Los Cabos (Cabo San Lucas & San Jose del Cabo), located at the southern tip of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula, is a destination that offers something for everyone. While “Cabo” first became popular as a wild spring breaker’s paradise (I think we all remember watching Laguna Beach, Season 1, ep. 5!), it’s grown into an elevated & luxurious destination. Whether you’re looking for relaxation, golf, or adventure, this area has it all. I’ve been coming to Cabo with my family for nearly 15 years and it’s pretty wild to see how the area has grown! So it’s about time I compiled a guide for y’all with all the things we like to do & eat while in Cabo! What happens in Cabo, ends up here!
One of the most popular things to do in Los Cabos is to simply relax on the beach. The area boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, with dark blue waters and white sandy shores. Popular beaches include Medano Beach, which is known for its lively atmosphere and water sports, Playa del Amor, a secluded beach that can only be accessed by boat, and Chileno Bay Beach, which has some of the calmest waters and nicest sand.
Los Cabos is also known for its luxury resorts and world-class dining. Some of the world’s most iconic luxury hotels are here: Waldorf Astoria, Viceroy, One&Only Palmilla, and Montage to name a few! The town is pretty “resort-focused” as you will find that many resorts are expansive hosting two or three restaurants on their grounds. Most of the impressive restaurants can be found on these properties, so make sure you make reservations! This makes the logistics of navigating Los Cabos, so make sure you’re coordinating transportation with your resort – they should help you (but it ain’t cheap!)
The area is also home to a flood of high-end and fine-dining restaurants that serve everything from traditional Mexican cuisine to international dishes. Most of the restaurants I’ve listed can be found within a resort, as the properties are so luxurious and generally host up to two or three restaurants. If it’s your first time in Cabo, I’d go to: lunch at TNT (at Chileno Bay) or Breeze (at One&Only Palmilla)! Grab dinner at Edith’s, Acre, Flora Farms, or Comal. After be sure to grab cocktails at Toro (at Esperanza) or The Glass Box Bar (at The Cape)! If you want to get your “Spring Break” on, be sure to get lunch at Mango Deck or The Office and you might be lucky to catch a wet T-shirt contest! Hit up Cabo Wabo or Squd Roe for some real dive-bar debauchery!
For those looking for adventure, Los Cabos has plenty to offer. The area is known for its excellent deep-sea fishing, with a variety of fish such as marlin, tuna, and dorado available to catch. A word of advice: maybe don’t have too much tequila the night before you go deep-sea fishing. Learn from my mistakes! Los Cabos is also a popular spot for scuba diving and snorkeling, with a variety of colorful marine life and underwater rock formations to explore. In addition to its natural beauty, Los Cabos is also home to a variety of cultural and historical attractions. The historic town of San Jose del Cabo is a great place to explore the local culture and history, with a variety of art galleries and shops to visit. The nearby Cabo San Lucas is a popular tourist destination, known for its lively nightlife and famous landmarks such as El Arco (The Arch).
Neighborhoods to know:
- Cabo San Lucas, at the southern tip of Baja, is home to dozens of resorts, beaches, the marina, and “the arch,” where the Pacific Ocean and Sea of Cortés meet. Cabo is also known for sport fishing, with several major fishing tournaments each year.
- San José del Cabo, also home to resorts, restaurants, and golf courses, retains much of its original Spanish colonial architecture, for example, the 18th-century Misión de San José del Cabo and its 19th-century City Hall. The Art District and downtown plaza are favorite spots.
- Tourist Corridor: This twenty mile stretch of coastline connects Cabo San Lucas and San José del Cabo. Luxurious resorts, sandy beaches, restaurants, shops, and golf courses line the corridor. Wild Canyon Adventures theme park is also located in the area.
- Pedregal: Just above downtown Cabo San Lucas on the Pacific, Pedregal is one the most exclusive neighborhoods in Los Cabos. Luxury resorts, upscale restaurants, private homes, and wealthy communities are set in Pedregal.
