cabo san lucas, mexico
Just back from a trip to Cabo San Lucas, at the tip of Baja, Mexico. I figured July is the perfect time to avoid the crowds & high season rates, due to the heat, swine flu threat, border drug wars & of course the recession. Pretty well right about the crowds - except when the occasional cruise ship wandered into the harbor, traffic was pretty light & prices were reasonable (almost free!).
We stayed at Tesoro de Los Cabos which is on the harbor, & the harbor is where everyone ends up, so may as well stay there. Tesoro has a great view of the harbor & ocean. Also all the rooms have been recently renovated & the AC works great (critical concern).
Just a word of caution for those of you who have been through 'time share' hard sells before. As soon as you land in San Jose del Cabo & clear customs, you will be accosted by 'organizers' who offer numerous freebies if you're willing to tour a sister resort & sit through a short sales pitch. My buddy & I decided to take our organizer up on this, as we were offered comp'd taxis to & from the airport (20 miles & appx. $50 each way w/ gear), free parasailing for two persons, & a $100 dinner voucher at yet another of Tesoro's sister resorts. So the next morning we took a free taxi up to an absolute world-class resort. At that point, the short sales pitch became a 3-hour tour with breakfast & finally the hard-sell ending over lunch. However, once we refused to buy on the spot for the final time, they signed all our vouchers & sure enough came through with all the promised freebies. I actually enjoyed the tour, as it showed me how people with real money live on vacation! Even during the hard-sell portion, they kept plying us with free Corona's like they thought enough of them would surely convince us to sign up. Then they got us a free taxi back to Tesoro.
Desert / ocean / land's end arch photo opportunities are abundant. You don't want to miss a sunset cruise (all the hotels will set them up for you) out around the arch - it's worth it. As far as the diving goes, it's not the Carribean & it's not for everyone. Pacific diving & dive sites change constantly. Water temperature varies from cold to hot on the same dive & visibility is not dependable. But there's a lot to see that you will never see in the Carribean. It can be tough for underwater photography.
Cabo was a blast for a week of good food & cheap beer. And of course, if you start to miss home, there's Cabo Wabo, Margaritaville, El Squid Roe, Hooters, Hard Rock Cafe & plenty of local bars to take the edge off. And then there's also a McDonald's & Burger King for that sudden burger urge, just like in the States. The other good reason to stay on the harbor is you can pretty much walk anywhere you need to get.
As someone who has flown internationally on a fairly regular basis for the last 20 years, it's a great time to travel if you can afford to. It's a rare international flight these days that's full, & it's been a while since I could say that. And of course the airlines are dealing!
Good Luck & Keep Shooting........................
Photo credits: Conchasdiver.