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Sponsors Are Rallying Behind the SUP Mexico Championships: Quick Facts and Info

by Meghan Fitzpatrick

Sponsors Are Rallying Behind SUP Mexico Championships!

November 3rd marks the beginning of the 3rd Annual SUP Mexico-Mike Doyle Los Cabos Classic Stand Up Paddle Race & Hennessey’s World Paddle Championships at Palmilla Beach. The two-day event will involve a lot of activities, events and general fun things during the action-packed 3-day championships. Both the community and sponsors are rallying behind the SUP Mexico Championships; the event has all the markings of a huge success.

 

Businesses involved in the event (sponsors, organizers and contributors) include Campamento Tortuguero Don Manuel Orantes (Cabo Tortugas), Yellow Tail, Clase Azul Tequila, Alecran Tequila, Peligroso Tequila, Tecate Beers, Don Sanchez Restaurant, Habaneros Restaurant, Royal Solaris Resort, Baja.com, Alaska Airlines, SUP Mexico, Bliss Events Los Cabos, Hennessey’s, Hobie, Snell Real Estate and Del Mar Development. Obviously, with this many big names involved, the event is not just about stand up paddleboarding – there will be a lot of other things going on! Aside from all of the aforementioned businesses somehow involved in the event, many businesses (local and from much further afield)  will have booths at the event. This will be a great event for the community of Los Cabos, as well as for the SUP community.

Sponsors are rallying behind the SUP Mexico Championships that will benefit sea turtle preservation

Campamento Tortuguero Don Manuel Orantes (Cabo Tortugas) is a charity dedicated to helping Baja’s endangered sea turtles, and the organization that the 3rd Annual SUP Mexico-Mike Doyle Los Cabos Classic Stand Up Paddle Race & Hennessey’s World Paddle Championships will benefit from. The organization helps to protect the turtle eggs before they hatch and then during the “hatch and release” process they help the turtles find their way to the water safely. They hold their turtle releases in a sanctuary next to the San José del Cabo estuary. Campamento Tortuguero is a non-profit organization. Donations, volunteering or sponsoring a turtle are the best ways to help Campamento Tortuguero Don Manuel Orantes. Look forward to a turtle release at the championship!

Yellow Tail, Clase Azul Tequila, Alecran Tequila, Peligroso Tequila and Tecate Beers are all providing drinks for the event; Don Sanchez Restaurant and Habaneros Restaurant will be providing the food. Don Sanchez is also hosting the grand opening and closing ceremonies. The championships are sure to excite any gourmets, culinary enthusiasts and drinkers from all walks of life.

Other highlights and things to look forward to throughout the weekend include bootcamp classes from Cabo local fitness god/guru Modu (http://www.moduvated.com/Moduvatedtobefit/MDVFIT_Home.htm), a local school art and essay competition, a beach concert and what is sure to be a great raffle with some very impressive prizes up for grabs.

The two primary sponsors for the event are Snell Real Estate and Del Mar Development. This will be the third year running that Del Mar Development has sponsored the SUP championships. Both organizations do a tremendous amount of work in the Los Cabos community.   The SUP event organizers are quick to point out that the success of this program will be due to the community, as a whole, and to the many sponsors who have stepped up to the cause.

Quick Facts and info about this year’s SUP Mexico event!

1.  More SUP industry vendors/sponsors present
2.  More Pro’s in attendance
3.  Full Bar (Vodka, Rum & Tequila drinks available)- $50 pesos
4. Larger cash prizes for pro’s ($16,500 usd)
5. Saturday Beach concert by Pura Vida
6. Daily tequila tasting (Peligroso, Clase Azul & Alacran)
7. Fun photo booth on the beach for families to enjoy
8.  Ceviche cooking demonstration by Tadd from Don Sanchez
9.  Presenting sponsor lounge with waiters

Closing ceremonies will be held at the NEW Don Sanchez restaurant. Buffet/Open Bar/DJ/Dancing/Photo Booth. Racers get tickets with their registration. Each sponsor has tickets. General ticket price – $350 pesos.

Want to go to the beach, eat amazing food, and have a wonderful visit to Los Cabos?  Visit Palmilla Beach…and find out more on Baja.com.

