Want to escape the crowds and feel safe and comfortable on your next trip? Baja California Sur is just the ticket for a post-pandemic getaway.
For anyone planning a vacation in our current travel climate, safety is understandably top of mind. This means packed beaches and crowded resort pools may not be the best option at the moment.
In addition to sunny skies and turquoise waters, space has become an important factor when choosing a destination. Situated between the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of California, the state of Baja California Sur, and in particular the small beachfront city of Loreto, offers exactly that. Plus so much more.
Loreto has the laid-back vibe of a traditional fishing village. Yet it also offers all of the amenities of a resort destination—minus the crowds. With more cacti than people and ample wide open spaces, the destination is naturally conducive to distancing.
Add to that a whole host of natural attractions and enticing activities and you have the perfect recipe for a safe and satisfying vacation experience.
Accommodations to call your own
Being a small city with mostly boutique, independent hotels, the tourism board of Loreto wanted to offer an alternative to traditional hotel stays as a way to encourage safer family or travel-pod visits.
A new campaign, #OneWeekTakeover, aims to promote those small hotels and alert people to the opportunity to take over an entire property to themselves. Some have as few as four guestrooms, and you can enjoy all the facilities, including kitchen, pool, gardens and more—privately and safely. The hotels are all independently run by owners who will act as concierges for guests and many of the packages include dining and tour programs.
History and magic
If it’s somewhere steeped in history you’re looking for, Loreto more than fits the bill. This was the first Spanish settlement on the Baja California Peninsula (founded in 1697). It was also the first capital of California, so historical sights abound.
Museo de las Misiones is one such worthy stop for history buffs. It houses a detailed collection of religious art, historic documents, tools and crafts. These tell the story of the settlement of the Baja Peninsula.
Just north of Loreto you’ll find the unique cave paintings of Canipole (also known as La Pinguica). They date back to prehistoric times and are designated for special protection by UNESCO. In addition, Loreto was awarded with the Pueblo Mágico (Magic Town) designation by Mexico’s Secretary of Tourism, in part for its rich history.
Land and water: endless opportunities
The waters of Baja Sur are one of the region’s biggest draws. Loreto sits along the Gulf of California. It’s a body of water so rich in diverse marine life that Jacques Cousteau referred to it as “the world’s aquarium.”
Along with five offshore islands in the Gulf, Loreto Bay (Bahia de Loreto) has been designated as a protected national marine park and is part of a UNESCO World Heritage site. The Gulf is also ideal for sport fishing, whale watching (January to mid-March), diving, paddling, snorkelling and more. While on land, golf, hiking, ATV adventures and mountain biking await.
Health and safety
Hotels and restaurants in Loreto and nearby towns are currently accepting guests at up to 50 per cent capacity. Golf, pools and other activities offered on hotel properties are open with social distancing practices in place. The state is also a recipient of the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) global safety stamp of approval in recognition of its safe travels protocols. All establishments adhere to a statewide mandate on safety and sanitation practices. Travellers will be required to fill out a health questionnaire on arrival and departure. They’re also required by law to wear a face covering. At the time of publication, a COVID-19 test or quarantine period is not required to visit Mexico.
Baja California Sur and Loreto not only appeal to those looking for a warm respite from winter weather. It’s ideal for those interested in connecting with nature, enjoying a slower pace and taking advantage of wide open spaces.
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