After 15 years of traveling to Cabo San Lucas, it's always fun to find new things to do, restaurants to enjoy and resorts to try out.
First, is Cabo still a safe haven during Covid-19? The resorts have upped their occupancy a bit since our September trip and the cooler weather has encouraged a lot more travelers. Temperature checks, luggage sanitizing, and hand sanitizer is still the norm everywhere you go. Resort staff, restaurants and vendors were 99% masked. However, we did notice that way more tourists (and there were way more tourists) were not observing masking protocols on the streets, although compliance was relatively high in the resorts themselves. We wore our masks, avoided those who did not and felt safe everywhere we went.
The first four days of our stay was in San Jose del Cabo at the all-inclusive, Hyatt Ziva. The hotel was lovely; pretty pools and grounds and the rooms were nicely appointed. It is not as elegant, as say, Le Blanc or Grand Velas, but it isn't as pricey either. It's also walking distance (or a short cab ride) to San Jose's Art District and plaza which makes it more convenient than Corridor resorts. Hyatt's main pool was separated from the adult pool by an entire wing which made the adult side particularly quiet if that's your thing. Entertainment was provided nightly; poolside and in their theater.
Photos by Seguras: Hyatt Ziva private check-in with Gogo Mytime (ask me how!), lobby and grounds, adult pool area, swim-up rooms, main pool at night, ocean view studio
Taking advantage of our all-inclusive package, we ate in every restaurant (DoZo - Japanese, Bon Vivant - French, Zaffiro - Italian, La Hacienda Beach Grill-Mexican/South American) with the exception of one (El Cortijo- Spanish), including the pool-side deli and the adult, pool-side grill. In all honesty, we were most impressed with The Plaza breakfast buffet which includes made-to-order omelets, Mexican breakfast specialties, fruits, cereal, pastries and lunch items. Zaffiro and La Hacienda benefited from their beach-front settings and all the masked waiters and waitresses were very kind and attentive.
Photos by Seguras: Hyatt Ziva, La Plaza buffet and outdoor seating, Bon Vivant with socially distanced tables, DoZo and La Hacienda beach-side grill with its lovely view. Note: Due to Covid, restaurants have removed all table decor so everything looks very bland. I'm sure in normal times, the decor would spice up the ambiance of the restaurants.
Since we were in San Jose del Cabo, we walked down to the San Jose Estuary. We've passed the sign many times but have never stopped to take a look. What a surprise! This beautiful, protected oasis covers 345 acres and is home to hundreds of species of birds, reptiles, turtles, fish and other marine animals. We walked in only 100 yards or so, but there are kayak and walking tours available throughout the year that we may try next time.
Photos by Seguras: Estero de San Jose del Cabo and a few of its inhabitants
Just before the estuary, we happened upon Bonanza Stables and decided to book a horseback ride with them. Another wonderful experience! Aaron, his daughter and crew were delightful to meet and the ride along the Sea of Cortez where it borders the estuary was breathtaking. We were not required to wear helmets and we were allowed to take our cell phones and cameras - a nice plus. Highly recommend!
Photos by Seguras: Aaron, owner of Bonanza Horseback Ride and our beautiful ride along the estuary and the Sea of Cortez
We also discovered a new restaurant in San Jose worthy of mention. Jazmin's, in the Gallery District, just a few blocks north of the main plaza and church, has become our new favorite San Jose restaurant. Where to sit? Balcony? Garden? Indoors with A/C? Browse the gift shop before or after eating? We tried Tortilla Soup, Shrimp Tacos, Enchiladas in Mole sauce and Avocado Shrimp - all delicious and beautifully presented. The hosts and servers were friendly and gracious. We will make it a point to eat there on all future trips!
Photos by Seguras: Jazmin's Restaurant in the Art District, balcony and garden seating, gift store, Mamacita's Tortilla Soup, Shrimp Tacos, Chicken Mole and Avocado Shrimp
Most of our remaining time, we spent at the Grand Solmar at Land's End Resort and Spa. This is a timeshare property, but they also offer individual rates for both all-inclusive and room only. Located on the Pacific Ocean side but isolated from the hustle and bustle of downtown Cabo, this pristine resort offers all ocean view and ocean front rooms, four restaurants, infinity pools, wading pools, hot tubs, swim-up bars, free WiFi, and free parking, plus kitchenettes in studio rooms and full kitchens in one-bedrooms and up.
This is an incredible drone shot of the ocean-front, Grand Solmar. Nestled against the rocks that divide the Pacific from the Sea of Cortez, you can see the marina in the background just a short walk away. Photo credit: R. Castro
Photos by Seguras: Night shot of the Solmar grounds, one-bedroom Master King room, pools and water features abound
Photos by Seguras: Sunrise from Solmar's beach, sunset from the infinity pool, nearby rock formations, beautiful sunrise view from our balcony
Cactus Tours, Horseback Ride and Razor Tour
Another new adventure for us! We did a one-hour horseback ride, followed by a one-hour Razor, Off-Road ride. The new Cactus facilities are well-appointed and include a lunch bar and Tequila tasting room. Hotel pick up was included - about one-half hour from downtown Cabo to the Cactus location on the Pacific Ocean side of Cabo. Our guides were very nice on both rides. The horseback ride is a walking, head-to-tail trek through the desert to the ocean and back. Same for the Razor, but my husband enjoyed it because once he showed the guide he knew how to drive, they set a fairly fast pace over the dunes. It was fun for the rider too! Negatives: Mandatory helmets for both tours (which is understandable) and no phones or cameras allowed. This is obviously because they want to sell you their photos at the end and they aren't cheap. We bought two, just to prove we were there. ($20)
Photos taken by Cactus Tours