16 Best Things To Do in La Paz, Mexico

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sea of cortez in Mexico

I stumbled into La Paz in Mexico by accident. I was tired and, after a night ferry from the mainland, a little less than fresh. But I forgot about my fatigue the second I saw the sea. The Sea of Cortez has long been declared (by none other than Jaques Cousteau) as one of the most biodiverse places on the Planet. Yes. The. Planet.

But it didn’t take me long to realise that the Sea of Cortez wasn’t the beginning, middle and end of this part of the southern Baja Californian peninsula. It was just one part of the myriad activities. And in this article, I’ll share with you my favourite things to do in La Paz. I have also written a travel guide for La Paz – La Paz Mexico – Full Travel Guide & Attractions including when to visit, how to get around, safety, tours and more.

1. Swim with the Sea Lions in the Sea of Cortez

Sea Lion on a rock in the sea of cortez

Swimming with sea lions in La Paz was one of the best things I did.

Whether you’ve marvelled at the sea lions at Pier 39 in San Francisco or watched with amazement as they flat their paws…claws…flippers (what is the correct name, anyone?) at La Jolla beach in San Diego, nothing beats swimming with these smooth and graceful creatures in their natural habitat, around Espiritu Santo island.

Add in a day out on the Sea of Cortez, lunch on a secluded beach and snorkelling opportunities and you’ll struggle to have a better experience in La Paz Mexico.

  • Chicalera Tours – this company would be my top recommendation for booking your tour of Espiritu Santo island. Unfortunately, I don’t have a website or booking link for you, just a couple of phone numbers. Tel cel.6121554464, 612 1416019 tel. casa.6121286755.
  • Punta Baja – this is the second company I toured Isla Espiritu Santo with and, although a shade less fun than Chicalera, I’d still recommend them.
  • Sunrider Adventure Tours  – prefer to book online in English and pay in dollars?

2. Go Whale Watching

Whale tail in Mexico

Surely whale watching has to beat swimming with the sea lions, I hear you cry? Well: yes and no. Yes because…whales. Obviously. (By the way, it’s the gray whale that you can spot off the coast of Baja California, not the humpback whales you see in Maui, Hawaii. Not that you need to do much spotting – these mammals can grow up to 50 foot).

And no because, sadly for us snap-happy humans, whale watching is highly seasonal. Migrating from Alaska down to the warmer waters around La Paz, whale watching season is only three months long – from January to March.

3. Stroll along the Malecón – morning, noon and night

Baja Sur Malecon pier at sunset

The malecón is both one of the simplest yet most rewarding sights of La Paz. A wide pavement that skirts the edge of the sea, the malecón is a place of cafes, bars, restaurants and excited Mexican children wobbling along on two wheels.

La Paz Mexico Baja Sur beach and malecon

By day you can cross the small slip of beach and pop into the sea for a quick cool down. By night you’re going to want an ocean facing seat (in a bar or one of the many free-to-use benches that dot the malecón) to watch the sun, which is going to set right in front of you.

After dark, the street sellers roll out their carts and friends, families, couples and solo travellers stay out on the malecón enjoying the cooler evening air. There’s a small pier that is worth a wander and if you’re really up for exploring, walk the malecón end to end (it’s around 5 kilometres/ 3 miles long).

As a solo female traveller, I felt entirely safe on the malecón after dark.

Related: Is Mexico Safe? The Main Risks & How To Avoid Them | The Safest Places in Mexico For Tourists To Visit

4. Visit Balandra Beach

Isla Espiritu Santo Tour through a rock arch

The swatch of beach in La Paz itself is somewhat disappointing compared to the rest of the beaches that are accessible from the city. Partly because the beaches are small and partly thanks to the road just behind you. That said, I’ve have managed to spend more than one afternoon enjoying the proximity of the sea and the sand from within the city.

However, if you want to really see La Paz’s finest beaches, you should take a tour to swim with the sea lions (you can skip the snorkelling part if you aren’t so interested in the sea lions). Alternatively, head to Balandra beach.

Balandra beach is Located about 25km/15 miles outside the city. However, you’ll need to hire a car or line up a few buses. If you’re feeling particularly active, you can take a sea kayaking tour (don’t worry – you’re driven to the beach and sea kayak from there).

Try SUP and/or kayaking at Balandra beach with Baja Desconocida. If you’re looking for an alternative beach, try Playa Caimancito.

Tip: I booked my car through RentalCars.com – it’s a rental price comparison site that makes life a lot easier than comparing prices on individual rental company website.

