Preparing for Baja

The long arm of Baja, fastened on Southern California, seems quiet, beautiful and remote. To the west is the Pacific and nestled in the peninsula’s flank is the Sea of Cortez, what Jacques Cousteau called “the aquarium of the world.” Last summer I trailed Cousteau to the Belize Barrier Reef. This time I’ll cross his path in the Gulf of California after a desert road trip between both sides of the peninsula.

My companion and I planned this excursion with a Moon Guide, perfect for independent travelers like us. Our itinerary was inspired by their suggestions for La Ruta del Vino, Best Beaches, and the Bahia de Los Angeles. The Moon series has been updated to full-color and the photos and maps are a gorgeous complement to their recommendations, which tend to be frank and have always lead us to warm personalities and good deals.

I’ve also been devouring John Steinbeck’s Log from the Sea of Cortez (and should finish before we leave). Steinbeck’s meditations on tide pools, desert seascapes, sea creatures and spirituality are a treat. Even if I don’t finish in time, the travelogue would be top-notch reading for down-time in the palapa.

Finally, I’ve been poring over National Geographic’s North Baja Adventure Map. Each map in this series is printed on tear- and water-resistant paper and is a perfect size for unfolding in the car. I’m looking forward to the places already; the names themselves are marvelous: Ensenada, Mexicali, Isla Coronado. They radiate relaxation and desert heat!

These three titles are perfect for my upcoming trip to Baja and I’m looking forward to a meaningful trip. Wishing you meaningful travels as well, this summer and beyond! If you’re also planning a trip to the Pacific side of Mexico, take advantage of our special offer of 15% off retail price and purchase these books as a set, with item code EXBJA106. ¡Feliz viaje!