Attractions around Huatulco concentrate on the nine bays and their watersports. The number of ecotours and interesting side trips into the surrounding mountains is growing. Though it isn't a traditional Mexican town, the community of Crucecita is worth visiting. Just off the central plaza is the Iglesia de Guadalupe, with a large mural of Mexico's patron saint gracing the entire ceiling of the chapel. The image of the Virgin is set against a deep blue night sky and includes 52 stars -- a modern interpretation of Juan Diego's cloak.

You can dine in Crucecita for a fraction of the price of eating in Tangolunda Bay, with the added benefit of some local color. Considering that shopping in Huatulco is generally poor, you'll find the best choices here, in the shops around the central plaza. They tend to stay open late, and offer a good selection of regional goods and typical tourist take-homes, including artesanĂ­a, silver jewelry, Cuban cigars, and tequila. A small free trolley train takes visitors on a short tour of the town.

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