5. Dine in style at the marina

Yacht in La Paz marina at sunset

Is all this strolling, swimming, snorkelling and sea kayaking sounding a bit exhausting for you? Then why not flex your inner sloth and spend a long, lazy lunch or evening near Marina Cortez, a short walk from the centre of La Paz.

Wealthy yacht owners have always been a prompt for upscale restaurants to appear (for which I thank you) and the beauty is that you don’t need to throw down the price of a yacht to enjoy the restaurant facilities. Sunset is a great time to stop by, sip a tequila cocktail as the sun sets and play ‘if I was a millionaire, I’d buy that one.’ (My chosen ‘one’ is above).

Related: How to Drink Tequila Like a Mexican

6. Visit the Cathedral Nuestra Señora de La Paz

Whether you are an ardent visitor of religious building or just want to take a pretty picture (I fall into the latter category), the Cathedral of Our Lady of La Paz, located right in the centre of the city, is a beautiful cathedral to explore.

7. Visit the Whale Museum (Museo de la Ballena)

La Paz whale sculpture

You can’t fail to notice the whale museum (Museo de la Ballena) museum thanks to the gigantic whale skeleton lingering outside. The museum has since moved location within La Paz since I visited, with many of the exhibits moving to Mexico City, but I understand there is still enough there to merit a visit and to find out everything you want to know about whales and their affinity with this part of Baja California. Find out more at: Museo de La Ballena.

8. Explore La Paz’s museums

Cultural Museum in La Paz

With all the lure of the sea, it’s easy to forget that La Paz has a cultural side. However, as the capital city of southern Baja California, La Paz is not short of cultural activities. I confess, the lure of the sea (and tacos) has always been so strong that I’ve never visited any of these attractions, but I stopped by the exterior to take a couple of pictures once, so that counts, right?

Here are some of the main cultural buildings La Paz:

  • Centro Cultural La Paz – picture above, this striking building has had a political as well as military past and can now be visited.
  • Museo Regional de Antropología e Historia) – the anthropology and history museum gives an in-depth look at Baja Califonia’s past from pre-history onwards.
  • Teatro de la Ciudad – for theatre performances (as the name suggests) but also apparently popular for the Day of the Dead (Dia de Los Muertos) celebrations in La Paz.

The most popular museum is the whale museum – see above.

white Casa de Gobierno in La Paz Mexico

The picture above of the Casa del Gobierno. I can’t figure out (despite some Googling) whether it’s possible to go inside. I think it might now be a history library. If you know the answer, can you drop me a note in the comments below?

9. See the sculptures in La Paz

ocean pearl sculpture in a clam in La Paz

Sculptures are to La Paz what street art is to Berlin and whether you set out to track them all down or not, you’re going to stumble across several of them regardless. And that isn’t a bad thing.

I don’t have a full list of the sculptures (nor pictures of them all) but here are the most popular, most of which are dotted along the length of the malecón.

  • Giant pearl (above)
  • Dove of Peace
  • Sirena with Dolphins (immediately below)
Sirena con delphines sculpture in silver colour at night
Jesus del Caracacolon sculpture by the sea at sunset
  • Mermaid and the Dolphin (see further above)
  • And plenty of other sculptures of the local marine life.

10. Get a picture in front of the La Paz sign

La Paz sign beachfront mexico

This was a new addition since the first time I visited. In fact, trying to get a picture of it without someone in the frame took a couple of days’ effort. Tip: in the middle of the day, under the blazing Mexican sun, when all other sensible people are under shade or in the sea, is the ‘best’ time. At night, when it’s illuminated – good luck.

Another tip: if you’re heading through Baja California on a road trip, you’ll find similar signs in some of the major stops like Loreto.

Related: How To Visit Tijuana from San Diego | 20 Fun Things To Do In Tijuana Mexico | How To Go Wine Tasting in Ensenada

11. Don’t miss the sunsets

Pictures of Sunset across the sea in la paz

Yeah, I know I mentioned the sunsets more than once already but so stunning they are, they merit a mention all on their own. Up there with Hawaii, La Paz puts on some of the most beautiful sunsets I’ve ever seen. So much so that every time I’m there, I plan my days’ activities around it. Because where else would you want to be than sat on the malecón, cold beer in hand, watching the ret hot ball of fire sink behind the sea one more time.

12. Go swimming with whale sharks

statue of mermaid and dolphin at sunset
Mermaid and the dolphin sculpture

Another popular but seasonal activity from La Paz is going swimming with whale sharks. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting these bus-sized fish (yes, they are fish!) from Isla Holbox, Mexico, in the Yucatan Peninsula.

Want to experience it from La Paz? The whale shark swimming season is from October to March. Check out La Paz Whale Sharks VIP Toursa firm favourite on TripAdvisor.