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula, supported by a full-service tour operator staffed by Baja locals (our “Baja Travel Savants”). We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurants, hotels and vacation rentals, as well as guides, maps and articles about events, sports and activities. We provide bilingual customer support, information and sales seven days a week, 365 days a year.  For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

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Baja International Film Festival Announces Board/Awards Categories: Actor Edward Norton Signs On

The Baja International Film Festival Announces Board/Awards Categories: Actor Edward Norton Joins the Board
By Chris Sands

The first annual Baja International Film Festival will be held in Los Cabos, and the festival’s organizers made news earlier this week when they announced the membership list for their advisory board, as well as the categories for this year’s awards and prizes. The inaugural event will be held November 14-17, with screenings at the new convention center and other select area locations.

An influential name on the advisory board is noted actor Edward Norton. The star of Fight Club and American History X has agreed to act as a special advisor for the film festival, joining an esteemed group of movie industry insiders, as well as business figures in Los Cabos and representatives from Mexico’s culture and tourism sectors.

The inaugural Baja International Film Festival Announces Board/Awards Categories: Actor Edward Norton has joined the Advisory Board

Baja’s inaugural film festival has many prominent backers, including Academy Award nominated actor Edward Norton.

Norton rose to prominence with a star making turn the 1996 thriller Primal Fear, for which he won a Golden Globe and received the first of his two Academy Award nominations. Norton is considered one of Hollywood’s most respected actors, with credits that include Fight Club, Frida, Red Dragon, Rounders, 25th Hour, The Illusionist, The Incredible Hulk, and, most recently, The Bourne Legacy. He was also an uncredited writer on Frida, a biopic of Mexican artist and icon Frida Kahlo, and made his directorial debut in 2000 with Keeping the Faith, a romantic comedy co-starring Ben Stiller and Jenna Elfman.

Other actors and filmmakers on the advisory board include Carlos Reygadas, Kuno Becker, and brothers Mark and Adam Kassen. Reygadas originally hails from Mexico City, and has forged a reputation as one of modern cinema’s most talented writer-directors, most notably for his film Silent Light, which competed for the coveted Palme d’Or at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival. Actor Kuno Becker has worked in both Mexican and U.S. movies, and is most recognizable for his work in telenovelas and the football movie Goal! Filmmakers Mark and Adam Kassen premiered their latest film, Puncture, at last year’s Tribeca Film Festival.

Special events at the Baja International Film Festival will include an opening night cocktail reception.

Speaking of brothers and film festivals, Baja’s version is helmed by artistic directors and co-founders Scott and Sean Cross, who also founded the Vail Film Festival and the Colorado Film Institute. The third artistic director will be Jorge Sanchez Sosa, director of the Guadalajara Film Festival from 2006 to 2010. Apart from Reygadas, Becker, and Sanchez Sosa, Mexican advisory board members will include Rodolfo Lopez Negrete, Director General of the Mexico Tourism Board; Isaac Masri, promoter of the arts; Alfonso de Maria y Campos Castello, Director General of the National Institute of History and Anthropology; Ruben Reachi, Secretary of Tourism for Baja California Sur; and Jacobo Turquie, Municipal Secretary of Los Cabos Tourism.

In addition to the announcement of the advisory board, festival organizers also released the award categories earlier this week, as well as the cash prizes for winners:

Best International Feature, $10,000

Best Mexican Feature, $10,000

Best International Documentary, $5,000

Best Mexican Documentary, $5,000

Best International Short Film , $2,500

Best Mexican Short Film, $2,500

The slate of films is still being determined, but it is expected that the festival will screen in the neighborhood of 70 movies, 30 of which will be features. For more information on scheduling and special events, visit www.bajainternationalfilmfestival.com or email info@bajafilmfest.com.

Want to find out where to stay when in Los Cabos?  What to do when in Los Cabos?

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula, supported by a full-service tour operator staffed by Baja locals (our “Baja Travel Savants”). We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurantshotels and vacation rentals, as well as guides, maps and articles about events, sports and activities. We provide bilingual customer support, information and sales seven days a week, 365 days a year.  For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

All photos courtesy of Baja International Film Festival.

 

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Who is Mike Doyle and What is He Doing in Los Cabos?

by Meghan Fitzpatrick

“Life is like a wave, so why not take a big one and get a long ride all the way to the beach!”  Mike Doyle

Who is Mike Doyle? For the third year, Los Cabos is home to the annual SUP Mexico-Mike Doyle Los Cabos Classic Stand Up Paddle Race. So, who is this guy and what is he doing in Los Cabos?

Mike Doyle circa late 1960's

Mike is a champion surfer and paddler from the 1960’s. Today, Mike is also known for his custom surf and paddleboards and for being the author of his own highly popular story, the autobiography “Morning Glass.”

