When I hear the word “Cabo” I think of one thing: Kristin Cavallari from Laguna Beach dancing on top of the bar and screaming at Stephen. Now that I’ve actually been to Cabo San Lucas, I realize why Kristin was dancing on the bar. The city does tend to be a tourist party destination, but if you want a more adventurous experience, I recommend the following activities:

Beach horseback ride: When I was in Los Cabos, I was determined to horseback ride on the beach. While there was a local company that offered walked right outside my resort, I wanted a more authentic experience. It’s been years since I rode a horse, especially one with a western saddle, so I was quite shocked when my horse broke into a gallop once we hit the beach. If you want a scenic and local experience, I recommend booking with Carisuva. They offer various tours and I was impressed with the quality of their horseback riding excursion. Before hitting the completely deserted beach, you spend about 30 minutes walking through the ranch where there are cacti fields, mountains in the distance and clear air.

Girl Getaway JJ (2 seconds before full-on gallop)

Take a boat ride: If you make it all the way to Cabo, you must take a few hours to explore the Sea of Cortez. Having a guide with you will be beneficial in learning more about the city’s history and culture. If you are not a huge adventure-seeker, just go on a scenic boat ride that takes you past Lovers Beach, and Divorce Beach (where the Sea of Cortez and the Pacific Ocean meet). Just don’t hop off the boat and try to swim there. The waters are very rough there due to strong winds and rough currents, which is how it got its name.

Snorkel: An afternoon spent snorkeling may not sound too fun to the claustrophobic of the world, but after getting used to the breathing device, this is an ideal way to spend an afternoon in Cabo. The Chileno Bay area is a safe area to snorkel. I went at the beginning of October and the water was calm and very warm. We saw more species of fish and coral than I care to count and even spotted a zebra eel. For a faster tour around Chileno, try using one of the underwater motors.

Kayak: After an hour of snorkeling, our Cabo Adventure tour guide offered kayaking as the next activity. The water here is certainly not rough but there are a few waves, so it’s important to make sure you and your kayaking partner are rowing on the same side at the same time. Try getting up close and personal to the pelicans lazily sitting on the nearby rocks. Most kayak’s are equipped with some sort of seat belt, but I always avoid wearing mine, just in case of a capsize.

Swim with a dolphin: This is completely appropriate to do, regardless of age. I’ve wanted to swim with dolphins ever since I was five years old, so you can imagine how excited I was to actually get to live that dream. Cabo Adventures offers a few different dolphin programs: Dolphin Encounter, Dolphin Experience, Dolphin Swim, Dolphin Kids, and Trainer For A Day. I took part in the Dolphin swim but would have loved to have also done the Trainer for a Day since that was once my ultimate goal in life. The group size is limited to eight people, giving everyone ample time with the dolphin.

Pay a visit to Señor Frog’s: If you are in Cabo, there’s really no escaping from tourists. Señor Frog’s is one exception I make whenever I’m in Mexico. There is something about the name of the joint that gives me a feeling of complete contentment….that or it’s the multiple free shots they always end up giving out. Once you get Señor Frog’s our of your system, try going somewhere a little less touristy in town. There are usually 2-for-1 deals at nearly every bar. If there isn’t a promotion going on, they may make an exception just so you go to their bar rather than the string of similar bars on the same block.

Bargain with a local seller: One disadvantage many travelers find when they hit up a local market in a foreign city is the language barrier. It’s hard to get a good deal on anything when you are blatantly a tourist. Luckily, Cabo doesn’t have that problem – which is a good thing when it comes to market shopping. Nearly everyone speaks English and you can even pay in American Dollars. This certainly isn’t ideal when you are trying to immerse yourself in a different culture, but it will get you a good deal on a souvenir. Don’t be afraid to be firm in your asking price….it is more than likely that you can get the exact same thing at the shop next door.

Experience Nightlife: Although I never made it to Cabo after dark, the party scene is one thing that defines Cabo as a party destination. For a local experience, Cabo’s Best recommends the following bars: Cabo Wabo Cantina, The Giggling Marlin, El Squid Roe, Nikki Beack and The Passion Club, Hard Rock Café, and Nowhere Bar. I can vouch for Cabo Wabo, as many locals recommended this bar to us on multiple occasions.

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