Tip: the middle of the season is when you’re more likely to spot them.

Related: Quick Guide To Yucatan State in Mexico – with Maps

13. Hike in the Sierra de la Laguna Mountains

From hot springs to canyons to waterfalls and oasis-style hidden lakes, you can’t ask for a more dramatic climate for hiking in Baja Sur. It’s no surprise UNESCO has designated the Sierra de la Laguna mountains a biosphere reserve. Stretching 11,600 hectare, there are plenty of trails to choose from. Picacho de la Laguna is a popular hike. At 2,161 metres above sea, it’s the highest peak in Baja Sur. Just plan you trip with the weather in mind. Find out more about the Sierra de la Laguna.

Balloons against blue sky with palm trees

14. Take a day trip to North La Paz

Getting out of La Paz and into the desert can be a thrilling addition to your tripe. Hire a 4×4 and take to some of the coastal off-road tracks to explore North of La Paz. Having driven from the north of Baja to La Paz, I can tell you the sights (and the photos) will be beyond your imagination. For example, did you know that Baja California is home to the world’s tallest species of cactus, which has been know to grow up to 63 feet/ 19 metres?

15. Enjoy a cowboy experience at a ranch

Want to go horse riding in the Mexican desert? I can’t think of a better way to channel your inner cowboy than with a horse riding experience. Just outside La Paz, Rancho El Cajon will get you in the saddle no matter how experienced or inexperienced you are.

16. Explore La Paz’s food scene

 tacos topped with tomatoes

You could spend your entire trip doing nothing but eating in La Paz. From taco stands to family-run restaurants to international cuisine, here are some of my favourite places to eat in La Paz Mexico.

Superburro – if you want a big plate for a low price and you want to eat with the locals, this popular local chain has what you need. Location isn’t ideal but cheap food rarely comes with a good view.

Rancho Viejo – is the exception to the rule above. Sea view, excellent Mexican food and cheap prices, this small restaurant doesn’t have all the signage it’s neighbours have and you’ll want some Spanish to work the menu but it’s also half the price. This is my favourite place to eat in La Paz.

La Fonda – a few dollars for a set menu breakfast including eggs, tortillas, salsa, fruit and coffee, served in a beautiful courtyard. What’s not to love?

Frida Cafe – popular with the locals, this cafe is open late and serves coffee as well as local food and alcohol. If you’re after a quick bite with some A/C and atmosphere, it’s a good choice.

Street food sushi – surprising (to me, at least), sushi is very popular in Mexico. It contains a little too much cream cheese for my liking but you can still get very good sashimi and nigiri and it’s great when you’re in need of a taco break. The best I found was a street food cart where they prepared the sushi fresh (from an ice box). It’s  past the marina and located in front of Argencia Arjona. Otherwise, closer to the centre, Sushi Zone is a fair choice.

Tailhunter restaurant – if you want a more Americanised version of Mexican food (I believe the owner is American), try Tailhunter restaurant. Split over 3 floors, this place is great for watching the sunset away from the crowds.

Toscana Pizza Gourmet – Mexican pizza is pretty darn good (says the person who has been to Naples and tasted the real deal) and this was a cute, romantic spot the first time I visited. It seems to have lost some of it’s popularity (judging by the chef and waitress who were sat chatting and eating when I turned up to an empty restaurant second time around) but the food was just as good as I remembered.

Where to stay

Sunset in la paz with boats and bench

Hotels falls into a few categories in La Paz – those in the town/centre and those that aren’t. The latter tend to be more resort-based, so make sure the place you book corresponds with the kind of trip you’re after. You’ll also find a handful of cheap, locally run guest houses and hostels if you’re on a budget.

  • Hyatt Place – a beautiful spot in the marina for a trusted brand that gets great reviews.
  • Costa Baja Resort & Spa – if you’d prefer a resort style stay right on the sea front.
  • Hotel Lorimar – just a block from the sea, this is a great budget choice for under $50 a night.
  • Hostel Casa Esterito – La Paz isn’t teaming with backpackers but there are enough to merit a few hostels. Casa Esterito is both cheap and has a perfect location.
Cute sealion statue in blue and grey

And that is my guide to the La Paz. Have you been? Any other recommendations ? Let me know in the comments below.

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Balandra beach in La Paz with text overlay for pinterest

Photo credits: Whale

Author - Jo Fitzsimons

Hi, I'm Jo, the writer behind Indiana Jo. In 2010 I quit my job as a lawyer and booked an around the world ticket. As a solo female traveller, I hopped from South America to Central America, across Asia, the Middle East and Europe. It was supposed to be a one-year trip but over a decade later, it's yet to end. I've lived in a cave, climbed down a volcano barefoot, spent years as a digital nomad, worked as a freelance travel writer, and eaten deadly Fugu. Now I'm home, back in the UK, but still travelling far and wide. You can find out more About Me.

