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Mexican Riviera

5 Top Ensenada Tourist Attractions

La Bufadora. Credit: Wikimedia

Ensenada has several major tourist attractions including one of the largest marine geysers in the world at La Bufadora.

Known as the “Cinderella of the Pacific”, the Ensenada cruise port is in Baja California, Mexico, just 90 minutes south from San Diego, California.

Today, Ensenada is one of the most important ports in Mexico and a common destination for Mexican Riviera cruises along the Pacific coast.

With an extensive infrastructure for tourists offered by the city, Ensenada sees a constant flow of activities at the most popular tourist attractions. Food, wine, nature and deep sea fishing excursions are common.

1. La Bufadora

For the adventurous and nature buffs, La Bufadora is a marine geyser on the Punta Banda Peninsula, 21 miles south from the city of Ensenada.

La Bufadora is one of the largest marine geysers in the world and the most interesting tourist attraction in Ensenada. The blowhole spouts out sea water as a result of air being trapped within sea caves.

Due to the internal pressure, an explosion of air and water occurs wherein the water shoots upwards and then recedes.

The phenomena repeats every minute or so, creating a thunderous noise and often shooting upwards more than 100 feet.

Apart from the excitement of the blowhole, La Bufadora also offers beautiful views of the coastline of Ensenada. Several local shops selling handcrafts and other souvenir trinkets are also close by.

Cruise ship shore excursions to La Bufadora are common. One tour operator charged $46 for a four-hour guided tour that include both La Bufadora and other nearby sites.

2. Gray Whale Watching

Normally, during the winter and spring, great gray whales make their way to warmer waters to give birth to their calves. During this time, the oceans of Ensenada are filled with these wonderful giants of the sea.

This creates a wonderful opportunity for sightseeing. There are guided tours on boats sailing from the port of Ensenada to the open sea outside the Todos Santos Bay.

During the trip, knowledgeable guides often inform tourist of the ecological setup of the environs in addition to watching the wales as well as sea lions, dolphins, and gannets.

3. The Vineyard

Popularly known as wine country, Ensenada boasts a wide selection of wineries. Cruise lines and tour operators commonly offer many varieties of shore excursions to visit them.

The wine growing region of Ensenada lies within the valleys of San Vincente, Santo Tomas and Guadalupe. At present, more than 90 percent of Mexico’s wines are produced there.

Several wine vineyards are located within the area including Three Woman Winery, La Casa Vieja, L.A. Cetto and ol de Media Noche.

Some cruise excursions include both wineries and other activities such as La Bufadora or a gourmet lunch. One operator has a wine country ATV tour. Prices often range from $50 to $100 per person.

4. Avenida Lopez Mateos

Avenida Lopez Mateos is the main tourist street of Ensenada. The street is about one kilometer long (between Avenida Ruiz and Avenida Blancarte) with a variety of shops and other places of interest.

Several streets also branch off the main featuring various variety shops, restaurants, etc. Trinkets to be bought in the area include crafts, postcards, beach gear and t-shirts to paintings.

Since this is the main tourist zone, one can expect higher prices here, however it’s extremely hassle free and laid back. Visitors also will find the largest selection of goods in the city here. Additionally, prices are fairly uniform across the various stores.

5. Laguna Hanson

Laguna Hanson is a rather laid back area for those looking to relax and kick back in seclusion and surrounded by nature.

Laguna is en route to San Felipe via Highway 3, one of northern Baja’s prime camping & wilderness areas. Campers find themselves among the pines by the lake’s edge. Activities often include hiking, fishing and simply having fun camping out.

An appealing area with multilayered vitality, Ensenada is a great destination for travelers looking to leave home and not travel too far. As the bustling port consumes the entire waterfront, so will it consume travelers with an amazing time.

6. Zipline Tours

Las Cañadas Campamento is a campground and water park about 30 minutes south of Ensenada town center.

The park has five hanging bridges and five ziplines. Two of the ziplines are more than 1,300 feet long with speeds up to 25 miles per hour. The excursion lasts about one hour.

Prices start at about $30. Some tour operators combine the zipline park with visits to La Bufadora. Prices start at about $65. They last about five hours.