One of the defining characteristics of Mike Doyle and his surfing style is his attachment to the tradition of ‘The Waterman.’ This term refers to someone who embraces surfing, paddling, rowing, and rough-water swimming as well as possibly being skilled at diving, fishing, spear fishing, tandem surfing, lifeguarding, and handling outrigger canoes. Sort of a ‘renaissance’ approach to surfing.

Today, such notions in regards to surfing and paddling are sometimes considered to be old-fashioned and unimportant…yet it is quite possible that it was this approach that separated Mike Doyle from other surfers.  Mike saw the importance of learning and understanding the water, believing that knowledge about the ocean, the tides and even the etiquette of water activities were extremely important.

Mike started surfing when he about 13 years-old. Mesmerized by the older surfers he saw when he was just a tyke, Mike decided at a young age that surfing was for him and he was determined to learn and be the best he could possibly be at the sport. Mike’s surfing career took off when he was voted “Best Surfer” by Surfer magazine in 1965 and 1966. He earned the nickname”Ironman” for his participation in surfing, tandem and paddle races all in the same day and usually winning at least two of three competitions. In 1968, Mike won the coveted Duke Kahanamoku Contest at Sunset Beach, Hawaii and the world surfing title in Peru. He holds the honor of inventing the first snowboard and the soft surfboard.  Today, Mike lives every surfers dream by splitting his time between San Diego and Cabo San Lucas where he surfs and paints scenes of the ocean and the flavor of Baja.  And, he has become wildly successful at another aspect of surfing and boarding.

Today, Mike Doyle custom surfboards are among the best that money can buy. Mike has been studying, designing and crafting surfboards for more than 35 years and is recognized not only for handcrafting individual boards but for designing and producing customized selections for surf shop owners. Mike Doyle surfboards are shipped all around the globe. The company logo states “Working closely with the individual surfer during the ordering process to ensure that we tailor a board to each surfer’s specific needs.” It is this commitment combined with Mike’s extensive experience that make Mike Doyle surfboards so famous within the industry.

It was a natural progression that Mike would come to be involved with the Los Cabos Classic Stand Up Paddle Race. In 2012, after two very successful years, the race will be even bigger and better than ever before. Hennessey’s Stand Up Paddle World Championships has joined forces with the race (The 3rd Annual SUP Mexico-Mike Doyle Los Cabos Classic Stand Up Paddle Race & Hennessey’s World Paddle Championships) for what is sure to be an outstanding event — and with none other than Mike Doyle as the SUP championship ambassador.

Who is Mike Doyle: surfer, author, creator, artist and ambassador of the The 3rd Annual SUP Mexico-Mike Doyle Los Cabos Classic Stand Up Paddle Race & Hennessey’s World Paddle Championships Photo courtesy of Cabo Surf Shop

Who is Mike Doyle and what is he doing in Los Cabos?   To find out more, or for tickets and entry information about this year’s, “3rd Annual SUP Mexico-Mike Doyle Los Cabos Classic Stand Up Paddle Race & Hennessey’s World Paddle Championships” please view the event information here: http://baja.com/cabo-san-lucas/events/hennesseys-world-suppaddle-championships-los-cabos-2012/.

 

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula, supported by a full-service tour operator staffed by Baja locals (our “Baja Travel Savants”). We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurants, hotels and vacation rentals, as well as guides, maps and articles about events, sports and activities. We provide bilingual customer support, information and sales seven days a week, 365 days a year.  For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

 

 

 

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The 3rd Annual SUP Mexico-Mike Doyle Los Cabos Classic Stand Up Paddle Race & Hennessey’s World Paddle Championships

What:   Top Paddle Board and Stand Up Paddle Board professionals meet to compete at the 3rd Annual SUP Mexico event.

When: Nov. 2-4, 2012

 Where:  Palmilla Beach, Los Cabos, Baja

Who:  Alfredo Salafranca, race director; Kym Kuharski, Bliss Events, organizer.

After the overwhelming success of last year’s Los Cabos Classic SUP Mexico – Mike Doyle Stand Up Paddle Race, this year Hennessey’s World Paddle Championships has joined forces with the event, for what is sure to be an action-packed and very exciting weekend benefiting the  Campamento Tortuguero Don Manuel Orantes (Cabo Tortugas), a turtle monitoring and hatchling release program.  Professionals from around the world have been competing in the Hennessey’s SUP & Paddle Board racing series in order to qualify for the World Paddle Championships.