- Downtown Cabo San Lucas: This is the place for nightlife, with a variety of cantinas, bars, and nightclubs including Sammy Hagar’s famed Cabo Wabo. Hotels, shops, traditional Mexican restaurants, and more affordable prices as well as the nightlife make downtown a popular area.
- Marina: This lively area is home to fishing boats, yachts, and a variety of companies that offer sailing excursions, fishing and diving charters, whale watching, and sunset cruises. Restaurants, shops, hotels, the Puerto Paraiso Mall, and Luxury Avenue boutiques are also located near the marina.
- East Cape: About 45 minutes northeast from Los Cabos International Airport on the Sea of Cortés, the tranquil area features desert landscapes, secluded beaches, and stunning views of the Sierra de la Laguna Mountains. A developing area called Costa Palmas includes an elegant Four Seasons resort, golf course, marina, beach club, and an Aman hotel in the near future. *
- *Flora Farms – Slightly north of San Jose del Cabo, tucked away in the foothills of the Sierra de la Laguna Mountains, this seasonal, field-to-table restaurant is situated in a sustainable community, complete with a farm, restaurant, and shopping! The restaurant is in an airy, rustic-chic dining hall with patio seating. I’d recommend going before your reservation to shop around and enjoy the outdoors!
- *Acre – Acre is an authentic and sustainable restaurant with a modern farm-chic culinary experience featuring signature cocktails and a unique take on Mexican farm-to-table.
- *Edith’s – Colorful garden venue with thatched coverings & lanterns, for upscale Mexican fare, lobster & steak. Be sure to get the tuna tacos, steak, or fajitas and down it with a margarita – or strawberry martini (with tequila!). And you have to get the bananas flambé!
- *The Office – Vibrant beachfront restaurant featuring local & global food & cocktails, plus regular live music. If you’re lucky, you’ll get to meet ‘Rambo,” the resident fun enforcer!
- Nicksan – Bright, arty space for Japanese-Spanish fusion cuisine, with tuna tostadas & serrano ham sashimi.
- Vela (at The Hilton) – Vela Menu is inspired by traditional Italian cuisine with a modern twist!
- Toro (at Esperanza) – Toro Latin Kitchen & Bar has established itself as the most outstanding gastronomic and lifestyle scenery in Los Cabos in the last 5 years. It’s a wonderful spot for dinner and a favorite for an after-dinner cocktail!
- Comal (at Chileno Bay) – Comal is rooted in the authentic and traditional but injected with modern, inventive Mexican fare. Here, you’ll dine on the braised short rib with cacao broth, along with a selection of the freshest ceviche and crudo prepared in their live-action raw bar. Be sure to get the street corn, tuna tostada, crispy pork, and the steak quesadilla!
- Cocina del Mar (at Esperanza) – Perched atop striking cliffs overlooking Esperanza’s two private beaches this restaurant boasts some stunning views. The modern Mexican fare is delicious as are the drinks from the buzzing lantern-lit bar!
- Marea (at Montage) – Marea is an al fresco, Mediterranean-inspired restaurant perched on Santa Maria Bay with stunning panoramic views of the Sea of Cortez! Great for lunch!
- TNT (at Chileno Bay) – This beachside taco bar is great for lunch! They’ve got delicious ceviches and fresh-ingredient tacos that are all full of flavor!
- Yaya (at Chileno Bay) – A newer dining destination at Chileno Bay, Yaya is a gorgeous Mediterranean Be sure to get the hummus, burrata and shishito peppers! Their prosciutto and guava pizza is also so tasty!
- Arbol (at Las Ventanas) – Arbol’s elevated coastal cuisine showcases the bounty of the sea with delicate Asian influences and a trove of exotic spices from India and the Far East. Also has a seafood raw bar!
- Sea Grill (at Las Ventanas) – Located sandside with the stunning Sea of Cortez as its magnificent backdrop, Sea Grill offers a variety of grilled dishes, ceviche, and fresh seafood, as well as traditional Mexican dishes!
