Los Cabos Feature
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Great Itineraries in Los Cabos
Each of these fills one day. Together they touch on some of Los Cabos' most quintessential experiences from boating out to El Arco to visiting the blown-glass factory, and from grabbing a beer at a local brewpub to discovering Cabo's "Fiesta Zone."
Learn the Lay of the Land
On Day 1 take it easy, enjoy your hotel, take a swim in the pool, and get to know the beach in your general area. If staying in Cabo, meander around town, mentally noting the many restaurants and shops on the way that you might wish to sample later. Walking the length of the marina boardwalk will introduce you to Cabo's notorious party central: From the boardwalk's western end beginning near the Marina Fiesta Hotel, you'll pass through the marina's "Fiesta Zone" (along which is the infamous Nowhere ¿Bar?). If you make it all the way to Tesoro Hotel, you've essentially completed the marina walk. Note that it's here where you can catch a boat for sunset cruises, whale-watching, and sportfishing.
Traversing the Corridor
To see the Corridor and make it over to San José del Cabo from Cabos San Lucas, it's most convenient and least expensive if you rent a car for a couple of days. (Taxis are frightfully expensive, and buses limit you to their schedule and stops.) Shop around for rentals and you'll be amazed at the range. Take your time driving along the Corridor, both to enjoy the sights of the coast, as well as to become accustomed to the unique traits of this quirky highway. On and off ramps are challenging, as you'll see. About mid-Corridor you pass Santa María and Chileno Bay, fun for stops to sun, swim, and snorkel. Bring your own equipment and refreshments.
As you near San José del Cabo, you can't miss the Tiendas de Palmilla (Palmilla Shopping Center) across from the One&Only Palmilla Resort. "Tiendas" comprises upscale shops and some excellent restaurants, including Nick-San. (Walmart, Costco, and Sam's Club have also set up shop along Highway 1 for more basic shopping needs.) Heading farther east, you'll shortly see a turnout and large parking lot—a great panoramic overlook of the Sea of Cortez. It's a lovely spot to watch the surf at the Old Man's break, to your right, in front of the Cabo Surf Hotel.
Beachy, Happy People
For a small deposit, many hotels provide beach towels, coolers, and umbrellas, or you can rent these from Trader Dicks, just west of La Jolla de los Cabos Resort near the Costa Azul beach. Dicks also fixes good box lunches. To get to the most pristine beaches along the Sea of Cortez, head east out of San José del Cabo by car. At the corner of Boulevard Mijares and Calle Benito Juárez in San José, turn east at the sign marked "pueblo la playa". The paved street soon becomes a dirt road that leads to the small fishing villages of La Playa (The Beach) and La Playita (The Little Beach), about 1½ km (½ mi) from San José. As of this writing, construction of a marina resort complex is under way here; watch for road detours.
From La Playita, drive 60 km (37 mi) up the coast to the ecological reserve Cabo Pulmo, home of Baja Sur's largest coral reef. Water depths range from 15 to 130 feet, and colorful marine animals live among the reef and many shipwrecks. When hunger pangs call, stroll up the beach from Cabo Pulmo to Tito's for a fish taco and an ice-cold cerveza. Try to get back to La Playa by late afternoon to avoid driving the East Cape's dirt road at night. Stop for some fresh seafood and a frozen margarita at Buzzard's Bar and Grill right near the beach just north of La Playa. San José is 10 minutes away.
Artsy Los Cabos
Set out from Cabo San Lucas for the Fábrica de Vidrio Soplado (Blown-Glass Factory)—a bit hard to find if you're driving yourself. First head toward San José on Avenida Lázaro Cárdenas, which becomes Highway 1. Turn left at the stoplight and signs for the bypass to Todos Santos; then look for signs to the factory. It's in an industrial area two blocks northwest of Highway 1. At the factory, you can watch the talented artisans use a process little changed since it was first developed some 4,000 years ago.
From the factory, head east for the 20-minute drive to San José del Cabo. Park at the south end of Boulevard Mijares near the Tropicana Inn, since traffic tends to get congested from here on in. Grab some lunch at Don Emiliano, an upscale Mexican restaurant presided over by one of Mexico's top woman chefs. Then stroll through the central plaza, or zócalo, directly in front of the Iglesia San José (mission church) and take in the several art galleries north and west of the church.
For dinner, the Baja Brewing Company, located on Avenida Morelos, has a tasty San José Especial cerveza, and offers international pub fare to go along with it.
Alternatively, from the glass factory, head north on Highway 19 for the one-hour drive to the laid-back town of Todos Santos. Lunch at El Gusto! restaurant in the Posada La Poza hotel promises to be one of the most sumptuous you'll get in Baja. (Reservations are a must.) Spend the afternoon visiting in-town galleries near the Misión de Nuestra Señora de Pilar (Mission of Our Lady of Pilar) church.
From the Cabo San Lucas marina, board one of the glass-bottom boats that depart regularly for the dramatic Arco (Arch) and Playa del Amor (Lover's Beach), the sandy stretch in El Arco's shadow. (Or you can head out in a kayak or tour boat from Playa Médano.) The boat ride is half the fun, especially if you cruise by the sea lion colony on the rocks near the arch. Swim and snorkel only on the Sea of Cortez side; the Pacific side is too rough. When you're ready to go, board the next boat back to the marina or paddle back to shore. This is a good time to settle in for a leisurely lunch on Playa Médano. Order a cold drink and some grilled fish at the Office.
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