 

The weekend races will include the Los Cabos Classic races (the regular annual event) that are open to amateurs, the 11-mile Point-to-Point race (P2P), a four-mile course race, and the extremely popular Relay Race, which consists of four people per team, one of whom must be female.  A full schedule of events is available at the SUP event site.

Other events will include the opening ceremonies, a live DJ, a turtle release, a kid’s clinic hosted by SUP pros, a beach concert, food & beverages, tequila tastings, SUP demos, closing ceremonies and the final festivities at the new Don Sanchez Restaurant. The final party will include up to four hours of bar and food service with a photo booth and a live DJ.

Beverages for the weekend will be provided by Yellow Tail, Clase Azul Tequila, Alecran Tequila, Peligroso Tequila and Tecate Beers.  Food will be provided by Don Sanchez Restaurant and Habaneros restaurant (both owned by celebrity chef Tadd Chapman).  Royal Solaris is the hosting hotel for the event and is offering special packages for racers and spectators attending the event.  Alaska Airlines is also offering a special travel rate for the event for people flying between Southern California and Los Cabos.

This promises to be a weekend full of fun with activities to suit all ages and genders, raising money for a worthwhile cause, and in one of the most popular travel destinations in the world, Los Cabos.  For more information, visit Facebook/SUP Mexico, Facebook/SUP Mexico—Los Cabos Classic or read about the event page at Baja.com.

The event is presented by SUP Mexico, Bliss Events Los Cabos, Hennessey’s and Hobie.  Snell Real Estate and Del Mar Development are presenting sponsors and Baja.com is media sponsor.

Where to stay? What to do?  Where to eat?  Find it all at Baja.com.  

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula, supported by a full-service tour operator staffed by Baja locals (our “Baja Travel Savants”). We offer Baja travelers expert advice about localrestaurants,hotels and vacation rentals, as well as guides, maps and articles about events, sports and activities. We provide bilingual customer support, information and sales seven days a week, 365 days a year.  For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

 

 

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A Liturgical Landmark: Cabo’s Catholic Church Is One of the City’s Few Architectural Monuments

Cabo San Lucas is not known for its architectural monuments. The city does not boast a rich colonial legacy, and there are few buildings of any historical consequence–certainly nothing to compare with sister city San Jose del Cabo’s lovely colonial-style cathedral Misión de San José del Cabo Anuiti, or her 19th century City Hall with its murals depicting important events in the area’s development. However, the city does have a few notable buildings: the old cannery, the Casa de la Cultura, and, most importantly, the Iglesia Catolica de San Lucas (Cabo’s Catholic Church).

The church interior blends simplicity with traditional iconography.

Iglesia de San Lucas evokes the earliest period of the Jesuit missions in Baja California Sur, when missionaries like Padre Nicolas Tamaral were seeking to convert the native inhabitants of the area, the Pericu Indians. Tamaral wasn’t terribly successful in his conversion efforts. The natives unceremoniously killed him in 1734, apparently unwilling to accept his ban against polygamy. But despite Tamaral’s untimely end, the Catholic churches in both Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo are testaments to the priest’s deep devotion and single-minded sense of purpose.

The church boasts a place of honor near the main square, Plaza Amelia Wilkes, and perhaps more than other tourist attraction in Cabo San Lucas, offers a window into the religious and cultural life of the city’s inhabitants. It is open to visitors on a daily basis, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., with masses held every Saturday (7 p.m.) and Sunday (8:30 a.m., noon, and 7 p.m.). The noon mass on Sunday is performed in both English and Spanish. In addition to services, the church also plays an important role during festivals and religious holidays.

 

A view of the church from Cabo’s main square, Plaza Amelia Wilkes.

General Information

Where To Go – Iglesia Catolica de San Lucas is on Calle Cabo San Lucas, between Emiliano Zapata and Francisco Madero. It sits just off Cabo’s main square, Plaza Amelia Wilkes.

What to Bring – A healthy sense of respect, particularly in matters of dress. Casual clothing items such as t-shirts, shorts, and sandals are not considered appropriate.

Cost – The church is open to visitors daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. There is no admission fee.

Contact Information – For additional information, contact the church at (624) 143-2666.

Have you been to Iglesia Catolica de San Lucas?  What did you think?  What are some other unique architectural experiences in Cabo?  Share with us in the comments below.

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula, supported by a full-service tour operator staffed by Baja locals (our “Baja Travel Savants”). We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurantshotels and vacation rentals, as well as guides, maps and articles about events, sports and activities. We provide bilingual customer support, information and sales seven days a week, 365 days a year.


