Ixtapa and Zihuatanejo, two of the most beautiful beach destinations in Mexico, are located in the Pacific coast state of Guerrero on what is known as the "Mexican Riviera". Ixtapa and Zihuatanejo share similar and equally impressive surroundings with the crashing waves of the Pacific to the west, and the Sierra Madre del Sur mountain chain to the east. Ixtapa offers all the luxury resorts while Zihuatanejo is still a charming fishing village.
Ixtapa and Zihuatanejo are twin resort towns which are located about 4 miles apart in the state of Guerrero. Acapulco is about 160 miles (256 kilometers) southeast and Manzanillo is 350 miles (560 kilometers) to the northwest.
As one of the countries most exciting vacations spots, Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo features a number of first-class resorts, golf courses, restaurants, and of course, incredible beaches. Keeping in line with the original mission of FONATUR which is to maintain half of the property free from commercialism, the hotels of Ixtapa are all centrally located on a two-mile stretch of beach, making them convenient to virtually everywhere. Zihuatanejo offers more of a traditional town full of cobblestone streets, boutiques and typical markets, carrying everything from traditional crafts to the latest trends in fashion.
Among the many attractions, some of the more popular activities include scuba diving, surfing, and deep sea fishing for sailfish, marlin and yellow-knife tuna. Ixtapa hosts a popular annual winter offshore tournament, held at the Port of Zhihuatanejo.
Golf is also a top recreational activity for visitors to Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo. With a handful of outstanding courses designed by the best golf course architects in the world, including Robert Trent-Jones II, one has a wide variety of options for all skill levels and budgets. One secret that these beaches have to offer during winter months is the great whale-watching during their annual migration.
Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo is also home to a long history that one can experience at the regional archaeological museum. Those who favor a more vibrant and active nightlife will find many nightclubs and more intimate bars to enjoy.
The two towns have been fortunate to maintain the natural beauty despite the introduction of and growth in tourism. In addition to the number of pristine beaches, there is sunny weather virtually all year round, access to beautiful bays and a wide variety of native animals in and around the actual towns.
Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo is located 280 miles south of Mexico City and is 165 miles north of Acapulco on Highway 200. Once can arrive by boat, car or by plane via the Ixtapa - Zihuatanejo International Airport (ZIH).