Although it is the capital city of Baja California Sur in northwestern Mexico, La Paz is a tranquil land that boasts of an unspoiled natural environment. It sits on the Sea of Cortez, which the famous French oceanographer, Jacques Cousteau, referred to as the aquarium of the world. The pristine waters teeming with a rich diversity of marine life surrounding La Paz attract avid sport fishermen, serious divers and eco-tourists all throughout the year.
Getting to the City of Peace
Not only is La Paz a laid-back destination truly deserving its name (Peace), it is also quite easy to reach. If you like to drive, taking the trans-peninsular highway brings you straight to La Paz. To rack up frequent flyer miles, you can also take direct international flights to La Paz from several cities in North America. There are also ferry services to La Paz from other cities in Mexico. No matter how you get to the City of Peace, you will enjoy the many ways this beautiful city rewards its visitors.
La Paz is a popular destination for serious naturalists and nature-loving travelers alike. Local guides earn their livelihood escorting La Paz visitors to whale feeding grounds that abound in the region. Whale watching is a rapidly-expanding eco-friendly tourist industry that is benefitting several low-income families in the area. In addition, the city’s other natural attractions – bountiful flora, thriving marine life and diverse fauna – assure tourists of a one-of-a-kind communing with the best of Mother Nature.
La Paz chefs know how to bring the bounty of the sea directly to your dinner plate. Enjoy a variety of fresh seafood throughout your visit – blue marlin, tuna, abalone, lobsters and rock oysters to name just a few. If you want to savor authentic La Paz cooking, try the local dishes which are liberally seasoned with a wild herb called damiana. Touted as an aphrodisiac by residents, it may add more than just piquancy and local flavor to your La Paz sojourn.
The Heart of the City
In many Mexican cities, the center of socio-political and cultural life is in the main square, called the zocalo in Spanish. The zocalo is typically an open space with a fountain at the center and surrounded by shade trees. The heart of La Paz, Velasco Garden, is a modernized version of the zocalo from its colonial past. Bound by the Cathedral of Our Lady of Peace (circa 1861) and the Governor’s Palace, Velasco Garden is a relaxing place to visit and explore. The Library of the Regional History of California is housed at the Governor’s Palace.
Although a bustling capital city, La Paz has retained many of its old world charm and traditions. A trip to La Paz will allow you to experience a different side of Mexico. What are you waiting for?