The Other Baja
More than Meets the Eye
Flying into Loreto for the first time brings up a lot of questions. Questions like "why is there such a nice airport way out here?" Or "why is there a really big marina right down the road?" or "why don't more people visit here?"
The area is loaded with history. It is the oldest colonial settlement in all the Californias and was the original capital. If you are interested in ancient man, there are cave dwellings that you can visit which confirms that there were early inhabitants. A little more modern times are relics from when the Jesuits arrived to colonize the region. Over time, things changed control from the Jesuits, to the Franciscans, to the Dominican Order. Eventually the mission was abandoned, but has been restored. The legacy stretches south to Cabo San Lucas and north to the coast of California. Yes, all those well known missions are part of the original mission started near Loreto.
Go ashore and start exploring. The Bel Gato is a really great platform for your water based adventure, but there are some interesting diversions that take you inland. In town, or in the mountains you will find
The Mision San Javier Francisco is a popular tourist spot that is a nice drive through the rugged mountains. Combine that with a visit to a local farm, and you can get a good idea of how the locals have lived here for hundreds of years.
This is your chance to really experience fresh Mexican seafood or other authentic dishes without feeling like you are being taken to the tourist joints.
If you want some wind in your hair, we can get you set up on an atv tour, mountain biking or stretch those legs and hike some incredible canyons in the Gigante mountains.
Feel more like relaxing, we can arrange a "kick back" day. If you are more the sportsman type, we can set up a fishing trip.
Back to those questions - just why is that airport so nice for such a remote area? In the late 60's and 70's the Mexican government started a serious program to develop tourism. Fonatur as this agency is known, targeted several areas to develop. Cancun, Cabo San Lucas, Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo and Loreto. The results are what you see today, mega hotel strips and development, except for Loreto. There are differing reasons why Loreto did not taking off despite the heavy investment in tourist dollars (pesos). Some claim infrastructure problems, others believe the reliance on Mexico's failed massive marina build up.
Whatever the reason, the residents came to their senses and made strides to keep the area protected from out of control development and a National Marine Park was established.