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Sea Turtle Season in Los Cabos

by Chris Sands

Most visitors to Los Cabos know about whale watching season, the period from December through March when gray and humpback whales make their annual migration to breeding grounds off the coast of Baja California. Although its been considerably less publicized, the Capes region also has a sea turtle season, with two of the eight extant sea turtle species nesting on local beaches from June through February. The turtles aren’t nearly as photogenic as the whales, but which is more satisfying: watching a brief but spectacular breaching by a humpback, or participating in a hands-on program to save area sea turtles from extinction?

Mature Olive Ridley females nesting on the beach. Photo by Claudio Giovenzana

Los Cabos isn’t the only nesting ground for Olive Ridley and Leatherback turtles, but female sea turtles generally return to the beach where they themselves were born. They’re sentimental that way. These two species represent both ends of the sea turtle spectrum. Olive Ridleys are the smallest sea turtle, and average about 100 pounds at maturity. Leatherbacks, on the other hand are the largest of the sea turtles, and may be up to 70 inches long, and weigh as much as a ton. A bit of trivia: Leatherbacks are the fastest reptiles on earth (in the water, of course), and one of the deepest divers as well, able to submerge to depths of more than 4,000 feet. Olive Ridley females nest in Los Cabos from June through December, Leatherback females from November through February.

Once sea turtles mature, they have very few predators, but the hatching process is fraught with danger. After a two month incubation process, hatchlings claw their way out of the nest and instinctively edge their way towards the sea. Unfortunately, many are eaten by birds and crabs before they reach the water, and those that do often fall prey to ocean predators or fishing nets. Increasing resort development is also a major problem, as the lighting from hotels and housing developments disorients the fledgling sea turtles, and often leads them in the wrong direction.  As such, hatchling nursery programs have become hugely important in improving sea turtle survival rates, and there are two very good ones in Los Cabos.

Leatherback turtle swimming Photo courtesy of NOAA Fisheries

Turtle monitoring and hatchling release are two of the preservation touchstones at Campamento Tortuguero Don Manuel Orantes, a government sanctioned operation headquartered on a beach near the San José del Cabo wildlife estuary. Large-scale sea turtle preservation efforts are also being made at the 2000 acre San Cristobal Nature Preserve, which extends over several Pacific-side beaches north of Cabo San Lucas. The nature preserve is run by Rene Pinal and his non-profit group ASUPMATOMA (Association for the Protection of the Environment and the Marine Turtle in Southern Baja).

Although increasing development has been a contributing factor in the endangerment of sea turtles, eco-conscious businesses are participating in protection efforts. Guests staying at the Hilton Los Cabos from August through November may sign up for the Sea Turtle Protection Program, and assist with the releasing of baby Olive Ridley sea turtles. Tour groups such as Cabo Outfitters are offering similar programs, generally in conjunction with long-time sea turtle advocates like ASUPMATOMA and Campamento Tortuguero Don Manuel Orantes. Proceeds from the upcoming 3rd Annual SUP Mexico-Mike Doyle Los Cabos Classic Stand UP Paddle Race & Hennessey’s World Paddle Championships, which will take place on Palmilla Beach from November 2nd through the 4th, will help benefit sea turtle conservation and preservation at Don Manuel Orantes.

It’s Sea Turtle Season in Los Cabos.  Ever experienced the joy of watching hatchlings take off to sea?  You can.  Travel to Cabo with Baja.com!       

 

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula, supported by a full-service tour operator staffed by Baja locals (our “Baja Travel Savants”). We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurantshotels and vacation rentals, as well as guides, maps and articles about events, sports and activities. We provide bilingual customer support, information and sales seven days a week, 365 days a year.

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Taking the Plunge: Diving Adventures in Cabo San Lucas

By Chris Sands

Manta Ray, photo by Carlos Varela

Imagine an undersea fantasia of soft coral, sponges, sand falls, schools of tropical fish – colorful king angelfish, pufferfish, parrotfish, surgeon fish, guitarfish – and picture yourself navigating this pristine pelagic environment, experiencing unforgettable close-up encounters with eels, seals, manta rays and sharks.

Exploring the underwater wonders of Cabo San Lucas Bay. Image: Cabo Adventures.

There are many things to love about Cabo San Lucas. First-class activities abound, from fishing and golf to shopping and spa services. The diving is superb here as well, and scuba-inclined visitors don’t have to head up the East Cape to Cabo Pulmo, home of the oldest and largest living coral reef in the Western Hemisphere, to appreciate the aquatic abundance teeming in the Sea of Cortez. There are a number of great sites in Cabo San Lucas Bay.

