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About Los Cabos



The entire southern tip of the Baja Peninsula is known as Los Cabos. This is actually a county (municipio) within the Mexican state of Baja California Sur, including the towns of Cabo San Lucas (“Cabo,” at the tip of the peninsula) and San Jose del Cabo (“San Jose”, about 20 miles northeast of Cabo along the Sea of Cortez coastline). It also includes about half of the 50 mile distance to the town of Todos Santos on the Pacific Side, which is in the municipio of La Paz, our state capital.

Just north of San Jose up the Sea of Cortez shore, Los Cabos includes the “east cape” as far as the town of Los Barriles, which begins the municipio of La Paz on the Sea of Cortez side of the peninsula. The Sierra de la Laguna mountain range rises to 6000 feet in the peninsula’s center, physically dividing the Pacific and the Sea of Cortez sides. For convenience we and the Los Cabos MLS also cover Todos Santos, Los Barriles and the La Paz east cape up to La Paz. For ease in searching and for cross-system compatibility, on this site we use the areas as defined by the Los Cabos MLS. The area descriptions are given below in order starting from Cabo and vicinity, and going north and east along the coastline to San Jose, followed by the East Cape north of San Jose, then by the portion of the Sea of Cortez side within the La Paz municipio, and then the Pacific side including Todos Santos.

The climate along the Pacific is much cooler than anywhere on the Sea of Cortez, and there are not many safe places to enter the water. It is also farther from the international airport, and although a major paved highway provides good access, there is a gap in the electrical grid from a few miles north of Cabo nearly to Todos Santos. For these and other reasons development has been slower there than within the Corridor. However there do exist a series of lot subdivisions beginning about 10 miles north of Cabo, some others about halfway to Todos Santos in an area called Elias Calles (which has municipal water, but still not electricity), a very large subdivision at Cerritos (the only reliably safe swimming beach on the Pacific side) and smaller ones and individual homes in and around the naturally verdant Pescadero area, and in and around Todos Santos itself, where a local family has begun a major subdivision including a planned golf course.

Cabo is a center of night life and of activity of all kinds including water sports and fishing and boating, concentrated around its downtown core and marina. On the Pacific immediately north of town are hotels, a large fractional condo development and golf courses, plus neighborhoods of high end homes currently in development. Downtown Cabo hosts the Pedregal, the oldest planned community here and still one of the finest, Hacienda (under construction, and the newest) and many condominium projects either in town or within walking distance, plus many beachfront hotels along Medano Beach – a protected beach at which swimming is usually safe.

The 20+ mile “Corridor” between Cabo and San Jose is physically divided at its center by the wide Arroyo El Tule. The Cabo Corridor extends from the edge o Cabo north to the Arroyo, and includes a large hillside area called El Tezal with dozens of individual condo and single family developments in the modest to medium price range, most of which have views of the Bay of San Lucas, plus a number of master-planned residential communities, many of them very high-end, golf courses, hotels and timeshare hotels, plus new large luxury projects currently under construction at two of the area’s most popular swimming and snorkeling beaches, Montage at Santa Maria Bay, and the Chileno Bay community and golf course.

This part of the Corridor extends from the Arroyo El Tule north to San Jose, and features large master-planned luxury communities such as Cabo Real, Palmilla (including Villas del Mar) and Querencia, plus a number of hotels and timeshare hotels. At its northern end it includes hillside residential areas, more modestly priced like those in El Tezal, many with views of the Sea of Cortez and/or the bay of San Jose. Within its limits are swimming beaches at Palmilla and just north of the Mirador, which is also a popular spot for surfing and for watching surfers.

San Jose itself begins with Costa Azul, a beachfront area housing a number of condominium complexes, blending into hotels northward along the 5 or 6 miles of its shoreline. Here swimming is dangerous, except at the protected beach below El Mirador. Downtown San Jose has existed for over 200 years, and its recently renovated central square and surrounding blocks of well preserved older buildings have an Old Baja ambiance. Fine dining, artist’s studios and showrooms, and a more relaxed lifestyle, distinguish the town center from the more frenetic downtown of Cabo. Outside the center of town are neighborhoods in a variety of price ranges, mixing Mexican families, professionals, shops and activities with a strong “Gringo” presence. To the north of town along Highway 1 leading toward the International Airport about 10 miles out of town, are an array of neighborhoods, new and old, housing almost exclusively Mexican families. At the north border of San Jose is a mile-wide estuary at the far side of which is the master-planned marina community of Puerto Los Cabos. Physically part of the “east cape,” it is included within San Jose del Cabo by the MLS system.

This area begins just past Puerto Los Cabos and extends north along a coastline most of which is not yet serviced by paved roads or the electrical network. A number of large projects are under way, with the resulting likelihood of pavement and electricity coming along. At present, the 40 or so miles north of Puerto Los Cabos are characterized by individual lot subdivisions, individual homes in a variety of price ranges, and much more of a rustic, surfing oriented, or rural atmosphere than is found in the Corridor. Toward its northern end is the national underwater park at Cabo Pulmo, just north of which, starting at Cabo Colorado a few miles south of the town of La Ribera, there are both paved access and electricity. A major marina-centered development is underway at La Ribera, and from there to Los Barriles are a number of lot subdivisions and neighborhoods, mostly of modest to medium value. Just south of Los Barriles and neighboring Buena Vista (famous for wind surfing) several larger projects are also under way including condominiums and at least one golf course.

This begins with Los Barriles, which is still a quaint town oriented toward sport fishing and windsurfing. One large condo project is within the town, a large subdivision is being marketed north of town, and throughout the area are a variety of homes ranging from modest to high value, though none approaching the luxury of some of the master-planned developments in the Corridor. To the north along the Sea of Cortez shoreline are individual homes, a small hotel with paved runway, some lot subdivisions, and much farther north – more easily reached from La Paz on paved roads – the Bay of Dreams development and the small towns of Los Planes and La Ventana. The peninsula that separates them from the state capital to the west has a shoreline that is difficult to access and thus little developed, but it is the target of considerable current development effort.