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The Return of the Giants

“Manta Mania” – The Return of the Giants
Oceanic giant manta rays return to La Paz following a 15-year absence.

By Jay D. Gittens
source: Baja Bound Insurance

I remember the excitement of the moment very well. Scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed, I stumble across the post of an acquaintance who stated that several oceanic giant manta rays (Mobula birostris) had been encountered at a rocky islet called “La Reina” which lies just off the northern-tip of Isla Cerralvo, which, itself, lies off the coast of La Paz. Although there had been several infrequent sightings of these mantas over the years, there had not been a report of an actual aggregation, which, in biological terms, is defined as when two or more individuals of the same species come together for a common cause such as feeding or breeding. But 15 years later, here they are once again and the big question on our minds of course is “why?”

Plan A Dream Getaway to La Paz

Costa Baja Resort on the Sea of Cortez
By Richard Atkins

When planning your dream getaway, don’t shy away from Mexico because of safety concerns. At least not in Baja California Sur, which is located at the southern half of the Baja Peninsula. This area is free from the perceived danger travelers might have of Mexico. In fact, it’s one of the most beautiful places on the planet. The most convenient way to get there is to fly into Cabo, then rent a car for the two-hour drive north to La Paz. You may think, “Why do I have to drive two hours to get to my destination?” The answer: The Costa Baja Resort is a five star luxury destination that won’t set your pocketbook back thousands like Cabo, and on your way, you can stop off at a quaint little town called Todos Santos and have a tasty lunch, a cold beer, pick up some colorful, painted pottery or a Mexican rug and visit the famed Hotel California where Don Henley apparently received inspiration to write his song. Everything is true except the Don Henley connection. The rumor was started years ago to bring tourism to this small, relatively unknown town between Cabo and La Paz. And, in grand public relations style, it worked! Todos Santos is a thriving tourist attraction where you can spend a couple of leisurely hours and really enjoy yourself!

Baja Telephone Dialing Instructions

Mexico City: (011) 52-55, + the 8-digit telephone number.
Guadalajara: (011) 52-33, + the 8-digit telephone number.
Tijuana: (011) 52-664, + the 7-digit telephone number.

USA to MX Cell Phone: 011+52+1+Area Code+(Tel #)
USA to MX Landline: 011+52+Area Code+(Tel #)
MX to USA or Canada: 001+Area Code+(Tel #)
MX Landline to MX Cell Phone: 045 or 044+Area Code+(Tel #)
MX Cell Phone to MX Landline: Area Code+(Tel #)

Day of the Dead / Dia de los Muertos

by Ladislao Loera
Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is celebrated throughout Mexico and the Southwest States and coincides with the Christian All Souls and All Saints Days. On November 1 and 2 people remember those who are deceased. November 1 is considered the Dia de los Angelitos—the day to remember children that have died, November 2 is the traditional Dia de los Muertos.

Pictures of the deceased are placed on Dia de los Muertos altars with their favorite food and drink. Candles to light their way home and soap and water to freshen-up after their long trip back are also often placed on altars. Trinkets they were fond of, symbols they would understand and gifts are left to communicate to them that they are always in the hearts of those they left behind and that they are still part of the family even though they aren't physically with us any longer.

Baja Mexico Winter Time Change

For Baja California on Nov 4, 2018 - Daylight Saving Time Starts at 2:00:00 AM; turned your clocks backward an 1 hour...or before you go to bed turned your clocks backward 1 hour. There will be more light in the morning of Nov 4, 2018 than the day before. Also called Fall Back and Winter Time.

For Baja California Sur on Oct. 28, 2018 - Daylight Saving Time Starts at 2:00:00 AM; turned your clocks backward 1 hour...or before you go to bed turned your clocks backward 1 hour. There will be more light in the morning of Oct. 28, 2018 than the day before. Also called Fall Back and Winter Time.

Wind Scorpion of Baja

With a reputation nobody can envy, the wind scorpion is an insect spread across most arid places in the world, including Baja California. It is known under several other names: sunscorpion, windspider, sun spider, camel spider, and even deer killer or camel killer.

The rumors related to the viciousness of the windscorpion go back to the 2003 Iraq war. These rumors painted the picture of a huge insect that ran faster than humans. It was extremely poisonous, with venom that could knock out a camel. It became infamous for its voracious appetite, able to eat chunks of big animals or even people.

Mexican Home & Condo Insurance for Baja Good Life Club Members

Mexican Home and Condo Insurance

Special Savings for Baja Good Life Club Members, get your discount on already competitive prices regardless of where in Mexico or Baja your home is located. Questions about home/condo insurance, please contact Jason Wagner (818) 788-5353. Be sure to have your club member ID ready.

The policies available through the Mexico experts at West Coast Insurance, all are US Style Policy Structure. Meaning, it is very similar to a US homeowner’s policy in terms of how it reads and covers your home in Mexico. Some of the highlights include easy understanding deductibles, replacement cost and broad open peril coverage for your home and personal belongings. Also, hard to find coverage like earthquake, wind, flood, & hurricane options.

Always Here to Help YOU!

