Driving into Mexico from San Diego is a breeze! Just south of the border you can find incredible surf breaks, often unpopulated and desolate. It’s no secret that when the winter swells come rolling in, heading to Baja’s top beaches is a good way to avoid the masses you’ll find just miles north in Southern California. Just drive through the border and stay right on Highway 1, follow the signs to Rosarito and Ensenada on the toll road for about fifty miles (or less) and you’ll quite possibly put yourself right into the session of your season.
At KM 58, there is a campground on a bluff overlooking a private beach with one of the better breaks just south of the border. It goes by the name of La Fonda and camping is $13/night per car. Pop a tent or a car camp then fall asleep to the sweet sound of the ocean breeze.
Take friends, there are enough spots for everyone. Bring surfboards and wetsuits. Make sure to spend some time relaxing on the beach with your toes in the sand.
Pack snacks but be sure to leave room for tacos! There’s also a taco cart about 100 yards away from the campground. Fresh shrimp and fish tacos for $1 each are available for every meal of the day. Between surf sessions refuel at the local fruit stand to chow down on your choice of tropical fruits and coconuts topped with Tajín, and limon. Que rico!
Dogs are welcome. After all, there are street dogs everywhere in Mexico. Most are friendly, but pet at your own risk. Most likely, at the very worst, you’ll end up with a stinky hand and no running water or soap to wash it off.
Spend a night or two at La Fonda and then head north up the coastal highway to one of the most well-known surf breaks “K-38.” If driving North, look right for the giant Jesus who seems to be embracing the ocean in front of him. You can’t miss it!
Across the road from Jesus, check out Robert’s K38 Surf Motel for hot showers, clean rooms and a good community vibe right on the shoreline starting at $40 per night.
Check out a surf, a game of ping pong and a hot shower and then walk back out to the main road to Surf Taco and get your deliciously cheap Mexican taco fix. There’s a store right next to the taco shop to buy beer or Palomas to enjoy with your tacos. There is no such thing as too many tacos when you’re in Mexico!
Once you get your Mexico cup filled, head back across the border. Definitely make sure you bring your passport because crossing back into the U.S.A., they stop each car to check credentials, vet papers for animals and sometimes vehicle registration. Prepare yourself by using the restroom before getting into the border line because the wait can often last anywhere from 2-3 hours.
But…. on the upside, there’s plenty of time for fresh churros for you and your friends, and almost anything else that you could want.
You may see children and entire families among the cars in the border line doing whatever they can to make ends meet. Enjoy bartering, play nice and stock up on some souvenirs!