San Miguel de Allende or Lake Chapala ??

Thanks Barb.  I love city live as well as natural beauty, so glad to read your comments.  Didn't know there was an international airport close by.  I travel frequently so that's a big factor for me.

Looking forward to my trip there in February!

On the surface, it sounds like Chapala would be a better fit for you but you'll need to check out both to be sure. The lake is fine for kayaking and the kayak club here is very active with 3 outings per week. They even require newbies to the club to do a wet exit so they know that you have the required skills to re-enter. No ones died. :D

We have lived as retirees in Mexico for about 18 years  in both Ajijic on Lake Chapala and in San Cristobal de Las Casas, Chiapas. Very different communities. On the edge of town near the lake in Ajijic and in the historic center of the city in San Cristobal which is a densely populated neighborhood adjacent to a large indigenous community with heavy street traffic - both vehicular and pedestrian congestion.  We love both communities and experience no noise pollution in either place during the daytime or at night. Actually
, San Francico where we lived for many years before retiring, was a hell of a lot noisier than eiither Mexican community

This is really helpful, thank you.  We are right now trying to decide between the two places.  We plan to spend a month in SMA May/June, and plan to do a similar time in Lake Chapala area.  The downsides of Lake Chapala you mention are what we have heard from others, but we know it is a personal choice - you just know after some time what is right for you.  Thanks again, and if we end up in SMA we would love to connect.

very full with expats as well pricey areas, have you considered Merida area?
safest area in MX, full of history & culture as well very affordable with beaches close

After having spent time in both areas. my family and i decided we just liked the people better in Ajijic. The energy of the people we spent time with was just more relaxed. The people we spent time with in SMA were not our cup of tea. Just our experience.
I now run a Lake Chapala Real Estate office in Ajijic and we couldnt be happier. Best of luck to all of you


I'm thinking of retiring to SMA on a budget.  Do you know of anywhere I could contact a potential US roommate who might want to rent a house together??  Sharing a space with a suitable roommate and splitting expenses would be a dream come true.  I only wish there would be an expat roommate service, like so many of them here in the States.   I've never even been to SMA, just jumping in the deep end.  Tired of living in the US.

kleerogers :

dogs are a huge problem in many countries, I perswonally can not stand barking dogs, it's a total deal breaker for me

We live in an upscale gated guarded community and there are no barking dogs.

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