Kayaking / Canoeing
Since RN 7’s southerly realignment, it’s longer (in distance) but shorter (in time) to Potrerillos, the upper Río Mendoza’s white-water rafting, kayaking, and river-boarding center. Now 53 kilometers from Mendoza—about eight kilometers farther than it used to be—Potrerillos (pop. about 300, elev. 1,351 meters) is growing because the Embalse de Potrerillos, a hydroelectric project, has relocated displaced people in sharp new houses with fine views and finer conveniences than they’ve ever had before.
Whether once-isolated rural people will prosper in their new village environment on an international highway is another issue entirely.Destination:Activities:
The road may be paved now and fuel much easier to come by than in the early days of peninsular travel, but Baja California remains a classic route for travelers who enjoy the thrill of a long road trip. All you need is ample time, a reliable vehicle, and an ability to cope with unpredictable situations.
This itinerary follows Mexico 1 from the border crossing in Tecate to the Los Cabos tourist corridor at the southern tip of the peninsula, 1,600 kilometers away, with a few options for side trips and off-highway scenic drives along the way.Destination:Activities:
Whether you are already a pro or are picking up a paddle for the very first time, kayaks are a perfect way to experience Sea of Cortez marinelife up close. Whales, flying mantas, and sea turtles are just some of the creatures you might see from the surface. Throw on a mask and fins, and an entire world becomes visible below. Beach camping on uninhabited islands completes the experience. Overnight trips can take a couple of days, a full week, or more; organized trips are an appealing option, especially for novices.Destination:Activities:
South of Mulegé, stunning Bahía Concepción represents the best of all that Baja has to offer. Its string of a dozen protected white-sand beaches, small islands, and steady winds create a water-sports playground for snorkelers, divers, kayakers, and kiteboarders.
The mouth of the bay faces north, and a long, narrow peninsula forms the eastern shore. As a national marine preserve, the bay supports a vibrant ecosystem of creatures big and small.Destination:Activities:
Near the opening of Bahía Concepción, Bahía Coyote encompasses several of the most popular beaches in the area (which doesn’t necessarily mean they are the most crowded).
Between Km. 114 and 115, Playa Santispac was once the most developed of the Bahía Concepción beaches; by 2008 all semipermanent structures had been removed, leaving many ruins of small gardens, tiled floor areas, and other boundary markers created by the snowbirds who formerly made Santispac their winter home.Destination:Activities:
Loreto offers outdoor enthusiasts a rare combination of desert, water, and mountain activities, all of which you can pursue independently or through an experienced outfitter.
Loreto offers easy access to a string of islands offshore, including Isla del Carmen (18 km from Loreto, 8 km from Puerto Escondido), with several pleasant beaches. Arrange for a panga through any hotel that offers fishing trips or at the harbor at the north end of the malecón.Destination:Activities:
The islands near La Paz are some of the best places in the world to kayak, and several companies provide highly recommended tours.
Day trips are possible, but given the amount of gear and transportation logistics involved, many day-trippers end up feeling rushed and wish they had chosen a multiday tour instead.
Most trips fall into one of two categories: a four-day paddle along the west side of Isla Espíritu Santo (usually north to south) and a seven-day (or more) paddle all the way around Isla Espíritu Santo and Isla Partida (56 km).Destination:Activities:
Kayaking expeditions in the Sea of Cortez have become increasingly popular as more visitors look for ecofriendly ways to travel the peninsula and more marine preserves come under government protection from commercial exploitation. Paddlers can get to remote coastal and island beaches that are inaccessible to larger boats or those traveling by land.
There are appropriate destinations for all abilities, from Bahía Concepción for beginners to the Loreto/La Paz route for advanced kayakers. (The Gulf Current makes north-to-south itineraries the most logical approach.)Destination:Activities:
There is a lot to do on Isla Holbox besides lying in a hammock (though be sure to make time for that, too!), and various excursions can be arranged through your hotel, local tour operators, or done on your own. Most of Holbox’s tour operators offer the full gamut of excursions, at comparable prices.Destination:Activities:
In the Andean precordillera southeast of Curicó, the Río Claro plunges steeply over basalt bedrock into a series of pools known as the Siete Tazas (Seven Teacups), a feature that has given its name to this 5,026-hectare reserve. When the water is high with spring snowmelt, skilled kayakers have made this one of their favorite stops, but the reserve itself gets relatively few foreign visitors. Even when Chileans crowd it in summer and on weekends, areas off the main road are almost people-free.
Ecologically, distributions of drought-tolerant Mediterranean plants overlap southern Chile’s evergreen forests at Radal Siete Tazas. Ranging 600–2,156 meters above sea level, the park does not reach the high Andean summits to the east.Destination:Activities:
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