The Mexican dentist

My daughter and I travelled to Bucerias in April.

It was a great mother-daughter trip and also an opportunity for me to explore the “lure” of the Mexican dentist.

Many of my clients rave about the excellent and inexpensive dental work they receive across the border.

I love being self-employed, but a dental plan is definitely not one of the benefits. So I decided to include a dental visit to a recommended professional during my vacation.

Bucerias means “the place of divers” and is about 30 minutes north of Puerto Vallarta airport. It’s a lovely, small resort town, reminiscent of the PV of 30 years ago. 

It’s an excellent option for those of you who want to get away from the ceaseless “hum” of Puerto Vallarta or the “boxed in” feeling of the Riviera Nayarit all-inclusive resorts.

There are a number of small condo-style resorts as well as quaint local Mexican hotels.  Cobblestone streets, a central plaza, artist galleries and boutiques as well as raucous live music venues like the Drunken Duck are all waiting to be discovered.

Our home for the week was the Hotel Las Palmeras

Our host, Eric, and the two Sylvias made our stay welcoming and informative. 

The accommodations were basic, but clean and the pool area was perfect for late afternoon bevies and reading. Our favourite breakfast nook was across the street at the Red Apple (amazing pancakes!).

The gorgeous white sand beach goes for miles in either direction and is perfect for your morning walk or jog.  Water conditions are safe and clean. 

The central plaza is full of yummy, inexpensive food trucks and beers can be bought at the local stores for a $1 or less. There are many dining options ranging from beachfront seafood to hidden local treasures like Mark’s Bar & Grill or the N’Wok.

Local exploration is easy. We jumped on the local buses for $2 or less and visited the funky surf town of Sayulita.

Very popular with the U.S. surf crowd, Sayulita offers more in the way of a tourist vibe with pricey clothing boutiques, vegan juice bars and the ever present aroma of cannabis.

A little too kitschy for me but nonetheless a fun day trip. Punta de Mita is also an easy bus ride away. 

My day at the dentist had a definitive Mexican feel. When inquiring as to the location of the dental office, I was thrilled to learn that the doctor I had been referred to was a local celebrity.

Highly respected, Dr Malja has a profitable business treating foreign patients, but also works tirelessly on behalf of the local people. 

My appointment was scheduled for 2 p.m. and by 2:45 p.m. I came to terms with the understanding that “manana” (man-yana) applies to more than just getting a drink.

The office though small, was spotlessly clean and efficient and the waiting room full of North American visitors. 

Dr. Malja was professional and courteous. His exam resulted in a diagnosis exact to the one I received previously in Kelowna, but his written estimate was one-third the cost. 

As tempting as it seemed, I settled for a $40 cleaning and descaling and promised to return when I could allocate more time.

So, yes, both Bucerias and the dentist delivered.


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About the Author

Joy has long been a believer in the art of travel: the belief that a vacation is something to be anticipated savored and then long remembered as one of life’s great adventures. 
Website: thejoyoftravel.ca

You can contact Joy at [email protected]

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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