There is a hidden treasure in Mexico. It is a remote, unpopulated place with a landscape from another world. The Baja peninsula is perfect for the traveler who wants to enjoy the delights of Mexico away from the party lights of Senor Frog.
Baja California, Mexico is the peninsula extending into the Pacific Ocean from the US state of California. With the dramatic seascapes, deserts and dormant volcanoes you'll think you've reached the end of the world. This region certainly has a distinct culture and lifestyle apart from the Mexican mainland a culture meant for the adventurous and thoughtful traveler.
Baja California is full of some of the most magnificent scenery you'll ever see. The east coast is lined with pristine sandy beaches, while the central region is covered in mountain ranges, giant sand dunes, enormous cacti and extremely desolate deserts that look like something from another world. The whole peninsula is a sight in and of itself, but here are some of the highlights:
The Espiritu Santo is a shallow inlet with stunning pink cliffs. It's a part of an UNESCO World Heritage site made up of 244 Sea of Cortez islands and coastal areas. This spot is the perfect place for a kayaking afternoon.
To really immerse yourself in the history and culture of the region, make a stop at the Museo de las Californias. Here you'll see the story of Baja California going all the way back to prehistoric times. Explore exhibits with recreated cave paintings and other historical milestones.
For another taste of history, the Hotel Playa Ensenada is a gorgeous spot with walls full of stories. Opening in the 1930s, this Spanish-style building is formerly a casino rumored to have hosted the likes of Al Capone. Today it serves as an intriguing and entertaining museum.
The peninsula is full of activities for the traveler who can't sit still. Between camping, hiking, sailing and more, you'll find whatever adventure you're looking for.
The Pacific Ocean side of the peninsula is home to some of the best surfing waves in the world. But waves aren't the only things stirring up those waters. The shores of Baja California contain several species of magnificent whales like Blue, Fin, Bryde's, Humpback, Orca, Sperm and so many more. They're all there and ready to take a peek at any whale watching boat. This area is also full of a wide variety of dolphins also ready to say hello.
If you'd rather get up close and personal with the friendly creatures under the sea, this region is great for scuba and snorkeling. If you're a true thrill-seeker, hop into one of the shark cages offered off Guadalupe Island.
If a more relaxing activity is more your style, this area is famous for its fishing spots. Spend enough time and you'll likely snag a marlin, sailfish, tuna, yellowtail, wahoo or roosterfish.
Food and Dining
This region has visitors from all over the world, and that's evident in the amount of dishes you can find. More than anything, though, you'll want to taste the fish tacos. There is a hot debate over whether they were invented in San Felipe or Ensenada, but either way you're going to want to sample these local treats.
With some of the most amazing fish in the world swimming just off the shores, you're almost required to try the seafood of the Baja peninsula.
Getting around this region by car or RV is a popular method of transportation. The Transpeninsular Highway is maintained, but can be very narrow and winding in most places. If you're going through the central region, driving at night is not recommended. Keep an eye out, as farm animals frequently wander right into the road. Not only are the animals a hazard, the local drivers have a reputation for not being the safest on the road.
Always be sure to travel everywhere with a full tank of gas, as many gas stations along the way are not always open or may be out of gas. Always have your Mexican tourist card and passport ready for the mandatory stops. Don't be worried, the soldiers are only interested in finding drugs or guns. They'll clear you and you'll be on your way.
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