94 thoughts on “16 Best Things To Do in La Paz, Mexico”

  1. My son has a house in Paraiso Del Mar, just a short 7 minute boat ride north of La Paz. It has a great golf course, with a good restaurant, and two swimming pools if you don’t like salt water. There are about 90 homes and 4 Condos on the “island” and the condos have a large swimming pool and a good restaurant.
    Many of the homes can be rented, and there is a great beach for swimming. Everyone gets around in golf carts or the bicycles that are scattered around the “island”. A free boat ride gets you to and from the town of La Paz so you can easily enjoy all of its attractions. It is a relaxing an quiet place to spend a vacation.

  2. I love the information on this page. My best friend is maybe going to retire there in a couple years. If so I will definately be visiting her. She is headed there in a couple months to check it out. Looks perfect!

  3. This is a great article about La Paz, I recently went there and loved it! I did miss out on those restaurants you recommended. While on this trip, I did some street photography around the city.

  4. Stay at La Concha hotel. The best hotel in La Paz. This is a five-star hotel. It has its own cove,restaurant, bar, swimming pool, massage parlor, game room. There is also The Mosquito Fleet for charter fishing.

      • Hi Joe, my wife are planning to retire in La Paz, can we do it on $2500 usd a month, we are planning a visit to there in December of 2021 and making the move before the end of 2022, we would appreciate any feedback, thanks Ron and Jen.

        • Hi Ron, what a lovely place to retire. As with any of these things, it really depends on the level of luxury you want and the frequency you do things like dine out. Personally, I could live comfortably in La Paz for less than $2000 per month, staying in a small one-bed apartment and eating local food as well as cooking. Check out Numbeo, it’s a great website for telling you the cost of living in different places including things like typical rental and utility prices as well as food and drinks. Hope you have a great retirement!

  5. Hi! Just a note to let you know how extremely informative your blog was. Thank you so much for sharing. It certainly will assist me in planning our trip there. Happy travels! Ali

  6. I was reading some of the older post and to the person who commented on the sunsets, I was thinking the same thing but somehow it works out. Sunsets out here are absolutely stunning. Loving La Paz so far. Oh and just in my opinion Apple Maps works good for the streets but seems to be lacking on business when you type what you are looking for into the Apple Maps search bar.( For me this was trying to find a grocery store nearby) I have better luck googling what it is I am looking for and then using either Apple Maps or google maps. Thanks a lot for all the info Jo!

    • Thanks Yancy and also for confirming I wasn’t making it up about the sunsets 🙂 Great tip about the maps. Have a great trip.

  7. Excellent Post. I´m Mexican and I´d recommend you to vistit the beaches of The Conception Bay in Baja California Sur, If you realliy was awesome with La Paz You´ll love that beaches, My reommendation is to get a car and drive for all peninsula from Tijuana to Los Cabos, some beaches that you´ll find there are the below:

    Playa Santispac (km 114)  •  Posada Concepcion (km 112)  •  Playa Escondida (km 111)  •  Playa Los Cocos (km 110.5)  •  Pink Shrine with Cross (km 109)  •  Playa El Burro (km 108)  •  Playa El Coyote (km 107.5)  •  Playa Buenaventura (km 94.5)  •  Playa El Requeson (km 91.5)  •  Playa La Perla (km 91.3)  •  Playa Armenta (km 90)

    All of you are welcom to Mexico.

  8. Hi Jo,

    Awesome and very helpful article! I will be heading to La Paz either Feb 27 weekend or the March 5 weekend, I was wondering if the water will be clear and comfortable to go in at Balandra Beach? What is the weather like in late February and beginning March? And are there a lot of tourist during those times? Thank you for your help! -Jade

    • Hi Jade, Feb and March are both during the peak weather time (Nov to April) so the water is likely to be perfect. Although peak weather usually brings peak tourists, tourism isn’t so saturated in La Paz so I think you’ll be able to have a very enjoyable crowd-free trip. But come back and let me know how it goes!

  9. Hi Jo, recently ran into your page and i love all your suggestions so far. We are planning to head there beginning of september this year. What do you think of this time? is it ideal? i know its somewhat the start of hurricane season. We are about at group of 6 going out there looking to do lots of activities as a group.

    • Hi Maribel, it’s really hard to predict the weather, especially since we collectively broke the planet but I think that the beginning of September should be a pretty nice time to visit. Have a great trip!

