Riding through Mexico
Since the last time in the country (1997) a number a toll ways have been built. They are very expensive, but in my opinion, woth every peso. The problem with the regular roads is not that they are bad, but the fact that in every little fly-blown village there a numerous speed bumps, called topes, or vibradores. They force you to slow down to first gear and slither across. If you're behind several transports this could take quite some time, since these behemoths have to come to a dead halt before they can shift into first. So, I took the toll ways whenever there was one. It cost me close to US $100 all the way from north to south. But be warned. At times there are no gas stations for up to 100 km without any warning. So if you just passed one, and are going on reserve, you will not make it to the next one. So be prepared.
In Mexico you need not buy insurance. Good. I never do. But I'm fully ready to pay for any damage I'll do with the bike. Chances are, the guy that hits you hasn't got any as well. Since he's probably poor, you won't be able to collect. So why bother. Now in Guatemala, I didn't bother with insurance again. This adds spice to life.
Live to ride, Ride to live.
We've just ridden through Mexico - I totally agree that the speed bumps were, without doubt, the most frustrating thing about Mexico.
However, we still chose to take the old, libre roads - There is so much more to see and experience by going through the little towns, and villages. The roads are more curvy, more interesting, more fun, and the fact that the suicide dogs could sprint out at any time adds that element of excitement.
I agree that if you are in a hurry, take the toll roads, they are smooth, direct and fast. If you have time, take the original roads, and ride round the lorrys clambering over the bumps.
All the best!
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