The beaches, the relaxed atmosphere, great food.
the heat can get excessive.
A great little spot.
There are alot of things that you can do on the beach. We rented the banana boats. I remember doing it when I was younger and I had so much fun. The kids were dying to do it so I said ok. I didnt remember how exhausting it was holding on to that thing. I felt like I got a full upper body work out.We got thrown off about three times which is all...more
The kids wanted to go horse back riding so I waited for the sun to go down alittle to do this activity. I expected the guy to charge about 7 to 10 dollars for about 40 to 50 minutes. He told another person $15 for an hour. Then i heard him tell another Mexican tourist 4 dollars so i had it in my mind that that was what i was going to pay too. So...more
In the morning the tide is out as far as a mile in certain places. As the morning goes on the tide comes in and the water activities begin. Later in the evening the water oes out again. This part of the Sea of Cortez is the perfect place for kids to go swimming. There really arent any waves in the summer which is good and bad. Its good because i...more
The malecon is the boardwalk or beach promenade. Theres people from early morning to late at night here. Theres street performers, street vendors, locals checking out the tourist, tourist checking out the locals.During the day, people stroll the malecon, look for a place to eat, looking to buy stuff. At night the people are ready to check out the...more
Well I tried to get in here but everything was locked up. So I did the next best thing. I climbed the hill to the shrine of La Virgen de Guadalupe and I took some awesome pictures of the lighthouse and panoramic views of San Felipe.This is a working light house and at night you can see it working.more
I decided it check out this local shrine on top of the hill. Everyone thought I was crazy because it was 117 degrees outside and how in the heck am i going to hike up the hill. Just walking around the town for half a block left us soaked in sweat.Luckily it wasnt so bad. first of all there are stairs which make it alot easier to climb, second of...more
Many people enjoy watching the tides and walking along the beach when it happens and actually, San Felipe is known for it's extreme tidal changes. If the tide goes out, it goes reeaally out. Here's a link for tide calendarsDuring low tide you might wanna watch for stingrays. They are common in the Sea of Cortez. One of our salesmen down there told...more
The Sea of Cortez contains some of the finest fishing in the world and boasts an estimated 800 varieties of identified fish. Marine biologists suggest nearly four times that many. The majority of the varieties are found close to the shores. San Felipe has always been a fishing village due to the abundance of ocean resources. Not only are "game...more
The following events are from a calendar that we got from the tourism office. Events:Baja Score 250: March 10-12 - offroading race with trucks, motorcycles, buggies etcCODE Off Road San Felipe race : April 21-23 4th Annual Chili Cook Off, Club de Pesca : May 6IV Sport Fishing Tournament: May 7Dia de la Marina Nacional. (Marine Day in Mexico): June...more
I have come to Rice and Beans on a number of occassions. The food is always good. Locals and tourists come here.Just like Baja Mar there is a section with air conditioning and another section without it. Unlike BajaMar the air conditioning here was perfect.Usually I come here for breakfast. I am not sure why I have never come here for dinner but it...more
They serve breakfast lunch and dinner here. We came for dinner and we were looking for a place with airconditioning becasue even though it was night time, it was Africa HOT!Baja Mar has strong air conditioning up stairs, on the bottom floor there is no air conditioning but theres at least some shelter from the sun, then they have an area with...more
Usually in San Felipe i will eat at some of the local taco stands. I found El Zarape by chance. We were driving around and the malecon was packed, we drove to the street right behind the malecon and saw a taco stand with chairs outside. It is an outdoor establishment with only fans to cool you off while you eat. They have some tarps up to block the...more
The recommended route from the US is to enter Mexico through Mexicali, and drive straight down Highway 5 into San Felipe. The 120 mile stretch of highway is in good condition, which makes for fairly safe and easy travel. This is the route we always take. This is also the route that my parents used to always take. This road is paved and in decent...more
We crossed the border at Calexico/Mexicali. You can use Highway 5 to go from Mexicali to San Felipe. For the first few miles it's 4 lanes and will then change into 2 lanes, one coming, one going. Driving time is 2 hours.If you are coming from Ensenada, use Highway 3 to San Felipe.more
Though there is are four daily buses from Mexicali to San Felipe, it's much easier to go there by car. I did rent one in Mexicali and drove south about 150 Kms on a well paved road (n.5), through beautiful desert sceneries. There are a couple of military checkpoints, but they are very straightforward. There is no town between Mexicali and San...more
Most of the hotels in San Felipe do not offer beach towels and like a ding dong I totally forgot mine. But not to fear we bought some at one of the stores in town. Remember to bargain for just about everything unless you feel you are getting a fair enough price.