  10. Hello! This was an awesome review, I’m really excited about my trip! I have rented a car and I’m (unnecessarily??) worried about being stopped by the police and ticket scams. How safe did you feel and did you run into any of this? I do not have a look that “blends in like a local” so i’m a bit worried about being a target in a rental car. Can you tell me about your experiences driving around the area?

    • Hi Melinda, I’m not saying it won’t happen but I think you can shelve the worries about being stopped and scammed. I felt very safe and didn’t run into any of this. I’m British and can’t pass as a local either and had zero trouble. Just take it easy and follow the road rules and you’ll be fine!

  11. Looking for a close location (baja cali is close to me) to go for an extended weekend in January… any idea how the weather is?? And water conditions for swimming and or scuba diving??

    • Hi David, I’m in Mexico as I write and although I’m over on the other coast, the weather is divine. December to April is the peak, dry season here so if you’re looking for clear water, this is when you’ll find it. Hope you have an amazing trip!

  12. Heading there in February 2020, for 7 days with my wife..,.
    Been looking a lot at package deals.
    Leaving from Seattle, and trying to get into the La Paz airport seems to take 18-20 hours of commuting with multiple flight changes.
    If I go directly to Cabo, only 5 hours, then rent a car and drive up/back, which looks to be a couple hours of driving each way.
    I can’t seem to beat the prices they package, on my own, how do you normally arrange your trips?

    • Hi Ed & Denise, it might be that you have a good package price but typically I book everything separately – flights, hotels and car hire. Being a bit flexible on flight dates can make a huge difference as can booking local hotels instead of big international brand chains. If you don’t think you’ll need the car in La Paz, why don’t you catch the bus? I’ve taken it a bunch of times. It’s safe and you’ll get at least half a movie dubbed in Spanish ;p But seriously, it drops you off bang in the centre of La Paz and you’ll save on parking for your trip. Hope that helps?

  13. I’ve been from Hawaii to Cancun and i can say that balandra beach has been one of my favorite places , beautiful, and relaxing. Also played some football there since it’s only waist deep for miles ??

    • I’m in Mexico at the moment (other coast) and seriously considering hopping over to Balandra beach….and I agree – it’s absolutely divine!

  14. We, senior husband and I, spent about six weeks in La Paz in winter 2018, and were back there several times in early 2019 for shopping trips. It’s cheaper and less congested than Cabo/San Jose. There were some great cultural exhibits and events—check on-line newspapers and Facebook pages or announcements. We enjoyed the Malecon and sculptures and the whale museum, too; the whale museum was closed last season and moved, but maybe it’s reopened. Areas along the Malecon and downtown have some great street murals. There are two markets that have daily seafood, veggies and fruits, and one has fresh tortillas. If you’re planning to visit during the annual fiesta—check to see if the city is doing it in 2020. It sets up on the Malecon. Very, VERY loud with competing bands, carnival, and lots of drinking—very congested. Even when streets were empty at night we had no hassles. A boat trip to Espiritu Santos is worth the money for the photos alone. Only problem we had was Hotel Lorimar, where we had booked an apartment (non-refundable) for 2 months. The landlord lived below us and keep 2 large nasty dogs—one was a loud barker—and barked constantly when no one home as well as barking at any noise during the night!!! Landlord was real ass. Also lots of traffic noise and air pollution from the coal power plant and traffic. La Paz is growing, and this year it has both water shortages and electricity blackouts. Be prepared!

  15. Hi, Jo
    I was wondering if vaccinations are required in Mexico (since I’m anti-vax- I don’t believe in vaccinations) and if I can bring my essential oils along. Will anyone be offended?
    Also, I have three beautiful kids, Jake, Jackie, and Sinead (he’s adopted), and they are my precious little shmookins, I wouldn’t want them to get hurt. Are there any safe activities that they can partake in? No walking, cause that can lead to scraped knees and broken hearts. And no swimming, because the fish will hurt them.
    Thanks, Jo. By the way, I sell my own essential oils (made with my own saliva, gotta be natural) and free advice ($20). Let me know if you need these 🙂
    Thanks, Jo

    • Hi Karen, I suspect that I’m unlikely to change your mind about vaccinations. In absence of that, I’d like to request that you and your non-vaccinated children stay home in order to prevent the risk of jeopardising the health of others, particularly in countries where healthcare may not be as premium and privileged as in your own country. Also no, thank you, I have no interest in rubbing your saliva on my body…even despite the fact that I’ve been vaccinated – successfully and without any impairment – against many diseases. I wish you all good health.

  16. Hi Jo,

    I am in the midst of planning my trip to La Paz so your article was helpful. I’m wondering what made Chicalera Tours more fun than Punta Baja Tour? What didn’t you like about Punta Baja Tour?

