20 Magical Things To Do In Todos Santos, Mexico

Todos Santos has hands-down become one of my favorite destinations in Mexico. For those of you unfamiliar, Todos Santos is an artsy little town in the Baja California Sur region of Mexico that has long been a haven for nomads, surfers, travelers, and artists looking for an escape from the hustle and bustle of Baja.

Ask anyone who visited before–chances are, they were completely enamored by the small-town charm of Todos Santos. Personally speaking, the minute I laid my eyes on the streets of Todos Santos, I immediately fell in love with this magical destination!

In fact, Todos Santos has even been officially named a pueblo mágico, or “magical town”, by the government–a title given to towns in Mexico that do a great job of honoring and preserving the local culture and its history.

While it’s still relatively undiscovered and off-the-beaten-path (well, at least compared to places like Cancun and Cabo San Lucas), it’s far from Mexico’s best-kept secret anymore. Having said that, Todos Santos is still tranquil and calm enough that you can get away from the big city atmosphere.

Even with its small population of approximately 6-7k people, this town is bustling with things to do and see. While you won’t be finding nightclubs and touristy attractions, you will find tons of art galleries around town, colorful open-air markets selling trinkets and homewares, quiet beaches, as well as farm-to-table restaurants everywhere you turn!

Having spent three nights in Todos Santos exploring every nook and cranny in town, we were able to really immerse ourselves in what this arts-centric town had to offer!

And being so easily accessible from Los Cabos and the West Coast (there are lots more details on how to get to Todos Santos in this post), we’ll definitely be back for lots more weekend trips!

Here’s everything you need to know about this dreamy town–discover how to get there, where to stay, what to eat, and all of the best things to do in Todos Santos, Mexico.

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Where Is Todos Santos Located?

Todos Santos is located on the Pacific Coast of Mexico’s Baja California Sur. Baja California Sur is essentially that long peninsula that you see on maps directly south of California.

The village is located in the foothills of the Sierra de la Laguna mountain range, wedged between the dry heat of the desert and the cool breezes of the coast. (This means the weather is almost always pleasant!)

The town of Todos Santos is only about an hour north of Cabo San Lucas, making it a very easy day trip for travelers looking for a different/quieter change of pace.

And while, yes, you can see Todos Santos as part of a day trip from spots like Cabo, I would highly recommend staying for at least 2 nights to really experience the magic of this town.

Best Things To Do In Todos Santos Mexico

History of Todos Santos, Mexico

Todos Santos has been named a Pueblo Mágico by the Mexico Secretary of Tourism. Towns that have been given this title have been recognized as travel-worthy destinations due to their cultural richness, unique attractions, and historic relevance.

Like many other places in this region, Todos Santos started as a Spanish mission in 1724. In fact, the original mission can still be seen today! It’s now a well-preserved landmark located just across the street from the town square.

Over time, the town became best known as the sugarcane capital of Baja California.

Fast-forward to today, Todos Santos is best known for its thriving art community, farm-to-table restaurant scene, historic buildings, souvenir markets, independent boutiques, and charming streets. Literally, everything that makes me fall in love with a destination!

While you’re here, you won’t be able to ignore the town’s small-town charm and cobblestoned streets that live on from days of the past.


Best Time To Visit Todos Santos, Mexico

Because of how Todos Santos is uniquely situated between both the desert and the coast, the weather remains typically warm and pleasant throughout the year. Unlike many other true desert towns, the ocean breeze helps keep the region cool even during the peak of summer.

If I had to pick the best time to visit for outdoor exploration and sightseeing, I’d recommend the months from January to March. Not only will there be high chances of near-perfect weather, but you will also escape the peak season crowds, and have the chance to spot gray whales in the distance!

When we visited in late February, the weather was absolutely perfect. Daytime temperatures hovered in the low 80’s, while the nights cooled down comfortably into the 50’s (very similar to the Northern California weather I’m used to).

During all 11 days we were in the BCS region, the sun was shining and there was not a cloud in the sky!

