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Considering moving to Lake Chapala with kids


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No one has mentioned that Ajijic's close proximity to Guad is a big bonus for those with kids. There's of course the commercial aspects of Guad where you can find just about anything you desire. Being a State capital and Mexico's second largest city offers many cultural activities: music, theater, art etc. Plus, the close proximity to GDL makes it easy to fly in and out of here to the States, Mexican cities and to central America. The old bored 60 somethings on this board have not raised kids here and dont know what their talking about. Ajijic has plenty to keep your kids engaged in Mexico and they will really benefit by becoming bi-lingual.

Edited by Paco Loco
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5 hours ago, Paco Loco said:

No one has mentioned that Ajijic's close proximity to Guad is a big bonus for those with kids. There's of course the commercial aspects of Guad where you can find just about anything you desire. Being a State capital and Mexico's second largest city offers many cultural activities: music, theater, art etc. Plus, the close proximity to GDL makes it easy to fly in and out of here to the States, Mexican cities and to central America. The old bored 60 somethings on this board have not raised kids here and dont know what their talking about. Ajijic has plenty to keep your kids engaged in Mexico and they will really benefit by becoming bi-lingual.

I applaud this because I've know his kids since little and who have now moved on to University.   These are well rounded kids who speak highly of the Mexican experience.   Knowing a couple of other couples whose kids share this experience and are now themselves parents also relay their cultural benefits of living here and proximity to Guadalajara.  

Paco, thank you for speaking with experience!

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On 2/26/2017 at 10:33 AM, pappysmarket said:

If anyone is still in contact with"Beverly Dos" who used to work at Laguna RE she would be a fountain of information for the OP. Her husband Ronnie was a drummer. Going back a few years but someone may still be in contact with her.

Edit. Husband was Ron, daughter was Ronnie.

Lagune Realty is no more, and Beverly Dos and her family are long since gone, under negative circumstances, I'm sorry to say.  Bev Dos did tell me of her daughter's very positive experience in school here.  She was just graduating prepa when I met them, and the girl was able to concurrently study for and receive something equivalent to an AA degree in the USA in Business Administration - as she graduated from high school.  

To the OP - if you are fluent in Spanish and your kids know it, they will do well here.  There is a huge cultural difference in the way kids are raised in Mexico - with much stronger and deeper family ties than in the USA or other northern locations, and so they turn out well, very polite and cheerful and responsible.  Kids often "apprentice" under their parents here so there is not that typical alienation so common up north.  Plus, the strong traditions here provide lots of fun for kids of all ages, as we have just seen with Carnaval.  Overall, the kids here are far happier than up north; I've heard of Mexican-American kids visiting the grandparents here in the summers, and they don't want to go back!  

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35 minutes ago, ezpz said:

Lagune Realty is no more, and Beverly Dos and her family are long since gone, under negative circumstances, I'm sorry to say.  Bev Dos did tell me of her daughter's very positive experience in school here.  She was just graduating prepa when I met them, and the girl was able to concurrently study for and receive something equivalent to an AA degree in the USA in Business Administration - as she graduated from high school.  

To the OP - if you are fluent in Spanish and your kids know it, they will do well here.  There is a huge cultural difference in the way kids are raised in Mexico - with much stronger and deeper family ties than in the USA or other northern locations, and so they turn out well, very polite and cheerful and responsible.  Kids often "apprentice" under their parents here so there is not that typical alienation so common up north.  Plus, the strong traditions here provide lots of fun for kids of all ages, as we have just seen with Carnaval.  Overall, the kids here are far happier than up north; I've heard of Mexican-American kids visiting the grandparents here in the summers, and they don't want to go back!  

Yes we knew both Beverlys well and understand the circumstances Dos left under. It was a total cultural shock involving her daughter and nuff said. I was hoping someone was still in contact with her so the OP could talk to her. I guess no one is and will butt out.

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A hearty ¡Muchísimas Gracias! to all of you who have replied.  I am still researching, researching, researching!  I believe the Lake Chapala area may be good fit for us to begin and hopefully allow us the opportunities to explore other areas.   I am hoping to make a trip down either solo or with my kids to scout and explore! Thank you all again for you input, wisdom, opinions and suggestions!  I do believe I have taken away something valuable from each and every post :-)

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On 3/1/2017 at 11:41 AM, Paco Loco said:

No one has mentioned that Ajijic's close proximity to Guad is a big bonus for those with kids. There's of course the commercial aspects of Guad where you can find just about anything you desire. Being a State capital and Mexico's second largest city offers many cultural activities: music, theater, art etc. Plus, the close proximity to GDL makes it easy to fly in and out of here to the States, Mexican cities and to central America. The old bored 60 somethings on this board have not raised kids here and dont know what their talking about. Ajijic has plenty to keep your kids engaged in Mexico and they will really benefit by becoming bi-lingual.

