I spent two weeks in Todos Santos, Mexico this summer and it wasn’t quite what I expected. I wouldn’t be a reliable blogger if I told you every place I went was SO wonderful and you should visit all of them. My honest opinion is: skip Todos Santos because there’s so many other amazing destinations in Mexico.
Where to start, well I do recommend Todos Santos for a very specific traveler, I’m just not that traveler.
Who Todos Santos Mexico is great for:
- Couples that prefer boutique hotels over resorts
- Vacationers that want a getaway from city life to relax and live a quick flight away from Cabo
- Travelers that have a flexible budget
- Desert lovers that are looking to mountain bike or hike the trails
- A day trip from Cabo or La Paz to shop the markets and boutiques (it’s not cheap though)
You may fall right into the above demographic so if that’s you read on to learn about Todos Santos below. However I’m gonna go ahead and be biased and say that if you fall into that demographic I actually think Punta de Mita or San Pancho are still better options than Todos Santos. I guess I’m loyal to Riviera Nayarit; plus the flight to Puerto Vallarta is probably around the same cost as Cabo.
I didn’t enjoy Todos Santos because there wasn’t enough to do and it was expensive. A quiet desert town with not much to do IS the charm of Todos Santos, but if you only get one week a year of vacation time I don’t recommend spending it here.
Who I do NOT recommend Todos Santos for:
- Solo travelers
- Digital nomads
- Vacationers looking for nightlife
- Travelers on a budget
- Someone looking for lots of activities to do
About Todos Santos
Todos Santos is a sleepy desert town just over an hour north of Cabo located on the Pacific side of Baja California Sur. In the centro you’ll find a small handful of upscale restaurants and shops. The central area of the pueblo only consists of about four blocks. As you stray away from the centro the town quickly turns to dirt roads and humble homes.
There is a massive gap of wealth in this town and here are some of the reasons I found for that: being located in the desert two hours from a large city everything needs to be imported, almost like an island. The cost for food and basic items in this town is more expensive than many places in the US. So basically the locals here are making pesos and living in dollars. There also doesn’t seem to be a lot of work in this small town, it’s not a thriving beach town because the beaches are hard to get to and not swimmable.
How to get to Todos Santos
The best way to get there is to fly to San Jose del Cabo. Then you’ll take the bus from there or rent a car. There’s a shuttle that runs from the Cabo airport to Todos Santos several times a day, you can book it HERE. The best way of transport would be to rent a car at the airport in Cabo and take the new toll road from there. Having a car in this area is essential. It’s not an easy place to do anything with out a car, trust me.
What is there to do in Todos Santos?
There’s not much to do in Todos Santos. There are some hikes in the area, off-roading in the desert, mountain biking, the beach (which is not swimmable) and that’s it, that’s all there is to do. If you’re looking to relax and do nothing just make sure that you stay at one of the boutique hotels on the beach like Hotel San Cristobal. It’s not easy to access the beaches in Todos Santos with out a car.
Hike to Punta Lobos
This was my favorite thing that I did while visiting Todos Santos. To get there you’ll want to go to Los Lobos beach either by hiking there or driving. It’s a very long walk from town, make sure to leave early so you don’t get scorched by the desert sun. Once you arrive at Punta Lobos go to the very end of the beach. There you’ll need to climb the rocks at the edge to the path. The path leads to a beautiful view overlooking the pacific ocean.
Go Surfing at Playa Cerritos
Playa Cerritos is the best beach in the Todos Santos area. The beach is a 15 minute drive from Todos Santos. Cerritos is the main surf beach in the area. Here you’ll find a surf shop and options to get surf lessons. There are also some cool little casitas on Cerritos beach that look like they’d be great places to stay.
Have Fish Tacos at Santo Chilote
My favorite restaurant in Todos Santos was Santo Chilote. They had great and affordable fish tacos. I kept going back for the awesome coconut shrimp taco with mango salsa. It’s located right on the edge of the centro, here.
Whale Watching during Season
One of the many reasons this area of Baja is so popular during the winter is the amount of whales you’ll see. There are so many whales in this area that you won’t even need to take a boat tour to see them! You can simply see them from the beach.
Day trip to La Paz
If you’re reading this and you’re already in Todos Santos looking for what to do, I still have good news for you… La Paz is a really easy bus ride away and there is tons to do there! Read about it HERE.
Final Thoughts on Todos Santos
I’m sure there’s someone out there reading this thinking, I’m glad she doesn’t like Todos Santos so that it can stay small. Well, I totally agree with you. I see the charm that the pubelo has for the expats that live there and people that have been visiting for years, and it should stay that way. The town does not have the infrastructure to become a big tourist destination. I see that happening in other destinations and it’s a constant moral struggle for me to decide rather it’s good or bad to promote those places. While Todos Santos growing could create more jobs for locals, I think the reality would just be an even bigger wealth gap. So for the local’s sake I actually hope this does not become a tourist “hot spot” and continues to be a day trip destination.
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