Of course, the “best time” to go really depends on what you’re looking to do. Here are a few distinct travel periods that can help you decide when you want to go:

  • November to April: This is whale watching season in Baja California when gray and humpback whales make their yearly migration to these shores to breed and mate. Chances of seeing whales are very high!
  • October and November: This is when the summer heat and humidity have given way cooler, more pleasant daytime temps. This is considered low season, meaning you’ll find better deals on hotels and accommodations.
  • December and January: These are great months for surfing in this part of the state. NOTE: The town gets very crowded over the holidays in winter (as well as the week leading up to Easter during Semana Santa), with Mexicans flock to this region for vacation.
  • July to October: While the summer months are hot, this is also considered the region’s hurricane season, with August and September being the wettest months. Hurricanes are most frequent during the month of September.
Magical Things To Do In Todos Santos, Mexico - TravelswithElle

How Many Days To Spend in Todos Santos?

Personally, I could spend my entire life in Todos Santos. I would move there–I love it that much! However, I digress.

If you’re just visiting for a limited amount of time, I think the optimal amount of time is 2-3 nights. This will allow you to explore all that the downtown area has to offer, as well as the nearby towns (Los Cerritos, Pescadero, Las Tunas).

If you want to go on a day trip to La Paz or Cabo, then 3 nights (4 days) will be the perfect amount of time. During our last trip, we spent 3 nights in Todos Santos and were easily able to squeeze in a day trip to La Paz to swim with whale sharks.


How To Get To Todos Santos

Most major airlines fly directly into Los Cabos International Airport (SJD) in San Jose del Cabo. This is the more common airport to fly in and out of.

Another option is the La Paz International Airport (LAP). From the airports, you’ll need to arrange private transportation or rent a car.

If you’re already planning on vacationing in Cabo and are just looking for a day trip to Todos Santos, you’re in luck! Because of how close Todos Santos is to Los Cabos, there are several local tour operators that will take you there as part of a day trip. No need to rent a car! Some guided tour options include:

However, for the ultimate flexibility to see and do what you want on your own time, renting a car and getting there yourself is the way to go! This is what we did during our last trip, and we would do it the same all over again.

BY CAR

Getting to Todos Santos by car is pretty easy, especially if you do some preparation beforehand! You can either fly into Los Cabos International Airport (SJD) or La Paz International Airport (LAP) and make the quick drive to Todos Santos.

Todos Santos is roughly a 1.5-hour drive north from San Jose del Cabo (SJD Airport), or a 1-hour drive south from La Paz. No matter which airport you fly in from, both routes will be on a well-maintained road, Highway 19. This new toll highway makes the drive from the airport to Todos Santos very straightforward!

Alright, be forewarned, I’m going to get into detail for this section. Only because searching for a rental car was such a pain in the butt for my trip to Cabo/Todos Santos. I’m going to try to spare you the many hours spent on research!

Choosing a rental car company

After doing countless hours of research and being stressed out about all the negative reviews I was coming across for the majority of the American rental car companies, I narrowed down the trustworthy businesses to the following: BBB Rentacar, Cactus, Alamo, and Los Cabos Family Rental Cars are all good companies to book with.

If I were you, I would get quotes from all of these companies and go with the one that provides you with the best quote and all the car features you’re looking for.

Of course, your personal experiences may vary, but generally, these companies have a good reputation, unlike the other companies who will entice you with a low price, then do everything to upcharge you for insurance.

For my trip, I ended up renting with Los Cabos Family Rental Cars.

Though the price for the car did look steeper than what I was seeing elsewhere on the web for rental companies like Hertz, Avis, etc., I did like the fact that I was promised “no surprises”.

Last-minute surprises in pricing are a HUGE pet peeve for me, and I wanted to have a stress-free vacation, so I bit the bullet and went with a company with positive reviews and a good reputation. And so glad I did–our car rental experience was seamless!

We met a member of the family-owned car rental company in the parking lot of the airport, signed some final paperwork, paid for the car, picked up the keys, and off we went!

