DESTINATIONS

9 Reasons why people fall in love with Los Cabos

July 25, 2014
Fountain at Grand Regina on the Corridor overlooking Sea of Cortez

It’s easy to fall in love with Los Cabos although the reasons vary for different visitors. 

Los Cabos: Where the desert meets the water

Los Cabos: Where the desert meets the water

Located on a peninsula at the tip of Baja California (Land’s End), Los Cabos, Mexico is cradled by the aquamarine waters of the Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Cortez on its coasts. Visitors (primarily from the U.S. and Canada) come as vacationers and snowbirds, many returning year after year because of its many lures, which include miles of pristine sandy beaches.

Here are nine reasons why they fall in love once they get here:

1) The Weather

View from your lounge

View from your lounge

For those of us who leave home expecting to find reliably sunny skies on vacation, the arid desert climate of Los Cabos rarely disappoints. The average number of sunny days each year is 350. Temperatures hover as high as 90° between May and October but compared to the tropics, humidity is low. The heat of the day usually drops off in evenings with cool ocean breezes coming off the water. Rainfall is minimal, less than 10 inches per year.

2) One Destination: Three difference ambiances

Modern marina in Cabo San Lucas

Marina in downtown Cabo San Lucas

Two towns anchor Los Cabos: Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. In-between is an 18-mile stretch of modern highway that runs adjacent to the Sea of Cortez, called The Corridor. Visitors can find accommodations at each of these three diverse locations.

Cabo San Lucas is a bustling port of call with restaurants, a contemporary shopping center, clubs and other nightspots, and a world-class marina.

Night view of the historic square in downtown San Jose del Cabo

View of the historic square in downtown San Jose del Cabo at night

San Jose del Cabo is an older, more traditional Mexican town perfect for evening strolls. On Thursday nights, a popular Art Walk draws visitors to the restaurants and galleries located on the small streets off the historic square.

Some of the most posh resorts with dramatic ocean views sit along the Corridor (Corredor Turistico) that links the two towns, with picturesque desert terrain across the road.

3) Range of Accommodations

Pools at Zoetry Casa del Mar

Pools at Zoetry Casa del Mar

When a destination has more than 14,000 hotel rooms—in addition to thousands of condo and villa rentals—competition is keen, upping the levels of amenities and service, and providing visitors with a wide array of choices to fit every taste and budget.

Some of the private villas and ultra-luxury properties like Capella Pedregal, One&Only Palmilla, Esperanza and Rosewood’s Las Ventanas al Paraiso consistently draw A-list Hollywood celebrities whose faces (and bodies) appear on the pages of People Magazine.

View from Villa Delfines - A CaboVillas.com property

View from Villa Delfines – A CaboVillas.com property

In December 2013, Secrets Puerto Los Cabos opened on the water’s edge of a new 2000-acre master-planned community of private homes with a marina and two golf courses. The new property joins AMResort’s other all-inclusives in Cabo: Dreams, Secrets Marquis Los Cabos and the boutique Zoetry Casa del Mar wellness resort. An all-suite, family-friendly Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos also opened recently, minutes from downtown San Jose. 

4) Spas for Body, Mind & Spirit

Outdoor spa area at Auriga Spa at Capella Pedregal

Outdoor spa area at Auriga Spa at Capella Pedregal

Wherever you stay, you’re likely to find an extraordinary spa on-premises or nearby, offering treatments and products that build upon Mexican traditions. As long as reservations are made in advance, most resort spas are open to the public as well as guests.

A few examples:

  • The ocean view Auriga Spa at Capella Pedregal bases treatments on the different phases and energies of the lunar cycle. It was named one of the top 270 spas in the world by Condé Nast Traveler magazine with perfect scores for treatments, staff and facilities.
  • The One&Only Palmilla Spa offers a unique experience even for spa veterans; it is set in a sybaritic garden where treatments seamlessly flow between indoors and outdoors with birds and butterflies circling overhead.

