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South of the Border’s End: Cabo San Lucas

Story and photograph by Lily Louise Henson

At the southernmost tip of Mexico’s Baja Peninsula, land, water and sky meet in a stunning paradise.

The resort town of Cabo San Lucas, situated at land’s end, offers many ways to enjoy all three:

Land

The Pacific Ocean meets the Sea of Cortez at Cabo San Lucas, and the force of the craxhing waves has carved rugged rock formations, including the famous El Arco (The Arch), an awe-inspiring doorway from the ocean to the sea. The Hotel Hacienda Beach resort, whose grounds offer an incredible view of The Arch, is the perfect place to base your exploration of the area. Situated on Medano Beach, Cabo’s safest swimming beach, the Hacienda offers patio rooms, suites, townhouses, and beach cabanas just a few steps from the warm waves of the Bay of Cabo San Lucas. The Hacienda is a well-established, non-chain hotel with beautiful landscaping, fountains, an open-air lobby, restaurant and oyster bar, and a palm-thatch roofed beach bar, Zorrillos, at which it is impossible not to sink into the relaxed and carefree vibe of Cabo. The Hacienda is just a short walk from the downtown shops of Cabo San Lucas, where the people are friendly and eager to offer deals on their colorful pottery, silver, clothing and souvenirs. Nearly everyone speaks English and the U.S. dollar is accepted as readily as pesos. Golf in Cabo has grown to become a top attraction, with five championship courses that have been rated as among the best in the world. Tee off amid beautiful desert landscapes surrounded by mountains and breathtaking views of the shinning Sea of Cortez. You will experience unforgettable rounds of gold on these spectacular courses! Visit www.cob.com to see all five. After a day on the greens, you should be hungry, and seafood, of course, is the highlights of dining in Cabo San Lucas, although there are also steakhouses, Italian, Brazilian, American and traditional Mexican restaurants. Edith’s, just a block from the Hotel Hacienda, provides impeccable service in a colorful, festive garden setting. Try the Caesar salad for two, prepared tableside. In downtown Cabo San Lucas, Felix’ Fine Mexican and Seafood features the world’s largest salsa bar with 30 to 40 fresh salsas available every evening. There are bars and restaurants all over town boasting the “best” margarita in Caho… have fun deciding for yourself which establishment can claim that honor.

Water

The centerpiece of Cabo San Lucas is its bustling marina, mestled in the town’s natural harbor. Second only to Greece, this large and modern marina is the most expensive in the world. The waters off of Baja Peninsula’s southern tip are nicknamed “Marlin Alley” and sport fishing is king here. Year-round, every morning around 6 a.m., the docks are filled with visiting fishermen and local captains and crew wishing each other suerte, or good luck, for the day’s attempts at catching a record-breaker. Around 3 p.m. the charters return flying flags that signify their catches; marlin, yellow fin tuna, red snapper, sea bass, sailfish, grouper and mahi-mahi are common and plentiful. Catch andrelease is encouraged for preservation of the billfish. For tuna and mahi-mahi you are invited to take your catch to one of many local restaurants that will prepare it for your dinner. Although it is possible to arrange for a boat on-site, it is best to plan ahead to ensure availability. Cabo Magic, founded in 1999 by friendly and knowledgeable Tommy and Lori Garcia, arranges charters on a fleet of well-appointed, independently owned charter boats that range in size from 26 to 53 feet. Cabo Magic also offers sunset cruises where you can relax, have a drink and enjoy the most captivating sunset views from the best seat… the water. Fishing is optional. Other ways to explore and enjoy the beautiful blue waters include diving and snorkeling, kayaking, wave runners and other water sports. Dinner and sightseeing cruises aboard glass-bottom boats and even an 1885 pirate ship, -- afford views of native wildlife: osprey, frigates, pelicans, sea lions, porpoises, and January through March, gray whales wintering in the warm waters.

Sky

The sunrises and sunsets, vibrant and spectacular over the sea and the ocean, should not be missed. With over 300 days of sunshine each year, Cabo San Lucas provides endless opportunities for picture-perfect views. To make your way there in the sky, head for San Felipe International (GPS N3056 W114.49) and clear in the customs, fuel up and then off to Cabo San Lucas. Cabo San Lucas Airport (GPS N2256 W109.56) has a 5000 ft. paved runway but no services. It may be a good idea to “buzz the town for taxi” first. Bring your own tie-downs and you may park for about $10 a day. Be sure to get there early; there is no night flying in Mexico. For further airport or customs information, contact the Baja Bush Pilots at (480) 730-3250 or email erik@bajabushpilots.com.

Planning Your Visit

General Information: www.loscaboguide.com
Hotel Hacienda Beach Resort: www.haciendacabo.com
Cabo Magic Sportfishing: www.cabomagic.com
Baja Bush Pilots: www.bajabushpilots.com


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