Northern Baja California (Mexico)

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After a warm night at a campsite near the Mexican border, we woke up with mixed feelings in the morning. We will leave many acquaintances. After six months we found ourselves along well in the US. The shopping was slow routine. We knew what tasted good and the prices were comparable. We had get a feel for where you can safely sleep, how many kilometers driven, we can expect us and got used to the good road conditions. The language went us liquid lips and contact with the people to take was playful. Within an hour all should be different. We looked forward to the new adventures but had concerns. What is the security situation? What food will taste good? How will our car master the streets? Can we communicate with people at all? Will we find a safe place to sleep? Many people in the US have warned us of an onward journey to Mexico. But we also have many great reports and belongs to the expensive and crowded time in Southern California, our longing for the simple and more solitary life was huge.

The first impression ..

Once in Tecate, a small border crossing to Mexico, we took care of the first to a car insurance for our motorhome. And so, from now begins the more favorable part of our trip. A liability insurance including collision and theft coverage cost us only a tenth of the insurance for the USA. The conclusion was quick and easy, as is the exchange of the first dollars in Mexican pesos. It continued across the border. A quick glance of a customs official in our motorhome and we were in Mexico. Nobody wanted to see our passport.We were just in the country. But to have correct everything we looked for in the narrow glad to get a parking space at our Visa streets. We filled in cute officials of the Immigration our form for the tourist card, paid the visa fees of about $ 20 per person on payment switch and are now the proud owners of the tourist map with a residence permit of six months. We wanted to also have an exit stamp of the USA in our ball and went for the Immigration and Naturalization Service. But want to know anything. Here in Tecate they would not do such a thing. Well, then do not. Registered Cover with cool drinks and an ice we sailed the first kilometers on the Mexican side.

A well-paved road led us through hilly, arid landscape, interspersed by many vineyards along the Pacific side to Ensenada. The city had then no longer as much resemblance to the US cities. The houses were small, dilapidated or not ready built. On the road we saw again stalls where you could buy everything. The streets had more holes and yet, we liked it. We found a supermarket, brought money from the ATMs and covered us with food, because our fridge was empty because it was not clear what we would have everything to Mexico may import. We were delighted that we were able to buy long-life milk finally, what in the United States was simply not possible and had always taken a lot of space in our fridge. By the time we got used to the other foods and can also be found here our favorites.

Fidel’s paradise

The first night we stayed at a campsite near Ensenada seaside. It was the weekend and the place full to bursting, but this we saw only when we had already paid for the night. Like sardines in a can we squeeze us between the tents and cars of local campers and were looking forward to continue their journey in less crowded climes. The next morning we went further south, San Quintin was our next destination. We camped at Fidel`s Campground for $ 10 per night including electricity, water, hot shower, high speed internet and direct location on the beach. Five nights we spent here. Splashing in the water, dug in the sand, read books and let easy break from everyday life, new impressions bag and found the tranquility that we had missed in Southern California. The weather was terrific, daytime warm with a constant wind and night so cool that we were able to sleep well with duvet.

Vehicle Breakdown in desert Mexico’s

The other route then was more difficult than expected. Our next destination was Guerro Negro on the Pacific side. The path led through the hilly desert of the interior. It was very hot and the sun beat mercilessly on our car. We enjoyed the views of the cactus forests, yet our gaze was focused directed to the street. From Catavina the road was so bad that the bypassing of the huge potholes in a veritable obstacle course degenerated (and the whole of oncoming traffic). After about 20km, our right front caught a pothole and all warning lights our dashboard lit up. The hazard warning lights flashed constantly and the engine caused crash start. So, there we stood. The middle of nowhere, in the scorching sun at temperatures around 44 degrees Celsius. The engine does not let himself start again – there was nothing to be done, we were stuck and had no idea what the error message “FPS ON” it meant. And also in the manual, we found no evidence that! After a short time held a construction vehicle with construction workers. They tried to help us but we did not get on. We did not then know if and where our tow hoes was. And we had no tow rope here. Yes, here we still have potential for optimization. The construction workers drove 15km to the next junction, and arranged a towing service. This also arrived 40 minutes later. During this time, we found our tow hitch and were able to piece together after talks with other helpful motorists, what the problem was. Our car interpreted the sharp blow as accident and switched for safety reasons, the fuel pump.Our Fiat has the Fire Protection System (FPS) activated – therefore this error message. But without an internet connection we could not figure out where the Konstrukeure have installed the FPS counter in Italy simply. The tow truck came, tried to charge us, which was not possible due to our deep front apron. Thus we were afterwards dragged hanging on a steel chain. In the workshop (with more scrap than cure Cars) took the young mechanic on the Internet out quickly where the reset button was. After a short time our car was ready to drive again and we now know to help themselves. If necessary we can resolve such a problem the next time you. In addition, we are now equipped with a tow rope, which we now that we have probably no longer need.

