Los Cabos Land Adventures
Photo courtesy of Thinkstock
While Los Cabos is most frequently linked to deep-sea fishing, sailing, diving and snorkeling, this Baja destination also appeals with eco-centric diversions, planting landlubbers firmly on turf rather than surf. Land’s End is home to a flurry of excursions that transports travelers through rugged terrain on ATVs to horseback — or camel — rides along the beach.
Those into birding can grab binoculars and head to the 125-acre San Jose Estuary & Bird Sanctuary that’s designated as a Protected Natural Area. The surrounding land is desert, and a narrow finger of white sand separates the estuary from the Sea of Cortez to the south.
The migratory and native bird scene, composed of some 250 species, unfurls while kayaking through the thriving coastal lagoon or while strolling along friendly paths. Those in the know should count on spotting brown pelicans, egrets, herons, Xantus’s Hummingbirds and endemic Gray Thrashers.
READ MORE: Going Underwater in Los Cabos
Also in the San Jose del Cabo area, Wirikuta Botanical Desert Garden exposes wanderers to more than 1,500 varieties of desert plants from across the globe that honor along with native specimens. Eco-focused to the core, the garden showcases more than one million plants, a labyrinth of 1,000 bonsai bougainvillea and three pyramids built from massive granite boulders.
Considered among nature lovers as a Baja “must-do,” hiking hits a high note along the base of the Sierra de la Laguna Mountain Range. Cabos Outfitters leads the way to the Canyon de la Zorra, where hikers explore the base of the range before jumping into pools where freshwater tumbles over huge granite boulders.
The excursion also visits Miraflores and Santiago, two mellow craft/farming villages that border the canyon. Everything becomes more vivid as the guide shares the scoop on this magical environment.
From late August until early December, five species of endangered turtles — Hawksbill, Loggerhead, Leatherback, Green Turtle and Olive Ridley — return to their Baja beach homes to lay eggs. Cabos Outfitters’ certified guides lets your clients help with conservation efforts by visiting a nursery camp to “adopt” a turtle hatchling for releasing into the Sea of Cortez at sunset.
Cabo Adventures adds a four-legged component to eco-offerings with horseback riding at El Migrino Beach. Or slip onto a two-person saddle atop a dromedary for camel riding through Baja sand on the beach at Rancho San Cristobal. Winter outings add even more splash as migrating whales frolic offshore. These morning and afternoon tours also include a nature walk for learning about local flora and fauna, Mexican lunch overlooking the water, tequila tasting and tortilla making class.
The tour operator treats thrill seekers to adrenaline-pumping action with Mexico's highest and longest zipline. With the UNESCO-protected Boca de Sierra National Park as a backdrop, the jaunt elevates the cross-canyon ziplining component with crazy ladders, cliff side rappelling and a natural rock-climbing wall.
Both experienced cyclists and first-timers can use pedal power by mountain biking down cactus-lined tracks to a stunning hidden beach overlooking the Pacific — all while passing ospreys, chipmunks, deer, roadrunners and red tail hawks. As expected, this ride ends with an authentic Mexican feast and celebratory drink.
More by Dawna L. Robertson
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