19 August 2015

Tijuana pedestrian crossing opens

The US and Mexico have been working for several years to modify and upgrade the crossing points in to Tijuana for several years.  The US has fully rebuilt the San Ysidro crossing going North to the US and continues to expand with additional auto lanes and streamlined pedestrian crossing.

Likewise in Mexico the El Chaparral crossing has created numerous additional auto lanes but not so much for pedestrians until now. The new Puerta Este for pedestrian crossers looks much more like you are arriving at an airport than any pedestrian facility seen before at a US border crossing.

What is generally true is that this crossing point sees more than 20,000 people a day on average. For the most part crossers will be requested to push a button that will give a green light or red light. The green light means go on your way while the red light means you will be asked a few simple questions such as how long are you visiting Mexico, where you will visit and if you have anything to declare. It should be noted that the immigration rules require foreign border crossers to show their passports and they may be required to complete entry form.

What is true, no matter if you are crossing by vehicle or on foot in to Tijuana, there is much more scrutiny than ever before. The number of Customs Officials has increased dramatically. Click here to view a previous post regarding visa requirements to visit Tijuana.

Full story at San Diego Union Tribune.

01 August 2015

Wine Harvest Festival > August 7 - 23

Suggested events: 

Friday August 7, 2015: Muestra del Vino 2015

The kickoff to the Vendimia takes place at one of the most iconic buildings in Ensenada, the Riviera del Pacifico. This event has wine from over 50 wineries and food from around the region accompanied by music. This year will celebrate the 25th annual Vendimia celebration.

Sunday, August 16: Party at the Riviera

Wine tastings, music, culture and dance at the Riviera del Pacifico in Ensenada. Enjoy a wonderful time with family at this free event.

Thursday, August 20: Party in the Valley

This free event offers wine tastings, food and artisanal craftsfrom the Valle de Guadalupe in the Parque el Porvenir

Sunday, August 23: Paella Contest 2015

This huge event concludes the Vendimia festival. A magical event with more than 50 winemakers and 80 teams competing to offer the best paella, this is always a favorite. 

Full list of events at DiscoverBaja

10 July 2015

Tijuana Festival at the Beach

Festival Tijuana en la Playa

Date: July 24 - 26, 2015
Time: starts at 9:00am
Cost: Free
Place: Malecon (boardwalk) in Playas de Tijuana

The festival will showcase food, music, art and culture of the San Diego-Tijuana border region. There will be three pavilions with different foods, vendors and  services available to visitors. Items for sale and services include foods of the region, travel and tourism, massage, clothing, and beach accessories. Exhibitions and activities include paintings, sculpture and body paint, among others.

Other activities include:
 - dog parade    - volleyball tournament    - body boarding competition
 - surfing exhibition    - skateboarding exhibition    - Zonkey photos  
 - sand castle building    - swimwear show (men and women)    - many more!

Playas de Tijuana is located approximately 8 miles from the San Ysidro / El Chaparral border crossing. The drive takes only about 10 minutes along the international highway. Taxis from the border are available for approximately $10 USD.

01 July 2015

Fiestas de la Vendimia - Wine Harvest Festival

Dates: August 7 - 23, 2015
25th annual Fiestas de la Vendimia
Valle de Guadalupe

It is important to plan early if you want to book local lodging in the Valle de Guadalupe or in Ensenada. Lodging can be found on sites such as Hotels.com, Expedia and AirBnB.
Some lodging in the valley: 
  • La Villa del Valle – www.lavilladelvalle.com
  • Adobe Guadalupe – www.adobeguadalupe.com
  • Encuentro Guadalupe – www.encuentroguadalupe.com
  • Terra del Valle – www.terradelvalle.com
  • Meson del Vino – www.hotelmesondelvino.com
L.A. Cetto sponsors several events, click here also see Other vineyards

18 June 2015

Tijuana Pride - June 27

June 27- Parade starts at 5:00p

Plaza Sta. Cecilia is 10 minute walk from the San Ysidro / El Chaparral border crossing or $4 USD taxi ride. Uber is also available in Tijuana.

After party at Ranchero Bar on Plaza Santa CeciliaOther events include a VIP after party at Rouge fun at Fusion and a concert by Rocio Banquells at International Nightclub (Premier).

The Committee for Tourism and Conventions reports that the number of gay visitors to Tijuana will spike during the week of the Pride festivities. Acceptance of gay visitors has become more widespread as the positive impact of those visitors is seen.  Tourism in Tijuana has increased by eight percent this year over last. 

13 June 2015

Gay marriage in Mexico

The Supreme Court of Mexico ruled that state law which considers the ultimate purpose of marriage to be "procreation, and or defines (marriage) as celebrated between a man and a woman, is unconstitutional."  This does not mean however that gay marriage will immediately state in all states.  Any person who is denied the ability to marry based on these circumstances has the right to petition the local court.

For more detail read:  English  Spanish

05 June 2015

Baja Bike Race

June 21, 2015
Tecate to Ensenada

This new bike race is 73 miles through scenic Baja starting in Tecate and finishing in Ensenada.

Click here for the information sheet. Learn more, register or volunteer at the Baja Bike Race website.