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Carnival Cruise Ports of Call, Manzanillo, Acapulco, Zihuatanejo, Las Hadas Resort

The Carnival Cruise Lines ship the Spirit on a Cheap Mexican Riviera Cruise to Acapulco - Our review and photos

The itinerary was changed on this trip and so this is not the typical order of the ports on a Carnival Spirit 8 day cruise to the Mexican Riviera.

Deep Sea Fishing in Manzanillo Mexico

I had planned to go deep sea fishing with my son and our new friend Bob while in Manzanillo, leaving Bill to spend the day with the ladies. Now wasn’t that nice of me!  Bob had made arrangements through Vidal Davalos at

Before the cruise I managed to pull a muscle in my back and I figured this would be the time I would catch a big one and would cause some further damage .. So I reluctantly bowed out leaving the guys to go it alone in the wilds (darn was I jealous.) 

Manzanillo Mexico – The Las Hadas Resort

I did further research on the Port and decided a day at the beach at Las Hadas resort was just the ticket.  Bill and Carole (Bob’s lovelier half) and I caught a taxi at the port and said Las Hadas Por favor.  Sounds simple huh?  Well not so fast.  The driver took us through town and dropped us off at a beach, with no resort in sight.  There were some men at the entrance and we asked “where is Las Hadas” at which point they ran after our departing taxi and managed to call him back. 

He then took us the scenic route to Las Hadas (and I will admit it was very scenic... overlooking the entire area.)  When we got to the gate and the gentleman said “From the cruise ship” we all breathed a sigh of relief and handed over our $30 in exchange for $30 in coupons good for all things resort related.

We walked through a lovely lobby and down some steps into paradise.  This is a beautiful facility and extremely well maintained.  We found our way to the beach to greet others of our group already ensconced in beach chairs and cavorting in the surf; drinks in hand.

Videos at Las Hadas Beach Resort and Hotel

Here are a couple of videos I took at the beach. You can right-click and download, or double click to view.

The Beach at Las Hadas Resort
This video is a panoramic view of the beach at the Las Hadas Resort in Manzanillo Mexico.

Pool side dancing
Steve and Karen dancing at the pool side.

Grabbing our own beach chairs, we looked up to find a server ready to take our drink or food orders (paid with coupons) and our day began.  After some swimming, sunbathing, eating, drinking and laughing we decided it was very warm on the beach and we should try the lovely swimming pools.  Gorgeous water, swim-up bar, underwater lounge chairs, dancing at the pool side, and a few drinks later…well the day had been a glorious success.

Meanwhile back on that fishing boat there was some excitement for the intrepid fishermen.  They both caught huge (around 70 lb) Sailfish almost simultaneously.  Can you tell by the pictures they were excited? (NOW I have moved from envious to pure green jealousy). 

Both of them said that this was a first class charter with beer and sandwiches included, a well maintained and clean boat with a great crew.  Highly recommended to any fisherpersons out there.



Acapulco Mexico

OK, to be completely honest, this port was not one that I was excited about.  It seemed like every other big city resort town on the Mexican Riviera.  It was Halloween when we were in port, or Day of the Dead or Día de los Muertos in Spanish so there were decorations everywhere and lots of merchandise on display related to that. 

We had decided to get off the ship, walk to the old town shopping area, buy a sombrero for Bill’s costume and return to the ship.  That was the plan, and then there was Victor.  Victor explained that he was paid by the city of Acapulco to guide and assist tourist and well he did have a badge .. and more importantly he had a WHISTLE!! 

We trailed in Victor’s wake as he guided us uninjured across 4 lanes of traffic and on to Old Town where he, coincidentally, seemed to know or be related to every merchant in the area.  We finally found a sombrero and I was ready for un cervesa!!  It was hot in Acapulco.  After the cervesa, I expressed my desire to return to the ship ( this is the first place I should have said .. please get us a taxi) but Victor had a small side trip that was a must do and off we trudged, whistle in place and again getting us across perilous street. 

We wound our way to the Old Town Square to see the Soledad Cathedral.  Now make no mistake, this was a lovely square and a very picturesque cathedral, however, I missed the first step going down upon leaving the cathedral and OUCH I cried.  Hmmm must have bruised or slightly sprained my foot.. (this is the 2nd place I should have asked about a Taxi .. but hey the ship doesn’t look that far away.)  We walked/limped back to the ship, tipped Victor and re-boarded a very tired, sore and HOT couple.

I was to learn,  upon my return home, that I had actually broken my foot.  A side note here, I could have saved myself a lot of trouble and pain had I gone to the ship doctor and had it x-rayed and a boot put on it.  I did not, mainly because of the cost and denial that something was really wrong. 

This was a stupid mistake given that I had trip insurance that would have covered this and that I would have been in less pain as the cruise went on,  isn’t hindsight grand.



One of the reason’s this cruise appealed to us was that we could return to Zihuatanejo the scene of son Chris and daughter in law Claudia’s wedding.  We walked off the ship and through a small shopping are to a plaza were we caught a cab for La Perla.  Our cab driver was Victor ( who knew this was such a popular name in Mexico?) and he delivered us to our destination and offered to return for us later. 

We gave him an approximate time  and off to the most beautiful beach we have every visited in Mexico.  La Perla is a restaurant on this beach Playa de Ropa, and it is indeed the scene of the wedding mentioned earlier.  I gingerly made my way to a beach chair and applied the sun screen, with no plans to move much but to watch the water, the ship, the people etc. 

Soon I had a margarita in hand and life was good.  This area featured jet skies, para-sailing, banana boats and a gorgeous swimming area.  The weather was perfect, the food was good, the service was excellent and the company was fabulous.  I believe a good time was had by all.