Saturday, January 5, 2013

Baja Getaway - San Jose Del Cabo




Happy 2013!

I've been extremely inconsistent in my blogging this winter but I'm determined to at least continue to post tips and pics from getaways to share the fun and conveniently document the hotels, restaurants, and spots we liked for future sharing with friends and family who might be making a trip.  After a genuinely heartwarming family Christmas on the east coast  last month Nic and I headed to Baja for 5 days in San Jose Del Cabo -- the town between the Cabo airport and the resorty area of Cabo San Lucas.  We had wanted to plan a hot weather trip and while airfare was ridiculously expensive everywhere I had read a great article in Budget Travel about San Jose Del Cabo and how it was an inexpensive and interesting alternative to the big resorts in Cabo San Lucas. It was uber relaxing and I would definitely recommend a trip to that area of Mexico.  It was actually really sad to see how empty all the shops and restaurants were in the busiest time of year down there--- the violence in other parts of Mexico seems to really be killing tourism in Baja but it was VERY safe and affordable. Here are some of our favorite spots and tips!

Spots We Liked!
San Jose Del Cabo is the town we stayed in, about 20 minutes from the airport. We stayed in the charming Historical part of the town which is full of art galleries. It was about 2 miles from the beach but we had a rental car and there were plenty of restaurants to walk to. The little town caters to tourists but since it is not on the beach there are no huge resorts or chain restaurants and the little shops and restaurants were cute.

A street near our hotel in San Jose Del Cabo

The beach at San Jose Del Cabo - 2 miles from our hotel

Giant margaritas at TEO grill in San Jose Del Cabo - Great homemade flour tortillas here!


Todos Santos is a town on the Pacific side of the Baja peninsula, about an hour and 10 minutes from San Jose Del Cabo or the airport. It was further from the big resorts and still by the water but very cute. There were also a lot of art galleries here and some cute boutique hotels as well as surfing beaches. I think if we came back we would try to stay here for a couple days.

Los Cerritos Beach was a beach I read about on TripAdvisor.com just about 20 minutes before Todos Santos on the highway that goes along the coast from Cabo. Drive about 25 minutes from Cabo San Lucas towards Todos Santos and the little surfing town Pescadero. You will see a roadside sign for Los Cerritos Beach club in 2 km. In 2km you will see an unmarked shabby sand road off the highway going toward the ocean, take it :)  You will arrive at the beach where you can park for $5, watch surfers or rent a surfboard and have a surfside lunch or drinks at Los Cerritos Beach Club. The food's not amazing but the chips and salsas are plentiful and the beer is cold ---- we felt like we had taken the sketchy dirt road to heaven!!



The road to Los Cerritos Beach

Happy campers at Los Cerritos Beach

Los Cerritos "Beach Club"

Token Corona commercial shot

Los Cerritos Beach - That hotel looked interesting

Playa Publica (between San Jose Del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas) look for signs from the highway, this very cute little public beach is beautiful and family friendly. I would recommend stopping at the Walmart on the highway on your way to fill a cooler with beer and buy a few snacks for the day :)

Playa Publica

Rainy Day Activities and Food:
Art Galleries (San Jose Del Cabo) - San Jose Del Cabo is FULL of art galleries but we only walked through a few on our rainy day and Galleria Corsica was our favorite, really cool stuff. Every Thursday night all the art galleries in the area stay open late and have free wine so you can have a drink and mingle as you walk through them all.

Cabo SUP (Medano Beach, Cabo San Lucas) --- go very early so you can avoid the a-holes on jetskis. We went in the afternoon and got knocked off our boards a few times by those turds. We also saw a huge seal come up right by my board which of course sent "Jaws" flashbacks through my head, but it was still fun and pretty!!! Just up the street from Cabo SUP is a very unassuming local little coffee shop called El Jarro Cafe - GO THERE and order tacos. It's not a place you would think to try but the guy who worked a the SUP place recommended it and it had the best fish tacos I had on the trip. 

Baja Brewery (San Jose Del Cabo) -- yummy beer and onion rings do the trick on any rainy afternoon :)

D'Pancake House (San Jose Del Cabo) -- Great breakfast place with a huge menu and a mix of locals and some tourists. 


Where to Stay:
We stayed at the El Encanto inn in San Jose del Cabo. It was very affordable and super charming. Our room was nice, big and cleaned daily by the friendly staff. The pool was really nice and clean and the gardens are very pretty. It even has it's own little chapel if you want to get married there! It's within walking distance to a bunch of restaurants and all the art galleries in San Jose Del Cabo. I would totally recommend this if you don't mind NOT staying on the beach.  If we do this trip again we talked about staying there for a couple days and then maybe finding a beach hotel in Pescadero or Todos Santos for the second half of our trip.


Half of our room at El Encanto (at night)

The other half of the room
So what do you think? Are you ready to go to Mexico?

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