- El Farallon (a Waldorf Astoria) – High-end seafood eatery with outdoor tables beneath a cliff, for candlelit dining & sea views.
- La Lupita – The patio at this San José taco joint feels a lot like a backyard party—rustic mismatched furniture, the smell of sizzling tortillas, and seemingly endless supplies of cold cervezas! Enjoy some live music as the band goes on right when the sun sets!
- Sunset Mona Lisa – Tasting menus of stylishly plated Mediterranean dishes on a sprawling terrace overlooking the ocean.
- El Merkado – Perfect for a casual lunch, this warehouse offers over a dozen different kiosks serving up cuisine concepts (Mexican, Italian, Sushi…)
- Bagatelle – French Mediterranean dining is known for a lively brunch scene, with an opulent space in the heart of Baja California.
- Nobu – Nestled close to the ocean’s shore, Nobu Restaurant Los Cabos creates an immersive atmosphere with glass interiors that form a connection to the enticing waves and salt air, accentuating the elegant cuisine. Enjoy signature dishes such as rock shrimp tempura, miso black cod, and yellowtail sashimi with thinly sliced jalapeño peppers.
- Suviche (at One&Only Palmilla) – Chic Japanese fusion, served with style and sea views.
- Romeo y Julieta – Polished Italian dishes & seafood on a colonnaded patio or in an elegant dining room with music. They also have a big wine selection!
- Los Tres Gallos – Buzzy spot with a large terrace lit by fairy lights at night, for classic Mexican food & cocktails.
- Seared (at One&Only Palmilla) – Indulge in world-class steaks and fresh seafood at this signature restaurant at by Chef Jean-Georges!
- Manta (at The Cape) – From Mexican Chef Enrique Olvera (of Pujol, Atla, Cosme fame), Manta celebrates Pacific coasts cultures; taking inspiration from Mexico, Peru, Japan and beyond!
- Fisherman’s Landing at the Cabo Airport – you gotta trust me on this one! They have one of my favorite micheladas and it’s necessary to get a “roadie” for the drive to your lodging! It’s a must-stop on the way to your car.. can’t miss it – right when you arrive outside!
- The Rooftop (at The Cape) – Perched on the sixth floor, this al fresco sky garden features open-air bars, sunken communal seating, fire pit, and serene water features, all surrounded by sweeping views to downtown Cabo San Lucas.
- Bar Esquina (at Bahia Hotel) – You’ll drink inventive cocktails and an impressive wine and eat locally-sourced food from Chef Andres Bracamontes’ Mediterranean- and Mexican-inspired menu.
- The Glass Box Bar (at The Cape) – The Glass Box bar juts out from the rest of the hotel for a sort of floating effect – it offers uninterrupted views of the Sea of Cortez and El Arco!
- El Wine Shop (at Flora Farms) – A super cute wine and coffee bar in Flora Farms!
- El Squid Roe – Maybe the most infamous of the downtown “Spring Break” bars, this colorful party spot has DJs & dancing and party-goers.
- The Nowhere Bar – Boisterous nightspot on the marina offering beer & cocktails, plus a dance floor & pop music DJs. Another “Spring Break” joint!
- The Jungle Bar – if you want to party like you’re on spring break, this is a great place to end up!
- Cabo Wabo Cantina -Rocker Sammy Hagar’s high-energy cantina dishing out Mexican eats & cocktails in colorful digs. It’s a little overpriced and touristy.
- Mango Deck – Breakfast dishes, Mexican snacks & drinks served on a covered terrace or at tables on the sand. On a good day you might be able to catch a wet T-shirt contest here!
- The Office – Vibrant beachfront restaurant featuring local & global food & cocktails, plus regular live music. If you’re lucky, you’ll get to meet ‘Rambo,” the resident fun enforcer!
- Cream Cafe (at Palmilla) – European-style coffee served in a great atmosphere with pastries, sandwiches, snacks, and wine!
