Sunday, June 16, 2024

Learning to love Los Cabos: A perspective from our CEO

OK, I admit it. My first impression of Los Cabos was not very positive.

Los Cabos struck me as not very authentically Mexican — US $25 million homes; ultra-luxury hotels; an Ashley Furniture Store with prices listed only in US dollars; Costco Home Depot, Walmart, and multiple Mexican grocery store chains all within a mile or two. At first, I really didn’t understand the place.

But after several years and nearly a dozen trips there, I have absolutely learned to love the area. Here are the top five things that helped me learn to love Los Cabos.

  1. It’s important to remember that Los Cabos is not one specific place, but rather a series of towns very different from one another: San José del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas, with  Todos Santos and La Paz located nearby. All of these are accessible on a vacation to the area, with La Paz a bit of a drive north. San José del Cabo is the most colonial of the towns, with great architecture, a wonderful evening vibe of great bars and restaurants, and a walkable town center. Cabo San Lucas is the epicenter of the boating culture of the area, with hundreds (if not thousands) of boats to rent in the marina and cruise ships continually docking in the bay. Todos Santos is the hip, chill, up and coming beach town on the Pacific Ocean. La Paz is a larger city with great day trips to incredible beaches and world-class sea life viewing in the Gulf of California.
  2. It’s a place to become a foodie. Los Cabos has a mind-blowing variety of food experiences, from stunning desert oasis farm to fork restaurants like La Huerta, Flora Farms, Acre, and Torote, to ocean cliffside restaurants throughout the tourist corridor.  From “feet in the sand” places to get tacos in Todos Santos like The Green Room, to rooftop restaurants with live music in San José del Cabo, you have access to a huge variety of foods like in few other places.
  3. The golf is world class. Even if you are a very mediocre golfer like me, you will want to experience the golf courses in the area. The course conditions are perfect. The views of the ocean and surrounding mountains are gorgeous. The weather is perfect. The contrast of the desert, the sea, and the green fairways are beautiful. Take my advice and don’t keep score — just enjoy the amazing experience!
  4. The water has something for everyone. The beaches are a bit different here than most places in Mexico and you need to do your homework in advance. Many are not ideal for walking, but there are some great options for swimming, like Playa Chileno, Playa El Medano, and Playa Santa Maria near San José del Cabo. At certain times of the year, it is very common to spot whales from the beaches. Near La Paz further north, you can find one of the most stunning beaches in the world at Playa Balandra. Los Cabos is a great place to rent a boat and the options for tours are endless. From whale watching, to snorkeling, to world-class fishing, to sunset cruises, or just to do some beach hopping – you can easily find your perfect boat day here.
  5. Embrace driving a car here. Things are spread out, but it’s easy and safe to drive.  Having a car will allow you to see and do much more and greatly enhance your experience. However, renting a car in Cabo — as is the case almost anywhere in Mexico — requires a bit of patience.

Although the cities of Cabo San Lucas and San José del Cabo have grown from a combined 29,000 people in 1990 to over 350,000 today, I think that the area is still in its early stages of growth.

There is so much to offer and the area is easily accessible from the West Coast of the U.S. and the booming Southwest as well. New domestic and international flights are frequently being added, new hotels opening, and new homes and condominium construction are visible nearly everywhere throughout the area.

Some places on the peninsula are just starting to grow on the East Cape, like Cabo Pulmo and Los Barilles. Parts of Los Cabos feel well-developed, while others are just getting started. It makes for an interesting mix.

Come see for yourself this uniquely beautiful and fast-developing part of Mexico, and be blown away by the variety of sights and experiences it offers. You’ll find it hard not to fall in love with it!

Travis Bembenek is the CEO of Mexico News Daily and has been living, working or playing in Mexico for over 27 years.


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