Los Cabos (the capes), a large municipality spanning the East and West Capes at the tip of the state of Baja California Sur, Mexico, is 900 miles south of San Diego. The Tropic of Cancer crosses the peninsula 50 miles north of Land’s End. The two main tourist areas of Los Cabos are Cabo San Lucas (Cabo), and San Jose del Cabo (San Jose). In the 1950s, Hollywood celebrities flew down in private planes to fish and hunt at a few exclusive resorts. The two-lane paved highway from Tijuana opened in 1974 and tourists began discovering our secret. The FONATUR, Mexico’s government agency responsible for tourism development, began the infrastructure that enabled Los Cabos to become the resort destination it is today. The area population is approximately 110,000 with over one million visitors a year.
Cabo San Lucas
Cabo San Lucas is at the tip of the peninsula, where the Sea of Cortes (Gulf of California) and the Pacific Ocean meet. Cabo San Lucas Bay, one of the most beautiful in North America, was once used by pirates to plunder Manila galleons returning from the Philippines. Cabo San Lucas is known for its famous stone arch, called El Arco in Spanish. Famous for world-class sportfishing, annual billfish tournaments award hundreds of thousands of dollars in prizes. Other big attractions are water sports, shopping, dining, and vibrant nightlife. The heart of Cabo is its marina; the home of sports fishing fleets, luxury yachts, and boats for tours and cruises.
San Jose Del Cabo
Smaller and quieter than Cabo and nineteen miles northeast, San Jose is a colonial oasis founded in 1730 by Jesuit missionaries on the banks of the Rio San Jose. The seat of government for the municipality, San Jose has an appealing downtown of tree-lined streets, a large main plaza, and a picturesque twin-spire church. There’s plenty to do around the area: every type of water and land sport is nearby, or rent a car and explore the East Cape and the Sierra de la Laguna range.
The Tourist Corridor
The oceanfront Tourist Corridor separates Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. Resort Hotels, endless beaches, and championship golf courses wind along this magnificent coastline.
Cabo Weather and Climate
If you’re looking for perfect weather, Cabo San Lucas is the right place. With an average of 300-350 days a year of sunshine, Cabo San Lucas is known for its mild, sunny, spring- and summer-like weather all year round. If you’re planning a trip to Cabo San Lucas in the near future, here’s what to expect from the weather.
In the fall. The Cabo San Lucas tourist season begins in October. In the fall, expect highs from 94° Fahrenheit in September to around 83° Fahrenheit in November. Lows will range from 75° Fahrenheit in September to 63° in November. The weather this time of year is generally sunny, although there may be some occasional rain. The weather in Cabo San Lucas is usually hot towards the start of fall, with a rather abrupt cooling around October. Bring a light sweater or coat for evenings and cooler days toward the end of the autumn season.
In the winter. The average highs for winter climb to around 77° Fahrenheit, while the lows sink to the mid-fifties. Winter weather is mostly sunny, dry, and mild. Temperatures at night can sometimes drop to the 40’s or even the 30’s, so be prepared with clothing appropriate to the temperature if you’re going during the winter months. There is often a cool Pacific breeze during this time of year; don’t expect hot or muggy weather.
In the spring. The spring has the driest weather in Cabo San Lucas. It’s common for no rainfall to occur at all between March and June. The temperatures rise very gradually between winter and spring. Highs will generally be in the 80’s, with lows around the 50’s or 60’s.
In the summer. Summer is the off-season for tourists in Cabo San Lucas, and it does get hot during this time. Average highs are around 90° Fahrenheit, but it isn’t unusual to see 100° or even 110° days.
Late summer also brings some rain; while hurricanes rarely hit Los Cabos directly, the area does experience the effects of the tropical storm season to the south with heavy rain and thunderstorms during this time. While rainstorms usually don’t last long, they are often intense. The rainfall stirs up nutrients in the ocean, however, which attracts fish. That’s why many fishing enthusiasts come to Cabo San Lucas in the off-season.
As for the ocean, the average temperature in the Sea of Cortes is around 75° Fahrenheit, with the Pacific around 10° cooler on average. Seas can get a bit chilly in the winter, dropping to the 60’s, and in the summer they can rise into the 90’s. Most of the time, the Sea of Cortes is warm enough for swimming.
The weather in Cabo San Lucas is beautiful and mild most of the year – not too hot, and not too cold. Be sure to check current weather advisories before leaving on your next vacation, however, so you can plan accordingly.
A Guide To Cabo San Lucas Beaches
If you’re planning to travel to Cabo San Lucas, it’s pretty likely you’ll be spending time on the beach. But which beach? There are plenty of beautiful stretches of sand in the area, and each has its own specialty. Here’s a guide to the beaches of Cabo San Lucas.
Playa El Medano. Medana Beach sweeps across the main hotel area of Cabo San Lucas, separating the city from the sea. It’s the best swimming beach in Cabo San Lucas, and it’s at the center of the action lined with bars, shops, and restaurants, and crowded with natives and tourists. Here, it’s easy to rent boats, surfboards, or any other water toy you could name – not to mention find a guide to take you on a glass-bottom boat tour of Los Arcos. It’s truly a place to see and be seen.