5) Water Sports

Glass-bottom boat beside the iconic El Arco in Cabo San Lucas

Glass-bottom boat beside the iconic El Arco in Cabo San Lucas

With proximity to both the Sea of Cortez and Pacific Ocean, Los Cabos offers unparalleled opportunities for water activities including snorkeling, swimming with whale sharks, whale-watching, parasailing, or exploring the waters in a glass-bottomed boat. Between mid-December and Mid-April, the migration of thousands of whales can often be seen right from the shore.

Parasailing on the Sea of Cortez

Parasailing on the Sea of Cortez

Jacques Cousteau called Los Cabos “the aquarium of the world.” Anglers can rent fishing vessels to snag marlin, swordfish, snappers, dorado and more. The Bisbee’s tournament held in October has been drawing sports fishermen to the area for more than 30 years. Many restaurants offer “catch and cook” service to prepare the fish you catch.

Some complain that the vast majority of beaches in the area (even at resorts) are unswimmable because of rough waters and the strong undertow but several public beaches are safe for swimming, among them Lover’s Beach near Cabo San Lucas and the one at Chileno Bay on the Corridor. In addition, the destination offers a multitude of infinity pools at water’s edge with swim-up bars. Who can beat that?

Fountain at Grand Regina on the Corridor overlooking Sea of Cortez

Fountain at Grand Regina on the Corridor overlooking Sea of Cortez

6) Great Dining

Fresh-catch at El Farallon at Capella Pedregal

Fresh-catch at El Farallon at Capella Pedregal

Regional cuisine, Baja wines and tequila take top billing at many hotel and resort dining rooms and bars (which are usually open to the public) as well as at the informal taquerias, snack bars and restaurants in the two towns and along the Corridor. Because the weather is temperate, many are open-air without roofs, offering dining under the stars or even on the beach.

While the desert may seem antithetical to organic farming, farm-to-table dining has taken off in Los Cabos. For example, Chef Enrique Silva operates a charming farm-to-table restaurant at Huerta Los Tamarindos that offers roll-up-your-sleeves cooking classes for individuals or groups. His tamarind margaritas are to die for. Not too far away is Flora Farms, another lovely setting for an authentic organic experience. Singer-songwriter Adam Levine of The Voice recently got married here.

Freshly picked salad at Huerta Los Tamarindos

Freshly picked salad at Huerta Los Tamarindos

Some of my other favorites:

  • For an elegant night out, El Farallon, the restaurant at Capella Pedregal is perched on a high cliff above the ocean. Diners choose their dinner from a stand that looks like a fish market (featuring fresh fish from local waters) and then the fish is prepared and served tableside.
  • Edith’s restaurant, located in downtown Cabo San Lucas near Medano Beach, serves prime cuts of grilled meats and fish along with more traditional Mexican specialties. The vibrant decor and linens, homemade tortillas, oversized Margaritas and lively music combine for a fun evening with a splash of local color.
  • A more economical choice: For gargantuan size shrimp-cocktails served in goblets or fresh fish tacos, try Taqueria Rossy in San Jose del Cabo. (Local legend has it that George Clooney eats here). Pork lovers will swoon over the carnitas at Los Michoacanas, with locations in both San Jose and Cabo San Lucas.

The destination’s growing number of culinary offerings is showcased each December at Sabor a Cabo, a weeklong wine and food festival.

7) Golf Courses

El Dorado golf course on the Corridor

El Dorado, a private golf course on the Corridor

Known as a golf mecca, Los Cabos has 12 championship golf courses (public and private) that include ones designed by Jack Nicklaus, Greg Norman and Peter Dye. The greens fees are high but the settings unique. The one at Cabo del Sol, for example, has both Ocean and Desert courses. Two new courses are scheduled to open this fall including the first designed by Tiger Woods outside the U.S.

