Nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the Sierra Madre Occidental, this beautiful Mexican State is just two hours away by plane from the U.S. border. Sinaloa is a Cáhita word, meaning ’round pitaya‘, a local and abundant fruit, the same encasing the State’s coat of arms.
First and foremost, Sinaloa is Mexico’s breadbasket. It devotes over three-quarters of its land to agricultural production, and its fertile fields produce large crops of soybeans, maize, tomatoes, sweet pepper, and many other vegetables.
In addition, the Pacific coast makes this State the leading producer of shrimp, tuna and tilapia; each January the capital hosts the Expo Agro Sinaloa, a premier agricultural trade show, the largest of its kind in Mexico, and between November and December, the popular ‘Feria Ganadera‘, with cockfighting and banda concerts at the Palenque.
Sinaloa produces notable Mexicans too: boxer Julio César Chávez, norteño band Los Tigres del Norte, ‘dog whisperer’ César Millán, film icon and singer Pedro Infante, and many others. But there’s also another kind of production: huge marijuana and opium crops, and the biggest and most powerful drug lords and cartels Mexico has ever seen: all the big names in the drug business you can think of come from Sinaloa’s capital Culiacán and its neighbouring ranchos.
In fact, what Los Angeles meant to Colombian drug lords during the 80s, this city is nowadays to the Mexican, embodying what it means to be Sinaloense, and like Mexico, a place of unbalanced contrasts… it might seem a city of millionaires, but it is just of farmers and drug kingpins.
But despite its own history and current circumstances, Sinaloa also has the very best in a positive way: insanely delicious food (especially seafood!) available everywhere, friendly and cheerful people who embrace life, ready to celebrate on any occasion, banda music, damiana and mezcal liquors, stunning and overlooked beaches, jaw-dropping beautiful girls, Magic towns, amazing sunsets every day, and much more…
See also Sinaloa’s photographic collection at Flickr.