Cabo Adventures runs one of the best dive operations in town, with three hour tours in the mornings and afternoons. About half that time is spent in the water, the other half checking out and trying on equipment, and getting out to Land’s End and back on their 46′ dive boat. Two tank dive tours are the norm, with a tank each at two of the top spots in Cabo San Lucas Bay, chosen according to the skill level of the divers and the water conditions.

Better known sites in the bay include Pelican Rock, Neptune’s Finger, and The Point. Each site boasts unique features, from the degree of depth to the quality and quantity of marine life. Pelican Rock is famed for its sand falls and profusion of tropical fish; Neptune’s Finger showcases coral, sponges, and sea fans; while diving The Point offers opportunities to see sea turtles, sea lions, moray eels, whale sharks, and the occasional octopus. In addition to the excellent diving, the trip also includes a guided boat tour with beverages, snacks, and photo opportunities of local landmarks like Land’s End and The Arch.

Dive trips include a guided tour of local landmarks like Land’s End and The Arch. Image: Cabo Adventures

Cabo Adventures offers one dive tour outside the bay, at Cabeza de Ballena. This is an excellent shallow divesite, perfect for beginners and advanced divers alike, with plenty of soft coral, tropical fish, sea turtles, and the occasional octopus. This dive is available only on request, and advance notice is required.

The diving in Cabo San Lucas Bay is good year round, but water temperatures and visibility vary, so it’s a good idea to check on current conditions before you make reservations. As might be expected, the water is warmest during the summer and autumn months. From July through October, water temperatures typically range from 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Visibility is best during the autumn months, and since this coincides with the off-season for tourism, it’s also a great time to find discounted deals on accommodations and activities.

General Information

How to Get There: Dive tours meet at the Cabo Dolphin Center, located near the Cultural Pavilion on the Cabo San Lucas Marina. Check in times are typically at 8:30 a.m., and 12:30 p.m. Tours are three hours in duration, and round-trip ground transportation from your hotel or resort can usually be arranged if you call in advance.

What to Bring: Cabo Adventures provides all dive equipment, but you should bring a swimsuit. Sun protection is a good idea for your time on the boat, and a jacket is recommended after diving during the winter months.

Cost: For certified divers, two tank dives cost $120 U.S. Courses for beginners are also $120, and refresher courses cost $35. There is a bubblemaker program for children under 8, and PADI certifications are also available.

How to book: You can book tours by contacting our Baja.com Travel Savants!  See below….

Other Dive Options in Cabo San Lucas:  Amigos del Mar: Plaza Gali, Marina Boulevard, Cabo San Lucas.

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula, supported by a full-service tour operator staffed by Baja locals (our “Baja Travel Savants”). We offer Baja travelers expert advice about localrestaurants,hotels and vacation rentals, as well as guides, maps and articles about events, sports and activities. We provide bilingual customer support, information and sales seven days a week, 365 days a year.  For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

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Cabo Lodging that Inspires Loyalty: Mar de Cortez and Its Regulars

By Chris Sands

I can name dozens of local bars and restaurants with devoted followings–residents and regular visitors who swear by the food, drink, deals, or atmosphere. However, there aren’t a lot of hotels or resorts that seem to inspire the same type of loyalty. In Cabo San Lucas, one stands out: Mar de Cortez.

Views of Mar de Cortez from the courtyard swimming pool.

Maybe it’s the central downtown location, or because the hotel has been around forever, or what feels like forever in Cabo (40 years). Maybe it’s because the room rates are almost impossible to beat. Maybe it’s the feeling of community, running into many of the same people year after year after year. Whatever it is, Mar de Cortez has it, and the hotel has long been one of the most popular budget-oriented accommodations options in town.

Beyond the value pricing and friendly ambience, there are many things to recommend about this small, colonial-style hotel. The central location puts guests within easy walking distance of the Marina, and all the downtown shopping, restaurants, and nightlife. Medano Beach requires about a 20 minute walk, but Cabo Wabo is less than a block away–a not insignificant factor on those nights of vacation-inspired indulgence.

A standard ground floor room at Mar de Cortez.

