Magnificent Surf and Plenty of Feathered Friends in San Jose del Cabo

After several expensive home repairs last year, Hubby and I decided against our usual January vacation. But as winter dragged on, we missed getting away, so I booked an inexpensive trip to San Jose del Cabo for a week in March.

We’ve been to Cabo San Lucas before, but never to San Jose, and I’ve always wanted to go. We stayed at the Holiday Inn Resort, which is an economy accommodation, but perfectly situated next to a bird estuary and within walking distance to San Jose’s historic downtown.

1 Holiday Inn Entrance

We were lucky to get upgraded to a ground level lanai room, close to the estuary and the adult pool. Although our room was no-frills, the location was lovely and quiet. Hubby especially enjoyed the hammock on the lanai.

1a Our lanai

Our view towards the pool.

2 Adult pool from our lanai

And towards the estuary and beach.

3 Towards Estuary

San Jose is situated at the bottom of the Baja, in the Gulf of California, where the Sea of Cortez meets the Pacific Ocean. It’s not safe to go into the water because of the notorious riptides. The surf is incredible and, once we’d settled in, we headed for the beach.

4 5 6

The mountains blocked our view of the sunset, but the sky was painted with beautiful colours.

7 San Jose sunset 8 San Jose sunset

Compared to other places we’ve stayed, the evening entertainment was rather lacking. The fire dancers at Saturday’s Mexican Fiesta were impressive.

9 10 11

I didn’t actually see the sun rise out of the ocean (an unusual occurrence on the west coast) because I was still fast asleep, but my early-riser Hubby enjoyed the experience almost every morning.

12 Pacific Ocean sunrise 13 Pacific Ocean sunrise

I had hoped to explore the trails through the estuary on Sunday, so was disappointed to find out they’ve been under water since that devastating Hurricane Odile wreaked havoc on the Baja in the fall of 2014. We made due with exploring the edges of it.

14 San Jose estuary 15 San Jose estuary

We saw many fine feathered fowls. A red-tailed hawk having breakfast.

16 Red-tailed hawk @ estuary 17 Red-tailed hawk @ estuary

Snowy Egret

18 Snowy Egret 18a Estuary

Great Blue Heron

19 Great Blue Heron


20 Pelican

Greylag goose

21 Greylag Goose 22 Greylag Goose

Turkey vultures

23 Turkey vultures

In this photo of the gulls, the ocean is on the left and the estuary is on the right.

24 Pacific Ocean on left, estuary on right

Farther down the beach, past the estuary, is a marina with breakwaters to protect the calm little beach.

25 Marina beach 26 Marina

We started down a path hoping to find the other side of the estuary, instead we came across some camels. Yes, camels.

27 Camels near the marina 28 Camels near the marina

With such clever camouflage, I almost didn’t spot this crab.

29 Crab hiding in the sand

Cute little flowers decorated the sand.

30 On the beach

Views of the resort from the estuary

31 Estuary view of the resort 32 Estuary view of the resort & beach

It took all of my willpower to stand with my back to those powerful waves that sounded like a locomotive coming right at me.


33 34

Incredibly, we spotted grey whales breaching on the horizon. I actually saw as many as three whales jump at the same time. They were too far away to photograph; we had to use binoculars to see them.

The strong wave action made interesting sand formations.

35 Resort from beach

These horses were on the beach every day, and I couldn’t help feeling sorry for the poor things. Seemed like a sad life just standing there all the time, and I worried about how often they were watered.

36 Beach horses

Another gorgeous sunrise I missed seeing.

37 Sunrise on the Pacific Ocean 38 Sunrise on the Pacific Ocean

Sunrise surf.

39 sunrise surf 40 Surf flowing up to 2nd tier

On Monday morning, we walked up Blvd Antonio Mijares into San Jose’s historical downtown. Unlike touristy Cabo, San Jose has a laidback small town feel.

41 Blvd Antonio Mijares

Palacio Municipal (Gov’t building)

42 Palacio Municipal

Plaza Central

43 Plaza Central

Plaza Central with Mision de San Jose del Cabo Anuiti in the background

44 Plaza Central

Mision de San Jose del Cabo Anuiti

45 Mision de San Jose del Cabo Anuiti 46 Mision de San Jose del Cabo Anuiti

Calle Morelos

47 Calle Morelos, San Jose

While strolling Calle Morelos, we came upon El Encanto Suites and were intrigued into peeking inside at its enchanting yard.

48 El Encanto Suites, Calle Morelos 49 El Encanto Suites, Calle Morelos

Back at the resort, we visited with the horses stabled next door. The flooded estuary has invaded their area, but at least they can still move freely and have water and shelter from the sun.

50 Horses @ the resort

My typical lunch – salad, fish, and buns with cranberry juice. Yum.

51 My typical lunch

Little restaurant sparrows entertained us at every meal.

52 Restaurant Sparrow 53 Restaurant Sparrow 53a Restaurant sparrow

After lunch, we headed to the section of the estuary where the trail used to go through before it flooded.

57 Estuary

Egret & Heron

54 Egret & Heron @ estuary

Great Egret

55 Great Egret @ estuary 56 Great Egret @ estuary

I accidentally took some pictures with my new camera’s special effects setting. Mostly they were junk, but some turned out fantastic. The following photos of workers at the estuary are from the same frame, with three different effects applied. All are similar, yet also wonderfully unique, and I thought to myself, this same outlook could be (and should be) applied to people. We’re all humans, yet we’re all different, and we’re all special in our own way.

58 Workers @ estuary 59 Workers @ estuary 60 Workers @ estuary

Quite amazing to come across the beach horses relaxing on the estuary trail. They weren’t tethered and completely ignored us.

61 Estuary trail

Estuary watch tower

62 Watchtower @ estuary

Hubby looking for whales in the watch tower

63  in watchtower @ estuary

See that tiny splash in the water? That’s a pelican diving for fish. Despite many attempts, that was the best shot we captured.

64 Pelican diving @ estuary

Estuary on left, ocean in the background, with sand spit in between.

65 Estuary & Pacific Ocean

More surf shots because they’re so magnificent.

66 67 68

Drinks on the lanai.

69 Drinks on the lanai

Cactus garden by the beach restaurant.

70 Cactus garden by beach restaurant

Glorious sunset colours.

71 Sunset 72 Sunset 73 Sunset

A talented mariachi band entertained us Monday evening.

74 Mariachi Band

We bussed to Cabo Tuesday morning, only to have our excursion cancelled because windy conditions had whipped up a sandstorm. After rescheduling the tour, we had about half an hour to wander the marina. It’s changed a lot since we were there seven years ago, but still very busy.

75 Cabo Marina 76 Cabo Marina

The sandy atmosphere is apparent in the background of this shot.

77 Cabo Marina

Despite the stormy sky, it was quite pleasant lounging by the resort’s pool.

78 Adult pool

That afternoon we spent several enjoyable hours roaming San Jose’s lovely residential streets.

79 Cactus on Blvd Antonio Mijares, San Jose 80 San Jose 81 San Jose 82 San Jose

The clouds continued to look threatening, but the weather remained mild.

83 San Jose

Unique cloud formations treated us to an interesting sunset that night.

84 Sunset

Join me next week when I wrap up our trip with even more pictures. Click here for next post.


3 thoughts on “Magnificent Surf and Plenty of Feathered Friends in San Jose del Cabo

  1. Pingback: Doesn’t everyone go to the Baja to ride a camel? | joyceholmes

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s