I purchased some towels, and sand toys and floaties for the kids. The floaties were cheap enough that when we were done with them and had to go home we left them there for another family to use.
As in all over Mexico, no beer can be sold during election weekends. Some hotels will allow the tourist to drink beer on their premisses but if you are caught drinking beer on the streets, you can get into serious trouble. Also beer or alcoholic beverages cant be sold until after 10am. So if you go to the liquor store, market or restaurant and you...more
Because San Felipe is a "cash" society, Make sure that you carry enough cash. Alot of larger hotels do accept credit cards also alot of eatting establishments. But the little whole in the wall establishments (good food) accept only cash. Also if you want to buy some souveniers, bring cash.more
San Felipe was founded in 1916 as a commercial fishing port. It still operates a sizeable shrimp-fishing fleet of small pangas.The sea water is maintained as clean as possible because of the great dependence of the town on the fish and shrimp industries. Tests of the bay water in past years have revealed minimal detectable e-coli contamination....more
There are two check points, one going into San Felipe and one coming out. These are totally random and dont worry if they tell you to pull over or to get out of the car. On our way to San Felipe we did get stopped and we asked to get out of the car so that they can search it. The guy did a half ass search and let us go back on our way. On the way...more
You can go to San Felipe (the one on the Sea of Cortez) on Highway 5 coming from Mexicali. It's a 4-lane road for the first few miles after leaving Mexicali and turns then into two lanes, one coming, one going. It's paved but be careful as it has hardly any adequate shoulders and no light at night.more
Two roads lead to San Felipe - route 5 from Mexicali and route 3 from Ensenada. I took route 5 which was straight and well paved. But make sure your car is in good condition, because the surrounding desert and the remoteness of the area can make rescue difficult. It's always sad to see the car wrecks by the roadside. What happened to the people in...more
Luggage and bags:
In the summer months, when I like to come, I dont really need much. Trust me, you wont be wearing much when its as hot as it is in the summer. Bring your bathing suit, shorts, tank tops and slippers. Also bring alot of sunscreen because the sun can be brutal. Bring beach towels and maybe even an umbrela or EZ up to shade yourself from the sun while out on the beach. In the winter months i hear it gets very cold at night so bring extra blankets and warm PJ's.
Photo Equipment: I havent really seen anywhere in San Felipe where you can purchase digital camera supplies. But they might have disposable cameras.
Miscellaneous: I always bring alot of water and snacks for the kids for the long drive. I would hate to get stuck in the middle of no where with no water in the heat. I also bring gatorade and juice.
I had never done this before and I read about it so i thought it would be fun to do something new in San Felipe. They have tours that cost$25 . We decided to drive ourselves. You take the road that heads you on out to Puertecitos on the Hwy 5. It is about 15 miles South.You might not see anything in site that says Valle de los Gigantes for a while...more
Now extinct, Totoaba was quite an amazing fish. This giant species can grow up to the size of an adult human, sometimes more than 200 pounds. The photo attached was not taken by me. It's from the photo archive (1956) of San Felipe's official promotion site http://www.sanfelipe.com.mx/. Spawning in the Colorado River delta, Totoaba was only found in...more
12 Reviews and Opinions
Off road racing with buggys, motorcycles, trucks etc is very popular in San Felipe. If you are active in this sport yourself or do it as a hobby, you might wanna come to San Felipe one day to either take part or watch popular races like the Baja1000 or Baja 250 who have San Felipe on their course map. The Baja Score 250 race starts and ends in San...more
Walk around the beach in the morning, and you will be approached by local fishermen to see if you want to hire their boat for a fishing trip. I didn't try so I can't really comment. A century ago, the Sea of Cortez used to be fishing paradise full of Totoaba. But that's no more (see my "off the beaten path" tip for Totoaba details).more
Miramar Bar. Yep, it's on Facebook. What happened here was so utterly strange and somewhat rude (no not anything I did), that you will have to email me if you want to know the story. I'll make you a deal. Email me and tell me if you want the edited version or the full version. If you like the story, you can then rate this tip accordingly.more
I thank my parents for taking our family on so many trips, especially into Mexico. I have so many wonderful memories of our family vacationing in San Felipe, Rosarito, Ensenada and so many other places. Monies were tight but my mom was resourcful. She showed me how I can see the world and still not break the bank.As a parent now I realize the...more
The San Felipe Desert is located near the eastern side of the Baja California peninsula and you will find a variety of plants there such as many different cacti, ocotillo and elephant trees who got their name from the fact that the branches are proportionally thicker than their length.People who are interested in living full or part time here, are...more