Posted November 16, 2011 by & filed under Festivals / Events, Retirement, San Felipe.

by Bob Miller

Baja, Mexico is often mistaken for Baja, California. Not to mention Baja, Oklahoma. Even Mexico looks at Baja in wonderment asking, “Does that state really belong to Mexico?”

The Baja peninsula is a little over 1,000 miles long with two coastlines. As the name implies, Baja is as much a Mexican state as it is an adopted state of California. If you were to drive south from San Diego through Tijuana to Ensenada, along what is one of Mexico’s seacoast jewels, you will see development after development and the cars parked out side of them have mostly California license plates.

San Felipe, Baja, Mexico
San Felipe BeachThe small village of San Felipe is located on the North end of the Sea of Cortez, within what is known as the Sonoran Desert. The first road there was completed in about 1949. Senior Ableardo Rodiguez, former President of Mexico owned a large section of land of San Felipe, along with his partner and lawyer Guillermo Rosas.

San Felipe became one of many fishing villages on the Sea of Cortez to attract fisherman from north of the border and treating them to an unlimited supply of shark, Yellowtail, Roosterfish, Totuava, Pacific Striped Marlin, Scorpionfish, Stingray, Barracuda, and dozens more. The Sea of Cortez has been called the Aquarium of the World’s seas. The Isla Consag is a 286-foot high guano plastered island located about 30 miles off shore. Here, one can experience sea lions, birds and other sea creatures.

San Felipe Shrimp FestivalThe tidal difference here in San Felipe is about 20 feet and may move a quarter mile between high and low tide.

San Felipe is located a mere 120 miles south of the International Border where Calexico and Mexicali are found. Between Yuma and San Diego, the nearest shopping is in El Centro, Ca. The town has been the host to college Spring fling, fishing derby’s, and land development. Today, one of the newest attractions are off road activities.

Mariachis from Mexicali at San Felipe Shrimp FestivalTwo of the largest off road races held, either start and finish here or go past the town on nearby dirt roads. The San Felipe 250, which starts and finishes here and the Baja 1000 known as the toughest off road race anywhere, goes close by on nearby dirt race roads.

In celebration of its world famous shrimp, San Felipe holds a Shrimp Festival. This year, the 18th shrimp festival was celebrated on November 4th, 5th, and 6th. Some of the entertainment included musical performers from Peru,

Mexican Navy BandMariachis’ from Mexicali, and a wonderful performance by the Mexican Navy band–which came all the way from Mexico City to appear here to a thunderous applause.

How I got there
Having lived in San Diego for decades, going to Mexico, along the Baja coastline, was always a great fun time for me. I had dreamed about moving to Mexico for decades. As retirement approached, I began to look seriously at places to check out.

I had an aging relative who would be joining me, so nearby quality health care was important. I was invited to an all expense paid weekend to check out El Dorado Ranch, located a short 2 hour drive south of the international border town of Calexico.

El Dorado Ranch is a forty thousand acre development on the Sea of Cortez, by an American. I liked the proximity to the border, the wide-open spaces, the development and its future plans. So, I bought, and several years later designed my house and watched it being constructed.

Today, El Dorado Ranch, just 9 miles north of the town of San Felipe, offers a secure and comfortable life style with first responder health care facilities, recreational activities such as swimming, tennis, golf, pickle ball, off-roading and much more.

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