Pro Tip: If you’re from the USA, you don’t need an international driver’s license to rent a car in Mexico. Booking a car as soon as possible will save you money compared to waiting last minute. (I accidentally waited until the last minute, and a lot of rental companies were out of available cars, oops!)

Opting for full coverage rental insurance in Mexico

If you were in the USA, I’d typically recommend going with insurance provided by your credit card. However, because this is Mexico, I’d suggest that you consider purchasing full coverage insurance.

Why? One thing to remember is that Mexico is not the US. Things work a little differently here, and it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Laws are different in Mexico and if you have an accident, you will be held until all damages you caused are paid for.

With full coverage insurance, if something were to go wrong, all you’d need to do is show your coverage to the local police and contact your rental car company. They’ll make arrangements to bring you a replacement and assist you in the reporting process so that you can continue on with your trip.

I’m not too familiar with the car accident laws in Mexico, so it’s always best to check your policy and your credit card coverage terms, but wouldn’t you rather be safe than sorry, especially while on vacation?

Driving to Todos Santos from SJD

Alright, once you’ve picked up your car, you’ll need to now drive to Todos Santos! You’ll be driving on a well-maintained highway until you get to town, which will then turn into a mixture of dirt and paved roads, depending on where you plan on visiting.

If possible, I’d recommend opting for an SUV with 4-wheel drive, as some of the roads in town aren’t as well maintained (such as roads to some restaurants and beaches).

Our small sedan did just fine, but we did have to drive significantly slower on bumpy dirt roads. A larger AWD vehicle would have been able to handle these roads better!

Keep in mind that while you’re on the highway, you’ll need to pay 97 pesos (~$5) for toll, so have some cash on hand and ready to go. We kept a few 100 peso bills in the glove compartment just for this reason.

Once you get your ticket from the first toll machine, do not lose it! Just stick it in the glove compartment and keep it safe. You’ll need it when you pay at the end of the toll road.

Once you get past this section of Highway 19, it’s smooth sailing all the way to Todos Santos!

Note: This is a rather hilly drive, so if you’re traveling with a lot of passengers and a lot of bags, it might be worth it to rent a car with more engine power.

BY BUS

There are three major bus companies on the Baja Peninsula – Autotransportes de Baja California (ABC), Transportes Aguila, and Tres Estrellas de Oro. While all are viable options, Transportes Aquila has the most routes to Todos Santos.

If you fly into Cabo, you can take a public bus to Todos Santos for about $5-10 USD one-way.

The bus journey time between Cabo San Lucas and Todos Santos is around 1h 15m and covers a distance of around 49 miles. Buses from Cabo leave for Todos Santos about every hour, starting around 6am and running into the evening.

Aguila operates a bus from Cabo San Lucas to Todos Santos every 3 hours. ABC also services this route twice daily.

From the airport, you’ll first need to get to the El Aguila Bus Terminal about 15 minutes away. You can get to the bus terminal by either shuttle service or taxi.

You can use Rome2Rio to learn more about your public transportation options here.

From La Paz, you can also take the Transportes Aguila bus for around $6-10 USD one-way. This route will take approximately 1 hour 30 minutes. Learn more about bus times/schedules here.


How To Get Around Todos Santos

While I would highly recommend a rental car to get to Todos Santos and to explore the outskirts of town, downtown Todos Santos itself is quite walkable. Chances are, if you’re staying at a hotel within the downtown area, you can get by just fine on foot.

If you plan on visiting a few off-the-beaten-track spots (turtle release beach, epic surfing beach, a few restaurants like Hierbabuena), you will need to hop in your car to get around.

Do note that taxis are available, but similar to most of Mexico’s destinations, they’re not typically metered. This means you’ll need to negotiate and agree on a price before getting in. As always, hailing a cab on a street yourself will always be cheaper than having your hotel arrange a taxi for you.


20 Magical Things To Do In Todos Santos

1. Start your mornings off at a cafe

One of my favorite memories of Todos Santos was being able to roll out of bed once the sun rises and head to one of the many great cafes in the town. A lot of these cafes specialize in both coffee and food, which is probably exactly what you’re looking for while on vacation!