Mar de Cortez has 88 rooms and suites, including standard, terrace, and garden rooms, and extra-large and king suites. The large swimming pool is the centerpiece of the courtyard, as well as social life at Mar de Cortez, and headlines the list of hotel amenities. High-speed wireless service is complimentary, and floral arrangements may be reserved prior to arrival. There is even a book exchange behind the front desk, where guests can trade in the thriller they read on the flight down for something a little more appropriate for a day at the beach.

The hotel’s onsite restaurant, Baja Peppers, opened last year, and has quickly developed a loyal local following of its own. Restaurateur John Venditti was behind one of Cabo’s favorite locals bar, Cabo Lounge, and has brought the same combination of low prices and congenial atmosphere to Mar de Cortez. The menu is a mix of Mexican, American, and Italian specialties. The American breakfast offers three eggs, bacon, fruit, potatoes, beans, and toast, all for US$3.  Baja Peppers offers both indoor and outdoor seating, and happy hour and dinner specials are available on a daily basis.

Mar de Cortez will be closed in September, but reopens on October 1st.

General Information

Location: Mar de Cortez is on Lázaro Cárdenas, near the corner of Vicente Guerrero, in downtown Cabo San Lucas.

How to Book: For reservations, visit Mar de Cortez’ website, or call toll free 1-800-347-8821 from the U.S. or Canada. The U.S. Reservations Office can be reached at (831) 663-1904. Information is available via email at mardecortez4info@gmail.com.

Cost: Room rates are being raised in October for the first time in seven years. Don’t worry. The prices are still very value oriented. Standard rooms (single or double occupancy) are US$57; terrace rooms are $62 (single or double) or $67 (triple occupancy); garden view rooms are $67 (single or double) or $72 (triple); and suites are $74 (single or double), $79 (triple), or $84 (quadruple occupancy). Off-season rates are a little lower, and children under eight stay for free year round.

Transportation: Airport shuttle service is available for both arrivals and departures. The cost is US$14 per person, per trip.

What is your favorite hotel or resort in Cabo San Lucas? Let us know below!

All photos courtesy of Mar de Cortez.

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula, supported by a full-service tour operator staffed by Baja locals (our “Baja Travel Savants”). We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurants, hotels and vacation rentals, as well as guides, maps and articles about events, sports and activities. We provide bilingual customer support, information and sales seven days a week, 365 days a year.  For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.


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Simple, Fun Adventure in Baja: Rancho Carisuva

by Yesica Pineda
Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.  ~Leonardo DaVinci

Simplicity:  A wonderful gift of life

We live the adventure of life on a planet we call “Tierra:” A planet that travels around the Sun, which travels around the Milky Way Galaxy, and travels (relative to other galaxies) at a speed of about 3,728.23 miles per second. Three thousand seven hundred and twenty eight point twenty three miles every second… there, another 3,728.23 miles traveled…and another 3,728.23 miles just traveled…every second…

So why am I rushing? To get where?

Having this in mind, when I travel I try to experience time in the simplest ways. I relax and pause from the never-ending distractions in my mind. I choose the experience of getting in touch with nature through a unique combination of adventure, contemplation and learning experiences about the abundance of natural wonders — exploring the untouched — in a setting of peace and tranquility.

I recently became aware of simple beauty as it is exemplified at a ranch in Playa Migriño, a pacific beach that is not more than an hour from San Jose del Cabo and close to Cabo San Lucas.  It’s rather secluded.

The ranch is called Rancho Carisuva and it is a typical Baja California ranch with around 43 horses, a freshwater well, farm animals such as goats, chickens, pigs, friendly donkeys and cows, and it even has a traditionally built desert hut. The fun allows you to safely indulge in adventurous, adrenaline-pumping experiences like ATV beach and desert tours, side by side 4×4 safaris, Pacific beach horseback riding, hiking burro and sunset horseback riding tours, all through private trails that run along the desert canyons, virgin pacific beaches, and amazing ocean side cliffs. Wonderful!

I learned that, as an eco-conscious Ranch, Carisuva has a commitment to preserve the natural beauty of its surroundings. They use solar power to meet water and electrical demands. And they do it well…the ranch offers you all necessary facilities to make your visit a cosy excursion.

Besides the adventure, the Ranch offers food, fresh water, a bilingual guide and free time to enjoy the day. Those who would rather just take the time to contemplate will find it a wonderful place for stillness, Baja-style. Transportation? It can be arranged from whichever hotel you might be staying!

Kudos to my friends at Rancho Carisuva! As they put it,  at the end of the day it’s the experience that creates an impression that will last a lifetime. Simple!

What is your idea of Simple  Pleasures in Baja?  Let us know!

