Los Cabos Feature
- Places to Explore
- Travel Tips
- Fodor's Choice
- Spanish Phrases
Top Experiences in Los Cabos
Catch and Release a Marlin
Let's start with the sport that originally put Los Cabos on the map, and keeps it there—fishing! Even for someone who has never been fishing, plying the indigo seas while savoring the stunning scenery from a new perspective makes for an amazing day. Boats from 23 to 110 feet long are available, and you can pay from $250 to $5,000 for the experience. Everyone, even non-anglers, will get excited when the line goes screaming out behind a jumping marlin, as it "greyhounds" off into the ocean. Catch (and, of course, release) all billfish—e.g. marlin and sailfish—but enjoy telling your tale.
"Under the Boardwalk, Down by the Sea"
If you arrive in Cabo San Lucas on a cruise, you'll disembark at its marina boardwalk. Approach from any other direction and you'll still find your way here. Lined with restaurants and bars that are terrific for people-watching, and complete with an air-conditioned shopping mall to pop into when the afternoon heat gets you down, perhaps no place in Baja pulses to the tourist beat quite the way Cabo's marina does. Yes, it's undeniably touristy, but we look at it this way: can all those visitors possibly be wrong?
The giant gray whales are snowbirds, too. Thousands of these mammoth cetaceans make their lengthy migrations between December and April, swimming nearly 10,000 km (6,000 miles) from Alaska and Canada to mate and give birth in Baja's warm(ish), west-coast lagoons; they make the trip without even stopping to eat, they're in such a rush to get to Mexico (we know how they feel).
Once the whales arrive, they cavort, spy-hop (poking their heads straight out of the water), and generally enjoy the seas of Baja, just like their human counterparts. A number of whale-watching tours are available, most of them centered around Scammon's Lagoon, San Ignacio Lagoon, and Magdalena Bay, where tourists go in pangas (small boats) out into the lagoons. Oftentimes, the whales and their new babies will approach the boat, rubbing against it, and looking with their sweet brown eyes at the people inside.
Enjoy a Maya Temazcal
Los Cabos has the spas, where giving yourself up to utter pampering and exotic treatments is just another day's vacation, but don't forget about the temazcal. This Maya sweat-lodge experience, at the Pueblo Bonito Pacífica Holistic Retreat and elsewhere, is spiritual in nature, working over your psyche as much as your body. Lead by a temazcalero, this ritual is a group experience, within a traditional enclosure, and incorporates bathing, steam at high temperatures, and medicinal plants. It requires an almost meditative commitment because extreme emotions often surface in these conditions. Your reward? A feeling of having been completely cleansed and renewed.
View Art and Wine in San José del Cabo
Art lovers unite on Thursday evenings in San José del Cabo, where the Art District Association is behind the Thursday Night Art Walk. With at least 15 impressive art galleries to visit in several square blocks, the district is located north and west of the town's centuries-old church. The art walk takes place from 5 to 9 pm, November through June. The informal, unguided tour makes for a fun opportunity to drink (free) wine, and be amazed by all forms and variations of art, from amber jewelry, photography, and Huichol beadwork to very pricey sculptures from top Mexican artists.
Hit the Surf
It's during the hot summer months, when tropical storms kick up giant waves, that you'll find the best surfing in these parts. If you are inspired to learn the sport, a number of tour operators offer lessons. By far, though, the easiest way to make this happen is to book a room at the boutique Cabo Surf Hotel, with perhaps the most prime Los Cabos surf location. Right out in front of the hotel are three top breaks, Old Man's, La Roca, and Acapulquito, all gentle, forgiving, feathering waves. The Mike Doyle Surf School has taken up residence in the hotel, and has 60 boards of all sizes, shapes, lengths, and compositions to encourage the beginner as well as outfit more advanced surfers.
What better place to enjoy and learn about tequila than in festive Los Cabos? Tequila tasting options abound: Toss down a couple of 70¢ shots of Cuervo. Order $2.80 shots of Don Julio with your lobster omelet at the open-air Crazy Lobster restaurant. Take a tequila class at Pancho's Restaurant & Tequila Museum from a certified "Tequila Ambassador." Enjoy the world's finest tequilas in the exclusive ambience of Las Ventanas al Paraíso resort. Los Cabos is the place to put tequila to the test.
Without a doubt, every bar and restaurant in Los Cabos offers a great selection; there are at least four "local" Cabo tequilas (though they're not grown or bottled in Baja but on Mexico's mainland, and then given company labels). Cabo Wabo makes a famed line of tequilas, the Cabo Surf Hotel has its own namesake in the tequila world, as has the Hotel California in Todos Santos. Las Varitas, a popular Cabo dance club located near ME Cabo Hotel by Meliá, also slapped its name on the stuff.
Enjoy the Fiestas
Festivals include Carnaval (February or March, before Lent); Semana Santa (March or April, the week before Easter Sunday); Día de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe (December 12); and Las Posadas (December 16–25). Don't expect to see much folkloric tradition in avowedly secular Cabo San Lucas or the Corridor. For that festival flavor of old Mexico, head to San José del Cabo, Todos Santos, La Paz, or other smaller, more traditional communities.
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