It’s not the Beaches, Booze, or Outdoor Adventures
(April 2021) I know I’m supposed to make you wait so that you’ll read the full article, but here’s those three surprises:
- It’s a Foodie’s town
- The locals are skilled boatsmen
- Customer service is off-the-charts
Don’t get me wrong. The beaches are spectacular, the booze free-flowing, and there are outdoor adventures everywhere you turn: sightseeing, fishing, golf, SCUBA, kayaking, horseback riding, and well, partying.
1) Foodie Town
What you might not know is that Cabo San Lucas is a foodie town. Seafood is fresh, pageantry is plentiful, and culinary skill is evident across many restaurants, not just a handful of top performers.
Local energy is a large part of what makes a destination exciting. And Cabo has energy by the handfuls, especially in its restaurants — with music, color, fire, smiling waiters, and table-side entertainment.
Edith’s Restaurant, off the beach in downtown Cabo
Many consider Edith’s to be one of the best restaurants in all of Mexico. Vivid colors, bright seasonings, fresh-from-the-mer seafood, hand-made tortillas and waiters who practice the lost art (in America) of table-side displays of fire and agile culinary stagecraft. Nothing lights up the evening more than flaming desserts and cocktails.
El Huerto Farm to Table, inland neighborhoods of Cabo
The food and property both are so artfully beautiful, fragrant, and flavorful that we ordered six full meals, two appetizers, and a full complement of juices and beverages for just four people. The full gardens are extensive and contain all the expected vegetables, plus orchards, set into magical landscaping with multiple charming areas to stretch out while you let your recently consumed meal nourish you.
A relative new comer on the food scene in Cabo, El Huerto’s menu changes with what’s fresh from the farm. Menus tout the extensive list of vegetables available that day and offer classic dishes with a twist, as well as signature offerings, flatbreads and pizzas. In our book, this is a don’t miss.
2) Skilled Boatsmen
The Pacific Ocean and Sea of Cortes are ineradicable in the life of Cabo locals (and visitors, of course). The ocean does not round the point of El Arco mildly, but strong currents, radical waves and winds create a dynamic that looks magnificent, but can be tricky to navigate.
With all the visitors clamoring to view the Arch up close, go fishing, or just take a bay cruise there are a multitude of tour boats of all sizes lined up for a piece of the lucrative tourist market.
For $50 + tip, three girls, and a dog, watched a sea lion hitch a ride on the back of a fishing boat, saw colorful fish fighting seagulls for chum, and manta rays dancing out of the water (probably running for their lives from a predator). Our captain, loving called Perro Viejo (old dog) by his crew, tucked our tour boat into an non-slip between the gangway of the dock and the riprap of the shore with calm nonchalance while I watched with wonder at the rocks mere feet under the hull. That’s some steady hands.
3) Top Customer Service
I’ve lived much of my adult life in very popular visitor destinations. I know how easy it is to wear out staff, and how hard it is to maintain 5-star service.
So, when my name was consistently used — three times when I ordered and paid for one round of drinks — I was seriously impressed. I felt like those people really cared about my purchase.
Things to make your trip easier:
- Uber is a great way to get around, but drivers cancel your trip frequently. Give yourself up to 20 minutes to get a ride if you are coming into town from the residential areas.
- Shopping? Prices can be different for Spanish and English speaking individuals. Know what you want to pay, and wander off if you can’t get your price. Just be fair.
- The pharmacies off the main drag have better pricing. I purchased some skin cream that was quoted $45 to $50 on the main street; and $37 on a side street farther back.