8) Ease and Accessibility

Horses on the beach

Horses on the beach near Zoetry Casa del Mar

Los Cabos is an easy place to land, both literally and figuratively There are currently flights from 24 cities in the U.S. and Canada and several airlines (United, Delta and Alaska) will be launching new direct flights this December from Atlanta, Detroit, New York City, Minneapolis, San Diego, Seattle, Salt Lake City, Washington D.C., Seattle and Portland. Los Cabos International Airport (SJD) recently added a second terminal as well. New and improved roads have halved the time it takes to get to the arty town of Todos Santos and La Paz (capital of the state).

Once you hit the ground, English is spoken almost universally and distances aren’t great getting to and from the airport or from one side of town to the other, so you can rent a car or use taxis–or simply ride a horse along the beach. The dollar (as well as plastic) is accepted as currency in most places so American visitors don’t need to worry about converting money. Although there has been drug-related violence in some parts of Mexico, no such State Department travel advisory is in effect for Baja California Sur or Los Cabos.

9) The People

Happiness starts at check-in

Happiness starts at check-in: Front desk staff at Grand Regina

However, the biggest draw that makes me and others return year after year and fall in love with Los Cabos is the warmth and hospitality of the Mexican people, evident in their smiles and eagerness to welcome and engage with visitors.


Some prior posts about Los Cabos on More Time To Travel:

For additional information: Los Cabos Tourism Board


[Update 9/27/16: Secrets Marquis Los Cabos and the boutique Zoetry Casa del Mar wellness resort are no longer AMR properties; they are under changed ownership.]

  • Reply
    Arline Zatz
    July 26, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    Wow, I have to visit this Paradise. i’ve kept away from Mexico due to so much crime I’ve read about, but I’m sure Los Cabos is well-guarded and secure. You’ve described a most tempting vacation spot and I’ll have to put it on my ‘to do’ list. So far, Maui is my #1 place. I’ve been there 13 times and am planning another trip in 2015. Thanks so much, Irene, for the lovely photos and marvelous description.

    Best, Arline Zatz

  • Reply
    terry wengdal
    July 27, 2014 at 1:36 am

    I went there for the first time last year with my 22 year old and her boyfriend. It is the best place. There is something for everyone and it is safe. The Mexican ambiance is everywhere without having to go to Mexico where you do have to have your wits about you. I have since sold Cabo and everyone that goes loves it.
    I hope I get the opportunity to go back.
    Terry

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      July 27, 2014 at 8:45 am

      So glad you enjoyed your visit as much as I have enjoyed mine! Yes, great for young people, too!

  • Reply
    Betsy Wuebker
    July 28, 2014 at 10:40 am

    Wow, very comprehensive look at a favorite destination. Mouth-watering photos of the food!

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      July 28, 2014 at 11:09 am

      The motivation behind this particular post was to refresh my own memory in planning for an upcoming radio interview on what Los Cabos has to offer!:-)

  • Reply
    noel
    July 28, 2014 at 10:53 am

    Excellent post Irene, haven’t been in awhile but with your wonderful tips, I just may visit again soon!

  • Reply
    Suzanne Fluhr
    July 28, 2014 at 3:17 pm

    You had me at 350 days with no rain per year—-therefore, not much worry about a total vacation rain out. Mr. Excitement and I have a world wide reputation as drought enders.

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      July 28, 2014 at 10:14 pm

      The weather is quite remarkable, especially for someone coming from the East Coast or up North.

  • Reply
    Michele Peterson
    July 28, 2014 at 4:11 pm

    I haven’t been to Los Cabos for 20+ years and camped on the beach during that visit. It looks as though it’s changed quite a bit since then! That shot of the Fountain at Grand Regina is gorgeous!

  • Reply
    Donna Janke
    July 28, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    I’ve not been to Los Cabos but over the last few months have heard a lot about it from people who have. Your post shows why so many people like it. I hope to get there someday.

  • Reply
    Shelley
    July 28, 2014 at 5:11 pm

    We went to Los Cabos a few years ago for a family wedding and loved it. It would be great to go again some day to explore a bit more on our own.