    I appreciate your insight.


    • Hi Sandy, it just felt more relaxed, like a group of friends hanging out rather than a structured ‘now on your left you will see….’ kind of tour. Both were great though so don’t let my subjective opinion sway you one way or the other 🙂 Have a great trip!

  17. Hi Jo,

    Just discovered your site, it’s fantastic!
    My friend and I are self-employed and looking to work remotely in Mexico to escape some of the Canadian winter. We’ve got it down to La Paz, Campeche, Manzanillo, and San Miguel de Allende. I backpacked through Mexico about 15 years ago and spent a few days in La Paz. Can’t remember how gringo it was but I remember the beaches were amazing. How gringo is La Paz these days? Looking for a slightly more authentic place, local culture to set up shop for a month.
    What are your thoughts?

    • Thanks Steve. It’s hard to compare a place to 15 years ago but I definitely felt like there were very few non-Mexicans in La Paz – one of the reasons I liked it so much. In fact, I’m considering it as a base myself later this year for exactly that reason.

  18. Nice article. Encouraging me to go there, except…..how do you get a sunset over the sea when La Paz is on the East Coast of Baja?

    • You’re going to have to consult a astronomer on that one but I do know that the east-west rule is impacted by proximity to the equator and time of year. You can also check the map and see La Paz is west facing on a bay. Also check the internet for other sunset pictures to confirm that I am not – as your comment suggests – making this shit up. Happy hols 🙂

  19. Hey, im planning on going to La Paz in July, what kind of device do you use to get around? incase your phone doesn’t have any signal

    • Hi Marlen, I just used my iPhone (data off) and used Maps.Me. It’s free and tracks you by GPS even offline (though you need to download the relevant area/country while you’re online). Hope that helps. Have a great trip.

  20. Thanks for all the info on La Paz. I have decided to take my motorhome down and spend about 6 months to see and do everything in La Paz but also take my motorcycle across the ferry and check out some of the Mayan ruins on the other side of the water too!

    • Hi David, that sounds like an amazing trip! I have recently written about taking the ferry, which you might find useful: – have a great time.

  21. Hi, I was looking at the 4×4 tour you recommended, but it wont let me book as a solo traveller and I definitely dont want to pay for a spot I won’t use. Can you advise if it is possible to book this tour for one person? And if it is, how I go about doing so? Thank you!

    • Hi Nick, I’d recommend contacting the company directly if you’re trying to book online. I had a lot more luck in person, in country when booking for a solo traveller. Good luck and I hope it works out.

    • Recomendation, avoid swimming on the beach in front of the malecon, the waters are dirty due to cities wastes….though no local will actually admit that to tourists.

    • Hi Bill, everyone has their own sense of danger. I felt safe the entire time, even in TJ. If your view of TJ is based on other people’s opinions/the media, I’d check it out yourself for a few days first and then decide. If you’ve been to TJ and are still worried, why not hire a car from Ensenada instead? Have a great trip.

  22. Can someone recommend the best time of year to visit La Paz? I work for a US public school and our kiddo attends there so I’m pretty limited to a week during Thanksgiving, around 2 weeks at Christmastime or 1 week in late March. And, of course- summer from June to late July. What would be the best time to enjoy the city and beaches? I love all that the area has to offer so we’re not set one particular event. We would like to enjoy the beaches with the least amount of high winds. We’re from the High Rockies so our idea of warm weather is anything over 70 degrees 🙂 I speak fluent Spanish and plan to book a hotel/home as close to downtown as possible to enjoy the local atmosphere and walk wherever we can. Thank you for any ideas!

    • Hi Karyn, for some reason, I’ve always landed in La Paz in summer and I have to say it is almost too hot. I’d say your other times of year are better – La Paz is typically warm and dry year round, with temperatures only dipping to around late 70s in December and January. March will be a bit warmer. I hope that helps.

    • Hi Loretta, there are plenty of stores like 7-Eleven in La Paz which will have chocolate. If she’s after artisanal/good quality dark chocolate, I’d recommend Brussels ;p But more seriously, ask in 7-Eleven or your hotel and they may have more suggestions.

  23. Thanks so much for this information about La Paz! I have about 5 days – been considering La Paz or Todos Santos – from what I am reading, La Paz has more to do. What’s your opinion? Also, I am planning on renting a car and driving up from the Cabo Airport. I am a bit nervous about driving in a foreign country – never have before. Any things I should consider about car rental and/or driving in that area?

