Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
Located on the southern tip of Mexico’s Baja Peninsula, the city of Cabo San Lucas likely conjures up images of spring break revellers and sundrenched beaches. Yet there is so much more for visitors to discover here.
Formerly a sleepy fishing village, during the 80s and 90s, Cabo San Lucas’s popularity exploded and today the city of approximately 70,000 is one of Mexico’s most visited tourist destinations. With day spas, resorts, shops and glitzy golf courses, cruise visitors calling at Cabo on their trips around the Mexican Riviera will have no trouble making the most of the various pleasure-seeking pursuits on offer.
There are also plenty of action-packed pastimes available for those keen to get out and explore. The waters surrounding Cabo are some of the best in the world for sports fishing expeditions and whale watching tours are especially popular during the winter months.
Cabo San Lucas is situated at the southernmost tip of Mexico’s 1,000-mile long Baja California peninsula. Cruise ships visiting Cabo San Lucas anchor in the Bahia San Lucas (San Lucas Bay) located in the Sea of Cortez, not far from the famous rock arches. It is about a 10-minute ride by tender boat to Cabo’s marina.
Along the tender pier are a number of shops, cafés and a tourist information centre where day trips and other shore excursions can be booked.
Facilities at the pier include:
- Senor Frog’s (Mexican themed bar and grill franchise)
- ATMs (dispensing pesos and US dollars)
- Starbucks coffee shop.
Taxis are also readily available by the cruise tender terminal and there are also several bars and restaurants in the streets adjacent to the marina.
How to Get Around
Cabo San Lucas’s main avenue, Lázaro Cárdenas is a short walk from the tender pier, with most bars, clubs, shops and restaurants clustered within the downtown area. Bulevar Marina, Cabo’s other main drag runs parallel to the waterfront, making the central area of Cabo San Lucas easy to explore on foot.
Taxis are also available, but are considered expensive compared to other Mexican cities and are not metered. Nearly all drivers speak English but be sure to negotiate a fare beforehand.
Cabo also has a bus system, The Supercabos, with fares costing US$1 per ride, and services every 20 minutes. Buses stop wherever passengers request instead of just scheduled bus stops.
Hiring a car is the best way to explore the surrounding desert and surrounding Baja Peninsula towns. Car hire, however, is generally only recommended for those familiar with driving in Mexico and for those who can speak Spanish. Rental rates are usually between USD$50-80 per day.
Travel times from the port:
- It is a 15 minute journey to Cabo San Lucas town centre
- It is a 26 minute journey to Medano Beach
- It is a 19 minute journey to Puerto Paraiso Mall
- It is an 11 minute journey to Iglesia de San Lucas (Church of San Lucas).
- It is approximately a 1 hour journey to Todos Santos
- It is a 6 minute journey to Medano Beach
- It is a 39 minute journey to Los Cabos International Airport.
By water taxi:
- It is a 7 minute boat ride to Medano Beach.
- Currency - Cabo San Lucas uses the Mexican peso, which is available in 50c, MXN$1, MXN$2, MXN$5 and MXN$10 coin denominations and MSN$20, MSN$50, MSN$100, MXN$200 and MXN$500 banknote denominations. Like other resort towns in Mexico, US dollars are also accepted and dispensed at ATMs.
- Time Zone - Cabo San Lucas operates on Mountain Time (MST), which is 7 hours behind Coordinated Universal Time (UTC.)
- Weather - Cabo San Lucas experiences a tropical desert climate with low rainfall, although hurricanes are possible between July-September. The yearly average temperature sits at 23.6 degrees Celsius, with an average July high of 33 degrees Celsius and January maximum of 25.1 degrees Celsius.
- Medano Beach - Cabo’s main beach is a major tourist destination. With plenty of bars, shops and water sport activities for hire, 2-mile-long Playa Medano is a hive of activity at all times of year and generally considered to be safe for swimmers.
- El Arco (Land’s End) - One of the best ways to see the rugged rock formations that dramatically rise out of the sea is by glass bottom boat. The last two rocks mark the final land point between the Baja Peninsula and the Pacific Ocean. El Arco, the largest rock, features an impressive archway carved out by years of ocean movement. Plenty of marine life can be sighted around the rocks, including majestic sea lions.
- Sports Fishing Tours - Considered to be the marlin capital of the world, Cabo’s waters are also home to plentiful tuna, wahoo and sailfish, and keen anglers and casual fishermen take daily to the water for sports fishing tours.