Thinking of retiring to Lake Chapala? Have you only heard of Ajijic? Well, there is lots more to Lake Chapala than just Ajijic. Here is a brief overview of the many communities and areas where you can buy a home, areas that together form what locals call “Lakeside”.
Use this blog when watching our new video and take a visual tour of Lakeside's communities.
From the town of Chapala (located straight South of Guadalajara airport) - North and East directions
Ixtlahuacan – Mexican Village 10 minutes drive North of Chapala, across the mountains towards Guadalajara and the Guadalajara International Airport
Aqua Escondida - Gated community of lower cost homes crossing the Airport Highway from Ixtlahuacan
Brisas de Chapala – A tree lined hillside community of homes with mountain and lake views, 5 minute drive North of Chapala.
Chapala Haciendas – A forested, open plateau 5 minutes North of Chapala, crossing the Airport Highway from Brisas de Chapala. Homes that line up at the base of the mountain in this area have fabulous lake and mountain views.
Chapala – The municipal hub of the area. Chapala is more than a village and less than a city. A variety of housing options are available – and more affordable than in/near Ajijic - condominiums, village homes and gated communities.
Vista del Lago - Gated community surrounding the Chapala Golf and Country Club.
From Chapala - West to San Antonio
Lomas del Manglar – A hillside residential area just west of Chapala, with fantastic lake and mountain views.
Riberas del Pilar – A residential area both below and above the Carretera (highway that parallels Lake Chapala, East-West direction) with houses of various ages and architectural styles.
Mirasol – A smaller community within Riberas del Pilar originally built as weekend getaway homes for Guadalajara residents.
Hamacas – A newer development of townhouses and detached homes built mostly as weekend getaways that share a lovely common area pool and clubhouse.
Villas Pacifica – Detached 2-story homes built around a pool and clubhouse.
Chula Vista (Upper) – Up the hill and just east of the in-town, 9-hole Chula Vista golf course. Some homes have incredible views while others were built in a rural-like treed valley, at the base of the mountain, East and North of the golf course.
Chula vista (Lower) – One of the oldest Lakeside communities of prestigious homes and estates, built on former mango orchards starting some 50 years ago. Spectacular views from some of the hillside properties.
El Parque – Gated community of unique, detached homes, built on the site of a former trailer park. Has a large common area pool, hot tub, and clubhouse. A very desirable location, minutes walk to many restaurants, shopping, and services.
San Antonio – The Village of San Antonio Tlayacapan spreads north east from the Carretera-Libramiento intersection, the Libramiento being the Chapala bypass road to the Guadalajara airport. San Antonio encompasses all of the gated communities along the Libramiento, as well.
Libramiento (Chapala Bypass) Communities
Chula Vista Norte – A prestigious area of large, detached homes with fabulous lake and mountain views. The quality of the views directly relates to the price of property.
Cumbres – A new development at the very top of Chula Vista Norte with outstanding views and a helicopter pad.
Las Terrazas - “The Terraces”, 15 high end homes with views that share a common pool and club house.
Birds of Paradise – A 64 condominium complex built at end of the 90's, favored by snowbirds for lock-and-leave and outstanding easy living.
El Dorado Tower – Currently the only high rise condo at Lakeside. Five story high with fabulous views from every floor and top notch common area facilities, including 2 tennis courts, large infinity pool, hot tub, jacuzzi, large club house and lovely terraces.
El Dorado Villas – Gorgeous homes with views and pretty gardens. Many have “miradors” - look out points/terraces to watch the glorious sunsets and sunrises over the lake.
Vista Alegre – Gated community with clubhouse, tennis courts and pool. Pricey, upper level lots can be developed by any builder/contractor.
Cielo Vista (older) – Gated community of mostly 2 bedroom/2 baths homes sharing a pool, tennis court and clubhouse. Great location! A short walk to Walmart and across from the Laguna Mall with outdoor shops, bakery, food court, movie theater, casino, banks, and a lively Wings Army restaurant.
Cielo Vista (newer) – Recently built homes of various sizes by the same developer as the older Cielo Vista.
From Walmart (at the Carretera-Libramiento intersection) to Ajijic
La Villita – Older gated community with two pools, large common grounds and tennis courts.
La Floresta – Prestigious area with wide, cobblestone streets and boulevards, tree-lined and beautiful. Generally large properties and estates and no views.
