The Best Beaches in Baja California, Mexico

An aerial view of Playa del Amor, where visitors can choose between the calm waters of the Sea of Cortez and the mighty Pacific Ocean
An aerial view of Playa del Amor, where visitors can choose between the calm waters of the Sea of Cortez and the mighty Pacific Ocean | © Frederick Millett / Alamy Stock Photo
Jessica Vincent

As the second-largest peninsula in the world, Baja California is packed with stunning stretches of sand. Check out our list of the best beaches in this gorgeous Mexican state, featuring some great places to stay and beach camping across the region whilst you’re there.

You’ll have plenty of time to hit the beach on our Laid-Back Baja California Sur Mini Trip, which includes visits to Playa de los Amantes and Playa Los Cerritos, as well as coastal cruises, a snorkeling excursion and a whale-spotting adventure.

Bahia Concepcion, Mulegé

Motorhomes parked along a sandbank at Bahia Concepcion, El Requeson

Bahia Concepcion isn’t one beach so much as an area filled with beaches. Coming to Mulegé from the north, you pass miles of stunning waters and bay after bay of pristine white sands: this is Bahia Concepcion, where you could easily spend several weeks exploring each patch of dreamy sand. There is no public transport here, making it a hub for Mexican beach campers who come to enjoy the sun, set up their tents and fire up the barbecue. Our favorite beaches in the area are Playa Santispac and Playa Perla.

Where to Stay – Posada de las Flores Loreto

Hotel Posada de las Flores sits in the historic heart of Loreto, its Spanish colonial architecture hiding a hacienda-style haven. Behind heavy wooden doors its rose-colored walls and stone archways wrap around a courtyard; look up to see the glass bottom of the rooftop pool dappling the fountain and benches below with warped sunlight. Rooms sit at the top of a huge spiral staircase and are decked out with handmade furniture and Talavera-tiled bathrooms.

Playa Ensenada Grande, Espiritu Santo Island

Kayakers in Ensenada Grande Bay

If you’ve made it to La Paz, chances are you’ve heard of Espiritu Santo Island; the home of epic kayaking, up-close encounters with sea lions and some of the most spectacular beaches in Baja South. Every beach on this island is dreamy, but Playa Ensenada Grande probably takes first prize. Come early if you want the beach to yourself though camping here – either on a multi-day kayaking adventure or overnight camping trip – is the best choice.

Where to Stay – Hotel Catedral La Paz

Rubbing shoulders with the Cathedral of Our Lady of La Paz, the mosaic-like facade of this hotel contrasts the sleek interior of pristine white walls and sun-drenched courtyards dotted with wicker furniture. The large rooftop pool looks out over the city’s red-tiled roofs to the treetops and rugged mountains beyond. Devour a complimentary breakfast buffet each morning and round off a day of exploration with a fruity cocktail from the rooftop bar.

Balandra, La Paz

Three friends find a peaceful moment next to the iconic Balandra Rock near La Paz, Mexico.

Probably one of the most famous beaches in Baja California, Balandra is a must-see for any La Paz visitor, with miles of shallow turquoise water, blinding white sand backed by mountains and lush, green oases. When you arrive, you may be a little disappointed by the crowds, particularly at weekends. Despair not, this place is huge. The further you walk from the main car park, the thinner the crowd. Go far enough – up and over the Balandra lookout point – and you may even get one of these magical coves to yourself for some beach camping in Mexico. Bring your own supplies for the day, though, as you won’t see any sellers past the busy points.

Where to Stay – Posada de las Flores La Paz

Sitting amid a jungle of hot-pink flowers, palm fronds and gnarled trees, this enchanting hotel feels like a portal into paradise. Rooms are warm with sun-yellow walls and dark wood furniture, while each adds its own bohemian twist in the shape of flowery ceramics, paisley armchairs or hanging star-shaped light fixtures. Be sure to bring a book for curling up on the lounge’s plump sofas and don’t miss out on the fresh seafood dishes, dangerously moreish mojitos and spellbinding sea views at restaurant Oliva Al Mare.