Photos Courstesy of Rancho Carisuva

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Coffee in Cabo

By Meghan Fitzpatrick

There are several places of note in Cabo in which to have your daily caffeine fix, but here are some favorites:

The Cabo Coffee Company is one of the primary Cabo coffee suppliers

1) The Cabo Coffee Company – this place has some serious coffee. A local favorite, their tagline, “Death before decaf” is no joke — a cup of coffee from this place will have you wired for hours. That being said, they also brew excellent decaf coffee. Their coffee is also available to buy online if you can’t make it to to their store; it is sold in 3 main varieties: dark (for  US $13.75), medium (for US $13.75), and decaf (for US $14.00). They have no ‘light’ option – it’s all or nothing here.

Cabo Coffee Company also boasts a strong and reliable internet connection – something which is good to know if you’re in the area. They have food too, including large breakfast bagel sandwiches (very filling), cookies, muffins, pastries and pies. If you plan on frequenting the Cabo Coffee Company on a regular basis, make sure you ask about their loyalty program, nine cups of coffee (or tea) earns you one on the house.

All the coffee from Cabo Coffee Company is grown in the Sierra Madre Mountains of Oaxaca, in mainland Mexico. The beans are called Pulma Hidalgo beans and their bold, complex flavor make them some of the most desired coffee beans in the world. Once they are grown, all of the beans are then freshly roasted in Cabo. This means that their coffee is the 100% fresh and of the highest quality you can get your hands on in Mexico. It is no wonder why this place is a local favorite.

2) Cafe Cabo – One of the best, Cafe Cabo has everything you could want from a local coffee place, including excellent value for money. I spent the whole day at Cafe Cabo last week and I had a large latte, a turkey sandwich, a large coffee and a large bottle of water – all for US $6.85 (MX $88). CC also has excellent wifi – I wasn’t knocked offline once the whole day. If you’ve ever needed the internet in Cabo, then you know that finding a reliable, high speed internet connection is no easy feat. Thus far, out of all of the places I’ve been to in Cabo, Cafe Cabo definitely has one of the best internet connections, and it’s free.

The Cafe Cabo offers a variety of breakfast and lunch food items – they have a selection of freshly baked pastries, muffins, cookies, croissants, and also a variety of sandwiches and baguettes to choose from. Since I ate there, they heated my sandwich up for me and added a generous amount of salad to my plate.

Cafe Cabo is open every day except wednesdays, from 7am until 10pm.

3) Starbucks – everyone can recognize Starbucks. Cabo San Lucas is home to one of two Starbucks — the only two in all of Baja Sur. The menu requires no description, as it is the well-known, classic Starbucks food menu with the standard tall, grande, and venti drinks. The prices are given in peseos, but like anywhere in Baja, you can pay in either dollars or pesos.

The Cabo San Lucas Starbucks is located in Plaza Bonita, across from Squid Roe and next to La Trattoria restaurant. It sits right on the main street running through Cabo, Boulevard Paseo de la Marina, so you can’t miss it as you drive into town. The second Starbucks in Los Cabos is in San Jose, next to McDonalds, near the the big Mega store at the roundabout where you turn to drive to the airport, Boulevard Nauricio Castro no. 4650 Col. Both locations have reliable wifi and strong A/C — making them welcome sanctuaries in the summer. For store hours and information you should contact the locations directly as their hours and opening days vary by season.

4) Bar Esquina  - this local hot spot is a great place to have some seriously high quality coffee. They have an excellent menu for breakfast lunch and dinner, in addition to a full bar that is open well into the night. Bar Esquina is the restaurant and bar at the Bahia Hotel and though it gets pretty busy at night, during the day it is a much quieter environment and is a great place to work, have a nice meal and some truly excellent coffee.

Starting at 7am every day, Bar Esquina brews specialty organic Mexican coffee from Chiapas and Oaxaca. This is definitely some of the best and highest quality coffee in Cabo. They also have a delicious and thorough breakfast menu that should not be ignored, menu choices include a breakfast burrito, eggs benedict, pancakes, French toast, omelettes, huevos rancheros, fruit, granola, and more – all for between MX $60 and $85 (US $4.75 – $6.60). Breakfast at Bar Esquina is an experience not to be missed – this is not just a nightspot. Breakfast is served at Bar Esquina from 8am-11:30am, and you can come in anytime between 7am and close (which is late) for some excellent, organic Mexican coffee.

Where is your favorite coffee place in Cabo? If you know of any other great places for coffee please share with us below.

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