Some of our top recommendations are DoceCuarenta Café, Jazamango Cafe, Coffee Shop Las Tunas (don’t miss the chilaquiles), and La Esquina Todos Santos (beautiful outdoor garden setting, traditional Mexican breakfast dishes).

All of these food joints feature fresh juices, flavorful coffee, homemade pastries, and an assortment of Mexican breakfast specialties (my go-to is always either chilaquiles or huevos rancheros)!

For more of a grab-and-go option such as coffee and baked goods, do not miss Taller 17. Their muffins are absolutely delightful. Their coffee is great too!

2. Take a stroll through downtown Todos Santos

Downtown Todos Santos is major eye candy. You can expect to see colorful banners hung up, blooming bougainvillea flowers wrapped around buildings, art galleries, and trinkets/handicrafts at every turn.

Don’t miss Calle Benito Juarez, the main street with busy restaurants and stores galore. Take note of the old colonial architecture of the town, including its cobblestone streets from the 1800s and the pastel-colored colonial facades on buildings.

Be sure to bring your camera as you explore downtown, because how can you not want to photograph up all the color?! Each and every street is unique and photogenic in its own way, so take the time to wander them (even the quiet ones) on foot.

You can also tour the Misión Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Todos Santos (Mission of Our Lady of del Pilar of All Saints) that was built in 1733. This is the town’s most notable religious edifice. Don’t miss the pretty yellow facade, an altar surrounded by stained glass, and sweeping views over the ocean.

Todos Santos Mission - Best Things To Do In Todos Santos - TravelsWithElle

Pro Tip: If you want to see an Aztec sunstone, walk past the “Todos Santos” sign away from the mission–it’s an amazing sight to see that not many people know exists!

Todos Santos Sign - Best Things To Do In Todos Santos - TravelsWithElle

3. Release baby sea turtles

If you’ve dreamed of seeing baby sea turtles up close, Todos Santos is going to really make your dreams come true. The beaches around Todos Santos are nesting grounds for various sea turtles including Olive Ridleys, Leatherbacks, and Blacks.

Tortugueros Las Playitas Turtle Release - Best Things To Do In Todos Santos

The turtle releases are run by Tortugueros Las Playitas, a non-profit sea turtle sanctuary. During turtle-hatching season, the volunteers invite you almost every night at sunset to cheer on baby sea turtles as they make their way down to the surf. It’s absolutely incredible to watch and the best part is that the releases are open to the public and free of charge!

Hatching releases take place at Tortugueros Las Playitas on most evenings at sunset from December through February–this is the busiest hatching time. If you’re visiting later in the year, the releases are done more sporadically during March and April.

Arrive a bit earlier than sunset to catch the babies taking their first steps before they’re brought down to the sand. You won’t be able to handle the baby turtles, but getting to watch them scurry around is enough to melt your heart and put a smile on your face!

For more information, check out this website here.

To get to the beach (Tortugueros Las Playitas), you’re going to have to drive on some uneven dirt roads. Just drive slow and you’ll be fine in any type of vehicle.

4. Shop for local treasures and handmade items

Shopping In Todos Santos - Best Things To Do In Todos Santos

Todos Santos sure is a colorful, eye-catching town! While exploring the town on foot, it’ll be hard to ignore the brightly colored souvenir shops selling everything from rugs to leather goods, and textiles to ceramics.

If you’re looking for some new home decor, a new leather bag, or silver jewelry, this is the place to get it!

Some of my favorite finds include the bright pom-poms and hanging woven cacti! If I could buy them all to decorate my house, I WOULD!

Once you’re done perusing the little shops on the main streets, don’t miss the little plazas that house even more shops! There’s even an open-air shopping area selling all the cute things a tourist would want to buy–hats, crochet things, colorful hanging decor, blankets, handmade plush toys, you name it!

Shopping In Todos Santos - Best Things To Do In Todos Santos

5. Shop at the indie boutiques

Shopping In Todos Santos - Best Things To Do In Todos Santos

If traditional Mexican goods are not your cup of tea, there’s still a lot of shopping that can be done in Todos Santos. The downtown area is speckled with independent boutiques, lifestyle clothing shops, and vintage stores.

