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Where is Puerto Peñasco, Mexico?

Many of you reading the blogs for the 1st time are asking many questions about how to get here and what is there to do there when we arrive, so hopefully some of your questions will be answered in this blog.
First of all it is located on the mainland side of Mexico in the northern part of the State of Sonora and is about 220 miles from the Phoenix, Arizona area or 60 miles from the US border at Lukeville, AZ.  It is surrounded  by the Sea of Cortez for miles in both directions.  It is where the Sonoran Desert meets the Sea of Cortez.
Rocky Point started out as a sleepy little fishing village, but has evolved into a tourist destination with something for everyone be it peacefulness or night life, we have it all from  Charity events, Bike Rallies, Fishing Derbies, Golf tournaments, Music Concerts and so much more.

Rocky Point
Rocky Point from the Ocean

Puerto Peñasco is  located 3 1/2 – 4 hours from either Phoenix or Tucson.  Where ever you are coming from you will have good roads to drive on.  Coming from the Phoenix you can hop on I-10 and then go south on State route 85 to Gila Bend.  From Gila Bend you will just stay on that highway and go south until you come to the Mexico border.  The drive through Organ Pipe National Monument is a very pretty part of the trip as it is lined with Saguaro Cactus as far as you can see.  If you are coming from the Tucson area you will take the road to Sells which will bring you out in Why and then you can make a left and proceed to the border.  If you are coming from Southern California, you will hop on I-8 to Gila Bend and then follow the same directions.
Highway 85
Saguaro Cactus along side the highway in Organ Pipe National Monument

The scenery through Organ Pipe National Monument

Once you are at the border, you will either get a red or green light.  Red means you will stop and green means to go forward.  If you have pets, they may ask for there shot records so have a copy of them ready.  While traveling through the border town of Sonoyta, the speed limit is 40 km per hour or just under 25 mphDO obey it as to not lighten your wallet.

Once you are at the border it is an hour drive to Rocky Point and it is a good road all the way down.  Take your time and enjoy the drive.. the beach will wait for you.

Needless to say, the main attraction is the beach and pristine Azure water of the Sea of Cortez.  If you have children with you or people acting like children, they can spend hours combing the tide pools or collecting shells.  This all depends on where you are staying.  The list below is just the tip of what you and your family can do.

Sea of Cortez
Horse back riding on the beach.

1) Go beach combing for sea shells.

2) Ride a Banana Boat.

3) Do a sunset cruise.  There are several different types of boats for this.

4) Go horse back riding on the beach.

5) Rent a rhino to drive around town in or behind the Sandy Beach Resorts.

6) Play golf at any of our 3 world class golf courses.

7) Go fishing.  There are several boats that will take you out for what ever time you want to fish for.

8) January – February, go Whale watching.

9 ) Take a boat to Bird Island and swim with the Dolphins and see the habitat of the Sea Lions or check out the new Aquarium.

Puerto Peñasco Sunset

In addition to these, you can go shopping on the Malecon for Mexican curios or go out to what is referred as  “Rodeo Drive” and you can not only find curios there, but can have a wonderful lunch or dinner at Marachi’s and Tequila. Here you will also find home decor items from the south of Mexico at Su Casa. If you are looking for quality beach wear look no further than Fabiolo’s located next to Su Casa.

Sunset Cruise Pirate Ship in rocky point
Photo by Beverly Arrowood

Depending on the time of the year, you will find cultural events going on all over the town such as in October with the Cervantino Festival and Dia de Muertos.  October is usually one the busy months for events as the weather has cooled down.  During the winter months, you will find The Mermaid Market” on the 3rd Saturday of every month at Shrimp Park, located near the entrance to the Old Port.  If you have time, drive out to the Pinacate Biosphere, it is educational  for people of all ages and is only about 15 miles north of Rocky Point.

View from the Visitor Center at the Pinacate Biosphere

There are many great restaurants in the Old Port, in town, hotels and near the condo developments.  There new places opening often.   Undecided if you want to stay in a condo or beach front home, check out Puerto-Peñ to see what is available.

Malecon at Puerto Penasco
The view from the Malecon looking towards Sandy Beach

If you have any questions, please email me at and I will answer you quickly.  Don’t forget to Like and Share us on and follow us on Twitter @PuertoPenascoMX . Come down and see us, once you have, you will be hooked.

Driving to Puerto Peñasco

Rocky Point Coastline
Photo by Beverly Arrowood

Although a lot of this has been covered not only here but in other medias, I think it is important to remind people of what you can and can’t do.

