Reindeer of La Cruz – Cruz de Huanacaxtle, Mexico - Atlas Obscura

Cruz de Huanacaxtle, Mexico

Reindeer of La Cruz

A wooden sculpture sits rather out of place in this Mexican beach town.  

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Stretching north of the famous resorts of Puerto Vallarta and into the Pacific Coast of Nayarit state, Mexico’s Riviera Nayarita includes several small beach towns, each with a unique vibe. La Cruz de Huanacaxtle is one of the smaller of these towns. Its marina and quiet atmosphere make it one of the most popular locations for older North American travelers, who know it simply as “La Cruz.”

Standing several meters tall, little is documented about this wooden reindeer sculpture. Mounted on wheels, it’s often found at different spots of the esplanade along La Cruz’s marina. Its construction of bunched wooden branches is quite similar to that of Sweden’s Gävle Goat

Unlike the Goat, La Cruz’s Reindeer is not a temporary structure for the holidays. Maybe it’s the work of an artistically-inclined, homesick expat missing the fauna of a former, much colder, hometown. Mysteries abound, but the Reindeer of La Cruz is a public artwork that stands out for its unique location. 

Know Before You Go

The Reindeer is mounted on wheels and often mobile so it can be usually found around the esplanade along La Cruz's marina. The marina is located east of La Cruz's main beach, La Manzanilla.

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