For us today, the inclination had to drive. We went to a small fishing village and introduced us to the beach to sleep there. The security that guarded the currently under construction ends harbor greeted us warmly and signaled to us that we can sleep safely in its bay. So we slept quiet and safe and the children discover the many fish skeletons on the beach the next morning and were pleased with all of their finds. The next night we stayed in Guerro Negro with very warm temperatures. We covered us with cash and filled our fridge on again. Because at the moment no gray whales were seen there was nothing more to be discovered and we drove to San Ignacio for us here. Here is located in the desert an oasis with palm trees and a large freshwater lake. We visited the old mission church in just a few children were rehearsing dances for the evening feast. On the large forecourt there were several booths for the festival. The children could paint beautiful pictures and we adults tried the local delicacies. Next we drove to Santa Rosalia, whose beauty we could not somehow find really. We spent the night on a beautiful bay on a campsite. But the night was beyond hot and humid. Out of sheer mosquitoes we took refuge in our motor home and closed all the insect screen. There was no wind and Heike had almost suffocating. As nice as the bay was, here we did not stay. The next morning we bought a cooling fan. We wondered self-critical: “Is this the highly acclaimed Baja California?” It was just us too hot and the places and spaces also did not keep what they promised. But what the hell, we want in the south of the island, because there is the ferry to the mainland.

New brake shoes for our Carthago

Then we arrived in Loreto. There was everything our heart desired. There was a nice beach promenade, a small cozy Old Town and a nice selection of beautiful restaurants. We enjoyed three nights here with our new fan did good service. We ate delicious Mexican dishes (for less money) and refreshed ourselves with homemade ice cream. Emergency Moderately sought Stefan on a small car repair shop, as our front brakes gave loud scratching noises. The mechanics were very helpful, assembled from our front wheels and the brake pads were divided almost in their hands. Of course, there were no Fiat-original parts and yet all knew that we could not continue with these brake pads. Without further ado, the wife of the mechanic was sent to the next car parts store. She came back with two different products. One of the products fit perfectly and was built immediately. Because, unfortunately, our brake discs have also suffered somewhat, they were still (old school) smoothly rotated on the lathe and the brakes working properly again. During this time Heike wanted to spend with the kids on the beach a few nice hours. What after dip in the sea water, however, a quick end found. Jala came splashing with alluvial small jellyfish in touch. Long threads glued on to her feet and led to painful burns. After consultation with the locals, we knew that it was painful but not dangerous though.

Scorpion Bay .. the best surfing beach in the world

The campsite operator then gave us a tip, what beach we should definitely visit. Here the weather is very pleasant and the wave-class surfing. But we found on any of our maps is a paved road to San Juanico. For such a long distance off the RV was not actually made. But the good lady assured us there would be a new paved road. With fully stocked fridge, we made our way 180km in the Pampa. At the official turnoff to San Juanico we stood amidst a stone slope in front of a small river, because there was to go through. That could not be the right way. With hands and feet we inquired with the local people for directions. A nice woman sent us some branches back where we actually found a paved road to San Juanico. So we reached a great surfing beach with the longest waves in the world. We asked the owner of the small beach if we could camp out with them on the cliff and they agreed. We quickly learned the American families who spent their summer here and know some emigrants. Noam befriended Ryan and the two usually spent the entire day with their surfboards in the water. Noam fished here his first fish and decided after he had watched as Stefan had excluded this to kill any other fish, as the latter are so hopeless. Thankfully, we are spared further killings. Six nights we were in San Juanico, enjoyed the beach, the clear water, the great waves, the many nice conversations and doing nothing. There was nothing except for a small corner shop, we were not tempted to spend the money. What a cheap week! Sadly we parted after this week of Ryan and his family. Noam had to say goodbye to his new friend, because Ryan was on his way home to the US, where on Monday went off to school. Our joy of Baja California is back. Loreto has voted us conciliatory, our cooling fan can no longer shy away from the hot nights and a week in San Juanico holidays were pur us. Now we will look at what the South has to offer! We’re glad! And yes, we feel very safe here in Mexico on the Baja California.