Lover’s Beach. Lover’s Beach is hidden among the jagged rocks that jut out from the Baja Peninsula at Land’s End. It’s very difficult to get to unless you have a boat. Luckily, it’s easy to find a water taxi from Cabo San Lucas. The area features towering rock formations and ocean on two sides, and it’s much more peaceful and solitary than Medano. Don’t swim or snorkel on the Pacific side; the currents are too strong.
Solmar Beach. This sparkling white sand beach sweeps beneath towering red stone cliffs. A few luxury hotels line the cliffs, but it’s still less crowded than Medano. It’s a beautiful place to take a long walk, sunbathe, jog, or build sandcastles—but it faces the Pacific, and the swimming here is dangerous.
Shipwreck Beach. A Japanese freighter sank just off the coast in 1964. Today, the ship provides a dramatic backdrop to the Ocean Course at Cabo del Sol. You can get to it from the entrance to Cabo del Sol today. It’s a good spot for diving, snorkeling, and surf fishing.
Widow’s Beach. This lovely secluded beach has some stunning volcanic rock formations as well as beautiful natural ocean scenery. It’s a good spot for swimming, and it’s got plenty of thriving tide pools – sure to keep the naturalist in your family busy for an entire day.
Costa Azul Beach. They say if you want to find the best places to surf and swim in a new area, follow the locals. This beach is a local surfing hotspot with some great surf. It may be too rough for swimming, though, so be wary.
With the Pacific on one side and the Sea of Cortez on the other, there’s no shortage of beautiful beaches at Cabo San Lucas. Whether you’re looking for a party atmosphere and a place to people-watch, a secluded stretch of sand where you can relax with a book, or a place to swim, surf, scuba dive, fish, or snorkel, you’re sure to find the perfect beach at Cabo San Lucas.
The state of Baja California Sur is on Mountain Time.
Both towns have ATMs and American Express offices. The currency is the Mexican Peso. Dollars can be exchanged at booths and at hotels at a slightly lower rate than banks. Banks are open weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. or later, and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Some do not exchange travelers checks. Ask before you queue. Shops and restaurants accept dollars but the rate may be lower than exchange booths and banks.
Taxis and car rental agencies are at the airport, major hotels, and in both downtown areas. A valid driver’s license and credit card is required to rent a car. You must be 21 years of age or older. SuburCabos and InterBaja buses run approximately every half hour from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. between Cabo and San Jose, with stops in the Corridor.
English is widely spoken in the tourist areas of Los Cabos, but knowing a few Spanish words like please (por favor) and thank you (gracias) will surely bring a smile.
Tipping is usually 15% of the bill at restaurants and bars. Tip bellboys, taxis, maids, etc., depending on the service. Taking a siesta (afternoon rest) is a Mexican tradition. Some businesses and offices close from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., more so in San Jose, reopening until 7 p.m. or later. In restaurants, it’s considered poor manners to present the check until it’s requested. Ask for “la cuenta, por favor” and your bill will be delivered to you.
Both towns have modern hospitals and good medical and dental facilities. There is a decompression chamber in Cabo San Lucas.
Long distance services are at all major hotels. Check rates before placing a call. Internet cafes and cellular phone providers are in both towns. The country code for Mexico is 52. The area code for Los Cabos is 624. Calls within Cabo San Lucas, the Tourist Corridor, and San Jose del Cabo are local calls with seven-digit numbers. To make a collect call dial 090 for the bilingual International Operator.
Long Distance Calling
To the U.S or Canada: Use the prefix 001, area code and number 001-111-222-3456 For within Mexico outside of Los Cabos Use the prefix 01, the area code and number 01-612-333-4567 For International calls, use the prefix 00, the country code, the area code and number 00-11-222-333-3456 To access US toll free numbers, dial 001-880 and the number: 001-880-555-1212. You will be charged regular long distance rates.
Most cellular phones from the U.S. and Canada may be programmed for local use through Telcel and Telefonica MoviStar, the local carriers. To dial a cellular phone from a landline or another cellular, use the prefix 044-624, then the seven-digit cellular number: 044-624-148-9999
The Tourist Corridor is a playground on the edge of the world, where the desert disappears into the sea. A four-lane highway carves through the 18-mile Tourist Corridor connecting Cabo San Lucas and San José del Cabo. Along the way championship, golf courses and luxury resorts wind along the stunning coastline with many sandy beaches ideal for a relaxing stroll.
Cabo San Lucas Crime Rate and Safety
Cabo San Lucas is a safe place to travel in Mexico. There is only one main road that goes in and out of Cabo which does not bring any drug-related violence to the area. The town of Cabo and surrounding areas are very safe, friendly, and easy going as people live the simple beach life. Twenty-four-hour security is provided for the entire property of Villa La Estancia, and the surrounding beach grounds. The neighboring resorts have the same security in place. It’s safe to walk into town from the resort and there is plenty to do within the resort itself.
In the event of an emergency dial 060. Los Cabos has a very low crime rate and is safe, especially when compared to larger, more urban areas in the U.S. and Canada. Do not take valuable to the beach and keep rental cars locked.
Consulary Offices in Cabo San Lucas:
Blvd. Marina Local C-4, Plaza Nautica, Col. Centro
Tel: (52)(624) 143-3566
The increase in violence in recent years has occurred near the U.S. border (Tijuana). Cabo San Lucas is not located near this area as shown on the map below