Coastiline in Rocky Point
Photo by Beverly Arrowood

For some reason, people coming from California still drive all the way to Gila Bend rather than the Coastal Highway. Other than the $95MN or aprx $7 USD toll, going that way adds time to your trip. You can cut down from Interstate 8 at either Tecate, Calexico/ El Centro, Algodones or Yuma ( then go south to San Luis). Once in Mexico you will go east through San Luis and pick up the Coastal Highway and just stay on it all the way to El Golfo and then follow the scenic drive to Puerto Peñasco. If you choose you can also take the scenic drive south of San Luis passing through a lot of farm fields. This may take time if they are harvesting produce so be prepared to go slow. The Coastal Highway Mexico 3 is a nice 2 lane road with very little to see until you reach El Golfo. In El Golfo you can fuel up or go to a couple of the little restaurants and have a fresh seafood lunch.

Pangas in el Golfo Mexico
Photo by Beverly Arrowood

Coming from Phoenix, it is an easy drive. Take Interstate 10 to Buckeye and pick up AZ 85 to Gila Bend and then stay on AZ 85 all the way to the Mexico-US Border. If you are hungry, there are several places in Gila Bend to eat. Burger King (just remodeled and great fast food and service), McDonald’s and Carl’s Jr. There is a Mexican Restaurant that is always packed called Sophies and it is very good. Also try the Little Italy it is very good as well. Although not a culinary destination, you won’t be disappointed.

Baja Coastline in Rocky Point
Photo by Beverly Arrowood

If you do not already have your mandatory Mexican Auto Insurance, you can get it at Ajo Insurance or the Texaco Station next door. There are many places to buy insurance, but I have done business with these folks for many years and they make it easy. Call ahead of time and pre-pay if you are passing after they are closed, they have a drop box for your policy. Also watch your SPEED limit here as well!

Driving to Rocky Point
Photo by Beverly Arrowood

Another 40 minutes and you will be at the border. A note of caution, when you come through the Organ Pipe National Park, obey your speed signs as the park rangers can ticket you. Near the visitor center entrance it drops down to 55mpr for a short distance. They also have clean rest rooms there and a really nice visitor center which I think everyone should go to.

Fishing Pangas in el Golfo
Photo by Beverly Arrowood

When you get to the border you will pass over some speed strips that rattle your teeth and wake up your sleeping pets. You will then you will get either a red or green light. If you have your dogs or cats (2 per vehicle only) you will be asked for their shot records and they will take pictures of you pets. Save yourself some time and make a copy of their shot record on one side of a piece of paper and on the other side a picture of your pet and your drivers license. They may keep it or just look at it, but it saves time. The main thing they are looking for is that the rabies shot is current. They are very polite at this stop. You can get a certificate of health from your vet, but it is now only valid for like 7 days and are costly. The other method works just fine. You are allowed to bring enough dog food for the length of your pet for your stay. However it can only be chicken based and must be in the original bag. If your pet requires a special food like Royal Canine, that can be purchased here at Servicios Medicos Veterinarios. If you will be here for awhile you can call them at 383-3344 or email me and I will send you their email address so that you can contact them and they can have food in stock for you. Again if you need an outstanding vet while you are in Puerto Peñasco, this is the one to go to.

When driving through Sonoyta OBEY the speed signs!!!! 40km is about 25mph. I set my cruise at just a tad under 25mph.

They are strict on the Mexican side about what you can bring in just as when you return to the US. No beef, poultry, pork or dairy products. You really don’t need to bring anything down these days as with Sam’s and the newly remodeled Ley’s store and a real old fashioned meat market we have pretty much anything you could want. Remember Puerto Peñasco is known for our shrimp and fish. There are plenty of fresh produce markets or stop and buy grapes or a watermelon on a street corner. If you are lucky enough to be here when the Mennonite Farmers come with their fresh cheese, do yourself a favor and buy some and I guaranty you will not be disappointed.

Boats at the Old Port
Photo by Beverly Arrowood

Finally, we have a great little apparel shop called Fabiola’s in the Cholla Bay Rd shopping area. You can get some really neat beach attire for you and the man or woman in your life for a fraction of what you would pay elsewhere. Remember, we are still a laid back beach town and not very formal. There are a lot of curios shops and art galleries out there as well for doing you Christmas shopping.

Rocky Point Bird Island

So after all this being said, you have arrived at your condo or home on the beach. Break out the cerveza or make a mouth watering margarita and relax. Take time to enjoy every minute of what Puerto Peñasco has to offer and enjoy the stunning sunsets. Enjoy one of water front bars or restaurants and shop until you drop. Want to take a sunset cruise, we have several boats that will take you out. Take the Eco Tour to Bird island to see where the Sea Lions and Dolphins are and swim with them if you choose or Kayak around with them. Golfer? Bring your clubs and play on one of our 3 beautiful courses or hire a guide to take you fishing for a ½ day or full day adventure.


Once you have spent some time here I can guaranty you will be hooked and will be back time after time. Please, if you have any questions about Puerto Peñasco, don’t hesitate to email me or Call Us at: 1-800-997-9431

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Rest Stop Rocky Point
Photo by Beverly Arrowood