facebook functionality image
a man and woman walking on a path with plants and trees
Hiking the Baja

Hiking the Baja

Interweaving the captivating Land’s End ecosystem are dozens of trails that bring hikers into a magical realm. Along with an appreciation for the environment, hiking is good exercise and more. Connecting with nature brings peace of mind and feelings of joy, especially in the company of friends and family. Early morning and late afternoon, when temperatures are lower and the sun is less strong, are the best times to hike the Baja.

Presiding over the region’s wide swath of desert is the multi-armed cardon cactus. Many of these magnificent specimens are centuries-old and up to 40 feet high. Below them is a thick forest of desert trees, notably the palo blanco and torote, and a wide variety of spiny plants and shrubs adapted to the arid climate. Punctuating the landscape are jumbled rock formations extruded eons ago by volcanic eruptions.

For guests of Pueblo Bonito Resorts as well as residents of Quivira Los Cabos, some of the most scenic hikes are conveniently located in and around Cabo San Lucas. A few are a little further afield. Here are four of our favorites.

Punta Lobos. Situated on the outskirts of Todos Santos an hour’s drive north of Cabo San Lucas, this spectacular hike features a steep-but-worth-it climb, stunning ocean views and abundant sea life, including whales and dolphins. The out-and-back loop can be hiked in one to three hours, depending on your pace. After passing by the ruins of the Old Port of Todos Santos, hikers ascend the face of a mountain, where the panoramic views of the Pacific are off the charts. Look for sea lions basking on the rocks far below. The bird-watching along the trail and at the summit is amazing. Level of difficulty: Moderate.

Costa Azul Canyon. Situated near San Jose del Cabo, this 8.4-km out-and-back trail is a pleasant, moderately challenging route that takes roughly two hours to complete. You'll likely encounter other people while exploring—this is a popular area for hiking, horseback riding and mountain biking. The trail winds along a sandy wash through the bottom of a canyon flanked by imposing rock formations. Keep an eye out for domesticated horses and cattle, which roam freely on the sandy road. The trail can be reached from the beach or the highway, where parking is available. Level of difficulty: Easy to Moderate.

Pacific Satellite Tower Hike. Satellite towers mark the highest elevation points in Los Cabos. The trailhead for this stellar, readily accessible hike is situated near the entrance to Pueblo Bonito Sunset Beach Golf & Spa Resort. The zigzag route leads to the summit of ConAgra Mountain, which serves up dazzling views of Cabo San Lucas, its bay, the Sea of Cortes, the Pacific Ocean and the cliff-hanging enclave of Pedregal. Difficulty level: Moderate.

Sierra de la Laguna. A mountain range that dominates the southernmost portion of the Baja peninsula, the Sierra de La Laguna, its tallest peak rising to 2,090 meters (6,857 feet) in elevation, represents the big leagues of Cabo hiking. These mountains offer a chance to climb in altitude to subtropical highlands and observe the changes in flora. At higher elevations, the desert cactus gives way to verdant oak and pine forests. A designated UNESCO biosphere reserve, the Sierra de la Laguna are accessible from Todos Santos on the Pacific side; and from small towns on the East Cape. Sierra trail access from Santiago, Miraflores, Caduano and Santiago on the East Cape are usually self-guided. Guided tours generally depart from trailheads on the outskirts of Todos Santos. Tour operators work in partnership with local farmers and ranchers--ecotourism at its best. Most hikes are four to six hours in duration and, because of the elevation change, are strenuous. Guided hikes can be booked through Cabo Outfitters or Baja Wild. Level of difficulty: Difficult.