Some of our favorites were:

  • Nomad Chic – Women’s clothing boutique with hats, caftans, swimsuits, dresses, and one-of-a-kind jewlery.
  • Saguaro – Men and women’s lifestyle clothing shop featuring brands like Banks Journal.
  • La Katrina Surf Shop – Selling all things surf and some really cool t-shirt designs.
  • Etnica – Features beautiful, locally-made clothes, bags, and shoes for men and women.

6. Get fish tacos at Fish Taco Santo Chilote

When in Baja, you absolutely need to get yourself some fish tacos. There’s no better place to gorge on fish tacos than Santo Chilote.

We ordered an assortment of fish and shrimp tacos as well as chips and guacamole, and everything was so filling and delicious.

Once you get your order, don’t be alarmed when you see a naked fish taco on your plate. Just take your plate over to the condiment bar and fill those babies up with whatever you like–purple cabbage, hot sauce, mango salsa, crema, anything you like.

Come at the right time and you might even catch some live music on the outdoor patio stage!

Pro Tip: If you make it out to Cerritos Beach (see below), you need to hit up Barracuda Cantina. These fish tacos are as fresh as they are delightful. They were even featured on Netflix’s Taco Chronicles! Don’t pass up the chance to eat fish tacos right by the beach.

7. Go surfing at Cerritos Beach

Cerritos Beach - Best Things To Do In Todos Santos Mexico

All the locals know that the best surfing around Todos Santos is at Playa Los Cerritos. Playa Los Cerritos is located about 20 minutes south of Todos Santos and is well-known for its strong surf and massive waves.

If you’re more of a beginner surfer, don’t let my description above freak you out–smaller waves can be found closer to shore. The great thing about this beach is that the sand is soft, meaning if you fall off your board, you won’t get all scratched up.

You can rent a surfboard and wetsuit from vendors along the beach and even opt for some surf lessons!

Another popular surfing spot is Playa San Pedrito. This beach is a mix of sandy floor as well as some rocky parts.

8. Hit the beach for swimming and sunbathing

If you’re in Todos Santos when the weather is too hot to handle, one of the best things to do is to hit the beach! Interestingly enough, when you’re in town, you won’t even be able to tell you’re near the beach. But you are!

Before we get into which beaches are recommended, it’s important to note that not all the beaches in the area are safe for swimming. This region is notorious for dangerous breaks and dangerous currents, so only go swimming at beaches where you see other people swimming.

Beaches In Todos Santos

Among the few beaches that are safe for swimming are Punta Lobos Beach and Los Cerritos Beach.

9. Dance with the locals

Wednesday nights in Todos Santos are like the Friday and Saturday nights of the rest of the world. This is when locals head to the nearest salsa clubs and discotecas to unwind and dance!

Head to Jardin Alquimia from 5 to 10pm for one of the most fun salsa nights in town! They have an incredible back patio that opens up into a bar, dining area, and dance floor. If you’re looking for deliciously crafted cocktails paired with a side of dancing, this is the place to be!

Expect nothing less than energetic and positive vibes! This was by far one of the most fun and memorable places we stumbled upon in Todos Santos. And we only learned about it after talking to a local for 30 minutes.

10. Grab lunch at JAZAMANGO

Jazamango - Where To Eat In Todos Santos, Mexico

If you’re looking for an unforgettable meal in a picturesque outdoor space, do not miss JAZAMANGO! This might be the prettiest restaurant I’ve ever been to. The restaurant’s location is a little slice of heaven–atop a hill overlooking the entire town.

JAZAMANGO is Mexican chef Javier Plascencia’s farm-to-table, open-concept restaurant. Here you’ll get the chance to taste his signature Baja Med cuisine, with almost all ingredients being sustainably and locally produced.

The beautiful setting complements the fresh, farm-to-table dishes so well! Walking through the spacious garden with your cocktail in hand is such a lovely experience. We will be dreaming of dining here again!

