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Camping in Baja, Mexico :: Our Route through this Beautiful Mexican Peninsula – PART 2

NIGHT 23 – La Paz
From San Juanico, the route into La Paz is primarily driven on the paved roads of Mex 1.  The trip takes 5-6 hours.  We arrived in the evening, driving along the malecon (boardwalk) as the sun set.  There were people, palm trees, and restaurants everywhere, and, since we didn’t know anyone in La Paz, we decided to pirate camp.

Our pirate camping recommendation in La Paz is a dirt parking lot in front of La Concha Resort and Condominiums.  Once you enter La Paz from the highway, drive down the malecon, which leads to winding roads running on a cliff.  Pass the water slides that spiral into the bay, and you’ll see the dirt lot on the left.  If you wait to set up until the evening, you should not run into any trouble.  The lot is lit, giving you light to prepare dinner and tend to any clean up or unpacking you may have.  Curtains are especially helpful to keep the street light out, and of course to have a bit of privacy.  Many people visiting the beach park in this lot, so they will pass by to get their cars and leave.  We were able to pick up three different wi-fi networks, which was an added bonus.  The main downfalls about this site are the lack of privacy and the noise level, but I prefer these downfalls to sleep in a safe place.

T O U R I S T   C A R D
As I discussed in Part 1 of this post, Nick and I had yet to purchase our Mexican Tourist Card, which we were supposed to purchase within 72 hours of our stay in Baja.  The process of purchasing a tourist card took us about and hour and a half.

If you need a Tourist Card (which is required to Ferry into mainland Mexico), there is an immigration office at the intersection of Juarez and the malecon.  The building, which is extremely non-descipt, has a sign in the window that reads, “INM.”

The process includes:
– showing your passport and filling out paperwork
– paying for the Tourist Card (300 pesos – about $23) at a nearby bank (required)
– taking the bank payment stub back to the Immigration Office and filling out more paperwork

TIP: 1) We were directed to Aduana (customs) to purchase a Temporary Vehicle Importation permit, but this is not needed.  They are purchased at the Ferry Station.  2) Domino did not need any paperwork to be ferried to mainland Mexico.  3) Skip a step.  Visit www.inm.gob.mx to pay online and then go to the immigration office.

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