Mazatlan is rich with history but in the oldest part of town, Olas Altas Beach, there is an incredible amount of history to sort through. Read along and learn a bit about how Olas Altas came to be.


Olas Altas History

Around the early 1800´s, Mexico was just starting as a brand new country, having signed our independence from Spain on September 27, 1821. On September 16, 1810 was the year the battles began against Spain, hence the day we celebrate Independence Day (Sept. 16) in Mexico.

About a block from here we are going to see one of the oldest buildings in town. Here is the old custom house, built back in 1828. The ocean water used to reach this far, but cargo ships bringing merchandise from Asia, Europe and the US were anchored out or tied down by the foot of the Watchman's Hill and tenders were used to unload the goods right here.

It was as early as 1778, when Mazatlan was contemplated to giving it a "seaport" category. The port of Mazatlan was opened to foreign trade by decree of the Spanish courts on November 9, 1820, mainly so the new government would receive taxes, but the move did not work due to the war. At the end of the War of Independence, Mazatlan was finally declared a seaport. Before that date, Mazatlan was considered an easy transit for smuggling and piracy.

The establishment of the office helped change the outlook of the city and strengthen the commercial vocation of the port.