If you’d rather dine here for dinner, I’d recommend getting there just a bit before sunset so you can fully soak in those sunset vibes. And don’t forget to order the fish or the catch of the day!

Do make reservations ahead of time because they do tend to get busy.

11. Go art gallery hopping

Art In Todos Santos - Best Things To Do In Todos Santos Mexico

Being such an arts-centric town, Todos Santos is filled to the brim with art galleries. You should definitely spend a few hours popping in and out of the various galleries to check out the range of local artists.

Galeria Enrique Guerrero, Galeria Logan, Galeria de Todos Santos, and Gabo Art Gallery are popular spots to check out.

Do note that many galleries are closed on Sundays, if gallery hopping is on your Todos Santos itinerary, make sure to visit any other day of the week.

12. Snap a photo by the Hotel California

Hotel California - Things To See In Todos Santos Mexico

While you’re walking downtown, don’t miss a quick glance at the Hotel California.

While, no, this hotel was not the inspiration for the Eagles’ hit song of 1976, Hotel California, it’s still fun to see a building with the same name. You can grab lunch at the restaurant La Coronela or visit the gift shop before moving on.

Fun Fact: The hotel is famously controversial because of its name. It was actually sued by the Eagles for false association with their song.

13. Go horseback riding

With all the beautiful terrain surrounding the town, one of the best things you can do in Todos Santos is to spend time outdoors. What better way to do that than on horseback?

There are a few tour operators that specialize in horseback adventures, including Eco Baja Tours and Adventure 19.

This lovely tour by Pegaso Expediciones features a seaside horseback ride, allowing you to enjoy the natural landscape without working up too much of a sweat. After the ride, enjoy a delicious family-style Mexican meal and drinks on their farm.

14. Go whale watching in the winter

whale watching oregon coast

Todos Santos is a great destination for catching a glimpse of migrating gray and humpback whales during the winter. The opportunity to see endless amounts of whales breach and surface from the beaches of Todos Santos is unforgettable!

The best time to see gray whales is between January and March, when they migrate from Alaska every year to the warmer, calmer waters of sheltered bays and lagoons along the Pacific Coast.

Humpback whales can usually be spotted around Todos Santos from October through January, and then again in April.

There are various tour operators around the area that will take you out on half-day whale-watching excursions.

15. Have an unforgettable meal at Hierbabuena

While Hierbabuena is way more off-the-beaten-path than most restaurants, the effort of getting there is well worth it.

So how hidden is this hidden gem? Well, you have to travel down a dirt road for well over a mile before you reach the outdoor restaurant. However, once you begin walking to your table, the magic really begins.

I’m talking fresh ingredients, delicious cocktails, and good vibes set among some truly beautiful scenery. The freshness of the food will really blow your mind!

Everything from the cocktails to the desserts is made with a great deal of presentation and care, so don’t expect to be in and out of here in less than a few hours.

It’s not exactly cheap, but your overall experience will be well worth the money. Do note that they don’t accept reservations, so show up early or be prepared to wait a bit.

16. Go dinner hopping in Las Tunas

Poke Loko Las Tunas - Where To Eat In Todos Santos

Las Tunas is the next town over from Todos Santos, just 5 minutes away. This was actually where our Airbnb was, and we’re so glad that we were able to discover this small little neighborhood.

In fact, some of our best meals were had right in Las Tunas just one block away from our accommodation. Because we were limited on time but wanted to try SO many restaurants, we went “dinner hopping” in this area which we totally recommend in a foodie town like Todos Santos.

Start at Poke Loko, where you’ll find both fresh poke bowls and artisan pizzas in a natural, Tulum-like setting.

While we wanted both a pizza and a bowl, because we had to save room for our second dinner, we just opted for a California poke bowl and some drinks. The bowl in itself was absolutely delightful–so many fresh fixings and super fresh fish! Next time, we’re definitely eating a full meal at Poke Loko.

Then head right next door to 5 Tacos and a Beer for literally five tacos and beer for just under $8 USD. You can choose between a wide variety of taco meats and vegetarian options for each and every taco, which really made the dining experience fun. I mean, look at those tacos–they were as delicious as they are beautiful!