Cerritos, Todos Santos

Tourists And Locals Swim And Surf In The Pacific Ocean At Los Cerritos, Todos Santos, Baja Sur, Mexico

If you fancy a change from all that shallow, calm water, then Cerritos Beach should be your next stop. It may not be all white sand and turquoise water like Balandra or Ensenada Grande, but it has a different kind of beauty; that kind of wild, untouched beauty that can only be felt when you’ve arrived at a Pacific beach. Expect miles of desolate sands perfect for long strolls along with crashing waves that add an eery mist to the shoreline here, not to mention some of the most epic sunsets in the region. If you’re a surfer, it goes without saying that you will love this place.

Where to Stay – Cerritos Surf Town Hotel

Sun-worshippers and surfers will be in their element at this hotel just steps from the golden sands of Cerritos Beach. Rooms range from shaggy beachfront bungalows to cavernous villas with colorful Talavera tiles, antique trunks and shaded terraces. As well as the sea on your doorstep, there is a lagoon-like pool where you can go for a dip and huge daybeds to where you can dry off with a beer in hand.

Bahia Chileno

Chileno Beach and Bay, Cabo San Lucas, Baja California, Mexico

Chileno Beach, with its blue-green waters, excellent snorkeling and sugary white sands, is considered one of the most stunning beaches in the Cabo corridor. During high season, and particularly at weekends, this beach sees big crowds and plenty of sellers. However, with a beach this beautiful, you can’t expect to have it all to yourself.

Where to Stay – Chileno Bay Resort and Residences

The beachfront Chileno Bay Resort is a charming warren of villas, suites and guest rooms set among lofty palm trees and manicured lawns. Drawing from the natural palette of its surroundings, materials like sandstone, bleached wood and cobalt take center stage, whilst each room welcomes in the salty breeze with floor-to-ceiling windows and private terraces. Swing by the on-site El Molino Coffee Shop for frothy lecheros or drift along the three-tiered saltwater pool that snakes through the resort.

Playa Santa Maria

Beautiful Santa Maria beach by Cabo San Lucus has full life guarding and bathroom facilities.

A little less crowded than its popular neighbor Bahia Chileno, Playa Santa Maria might just be the little slice of private paradise you’ve been after. Due to its protected waters and beautiful reef just off-shore, this is a fantastic spot for snorkeling. If you’re coming without an organized tour, be sure to bring your own snorkel gear as there aren’t any rental shops on site. If you’re not into activities, the pristine white sand and those stunning shades of blue are sure to keep you mesmerized for a few hours.

Where to Stay – Montage Los Cabos

The Montage Los Cabos cradles the crescent-shaped Santa Maria Bay, its native plants, large wavy-edged pools and natural stone walls blending into the idyllic landscape. The sprawling resort is home to a variety of eateries including signature restaurant Mezcal with its fresh seafood and the beachfront Marea, where brick-oven pizzas are the order of the day. Capacious rooms include sitting areas and private patios, while the eye-popping holiday homes offer a sunken outdoor fireplace, complimentary butler service and two private infinity pools.

Playa del Amor, Cabo San Lucas

Tourists sunbathing at Playa del Amor, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

Playa del Amor is a beautiful stretch of sand just a stone’s throw away from Cabo’s famous arc. Aside from calm, crystalline waters, velvet sand and some epic rock formations, you also get stunning views of the bay. Essentially two beaches in one, a short stroll between two rocky cliffs allows you to swap the Sea of Cortez for the Pacific Ocean and the beautiful Playa de Los Divorciados. Due to its isolated location, you won’t get any touts bothering you here.

Where to Stay – Mayan Monkey Hostel

Overlooking a marina in the heart of Cabo, Mayan Monkey Hostel is close to both a buzzy restaurant strip and the nearest beach. Drenched in buttery yellow and peppered with tropical-print cushions and potted plants, the air-conditioned rooms range from 12-person mixed dorms (with wooden bunks and privacy curtains) to balcony rooms with a secluded outdoor nook. All rooms also include a continental breakfast and en-suite bathrooms with shampoo and soap dispensers. Cool off with a dip in the outdoor pool and meet fellow nomads over a beer in the hostel’s lantern-lit bar.

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