THE BAJA GOOD LIFE CLUB is a discount club dedicated to enhancing the lives of Expats residents of Baja California through tours, discounts, insuranceWe are working provide you with better service and have now added LIVE CHAT / MESSAGING to all the BGLC websites; look to the bottom right corner. You are able to CHAT LIVE or leave a message and we will return your message within 1 business day. We continue to provide Baja information from history to fun facts all about Baja!

The Baja Good Life Club is forever finding you Baja discounts, helping to keep you covered with Mexican insurance, sponsor fun Baja give-a-ways throughout the year at parties and charity events in Rosarito Beach, San Felipe, throughout Baja.

Mexico Protects Beaches For Public Use

CancĂșn has the first; more to follow in other beach destinations. While all Mexican beaches are public most beachfront-built infrastructure caters to paying customers. But federal tourism authorities intend to turn the tables by creating public beach parks to further enhance the enjoyment of residents and visitors.

The first such facility opened to the public in December in CancĂșn, Quintana Roo. Since then, the 15.5-million-peso (US $750,000) Maya Langosta Public Park and its 135-meter-long beach extending over 7,000 square meters has received on average 2,000 visitors a week.

Baja BluesTour

2019 Baja Blues Tour

2019 Baja Blues Against Hunger Tour
January 29, 2019 to February 13, 2019

An experience of a lifetime from San Felipe Baja California, at the northern apex of the Gulf of California to Land's End at Cabo San Lucas, where the Gulf and the Pacific collide. Whether you're are a music lover, musician, or adventure traveler this is for you. Truly a magical musical experience.

SAVE YOUR SPOT - Click Above -
Option 1: Party Bus (we drive) OR Option 2: Roadie (you drive)
Questions please email -

Baja Wine Country

The wine producing regions of Baja, like wine itself, have gotten better with age. In the past few years there has been an explosion of creative juices flowing south of the border as new and exciting wineries and wines are popping up seemingly overnight. Some have called it the 'renaissance of Baja's wine country' and the excitement is growing.

The Guadalupe Valley just northeast of Ensenada is at the forefront of the Baja wine movement and has over 80 wineries - artisan, boutique, and commercial, both large and small who are producing some remarkable wines. Our guide features an in-depth look at 40 of the wineries. The people of the region are fascinating and they love to share their passion with visitors. So dive in and and discover the magical wine destinations the Guadalupe Valley has to offer!

Baja wine country map available from the Secretary of Tourism.

Benefits of Tequila and Lime

We must not forget the little ceremony either. A dash of salt, a slice of lime, banging the empty glass down on the table after you’ve slammed one – tequila truly is a unique drink, there’s nothing else quite like it. 

But for all you tequila fans, did you know that your favorite liquor is actually very good for you as well? The health benefits of tequila and lime are pretty far reaching, so the next time someone complains about your drinking, hit them up with these hard facts:

Spiders of Baja

Spiders of Baja
Karri Moser - July 2010 and UPDATED by BGLC July2016

With such a unique landscape, Baja is naturally home to many creepy and crawly critters. Spiders are undoubtedly a common sight indoors and out. Between the beaches, sand dunes, plains, mountains and desert landscape, you are bound to stumble across a number of varieties. 

It is important to be able to identify certain spiders and to do your best to not get bitten by them. Typically, spiders will not even bother to bite unless they feel cornered, threatened or are injured. It is also important to know that regardless of toxicity, each person reacts differently to being bitten. However, the majority of spider bites are not very painful. 

Santiago Zoo

Santiago Zoo 2328.747'N ~ 109 42.748'W

Elevation: 120 mWeather: 31°C, Wind N at 14 km/h, 52% Humidity
Local time: Wednesday 2:27 PM
Population: 752 (2010)
For those traveling Highway 1, it can be easy to pass by the small rural town of Santiago unless you are looking to find it. If you head south on Highway 1 from Los Barriles 15 miles (24km), then veer west (right) just about a half mile (2 km.), you will find yourself rolling right into the town square area of this quaint, if not frozen in time, village.

The Fishermen of San Felipe

The Fishermen of San Felipe
By Lee Lyons and Victor Rodriguez
The wonder of the Sea of Cortez goes far beyond its natural beauty. A haven for swimmers, boaters, and photographers, and a paradise for naturalists, much of the allure of this Baja coastal area resides in the remnants of its storied history.

Before there were tourists, before there were sun-worshipping vacationers and winter residents, there were the fishermen of San Felipe. They gave the town its first taste of prosperity and put San Felipe on the map. The Sea of Cortez offered up catches so abundant that the "fish taco" became a local staple and a Baja delicacy. Shrimp, shark, totoaba (sea bass), cabrilla (rock fish) and baqueta (grouper) abounded in the clear waters, providing a rich harvest for the fishermen.

Since the early days of World War II and until recently, fishing was a good living. The old fishermen of San Felipe tell the story of how they came with their families as young children or, later, as young men, seeking to establish themselves in a good profession. They made the difficult journey from Loreto and other locations throughout Mexico, first, by canoe or small boat and then, overland, to San Felipe. It took as long as three months to make the trip from Loreto, but it was worth it because fish were plentiful and the life of a fisherman was a good one.