5 Tacos And A Beer - Las Tunas - Where To Eat In Todos Santos

Both of these meals were amazing and we would go back to both in a heartbeat!

17. Support ranchers at El Mercado Ranchero

Want to support local ranchero producers of the area? Head over to El Mercado Ranchero, located 2 blocks from La Esquina Restaurant.

Here, you’ll find a wide assortment of handmade rancher crafts including pottery, knives, tablecloths, leather goods, and more.

All these rancher crafts are made with lots of love and dedication, and every product in this place has a story. They also sell fresh produce, meats, and ranch eggs!

18. Eat fresh oysters at Oystera

Oystera - Things To Eat In Todos Santos Mexico

If you haven’t had enough of the beautiful restaurants in Todos Santos, here’s another one–featuring oysters! Oystera is a gorgeous place to enjoy oysters and cocktails. If you’ve never had a Mezcalita (a margarita but with mezcal), this is a good place to try one.

Don’t forget to ask to sit outdoors in the picturesque garden area!

Once you’re done eating, stroll around the establishments surrounding the restaurant. There are some really interesting art galleries and gift shops in the building to check out.

19. Take a day trip to La Paz

Day Trip To Las Paz - Things To Do In Todos Santos Mexico

If you’re done exploring all that Todos Santos has to offer, consider taking a day trip to a nearby city like La Paz. Being just a 1.5-hour drive from Todos Santos, visiting La Paz during your stay in Todos Santos totally doable.

Some of La Paz’s highlights include strolling down the Malecon (oceanfront promenade), swimming with whale sharks (from the months of October to May), taking a boat tour of Isla Espíritu Santo (a small, rocky island with over a dozen white sand beaches and crystal clear water), and hanging out at Balandra Beach.

During our 3-night stay in Todos Santos, we took a half-day trip out to La Paz to swim with whale sharks. Our combo tour featured swimming with the gentle whale sharks, snorkeling with sea lions at San Rafaelito, and eating lunch at the picturesque Balandra Beach.

Balandra Beach has often been declared the most beautiful beach in Mexico. The calm, shallow waters of the lagoon are perfect for swimming, SUP boarding, and kayaking. Its crystal-clear turquoise waters contrast the desert’s red hills so perfectly! Definitely a not-to-be-missed destination while exploring Baja California Sur.

While you can visit La Paz on your own and just stroll around town, I personally found it a lot more fun to go on a guided outdoor adventure first (snorkeling, ATVing, sailing, etc).

La Paz is all about the gorgeous flora and fauna surrounding the town, so I’d highly recommend either a whale shark tour or an Espiritu Santo Island boat tour!

Swimming with Whale Sharks - Best Time To Visit Cancun - TravelsWithElle

20. Take a day trip to Cabo San Lucas

If you’ve opted to stay in Todos Santos to avoid the crazy party scene of Cabo San Lucas, you may still find it worthy of a quick day trip.

Some of the most popular things to do there are to take a boat tour out to the magnificent El Arco, as well as to take a combo ATV, camel ride, and eco-farm tour!

Cabo Packing List - TravelsWithElle

From Cabo San Lucas, make your way over to San Jose del Cabo, best known for its thriving arts scene (even more so than in Todos Santos), sandy beaches, and colonial buildings. This is a laid-back colonial gem–a true 180 from the Cabo atmosphere!


Where To Stay In Todos Santos

Hotel San Cristobal

Hotel San Cristobal Todos Santos - Where To Stay In Todos Santos
Courtesy of Booking.com

Hotel San Cristobal is one of the hottest spots to stay in all of Todos Santos these days–it’s truly desert chic at its absolute finest! In fact, it’s one of the main reasons why Todos Santos has blown up in popularity as of late.

This IG-worthy boutique hotel was designed by Texas hotelier Liz Lambert, complete with 32 rooms, a swimming pool, restaurant and bar on the premises. Expect vibes that are both hip and stylish, pastel tiles, and cactus-lined walkways.