Riviera Alta – Quiet and private, yet close to town. Gated community above La Floresta with full facilities and tennis court.
Los Olivos – Right beside and smaller than Riviera Alta, various sized lots and houses, some with views. No common area amenities.
El Palmar Condominiums and Estates – Beautiful, European style homes built by renowned German architect and builder Siegfried Grotte. Overlooking Ajijic, on a smooth stone road that the builder himself funded.
Ajijic – The Village of Ajijic, the heart of the action! There is a wide variety of homes from fabulous, large estates close to the lake, to smaller, town house style village homes. Many foreigners have bought and renovated, thus transforming the old village landscape.
Upper Ajijic (Mission del Lago, Lomas del Lago, Villas de Tepalo, Lomas de Ajijic) – Separate gated communities above central Ajijic. Older but well built and maintained. Very nice homes, most have views.
Las Salvias – An area of large, higher priced homes and estates just west of Upper Ajijic on the north side of the Carretera.
Villa Nova – Minutes west of Ajijic on the north side of the Carretera is a former gated community of independent, various size homes. Some lots still available. The higher streets have million dollar properties with million dollar views.
La Huerta – A small, well run, gated community of homes on good sized lots. Older and mostly excellent construction, 2 bedroom 2 baths predominantly.
Rancho del Oro – A rural area of estates with a sprinkling of small farms and Mexican homes. Most come on large lots with views.
Los Sabinos – Gated community with excellent quality, full facilities. Homes on the top row sit on large lots with wonderful views and covered “miradors”.
Los Arroyos Sur & Norte – Two smaller gated communities higher on the hill, with excellent views and 24 hour security.
Puerto Arroyo & Arroyo Alto – Two newer gated communities by the same builder, with quality facilities. Various size homes and lots, view homes at the top of Puerta Arroyo and Arroyo Alto.
La Canacinta – A mixed area of rural homes and some gated communities with and without facilities. Some of the “weekend homes” have lower standard construction.
Las Catarinas – Gated, mostly weekend homes beside the gated Las Canacinta condos.
La Reserva – A prestigious gated community of newer homes developed by the same builder as Los Sabinos, Puerta Arroyo, etc. Top quality facilities, including a large clubhouse, clay tennis courts, lovely pool, and it's own marina. Twenty hotel rooms close to the pool were built for residents' use only, to supplement the need for accommodations for family and friends.
Tres Canadas – High end homes on large lots with outstanding views. Built on the hillside, airy and quiet.
La Cristina – Another mixed area of rural homes and small gated communities, some with, some without facilities.
Laguna Vista, Los Arrayanes, Lago Encantado – Hillside gated communities with views but no common facilities.
Racquet Club and West
Racquet Club – A large gated community with tennis courts (clay and hard surface), pickleball courts, Olympic-size pool filled with hot springs water 3 times a week, an older gym, clubhouse, etc. Wide streets and large homes/estates, most have views.
San Juan Cosala – The Village of San Juan Cosala is home to mostly Mexican families and unequaled “Mexican flavor”. Mixed housing accommodates a few foreigners along with the locals, both on the lake side of the Carretera and up the mountain.
El Limon – An area just west of San Juan Cosala with mixed single family dwellings and a couple of gated communities without facilities. Worth the drive from Ajijic for homes with views at a lower price.
El Chante – The Village of El Chante offers a variety of housing, from rural, Mexican-owned properties to small gated communities.
Las Fuentes – Gated community on the North side of the Carretera across from El Chante.
Jocotopec – Located at the west end of the lake, Jocotopec is a bustling town that benefits from the riches of the farm land around it. There are enough berry greenhouses to feed the locals and be exported to the North American market. Much of our fresh food comes from the surrounding area. There is a variety of single family dwellings, townhouses, and village homes to choose from, at lower prices than Ajijic or San Juan Cosala.
Roca Azul – Just South of Jocotopec, a gated, rural community of smaller homes. They share a large pool and common facilities.
San Luis Soyotlan and Puerto Corona ( South Side of the Lake) – Offer village and rural Mexican living at its finest. Mixed village housing and rural acreages. Lakeside properties can be purchased at a reasonable price in Puerto Corona. Perfect for writers and artists who are looking for a quiet place to create or to get away from it all and become a hermit.
Please keep in mind that it's impossible to cover every single Lakeside community. I have highlighted a few of the biggest and most popular for this blog.
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