with the last stop before heading back to home — Ensenada, Mexico.  Because of the Merchant Marine Act of 1920 (aka, The Jones Act), all foreign-operated cruise lines (which except for NCL America, which operates a cruise ship in Hawaii, is all of them) must put into their itinerary at least one port of call outside U.S. waters.  For this trip, that port was Ensenada.

Neither Ursula nor I had ever been to Ensenada prior to this trip aboard Princess Cruises‘ recently refurbished Sapphire Princess.  I must say that I was pleasantly surprised, as Ensenada is a very charming example of a typical Mexican tourist area — across between the hustle and bustle of a border town (think: Juarez or Tijuana) and the flashy retail section of a resort town (such as Mazatlán or Cancún).  But with that charm come the ever-present, high-pressure hawkers standing outside their stores desperately coaxing you inside, or the never-take-no-for-an-answer beggers and street tykes hawking Chiclets in an interminable gauntlet lining the sidewalks.

On the upside are the street food vendors.  You’ll see in today’s pictures just such an example, where Ursula and I partook of some fish tacos and orange Fanta.  Also fun are the brightly colored buildings that range from obnoxious Barbie pink to lemon chiffon and even lime sherbet chartreuse.

And here are the photographic results:


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