If you don’t end up booking a night here, you should still at least stop by for a meal at Benno, led by Mexican chef Edgar Palau. And while this hotel is definitely more of a splurge, getting to soak in the unique atmosphere here can be well worth the price tag for some travelers!

Villa Santa Cruz

Villa Santa Cruz Todos Santos - Where To Stay In Todos Santos Mexico
Courtesy of Booking.com

Villa Santa Cruz is a spectacular boutique beach resort located right on the Pacific Ocean in Todos Santos. Situated on 20 acres of secluded beachfront property, this stylish hotel oozes authentic Mexican vibes.

Each stylish suite features a balcony overlooking the pool and ocean. In addition to getting tea or coffee delivered to your suite each morning, guests can enjoy a daily continental breakfast.

At Villa Santa Cruz, you’ll have plenty of places to unwind and recharge. Take a dip in the grand saltwater pool and jacuzzi, unwind at the spacious roof terrace complete with a fire ring, relax at the hammocks at the oceanfront palapa, or chill on the beach just steps from your room.

But honestly, the best part aside from the views is probably the fact that hand-delivered coffee trays and a hearty Mexican breakfast are included in your room rate!

Paradero

Paradero - Where To Stay In Todos Santos Mexico
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If you have the money to splurge on luxury accommodations, you have to spend a night or two in Paradero. This is the hotel straight out of movies (picture a place where James Bond would stay…yeah, that’s what Paradero looks like)!

The hotel is really unique and offers a very relaxing, almost zen-like, stay. Expect sanctuary-like guest rooms, unforgettable dining experiences, and cactus-studded outdoor landscaping. This hotel is truly an architectural wonder!

If you’re lucky enough to be a hotel guest, you’ll be able to partake in complimentary activities like morning hikes, farm tours, bike rides, and more.

We personally did not stay here, but my friends (whom I went on this trip with) did stay here, and it was one of the best experiences of their lives! Their biggest tip: do not miss the chance to eat dinner here!

Perro Surfero

Perro Surfero - Where To Stay In Todos Santos
Courtesy of Booking.com

For a more affordable lodging option, Perro Surfero offers a quiet and relaxing boutique-style gateway to everything Baja has to offer.

This property includes a wide variety of rooms ranging from one full apartment with a kitchenette to 6 other rooms with bathrooms and private patios. Because it’s meant to be a co-working space, there is also a large communal kitchen, a free weights gym, a pool, sunbeds, and a fire pit.

Overall, you’re going to get lots of space here for you to relax and feel at home! You will also find a garden, a terrace, and a large area with hammocks to take a midday nap.

Read More: Where To Stay In Todos Santos, Mexico: 7 Beautiful Hotels For Every Budget


Do I need a car in Todos Santos?

If you plan on getting to Todos Santos by bus and plan on only staying in the downtown area of Todos Santos, you may not need a car.

However, if you plan on exploring some of the attractions outside of the downtown area, you will definitely want to rent a car. Since there are currently no cabs or rideshare options in the area, you’ll need your own set of wheels if you want to explore areas outside of the downtown area.

Is Todos Santos Safe?

In short, yes Todos Santos is safe. We felt welcomed everywhere we went in Todos Santos.

While you obviously could run into some bad eggs during your travels (as you do wherever you travel), the residents of Todos Santos were some of the kindest people we’ve met!

And while there are parts of Mexico that are considered more dangerous, Baja California is considered to be a lot safer than other parts of Mexico. As with all travel, you should remain cautious and observant.

Use toll roads when possible and avoid driving alone or at night, keep expensive jewelry at home, don’t leave valuables in your car, and keep electronics hidden.

Where do you fly into for Todos Santos?

The closest airport to Todos Santos is Los Cabos International Airport (SJD). From SJD, it is about a 1.5-hour drive to Todos Santos (about 68 miles / 110km away). This is the most common airport travelers fly into.

Another nearby airport option is La Paz International Airport (LAP). From LAP, it is about a 1 hr 10-minute drive to Todos Santos (about 54 miles / 87km away).


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