    • Hi Daryl, La Paz definitely has more to do and unless you plan of hunkering down with War and Peace or a bottle of Tequila, or both, I think you’d get a bit bored in Todos Santos for 5 days. In that time, you could visit both. As for driving, it seemed to me that Mexican drivers are very considerate and will let you in. I like using Sat Nav so I only have to concentrate on road, not just route. If your mobile/Google maps data doesn’t cover you for sat nav (GPS in the USA!), then try maps.me. Within 5 minutes of being on the road, you’ll be fine I think. Have a great time.

  24. Hi Jo,

    Currently planning a possible solo female trip to the area in March, my first ever solo trip, and your blog has been an awesome resource for me! La Paz looks like it’s making it’s way onto the lsit. Some things I’ve seen that I’m wondering if you’ve experienced or written about – whale watching guerrero negro and dunas del soledad? I can’t find much info on either from non tour companies or tripadvisors, I prefer going through bloggers. Thanks!

    • Hi Alicia, I was in Guerrero Negro (don’t know if you saw my Baja California itinerary post: I hope you find the information you’re looking for.

    • Hands down, best trip to whale watch is with Andiamo Tours. I have gone 3 times with them-all spectacular. You will go to Guerro Negro and San Ignacio. This trip is the “whole enchilada”. It is a small group tour with a mix of Mexican Culture, hiking, education, wonderful food, and of course, up close and personal encounters with the whales.

    • Hi Nancy, La Paz has its own airport, about 20-25 minutes from the malecon. If you can’t find the right flights, Los Cabos International Airport will be your next best option (about 2 hours 15-50 by car). Have a great trip.

  25. HI there, we are going to La Paz Jan 18-28, 2019 and are taking our little pooch with us this time. We have booked pet friendly accommodations, but are curious to know if pets are allowed anywhere for restaurant facilities, even on the patio?And are there any day excursions that are pet friendly? Thank you!

    • Hi Kathy, good questions and one of those where, if you don’t travel with pets, you don’t seem to notice whether animals are accepted. I would say that Mexico is very laid back and there is lots of outdoor seating so I think you’ll be ok (though can’t promise it/offer my own experience).

  26. This area looks amazing but I was wondering if this is a safe place to visit in Mexico at this time. Mexicans are not happy with American people at this time

    • Hi Cindy, I have written a couple of articles about safety in Mexico (linked in the post). A sense of safety is a very personal thing. I’ve met many USA travellers in La Paz who had a great time.

    • Hi Cindy, I spend a lot of time in Mexico and can tell you that the Mexican people in general are quite friendly to us. They may have a very bad opinion of our current administration, but that doesn’t translate to not liking us – unless, of course, we cheer-lead our government.

    • Hi Cindy,

      Unfortunately, Mexico doesnt get very good press recently and with the travel advisory not to travel to Mexico it puts many people in fear to travel here.

      Mexico is a safe place for tourist .As anywhere else, use precaution. Same goes for Mexicans or other foreigner’s questioning whether it’s safe to travel to US with all the shootings in schools, night clubs etc…

      Mexico is a big country with 36 states. USA has 50 and just about the same amount of violence if you compare it to the amount of population per capital. Would it make sense to you not to travel to California because there was a terrorist act in new york so now you’re afraid for your safety? Or would you not travel to Utah because there was a mass shooting at a bar in California recently?

      Just something to think about.

      Hopefully you can visit La Paz one day and enjoy all the wonders it has to offer. I am certain you will fall in love with the people, gastronomy, culture, sea life etc….

  27. Thanks for the tips. I was caught out as the wind came up and port was closed so diving was off the agenda. I tried your suggestion of Balandra beach and it’s a great spot. PERFECT for little kids as water is only knee deep, kids were having a blast. I second the recommendation of Rancho Viejo for tacos there are several in town, it where the locals go and that’s where I like Togo and avoid tourist places. I stumbled across a fancy restaurant and tequila bar that looked great called tres virgenes I didn’t try it was middle of the afternoon but it’s on my to-do list, thanks Stu…

    • What do you mean you didn’t try the tequila restaurant in the middle of the day? Surely that is half the fun of Mexico ;p Sucks that diving wasn’t an option but glad you enjoyed the beach.

  28. Thank you for your very informative blog. On my way to La Paz and wanted to say thanks for all the information. It has been a big help.

  29. Hi Jo,

    Great article! It’s been a bit of a struggle trying to find information that we might find interesting about La Paz, which is great as we realize that the city may be a bit of an “undiscovered gem” compared the rest of our usual Mexican vacation spots.

    What are prices like there…I know Cabo is more on the expensive side, but I would imagine La Paz would be a bit easier on the wallet. We are a couple going in La Paz in March and are thinking a couple of excursions, a couple of nice dinners out and we like to drink quite a bit. How much would you ballpark we may need for the week (not counting hotel, transportation).

