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This blog discusses Los Cabos real estate and other important news and happenings in Cabo.

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Cabo San Lucas in the News - Chicago Sun Times Article

Even in Baja's tourist-laden Los Cabos region -- where American chains like Wal-Mart, Home Depot and Ruth's Chris Steak House run rampant -- it's possible to find some amazing, secluded spots away from the crowds.

One such place is the 2,000-acre Rancho Punto San Cristobal, just north of Cabo San Lucas along the Pacific coast of Baja. Here, longtime Cabo resident Rene Pinal has resisted developers and managed to protect several miles of pristine shoreline to help the survival of sea turtles that nest here every year.

If you come, Pinal and his team of biologists will put you to work, looking for turtle nests, digging up turtle eggs and moving them to a protected area, keeping predators or humans away and then helping the hatchlings make it back to the ocean. The best months to visit are August to October. Let them know you are coming by dropping an e-mail to asupmatoma@hotmail.com or calling 011 52 624 143 0758. For more information, go to www.savetheseaturtles.org.

The rest of the ranch is a beautiful example of the area's tropical desert environment. Unlike our resort or nearby golf courses, there is no sod here. But there are massive cardon cacti that are hundreds of years old. We got a close-up look at the landscape during a challenging mountain bike ride up and down some serious hills, dodging cactus and sludging through loose sand. The company NaturAdventure can set you up with bikes, helmets and friendly guides, www.naturadventure.com.

The tiny town of Cabo Pulmo is about two hours north of Cabo San Lucas on the eastern Baja coast along the Sea of Cortez. Accessible only by dirt road, it's a nature-lover's paradise, lush with tropical and desert plants and the jumping off point for the only living coral reef in western North America.

Because it's a protected marine park, the diving and snorkeling here is spectacular. For $100, I did an introductory scuba dive with the Cabo Pulmo Dive Center, www.cabopulmo.com, where I got a quick training course in shallow water before taking a longer dive with an instructor. Swimming among thousands of manta rays will go down as one of the highlights of my life. We also snorkeled within a few feet of inquisitive sea lions and admired the huge variety of fish within the coral reef.

You can rent your own private cabana in Cabo Pulmo for $35 to $135 at www.bajabungalows.com, or stay in a casita for $50 at Nancy's, an organic restaurant run by former Chicago marketer Nancy Hyzer. (Reservations can be made by e-mailing amyhyzer@aol.com.)

A short drive from Cabo Pulmo is Los Arbolitos, a gorgeous, secluded beach. If you're feeling adventurous, take the short hike along a very narrow hillside path to Mermaid Beach, where you can snorkel in the shallow reef. Keep in mind that the water is cold in the winter months, so you might want to rent a wetsuit from one of the dive shops in town.

On the ride back to Cabo San Lucas via San Jose del Cabo, I opted to bypass paved Highway 1 and instead braved a 30-mile dirt road that featured breathtaking views of beaches laden with thatched-roof palapas. Stop at the Crossroads Country Club, an outdoor bar owned by a friendly ex-New Yorker that has live music on weekends.

I felt like a race car driver cruising along the winding, hilly roads -- until I came upon a curious burro who stood in the middle of the road. When I slowed down, he stuck his head in my front window. For several minutes, the burro refused to leave until I gently nudged him, backed up, and drove away.

I couldn't blame him. I didn't want to leave this paradise, either.

Dave Newbart

Posted: Wednesday, April 09, 2008 9:39 PM by Nick Fong

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