La Quebrada Cliff Divers
Acapulco's iconic attraction, made famous in Elvis flicks, Ray Austen stunts, and every cheerfully scrawled holiday postcard sent home ever since, are La Quebrada Cliff Divers. Beginning in the 1920s, these brave young men and women began leaping for the crowds some 45 craggy meters (150 terrifying feet) into a wave-crashed inlet just 4 meters (13 feet) deep. And that's if they time it just right.
The ritual begins with a prayer at the shrine to La Virgen de Guadalupe, carved into the cliff-top platform. Then, the divers carefully calculate when their target will have enough water to soften their fall. Finally, they leap. First in the afternoon, and as the sun sets, again. The final dive of the night plunges past torches into a sea of fire (lit with flaming gasoline), no easy feat.
La Quebrada Cliff Divers perform daily at 1pm, 7:30pm, 8:30pm, 9:30pm, and 10:30pm.
There are 2 top spots for watching them dive. The public viewing platform close to the cliff offers the best views, and charges a small fee (tips for the divers are, of course, appreciated). Or, grab a seat at gently aging Hotel Mirador Acapulco, with fine views from its restaurant, cocktail lounge, and guest areas.