- Coffee Lab – Located in downtown San José, this hip coffee shop has a minimal Brooklyn feel and is serving up some seriously good coffee!
- Crust Baja Bakery Mx
- El Molino (at Chileno Bay) – Courtyard coffee shop proudly serving premium European-style coffee. I also love getting the ‘Uncle Bob’s” protein shake!
- Chameleón Cafe – On the west side of Corazón’s lobby, Camaleón Café serves as a casual marketplace for coffee and prepared foods to-go.
- Cafe Distrito
- French Riviera – This bakery is serving-up classic French & Mexican favorites!
- Casaola Cafe & Brunch – Mellow, laid-back cafe with a bamboo-shaded courtyard serving brunch options & frappes.
- Rent a boat and visit the iconic El Arco
- Go deep-sea fishing (learn from me and maybe don’t have a big night the day before!)
- Sunset sail around Cabo!
- Go whale watching by water!
- Check out the expansive Flora Farms
- Ride some waves and go surfing!
- Go golfing – and see why it’s becoming a golfer’s paradise!
- Ride horseback along the beach!
- Go snorkeling!
- Ride ATVs and adventure at Wild Canyon Park
- Ride camels in the Mexican desert!
- Catch the wind and go Parasailing
- Swim with the Dolphins
- Relax and get a massage!
- One&Only Palmilla – A legendary retreat where the marvels of Mexico come to life in authentic style. From incredible, authentic cuisine, to unique tailored experiences, and spectacular spaces to simply be. Look forward to finely appointed accommodations and the service.
- Chileno Bay – Nestled along a protected cove, Chileno Bay was created with a distinct vision to bring a contemporary take on the classic Baja escape with an airy, open aesthetic that blurs the line between indoor and outdoor with private terraces in each guest room. This is one of our favorite places to stay!
- Esperanza – Esperanza features a beachfront infinity pool, spa boutique, and free yoga sessions. They have a private beach with concierge services. There is a large state-of-the-art gym and an on-site art gallery. Sister property of Chileno Bay, there is a shuttle that runs between the two all day!
- Montage Los Cabos – Montage Los Cabos is located on the sweeping shores of Santa Maria Bay in Los Cabos. With 122 expansive guestrooms, suites, and casas designed to celebrate traditional indoor-outdoor living, the property has spectacular views and direct walk-in access to the finest swimming, diving, and snorkeling in the region!
- Four Seasons at Costa Palmas – One of the more secluded properties in Cabo, this stunning modern Mexican property is located on the eastern cape on the Sea of Cortez.
- Las Ventanas – Las Ventanas al Paraíso, a Rosewood Resort, has redefined pampering and luxury in Los Cabos with unparalleled service and unwavering attention to detail! With an expansive estate, the grounds and restaurants are truly impressive!
- Waldorf Astoria Cabo Pedregal – Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos Pedregal offers private pools in the rooms, has its own private beach area, and a state-of-the-art fitness center. Guests are welcomed with a free margarita cocktail!
- Viceroy– Located in the heart of San Jose Del Cabo, the 186-room beachfront property faces the Sea of Cortes and embodies the essence of water throughout its architecturally stunning design. Named the #1 Resort in Western Mexico by Conde Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards!
- The Cape, A Thompson Hotel – A fresh & vibrant approach to Los Cabos luxury—a singular beachfront retreat commanding a contour of the cape where every room and vantage point overlooks El Arco and the Cabo San Lucas bay horizon. The clean, contemporary lines of visionary Mexico City architect Javier Sanchez converge in a relaxed 1960s Southern California-meets-Baja aesthetic at this luxury boutique hotel.
Overall, Los Cabos is a destination that offers something for everyone. Whether you’re looking for relaxation, adventure, or a bit of both, this area has it all. Its beautiful beaches, excellent fishing and diving, cultural and historical attractions, luxury resorts, and world-class dining make it a perfect destination for a vacation. Have you been to Cabo yet? Let me know how you like to relax and enjoy Cabo too!
* from Travel & Leisure