Just chillin’ in Baja.
Whenever I think of Mexico, a few things come to mind. Beautiful beaches, ancient civilizations, the largest bustling city in the world and, of course, the phrase "Don’t Drink The Water!" And that is just on the mainland. Nestled between the United States and Guatemala, Mexico is the gateway to Central America. And even some locals do not know that it is actually considered North America.
But when I think of Baja, impressions are startlingly diverse.
Baja Norte holds the stigma of Tijuana, one of the busiest border crossings in the world, where drug trafficking, pharmacies, immigrant smuggling and police work are entrepreneurial enterprises. In order to find Baja’s identity, you must go south, deeper into the Peninsula, considered the backwards cousin of the giant mainland.
Baja’s reputation redeems itself as it boasts some of the best surfing in the world on the Pacific side. Bronzed, biceped beauties migrate south year after year in search of killer breaks just as the ancient grey whales make their pilgrimage north.
Through deserts, mountains and moonscape barren land, the narrow two-laned Highway 1, otherwise known as the Transpeninsular, the main road through the peninsula, switchbacks through lush green mountains reminiscent of Costa Rica, past mountain villages selling fresh pitajaya (cactus fruit) and dried mango (in season). You’ll glimpse azure shoreline expected of the Mediterranean, surely not of the Sea of Cortez.
By the time you’ve reached the end of the over 1000-mile road you encounter Baja’s sore thumb: the freshly blacktopped, neon, timeshare salesman-infested waters of sunburned Cabo San Lucas, the location of E! Wild On! "reality" shows and overpriced resort hotels. Many a spring breaker has lost nights here due to fiery tequila shots at El Squid Roe, only to find themselves the unfortunate star of Girls Gone Wild videos as seen on T.V.
I swear that was not me… this is my first time in Cabo!
What follows over the next few stories are excerpts and edited entries from my travel diary. It’s an intimate look at my two weeks traveling through sun- and sweat- drenched Baja California Sur.
You can reach me at email@example.com.
Catch Up On The Journey
1: Leaving Los Angeles
The thrills Delara gets flying over the blue of the Sea of Cortez, fade quickly as she hits the blacktop to try to catch a ride into town.
2: A Day Out in San Jose
Snorkeling and photo-snapping might be solitary activities, but solitary anything isn’t on Delara’s itinerary for the day.
3: "Hey, Nice tits!" – Welcome to Cabo San Lucas
A word to the Cabo San Lucas newcomer: those guys hawking bracelets? Actually drug dealers who do a bit of pimping out young Mexican girls on the side.
4: Following the Expat Trail to Todos Santos
By the way, the hostel in Todos Santos closed down. Delara wanted you to know, since no one told her. She’ll get to surf though, no matter what.
5: Surfing at the Tropic of Cancer
Delara and her surfmates are the closest beings to the sun, but that’s nothing compared to the free concert she attends in the bathroom that night.
6: Yoga and Escape to La Paz
The energy turns strange and Delara suddenly wants out of town, or is that just what it’s like when the rainy season threatens?
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