Paco, Thanks for this perspective.  It definitely resonates with me.  I am imagining weekend trips to Guadalajara for an overnight or two are doable?  I have lived in Manhattan and Madrid for extended periods of time, so I definitely appreciate all the cultural that a more urban area allows, but don't necessarily want to live there full-time.  Again, I'm pretty adaptable  (something I learned at an early age, since we lived mostly abroad during my formative years) and would like to think I've raised my kids to be as well. 

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Guadalajara airport is 30 minutes from Chapala, while Guadalajara centro is 60 minutes by car.  You can also take a Chapala Bus from either Chapala or Ajijic direct to Guadalajara‘s old bus station, which is about a mile from centro; walkable or by taxi.

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5 hours ago, HookEmHorns said:

"Doable" ? Just curious why you think they might not be "doable"?

I'm not sure whether or not I am bringing/planning on buying a vehicle, so I referring to whether or not there is transportation that would facilitate a weekend trip to Guadalajara.

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5 minutes ago, HookEmHorns said:

Busses run between almost all towns and cities in Mexico, as well as Taxi service. I see no problem for you.

Awesome.  I figured as much, but didn't assume.  I'm also exploring the possibilities that living in Guadalajara might afford us.  Bottom line, I realize I need to come down and see for myself what might be the best fit for us.  That said, y'all in the Chapala area make the transition seem as though it would be pretty seamless. :-)

 

 

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I think you will find this area to be very beautiful, with a wonderful climate.  The area is very small, everything is sqeezed on a very narrow strip of land between the lake and the mountains.  Some of the towns are more Mexican feeling than others, but each town will have a different vibe and different things to experience.  Guadalajara is a wonderful city with a lot to offer, it is huge and can be overwhelming.  But for anybody who has traveled around Mexico, if you compare Guadalajara to Mexico's other great cities, more than likely, you will find much more beautiful and more culturally inspiring cities.  Although, the Tapatios may think Guadalajara is one of the  prettiest cities in Mexico, I beg to differ.  Queretaro, Morelia, Puebla, and Cuernavaca (the other larger cities located in the central heart of Mexico) are much more attractive and nicer in my opinion with a lot more interesting cultural and historical destinations close by.

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If you  like Guadalajara and prefer a centro historico ambience, but find Guadalajara's centro too intense, check out the centros of Tlaquepaque (which is very nice, pedestrian friendly and beautiful) or that of Zapopan, both are nice and full of charm and are considered part of the Zona Metropolitana de Guadalajara.

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And, of course, the city mentioned in many books and articles as the most beautiful in all of Mexico, Guanajuato, with all its charm and historical significance. So, you have a LOT to select from, as you do in most countries. Just depends on what you like. No one can make that decision for you. Of course, the more Spanish you know, the more doors will open for you. But, that is also true in any country about their language. Suerte.

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On 27/02/2017 at 1:55 PM, barcelonaman said:

i am bored to tears here and im 62 !

Us too, we''re both 66.  My partner has lived here for 16 years, me 3.  So we've sold up and are getting out of town and going to Merida which is a small, lively city 30 minutes from the beach.  The expat community is diverse in terms of nationalities and ages.  Many young families there.   And, yes, we know what the weather is like in Merida.  We have both lived in the tropics before and love it!

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8 minutes ago, SmartTraveller said:

Us too, we''re both 66.  My partner has lived here for 16 years, me 3.  So we've sold up and are getting out of town and going to Merida which is a small, lively city 30 minutes from the beach.  The expat community is diverse in terms of nationalities and ages.  Many young families there.   And, yes, we know what the weather is like in Merida.  We have both lived in the tropics before and love it!

Merida has a fine skating rink where you can even play hockey to alleviate any tendency towards boredom there.

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3 minutes ago, ned small said:

Merida has a fine skating rink where you can even play hockey to alleviate any tendency towards boredom there.

LOL, Ned.  I think I AM too old for skating...I was never good at it - either ice or roller skating.  The last time I roller skated, I ended up in a rose bush.  But there is plenty to do in Merida - for diverse interests so thanks,  but I'll leave the skating to the youngsters...

 

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1 hour ago, SmartTraveller said:

Us too, we''re both 66.  My partner has lived here for 16 years, me 3.  So we've sold up and are getting out of town and going to Merida which is a small, lively city 30 minutes from the beach.  The expat community is diverse in terms of nationalities and ages.  Many young families there.   And, yes, we know what the weather is like in Merida.  We have both lived in the tropics before and love it!

i must look at that option.!

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