Pulmonía translates to pneumonia in English, but in Mazatlan catching a pulmonia is a must. The nickname for the iconic taxi comes from the local residents believing a ride in an open air car could cause a cold, yet you’ll find many locals taking pulmonias all over town. In fact, there is no better way to get around both downtown (Old Town) and the Golden Zone.
The golf-cart like taxi cars are everywhere, including one as a sculpture on the seaside malecon. They are quite affordable and make for an enjoyable experience getting around the city whether from bar to bar, beach to beach, or to and from dinner. The taxis are very safe and much fun.
When taking one, I’d recommend a few items to keep in mind to make for the best ride possible:
- Negotiate the fare before getting the taxi. Fares between Old Town and the Golden Zone will be less than 100 pesos. Other fares less. Know your price.
- Take a cocktail. This is your vacation, so enjoy a beer or mixed drink with you for your travels. It’s legal. I’d recommend a cup (not glass). Remember you are not driving.
- Take one along the malecon. You will enjoy the views of the water, the sculptures, and the wind in your hair all at slower speeds. Either day or night, the views of the bay, beaches, and people make for a memorable trip.
- Consider it a souvenir. A ride in the iconic pulmonia is not just a ‘must do’ when in Mazatlan, but its a unique experience you’ll remember longer than that tequila T-shirt.
photos: both photos by Craig Zabransky