    • Hi Julie, La Paz is a lot cheaper than Cabo. Still not as cheap as some places in Mexico, thanks to the location but eating locally and drinking the local beer should be affordable. It’s really hard to ball park because your idea of a nice dinner and drink quite a bit might be different to mine ;p Instead, check out numbero, my go-to for a rough idea of local costs:

  30. Hi! Next time you visit La Paz don’t miss Capuchino Café, actually neighbors of La Toscana. It serves a great variety of vegetarian and vegan meals including tasty tacos de falafel al pastor, black bean hamburgers besides craft beer and mezcal. Hope to see you around on your next trip to La Paz!

    • Hi again, Jamie @ capuchino.mx. You really are doing a wonderful – if a little irritating – bit of self-promotion for your café here. Personally, I’d rather eat my toenails than vegan food but each to their own.

  31. I love your site, and I am anxious to test out recommendations during my trip in two weeks. I love and miss being on water, and Sea of Cortez will more than fit the bill .Your tour guide suggestions are most helpful. Photos are fantastic. The area looks as
    alluring as I’ve heard it to be.My four night stay will be perfect. Thank you.

  32. I’d recommend Capuchino Café (Next to La Toscana) just one block away from the malecon. It serves vegetarian food, beer, coffee and a relaxed atmosphere to drink a beer or two. For those coming from Cabo, you can take a shuttle with ecobajatours, or hire a company to do a private tour for you such as RED Travel Mexico. Another recommended option is to rent a car, and drive for your self with the freedom to explore some beaches and as many stops as you want. For small towns, you can try Todos Santos.

    • Are you promoting your own company there, Jamie @ capuchino.mx? Suppose we’ll have to take your advice with a pinch of salt rather than a sprinkle of chocolate.

  33. Hi Jo,

    Great post! By far the best one I have come across on La Paz so far. May I ask, we plan on staying in La Paz and doing a lot of local stuff. We are not shy explorers, so do you suggest we rent a car while there? Is it needed? Or a bus/walkable city? (We are from NYC so we have no problems with that. )

    • Hi, it depends what you want to do – for day trips on the water and local sights, I don’t think you’d need a car. If you want to beach hop, you’d probably be better with wheels. The only other thing to consider is when you visit. If you’re going during the hottest months, a car does have the upside of a/c instead of a sweaty walk to dinner!

  34. Best restaurants, as of Spring 2018: Sorstis for fine dining. Their Sunday brunch is phenomenal, but dinners are pretty wonderful, too. For fine Italian food, reasonable prices, Il Rustico. For something very extraordinary, try Nim. All of these restaurants are in the central district, within easy walk to the bus station. And every one is worth the trip.

    For bus transport, check out bajaecotours … it’s a shuttle service around southern Baja, good prices, frequent and quality vehicles.

  35. My wife and I will be in Cabo this September and would love to take a side trip to La Paz. We are not familiar with the area, so we could use some references as far as taxi’s or bus service and where the best Mexican restaurants are. We recently spent time in Playa del Carmen and for the most part the food was not that good. We’re looking for authentic Colonial towns to possibly do a long term rental. Any info you can provide would be greatly appreciated.
    Thank you! Daniel Fayfar

    • Hi Daniel, check out Rome2Rio.com – it’s a brilliant resource for all modes of transport around the world and you’ll quickly find the local bus companies and you may even be able to compare prices. As the taxis, I usually just hired these from my hotel although most of the time I walked around La Paz. La Paz has some great places to eat but I didn’t find the same street food scene with taco carts that I found elsewhere in Mexico. Getting out of the old town definitely served up better food and asking my hotel for local recommendations also helped. Have a great trip.

      • I’m flying to Cabo for 2 nites and then driving to La Paz for 4 nites. I found your blog looking for ideas besides Isla Espiritu Santo (and stopping at Todos Santos on the way). I leave (only from San Diego) on July 10th. I am solo as well. I have saved your page so i don’t miss anything you’ve suggested. The sea lions changed me from a 3 nite in Cabo to only 2 nites then going to La Paz for more. I’ve swam with Manatees in Florida, dolphins in Roatan (also played with sloths and monkeys there!) so it seems right to swim with the sea lions in La Paz. I’m staying a little north at Hotel Cantamar in Pichilingue closer to Balandra. Hoping to also see some blue footed boobies!!
        I will try to get answers to those couple things you wanted to know!!

        PS. Your Bolivia comment killed me!!

        • Hi April, you have an amazing trip planned. Hope the sea lions are as fantastic as ever – say hello to them from me 🙂 Do come back and let me know how you get on!


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