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      July 28, 2014 at 10:16 pm

      Because of the spectacular setting and reliable weather, it’s a very popular wedding destination.

  • Reply
    Patti
    July 28, 2014 at 5:14 pm

    One of our favorite places. We love the Hilton on the beach, it’s the ultimate in luxury and they have an infinity pool to die for. You don’t have to twist my arm to convince me to return one day! We’ve been twice and wouldn’t think twice about a 3rd trip. And yes, the locals are so warm and welcoming.

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      July 28, 2014 at 10:17 pm

      The beach at the Hilton is on an inlet making it one of the few swimmable beaches and a great choice for families.

  • Reply
    Neva @ Retire for the Fun of it
    July 29, 2014 at 12:05 am

    You photos and descriptions are amazing and so beautiful. That infinity pool with bars attached sound so inviting. What a friendly respite to indulge yourself in.

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      July 29, 2014 at 8:31 pm

      It’s a great place to enjoy the outdoors and truly relax!

  • Reply
    Linda ~ Journey Jottings
    July 29, 2014 at 7:20 am

    This looks soooo exotic!
    Fabulous weather, fresh food, blue sea and blue skies – It looks perfect 🙂

  • Reply
    Kristin Henning
    July 29, 2014 at 12:03 pm

    Thanks for the overview of the three parts of Cabo. Useful to know.

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      July 29, 2014 at 8:34 pm

      It can help you plan your trip by choosing one for your trip—and then try the other two when you return again and again:-)

  • Reply
    Sand In My Suitcase
    July 29, 2014 at 12:19 pm

    We love Los Cabos, as you know – so much that we wrote the “Cabo Insider” travel app on it :-). It’s great that you too recognize that the Mexican people there really help to make a vacation special. All the servers and people in the hotel and tour industry are so friendly and helpful. And we’ve always felt safe in Cabo. Our timeshare there is like our second home.

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      July 29, 2014 at 8:35 pm

      The first time we visited Cabo, we knew we wanted to return so like you, we became timeshare owners too. I’m hoping that our weeks coincide one of these times:-)

      Yes, your app is terrific!

  • Reply
    Carole Terwilliger Meyers
    July 29, 2014 at 9:12 pm

    It’s been a long time since I’ve visited Los Cabos. Thanks for bringing me up to date. Time to go again.

  • Reply
    Marilyn Jones
    July 30, 2014 at 1:25 am

    Oh, it looks so heavenly! Your reasons to visit round out a great article!

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      July 30, 2014 at 8:51 am

      I probably could have made the same case with pictures alone:-)

  • Reply
    Michelle
    August 1, 2014 at 2:03 pm

    Los Cabos looks so beautiful and relaxing! I love Mexico overall, and am not afraid to travel there even though some people are at this time. Thanks for the future travel idea!

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      August 1, 2014 at 2:06 pm

      I never have safety concerns in Los Cabos—or let me put it this way, any more than I have in NYC!:-)

  • Reply
    A Cook Not Mad (Nat)
    August 1, 2014 at 3:51 pm

    We’ve heard so much about Los Cabos and have yet to make it there. Looks like a great place to grab a drink and relax.

  • Reply
    The GypsyNesters
    August 1, 2014 at 9:00 pm

    Wow! We love Mexico – Cabo is now officially on the list!

  • Reply
    Anita @ No Particular Place To Go
    August 2, 2014 at 8:14 am

    Beautiful photos and some compelling reasons to visit this area of Mexico. I can’t believe we’ve neglected this area! Looks like you could multiply your nine reasons by ten and still have many leftover places and fun things to do!

  • Reply
    Muza-chan
    August 17, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    Beautiful place…

  • Reply
    Will
    September 8, 2014 at 1:42 am

    Such a stunning place … I may have to stomach the expensive ferry ride across from Mazatlan to see this amazing beach resort!

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