Mexico is full of natural beauty, great food, local culture, and vacation delights both popular and unspoiled. But the popular beach towns and large cities can quickly become overwhelming for a first time tourist. The good news is, this country south of the border has a lot of hidden treasures that can provide a more relaxing adventure. Here at Business in Mexico, we're spotlighting one of the less-known tourist destinations in Mexico. Read on to find out why Todos Santos is about to become your next vacation destination
Todos Santos | Your Adventure Awaits
Todos Santos is a small coastal town in the Baja California peninsula, in the foothills of the Sierra de la Laguna Mountains. Right by the Tropic of Cancer, it's only an hour's drive from the more popular destination of Cabo San Lucas. The former sugarcane capital of Baja California, today it is a thriving tourist town combining natural beauty with all the creature comforts you would expect from a modern vacation destination.
Why It Is a Great Vacation Destination
Todos Santos is the perfect combination of everything you'll want from a Mexican vacation. You'll find all the great food of Mexico, ranging from upscale hotel restaurants to humble seafood shacks; the unspoiled beauty of the local Sierra de la Laguna Mountains; pristine beaches without the throngs of tourists you'll find in Cabo San Lucas; and a great sampling of local culture, shopping, and tourist sites. A few days there will give you a satisfying sample of the Mexican culture lying off the beaten path.
10 Best Things to Do in Todos Santos
Galeria de Todos Santos
The premiere art gallery in Todos Santos, this museum was founded in 1994 by Michael and Pat Cope. Spotlighting the artwork of Mexican and American artists, the gallery is acclaimed for its varied selection of art. You'll find landscape paintings, realism, and abstract paintings, but the signature exhibit of Galeria de Todos Santos is undoubtedly its sculpture garden. You'll find sculptures made of wood, marble, resin, and other mediums amid a green, contemplative environment. It's the perfect attraction for art lovers to make the most of their Mexican getaway.
Founded in 2010 by a group of friends aiming to bring a top-level distillery to the city, The Distillery is now recognized as one of the top creators of artisan spirits in Mexico. You'll find originals like chocolate moonshine and Baja Midnight vodka, and house blends of tequila. The entire slate of spirits is gluten-free, and The Distillery also has an extensive wine program. You'll find a bar and picnic area for dining, and educational programs for those interested in learning about the production of spirits.
La Sirena Eco Adventures
Todos Santos is one of the oldest fishing hubs in Mexico, and the shores are rich with a great diversity of species. Lucky fishermen can reel in tuna, marlin, snapper, mackerel, and grouper. The fisheries of the city are overseen by La Sirena Eco Adventures, an environmental group that sustains them through ecotourism. Fishing enthusiasts can take a cruise through the waters on a 24-foot panga boat, with the money going to protect the local species.
Playa Los Cerritos
It's not a trip to Mexico without some time on the beach, and if you're looking for a peaceful shore for swimming or surfing, you won't do better than Playa Los Cerritos. It's got the classic Baja California surfing vibe, with sandy white shores and pristine blue waters. It's a perfect place to watch the sunset from the shade, go for a swim, or hold a barbecue with friends. There's an acclaimed restaurant on the beach with authentic Baja California food, and surfing lessons are available from trained instructors.
Jill Logan Galeria
Founded by American artist Jill Logan in 1998, Jill Logan Galeria is a popular modern art gallery in Todos Santos. Also known as Galeria Logan, the gallery is a large and open space with art displayed in both an indoor traditional gallery and in a large and labyrinthine garden. The gallery is a frequent site for temporary art installations by local Mexican artists, and the facility is considered a major player in the fast-growing Todos Santos art scene kick-started by Logan.
One of the best way to see the city is on a bike, and The Hub is your one-stop-shop for all things bike-related. In an old-fashioned brick building on the corner of Calle Juarez and Marquez de Leon, The Hub offers a bike rental service that's perfect for tourists. Their central building offers a wide selection of bikes along with a comfortable lounge once you've finished your ride. Biking enthusiasts will find a lot of options for mountain biking tours organized by experienced instructors, who also provide lessons on bike safety.
There is no shortage of seafood restaurants in Todos Santos, but Tequila's Sunrise is one of the most unique dining options in the town. Before you go here, you should brush up on your knowledge of the classic rock band The Eagles—this restaurant claims to be the original restaurant from the famous Hotel California, and that song dominates the restaurant's playlist. Although there are doubts about the truth of this claim, there's no doubt that this is one of the best party sites in the town. Come for the kitschy environment and walls covered in Eagles memorabilia, stay for the high-quality local seafood.
Faces of Mexico
Todos Santos has plenty of local shops where you can buy all the souvenirs you want, but tourist stops usually have one store that's a must-visit. That would be Faces of Mexico, a one-of-a-kind store that's equal parts shopping haven and art gallery. A dense maze of dark rooms filled with local artwork for sale, inside you'll encounter a haunting collection of masks, sculptures, artwork, jewelry, and an extensive selection of traditional Dia de Muertos masks and painted skulls. Whether or not you buy something, touring Faces of Mexico is an essential part of getting the authentic flavor of the city.
Todos Santos is part of Mexico's rich history, and its role in the Mexican revolution is spotlighted in this local museum housed in a former schoolhouse. After walking through the open and picturesque courtyard, you'll find a small but extensive museum home to authentic nationalist and revolutionary murals dating back to 1993. In the museum, you'll also see regional artifacts, restored old photos, and a replica of a Mexican ranch house from the 1930s that's free to explore. The ceiling is its own distinct work of art thanks to its unique cradle-cage design.
With an extensive garden of fruits and vegetables surrounding the entry, this farm-to-table restaurant is one of Todos Santos' brightest culinary gems. The menu changes regularly based on what's available in the garden, and what's fished from the sea. Located eleven kilometers south of the city, an easy drive, Heirbabuena has achieved great praise for its welcoming and engaged crew that is always ready to explain the offerings of the day and how they were prepared. The food is consistently ranked among the area's best, making this high-end restaurant the perfect end to a day trip in the unspoiled surroundings of Todos Santos.
Whether you're in Mexico for business or pleasure, you'll find a lot to enjoy in the off-the-beaten-path towns away from the big tourist hubs. While Cabo San Lucas has a lot to offer, it can become overwhelming to a first-time visitor. That's why Todos Santos is the perfect town to get away from it all and enjoy the full gamut of what Mexico offers. From natural beauty to culinary delights and local culture, Todos Santos has everything you'd want from a Mexican getaway, but with only a fraction of the stress and crowds of the big cities and tourist beaches.If you're an art buff, you'll find not one, but two world-class art galleries in Galerie de Todos Santos and Jill Logan Galeria. From there, you can appreciate authentic Mexican crafts and take a souvenir home from the unique Faces of Mexico, or explore the city's cultural heritage at the Centro Cultural.
If you're looking to get up close and personal with nature, you can enjoy the beach at Playa Los Cerritos, or take a guided journey into the waters with the help of La Sirena Eco Adventures. If the land is more your speed, The Hub will set you up with everything you need for an enjoyable bike trip. Then the perfect way to end a day in Todos Santos is with a great Mexican meal, whether your speed is the casual party atmosphere at Tequila's Sunrise, the gourmet cuisine at Heirbabuena, or the authentic spirits at The Distillery.
Whatever your perfect Mexican vacation looks like, you'll find that and more in the Baja California town of Todos Santos. Business in Mexico is here to help you plan your next Mexican getaway and discover all the country has to offer when you wander off the beaten path.