14th Annual San Felipe Folk Music Festival

14th Annual San Felipe Folk Music Festival Saturday - March 24, 2018, from 1pm till 4pm Location: La Palapa in El Dorado Ranch Tickets - ONLY $5.00 GET YOUR TICKETS Performances will feature acoustic folk, cowboy, blues and original music by some of the Southwest’s finest acoustic performers. Entertainers including:

Mike Falk is a multi-instrumentalist with a penchant for regional folk from around the world, especially old-time music of the Appalachians, bluegrass from Kentucky, dance music of Ireland, Scotland, Brittany, and the Celtic regions of Spain, oddly-metered music from the Balkans, and swing music from Texas. He plays mainly mandolin, clawhammer-style banjo, bouzouki, and tenor banjo. His day job involves building imaginary things in the air. (He’s a pure mathematician.)
Jesse Anderson is an accomplished guitarist and banjo player and a lively performer of old time tunes. He goes to work several times a week as a strolling cowboy singer on the Vintage Grand Canyon Railway, entertaining world travelers en-route to the Big Ditch. He raises blonde children and brown egg layers in the mountain town of Flagstaff, Arizona.
Big Bill Vernieu is an an encyclopedic knowledge of bluegrass and western songs and is a master of the mandolin. Tickets - ONLY $5.00 GET YOUR TICKETS

Baja Spring Forward Time Change

Daylight Saving Time (also called SPRING FORWARD and Spring Time) Starts:

  •  Baja California - March 11, 2018
     - Set your clocks FORWARD on March 10th before you go to bed.
  •  Baja California Sur - Apr. 2, 2017
     - Set your clocks FORWARD on April 1st before you go to bed.

Ten Mexico municipalities which share a border with the United States; begin daylight saving time three weeks earlier on the second Sunday in March and end on the first Sunday in November. The Congress of Mexico passed legislation in December 2009 which allowed these ten border cities to adopt a daylight saving time pattern consistent with the United States. The municipalities which are now permitted by law to observe daylight saving time consistent with the United States are:

How to Grow Veggies in the Desert?

Desert Gardening
by Lowe's Creative Ideas / Lowe’s Desert region gardening expert Scott Calhoun

Growing fresh, organic produce for your family in your backyard is one of the most rewarding aspects of gardening. It is also surprisingly easy — much simpler than you might think — in desert climates. In the little 4x8-ft plot my wife and I tend, we supply nearly all the produce for our small family from November to April. Below I discuss how to start your veggie garden, and a few strategies for dealing with desert conditions.

Choose a Sunny Spot
It might seem counterintuitive where we have such a surfeit of sunshine, but even here, veggie gardens need pretty much all-day sun. A spot where the winter (southern) sun shines for at least 6 hours is good. A little late-afternoon shade (an eastern exposure) also works well, as long as the site gets the winter sun. Avoid planting a veggie garden under a tree or next to a tall evergreen hedge.

Why Buy Mexican Auto Insurance?

Why Buy Mexican Insurance?
U.S. and Canadian auto insurance policies are not recognized in Mexico; only policies from a Mexican insurance company are. Each Mexican state sets potential civil and criminal liability amounts a driver would be responsible for in case of a fatality or fatalities to others. The liability amount may be as high as U.S. $300,000 per fatality or more depending upon the state you are traveling in. Read more about the law.
A Mexican Insurance policy greatly reduces the financial burden you might come by after an accident and may reduce jail time.

Under Mexican law, motorists are required to have insurance, or "proof of financial responsibility", in the event of an accident, even if you are not at fault. As a foreigner traveling in Mexico, the only way of demonstrating this financial responsibility is to have sufficient real currency to cover damages, or an insurance policy from a Mexican company. U.S. or

Keep Your Pet Safe

Beware: Insecticides and Plants can be Fatal to Pets. During spring and summer, it's all about your house and garden, and unfortunately, for those of you with small breed dogs and puppies, you should be aware there can be serious health problems resulting from the ingestion of insecticides and various plants.

Small dogs, puppies and kittens that are most vulnerable, with very tiny young immune systems that absolutely do not tolerate toxins, such as insecticides and some very popular, innocent looking plants.

Baja Gray Whales

Gray whales begin travels along the Southern California coast as of December they make one of the longest mammalian migrations known to man.

The journey from the Bering and Chukchi seas to the lagoons in Baja California and back averages between 10,000 to 14,000 miles.

"We have been seeing more and more gray whales every day," reported Scott Louie from Harbor Breeze Cruises in Long Beach. "Add in literally thousands of dolphins and an occasional orca sighting and this is a terrific time to be on a whale watching trip."

The whales feed on small crustaceans on the bottom of the ocean by rolling on their sides and drawing up bottom sediments and lots of seawater.

The whale then closes its mouth expelling the water and sediment through its baleen plates and leaving a tasty meal inside. Adult males can reach 46 feet, and while adult females can reach 50 feet. They weigh between 30 to 40 tons. Find out more about BGLC Baja Whale Tours