Cabo San Lucas, or simply Cabo, on the southern tip of Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula, is a nature lover’s dream. Here are the six best things to do in Cabo San Lucas from heavenly beaches to desert canyons.
Unlike Tulum, a boho-chic beach town in the Yucatan Peninsula, Cabo has a swanky feel with all its posh hotels, though not everything will blow your budget.
Visit the Arch of Cabo San Lucas at Land’s End
The end of Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula is aptly called Land’s End. Its cliffs jut 200 feet out of light brown sand flanked by emerald waters.
Undoubtedly one of the best things to do in Cabo San Lucas is to visit that uniquely curved rock formation called El Arco, The Arch. Mother Nature’s powerful ocean currents carved the 30-foot arch in untold time.
Sea lions and seals love this rocky coastline where the Sea of Cortez and Pacific merge in a churning, fizzy water mass, awhirl with maelstroms and undercurrents. Sliding along the caramel-colored stones using their flippers, these large, blubbery masses bark loudly as if they hadn’t eaten for ages.
It’s a true natural paradise only accessible by the sea. It is well worth a yacht or catamaran trip with an open bar, cruising along Pelican Rock, Neptune’s Finger, and eventually, El Arco.
Things to do in Cabo San Lucas for a couple include lounging on the golden sands of Lovers Beach. However, while you can swim at Lovers Beach in Cabo, you don’t want to jump in the Pacific at Divorce Beach 300 feet westwards, where currents literally sweep you away.
In the crystal waters of the Sea of Cortez, on the other hand, you can enjoy kayaking, diving or snorkeling in Cabo San Lucas.
While it’s possible to stand up paddle to Land’s End, another option is to take a panga or water taxi from Medano Beach or the marina. They will take you to its cliffs in 30 to 45 minutes. These small wooden boats chug back and forth all day.
Feel the adrenaline on adventure tours
Not for the faint-hearted, rappelling down rock walls and canyoning are among the top things to do in Cabo San Lucas.
If you can stomach the adrenaline, bungee jumping, off-road ATVing, camel rides, and ziplining also await you at the Canyon Adventure Park 20 minutes from downtown Cabo. Flying from cliff to platform at 50 miles an hour, strapped into a harness hanging from a pulley, is bound to give you a kick.
And some tour operators offer family-friendly ziplining alternatives through rocky desert mountains and a biosphere reserve forest for those not into extreme thrills.
Go on a whale watching tour (best thing to do in Cabo San Lucas for wildlife lovers)
Unique things to do in Cabo San Lucas include whale watching tours. Year after year, gray humpbacks migrate from the Arctic to Baja Peninsula’s warm waters to mate and bear offspring.
While you can see them jumping and spouting from the shore, you can listen to male humpbacks groan, grunt, whistle, and whoop on hydrophone-equipped catamarans. Seeing them from up close when they leap skywards and crash back into the deep blue sea is guaranteed to have you enthralled.
Expert guides are available, and many catamaran tours come with open bars and meals.
Additionally, cruises—be it glass-bottom, snorkeling, sunset, or booze cruises—are among the best things to do in Cabo San Lucas.
Unwind on Cabo San Lucas’ beaches
Need a break from the pumping adrenaline? Cabo abounds with dreamy beaches.
Situated near the marina, the gently sloping Medano Beach in Cabo is the most popular. While its golden sand is more coarse than Santa Maria Beach, Medano Beach scores with Arch and Lover’s Beach views. Also, you don’t need to worry about rip currents. It’s safe for swimming and entirely seaweed-free.
Plenty of beach vendors walk back and forth, selling anything from straw hats and wind chimes to t-shirts and cigars.
Like water activities? The next jet ski roar is only steps away. You’re guaranteed to find a recliner, umbrella, or standup paddleboard. Or take it to the heavenly views from the sky and go parasailing.
Medano is quite busy, with restaurants and bars and pumping EDM beats blasting virtually anywhere. But, on the other hand, the further you amble away from the town, the more mellowed the vibe gets. So you can get away from the mayhem if you’d like.
Aside from Lover’s Beach and the picnic-suitable Divorce Beach, other beaches in Cabo San Lucas include the crescent-shaped Chileno Beach, 15 km (9 miles) from the marina, and Palmilla Beach Cabo. The latter is a half-hour car ride away but well worth the trip, given its near-white sands.
Whichever beach suits your fancy, be sure to enjoy a picnic, listening to the calming ocean waves washing up against the shore.
Visit one of the viewpoints
Certainly, Cabo’s beach viewpoint is a cracker, as is Mount Solmar at Land’s End with its rocky islets and cliffside beach views. But among the top things to do in Cabo San Lucas is hiking up the Pedregal.
Right behind Cabo rises the Pedregal Mountain. Home to luminaries like Sylvester Stallone, who’s rumored to own one of those fancy villas clinging to the mountain. Pedregal offers splendid views of Cabo and the marina, the Sea of Cortez, and the vast Pacific in the east.
Trekking these steep rock and stone-slab roads running to luxury villas, you’ll need a decent amount of fitness. But make it to the spherical observatory on the top, and you’ll be rewarded with an outlook over fishing boats mooring at San Lucas Bay and cruise ships visiting the area.
Getting here from town: Walk west along Lazaro Cardenas and cross Miguel Hidalgo. To enter the Pedregal gated neighborhood, you must pass through a guarded security gate. Soon after, the road begins to get steep.
Stroll along the Centro Marina
Walk on the marina’s esplanade, and you’ll stumble across eye-catching bronze sculptures, plus the Marlin Monument, apart from luxury yachts galore and the odd pelican resting in the small harbor. Here, you’ll find some of the best restaurants in Cabo San Lucas,
Besides a globetrotting selection of restaurants and cafes to catch some rays and sip on a cup of joe or an ice-cold beer, you’ll also find several bars and clubs. So if you’re looking for things to do in Cabo San Lucas at night, you’ll have no trouble finding them here.
To wrap this up, Cabo’s cozy feel is not just reflected in its desert climate but also in its hospitable locals, mouthwatering food, and upper-class hotels. Choosing where to go in Mexico is always a challenge. There are so many mesmerizing options. And Cabo is definitely one of them.
Between mid-December and early April.
August and September are the rainiest months, but there is still only a tiny chance of rain compared to other places in Mexico. So it’s a good time to go, especially if you want to avoid the crowds.
Five days is a good amount of time to see a lot and not be exhausted when you leave. If you have more time, you can delve deeper, and with less, you’ll have to prioritize what you want to see.